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DIY Concrete Countertops – A Bad Idea

Concrete has recently become one of the most popular countertop materials. It is incredibly versatile and very durable. These countertops can be customized to your exact specifications, when it comes to shape, color, and design.

However, making your own concrete countertops can be a challenging process. Before you begin, it’s important to understand the full scope of the project.

1. It’s labor intensive.

Pouring the concrete is just one of many steps. You will also need to:
- Create templates
- Build your own custom forms (or molds)
- Measure and measure again
- Make sure the molds are properly sealed
- Rent a concrete mixer from the local hardware store
- Pour the concrete
- Wait for the concrete to dry and cure
- Break the molds
- Grind and polish your surface
- Apply the appropriate sealer

2. You could end up in the emergency room.

You may need to use a number of power tools throughout the project. DIY beginners should exercise caution when working with new tools. If not, injuries are more likely to occur. Every year, over 10,000 end up in the emergency room with injuries related to the use of a circular saw. Over 5,000 people are injured while using a power drill.

3. It may require some heavy lifting.

Just getting the 50 lb. bags of concrete home from the store can be big hassle. If you are not pouring the countertops in place, moving the countertop pieces to their permanent home can be a very difficult task. Lifting without the proper technique can cause while using a power drill. You will need to enlist the help of a few friends. Don’t try to move the slabs yourself!

4. Concrete is unforgiving.

Getting the measurements right is key! If you make your countertop slab too small, it may not fit properly in your kitchen or bathroom. Once the concrete has cured, there will not be an opportunity to change it. You will have to live with the imperfections or you will have to start from scratch.

5. Is your concrete mix right?

Getting the concrete mix right can be a tricky process, even for contractors with years of experience. If the consistency is not right, the concrete may fail prematurely. Hours and hours of hard work will have gone to waste.

6. Customizing your counters may be challenging.

Customization is one of the best things about concrete countertops. However, with limited experience, the options may be overwhelming. If you have to make multiple batches of concrete, the amount of dye and aggregate used in each one must be precise. If not, the second slab may end up looking completely different than the first.

7. You will need to make a serious time commitment.

From start to finish, you project will require at least a few weeks of your time. This is not a weekend project. Waiting for the concrete to cure typically takes a week at the very least. Do you really have the time to do this? By hiring a pro, you can keep most of the mess out of your home and save a lot of time. The counters can be fabricated offsite, then delivered and installed when it’s convenient for you.

8. There’s no guarantee.

When you do it yourself, there’s no satisfaction guarantee. If you hire a licensed professional, they may offer a warranty on the workmanship. If the concrete develops cracks over time, they may return to your home or business to repair issues. Make sure to get the details of the warranty in writing (if you decide to hire a concrete contractor).

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About the Author

ProMatcher Staff, ProMatcher
Orlando, FL 32803

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