How to Cut a Laminate Countertop with Backsplash

Planning the Cuts

Before making any cuts, you’ll need to carefully measure and mark where the countertop needs to be cut to fit your space. Keep these tips in mind:

  • Use a framing square and pencil to mark straight cut lines. Make sure your lines extend 1/2 inch onto the backsplash.
  • For curved or irregular cuts, make a template out of cardboard or poster board. Trace the template onto the countertop.
  • Plan how the seams will look. Try to make cuts along the backsplash walls or at sink cutouts. Avoid seams in open counter spaces.
  • Double check all measurements before cutting to avoid mistakes.

Tools Needed

Cutting a laminate countertop requires specialized power tools:

  • Circular saw with a fine-tooth blade for straight cuts
  • Jigsaw with a fine-tooth blade for curves and irregular shapes
  • Router with a flush trim bit for trimming edges
  • Safety gear like goggles, ear protection, gloves and a dust mask
  • Clamps to secure the countertop during cutting

Cutting the Countertop

Follow these steps for smooth, precise cuts:

1. Use painter’s tape along the cut lines

The tape helps prevent chip-out along the cut edge. Apply several layers of tape along the entire cut line.

2. Clamp a straightedge guide parallel to the cut

For straight cuts, align a straight piece of wood along the cut line before clamping. This gives the circular saw guide to follow.

3. Make the top-side cuts using a circular saw

Set the blade depth to just above the thickness of the countertop. Make several light passes along the cut rather than one aggressive pass.

4. Flip over the countertop and repeat

Carefully align the straightedge again and make the bottom-side cuts. The two cuts should meet neatly in the middle.

5. Use a jigsaw for curved and irregular cuts

Clamp the countertop securely and cut along the template lines with a jigsaw using a fine blade. Take it slowly on the curves.

6. Trim the edges with a router

Use a router with a flush trim bit to trim and smooth all cut edges. Cut any rounded corners or edges needed with the router as well.

Finishing the Cuts

The final steps involve sealing and securing the separated countertop pieces:

  • Sand any rough edges smooth, working up to 220 grit sandpaper.
  • Seal the exposed laminate edges using laminate edge sealer. Apply 2-3 coats.
  • Drill pilot holes and use screws to secure the countertop sections to the cabinet. Screws should be at least 1 inch from cut edges.
  • If joining two countertop pieces, apply adhesive to the seams and join using spring clamps until the adhesive dries.
  • Clean up any laminate chips, adhesive or debris using denatured alcohol on a rag.

With care and the proper tools, laminate countertops with backsplashes can be modified to fit your unique kitchen layout and look seamless. Take time to measure twice and cut once for the cleanest results.

FAQ About Cutting Laminate Countertops with Backsplashes

How can I cut a straight line across my countertop?

Use a circular saw and straightedge clamped parallel to your marked cut line. Make several light passes rather than one deep cut. Always cut from the top surface first before flipping to cut from underneath.

What blade should I use with a jigsaw to cut curves?

A fine-toothed jigsaw blade with 10-12 teeth per inch is ideal for cleanly cutting curves and shapes in laminates. Take it slowly and steady to avoid chip-out.

Do I need a special bit to trim laminate edges with a router?

Yes, use a flush trim bit or laminate trimmer bit. These have ball bearings that ride along the top surface for a perfectly trimmed edge. Never use a standard router bit.

Should I seal the cut edges of the countertop?

Definitely seal all exposed laminate edges after cutting, especially along seams. An acrylic laminate edge sealer prevents moisture from penetrating the substrate. Apply 2-3 coats.

How can I join two countertop pieces together neatly?

After cutting precisely, sand the edges, apply adhesive to the seams, and clamp together tightly. Clean up any drips right away and let cure fully before removing clamps.

What’s the best way to cut sink or stove cutouts?

Use a jigsaw to cut the inside curves and corners of cutouts. Clamp guides help keep the blade steady. Finish edges with a router and flush trim bit for a factory look.


Cutting a laminate countertop with an attached backsplash requires careful planning, the right tools, and taking it slowly. Following the proper steps will lead to clean, precision results. Always measure twice before making any cuts. Seal edges and secure pieces firmly. With some patience, you can achieve a seamless custom installation that looks professionally done.