Use and Care of Butcher Block Tops

Butcher Blocks are made from real wood. Wood is a natural material that responds to changes in temperature and humidity. These changes set up tremendous internal forces in the block. Their shape and dimensions will change with the seasons. If warping or edge cracking appears it is related to uneven changes in temperature or humidity. Keep your block dry, away from heat and allow it to dry evenly. Regular oiling helps to prevent these problems because it keeps water from entering the board. Sometimes this finish will give the impression that the block is wet, the top is ready to use.

By following a few easy usage rules and maintenance steps, the life of a butcher block is almost unlimited:

Problems and How to Fix

Problem Cause Solution
Edge Cracks and Splits Excessive dryness from lack of oir or exposure to heat Small splits in the end grain can be expected. Most of the time this is only a cosmetic condition and needs no attention. But if you want to fill the splits, use a good wood filler. After filling the split, let the filler dry, then sand off any excess and re-oil.
Warping Imbalance of moisture content between top and bottom Apply oil liberally to concave side. If not corrected within 2 weeks, tape plastic to the convex sid and oil the reverse side every day. Top will adjust to new humidity.
Stains Allowing food t oremain on the top too long Use lightweight sandpaper on stain and re-oil. stain will dissipate into the wood grain over time.
Gouges, Dents External influences Simply sand out imperfections and re-oil.
Dark Streaks in Wood Natural color of wood No repair is needed - cherish the individuality of your butcher block!
Oil Residue Build-up of excess oil Clean excess with mineral spirits and then wash with soap water and dry.