Hey there! Thinking about giving your kitchen a little makeover or maybe popping in new countertops?
Well, measuring your kitchen countertops accurately is the very first step!
Whether it’s for a complete overhaul or just a quick refresh, getting those numbers right is crucial.
You need to have the exact measurements for your countertop materials.
An incorrect measurement could lead to wasted materials, increased costs, and a lot of unnecessary headaches.
But worry not, I am here to guide you step by step, ensuring you get it right the first time.
In this guide “Countertop Measurement”, I will cover this step by step process. You will also learn how to calculate the square footage.
Let’s get started ……
This post is about Countertop Measurement
This is what I will cover :
Understanding the Basics of Countertop Measurements
Before getting into the measurement process, it’s important to understand the components of a countertop. This includes the length, depth, and backsplash.
Length: This represents the longest side of the countertop.
Depth: Often referred to as the measurement from the wall to the edge of the countertop.
Backsplash: This is an optional vertical extension to a countertop, often used to protect the wall from splashes.
Why Proper Measurement is Crucial
You know what they say, right? “Measure twice, cut once.”
Proper measurements ensure that your kitchen renovation runs smoothly.
It guarantees the fit and finish you dream of, avoiding expensive mistakes.
Mistakes to Avoid
Speaking of mistakes, we’ve all been there. Skipping a corner, or misreading a tape measure can lead to inaccurate measurements.
Always double-check your work and avoid assumptions.
Tools You’ll Need
Here are the basic necessary tools that you you need:
Measuring Tape: A flexible, retractable tape measure will offer the most precise measurements.
Graph Paper/ plain paper : Useful for sketching out your countertop’s layout and noting down measurements.
Pencil or Pen: To record measurements.
Straightedge or Ruler: To ensure straight lines when drawing.
Follow these simple steps for taking correct measurements.
Preparing the Surface
Clearing the Area – First things first.
Empty the countertops. Remove any appliances, dishes, or other items. You need a clear space to work in.
Start With a Rough Sketch
Begin by drawing a rough sketch of your kitchen layout on the graph paper.
It doesn’t need to be perfect but should represent the shape of your countertop area.
Measure the Length and Width
Length :Using your tape measure, measure from one end of the countertop to the other. Make sure the tape is straight.
Depth :Measure from the back wall to the front edges of the countertop.
What’s the standard countertop Depth?
You know, there’s a typical depth for countertops, right?
It’s kind of like how there’s a standard shoe size, but not everyone’s foot fits that.
Most kitchen countertops have a standard depth of about 24 to 25 inches.
But, of course, variations can happen based on design and preference.
For L-shaped or U-shaped kitchens, measure each section separately.
Islands or peninsulas may have curved or diagonal sections – It is a good idea to break them down into smaller rectangular sections when measuring.
Sometimes, countertops like to stick out a bit beyond the cabinets underneath – that’s called an overhang.
If yours has one, you’ll want to measure how much it sticks out.
This is essential, especially if you’re thinking of adding stools or need to consider walking space.
Account for the Backsplash
If your design includes backsplash areas, add its height to your measurements. Typically, a backsplash is about 4 to 6 inches high.
Note the Sink, Appliances, and Other Cutouts
Clearly mark the location of your sink, appliances, or any other cutouts. This is crucial for ensuring a perfect fit during installation.
Remember, there are spots you won’t be covering – like where your sink or cooktop areas where stove goes.
For those cutouts and appliance areas, measure their square footage just like you’d measure any space.
Then, subtract that number from your total. Voila! You get the actual coverage area.
Tips to Ensure Precise Measurements
Keep in mind these following tips :
Always Round Up to the nearest inch : It’s better to have more material than less.
Sketch as You Go: A visual representation is invaluable.
Get a Second Opinion: Sometimes, two pairs of eyes are better than one
Write all your measurements on the paper that you used to draw your counter surfaces.
Watch the Video
Here is a good video to watch by Granite & marble specialities.
How to calculate the estimated square footage needed (Countertop Calculator)
Here is a simple formula you can use to calculate accurate measurements of the countertop space.
You need to multiply length x width of each section
This will give you the area of your countertops for that particular section.
For example, if your counter space has the following sizes:
Total countertop length = 117 inches
Depth of the countertop is 25.5″. (most of the base cabinets are 24″- mostly you need 1.5 to cover the drawers.)
Multiply length of the countertop with depth gives you an accurate estimate of the area..
Total area = 117″ x 25.5″ = 2983.50 square inches
To get the total square footage, divide this number by 144.
2983.50 / 144 = 20.71 Square feet (This is how much material you will need for the top of the countertop)
Use the same formula to calculate backsplash quantity.
Measuring a backsplash is a lot like measuring a mini wall. Here’s what you do:
Measure its height: That’s from the countertop to where the backsplash ends (be it midway or all the way up to the cabinets).
Measure its width: This is usually the length of the counter.
Generally backsplash is 4 to 6 inches high.
Height of backsplash x length of countertop
4 inches x 117 inches = 468 inches (area that needs backsplash)
468 / 144 = 3.25 Square feet ( This is how much you will need for the backsplash)
Always Good to Have a Little Extra
You know the saying, “Better safe than sorry”? That’s precisely why you should allocate some extra material.
Common Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
Those Tricky Wall Irregularities
The Mistake: Walls aren’t always as straight as they seem. Bumps, curves, and other irregularities can throw off your measurements.
The Fix: Always use a straightedge or a level when measuring. It can highlight any deviations in the wall. Also, taking measurements at multiple points, especially for longer countertops, can help ensure accuracy.
Overlooking the Overhang
The Mistake: Many people measure the cabinet’s size and forget that the countertop usually extends a bit further, known as the overhang.
The Fix: Decide on your desired overhang before measuring (typically 1 to 1.5 inches for standard counters).
Factor this into your measurements, especially if you’re thinking of adding stools or chairs underneath.
The Cutout Conundrum
The Mistake: Incorrect measurements for places where sinks, cooktops, or other built-ins will go can lead to gaps, overlaps, or worst-case scenario, a need to redo the entire countertop.
The Fix: Measure, then measure again! Always double-check your numbers.
If possible, use templates provided by the appliance or sink manufacturer. And remember to account for any fixtures or hardware.
Can I use a ruler instead of a measuring tape?
While possible, a measuring tape is more flexible and accurate for larger spaces.
How do I measure for a sink cut-out?
Measure the length and width of the sink, then add about half an inch on each side for leeway.
How do I calculate kitchen countertop dimensions if my countertop has an irregular shape?
Break it into smaller sections and measure each one, then sum them up.
How much extra material should I order?
It’s always good to have 10% extra to account for mistakes or future repairs.
Can I measure and install countertops myself?
While measuring is doable, installation, especially for materials like granite, might require professional help.
How much buffer space should I keep for cutouts?
Generally, an extra inch on each side suffices, but it’s good to consult with the countertop installation team.