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Click on any Frequently Asked Question about Boos Countertops to see the answer.

1.   Which types of Boos wood countertops are available? In which grain styles?

2.   What are Commercial and Industrial-grade countertops?

3.   Which sizes of butcherblock counter and island tops are available from Boos? Can I order custom-sized countertops?

4.   What's the difference between Varnique semi-gloss and natural oil finishes?

5.   Can I order a Boos countertop or kitchen island top unfinished and stain it myself?

6.   What edge styles are available?

7.   Can I order a butcher block backsplash too?

8.   Will the “Boos Block” logo appear on the edge of my countertop?

9.   How will my Boos countertop be delivered? Will I need assistance getting it off the truck?

10. Can I install my new Boos countertop myself? Are installation instructions included?

11. Are there any restrictions on where I can install a butcher block countertop?

12. Can I put a butcherblock counter above a dishwasher or oven?

13. Can I cut a hole in my countertop for a sink or appliance?

14. What support do I need to extend a counter for use as a breakfast bar?

15. What are the ideal temperature and humidity for wood countertops?

16. How long will it take to receive my Boos countertop?

17. What is the warranty on Boos counter and island tops?

Answers to Boos Countertop FAQs:

Which types of wood countertops are available? In which grain styles?

Boos offers hardwood countertops in maple, cherry, oak and walnut.


maple countertop questions

cherry countertop

oak countertop

walnut countertop

They're available in three different grain styles: edge-grain, end-grain and blended (aka, finger-jointed edge-grain). It might be worthwhile to read more about the differences in grain styles.

Edge-Grain End-Grain


edge grain style end-grain style blended grain style

What are Boos Commercial and Boos Industrial-grade countertops?

Both types come in blended maple only and in select thicknesses. They tend to show more color variation than do our residential maple counters.  Commercial tops are manufactured to NSF specifications, making them suitable for food service applications.  Industrial-grade countertops are fine for home workshops and manufacturing plants. They might show knots and other imperfections.

What sizes are available? Can I order custom Boos countertops?

Boos makes a wide range of standard-size butcher block counter and island tops in thicknesses ranging from 1.5” up to 7”. You can preview all species and grain style combinations and standard-size offerings to see if a standard size will fit. If a standard size won't get the job done, you can secure an instant custom price quote online in four easy steps. If you’re not ready to order, you can simply save your price quote and reference its ID number at a later time in order to complete your purchase.

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What's the difference between Boos' Varnique semi-gloss and natural oil finishes?

Natural oil is the standard finish for all countertops. Specifically, Boos Board Cream is applied. It contains mineral oil, which penetrates and moisturizes the wood, and natural beeswax, which leaves a protective, silky barrier.

An alternative finish – Varnique semi-gloss varnish – is available on many of the countertops Boos makes. Varnique provides the look of fine furniture and requires little maintenance, however it is not meant to cut upon. You might want more info about natural oil vs. a Varnique finish.

Can I order an unfinished Boos countertop? Can I stain it myself?

Natural oil is the standard finish for all countertops. Specifically, Boos Board Cream is applied. It contains mineral oil, which penetrates and moisturizes the wood, and natural beeswax, which leaves a protective, silky barrier. Yes, you can order an unfinished Boos countertop, however, unfinished counter tops are neither warrantied or returnable. Policy is such because butcher block is not fully protected until it’s finished with natural oil or Varnique semi-gloss varnish.

Most stains for wood are not food-safe. If you do not intend to prepare food directly on the wood surface, certainly you can choose to stain your counter yourself. Because Appalachian Red Oak is not a tight-grain wood, it absorbs wood stain fairly well. 

What countertop edge styles are available?

End-grain counters cannot be customized. Their standard edging is ¼” radius, top only. The standard edge style on edge-grain and blended-grain counter tops is “slightly eased, top only." In other words, the top corner is very lightly sanded so nearly square, but with a very soft bevel. Four custom edge styles are available for edge and blended-grain tops: radius edge, beveled edge, bullnose edge and Roman Ogee edge. You can view Custom Countertop Edge Specs or visit our Custom Calculator to order a counter or island top with a custom edge.

Boos countertop edge images

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Can I order a backsplash for my countertop?

Yes. Face-grain style backsplashes are available in each wood species: maple, cherry, oak and walnut. They are ¾” thick and 4” tall. You can add a standard-length backsplash to any countertop order. If you're ordering a custom size Boos countertop via our Custom Calculator you can also specify a custom length for your backsplash.

Will the “Boos Block” logo appear on the edge(s) of my countertop?

If you request the Boos Block logo imprint on your countertop, here's where it will appear, unless you specify otherwise.

On End-Grain countertops, Boos centers their logo on both long sides (vertical edges) of the countertop.

On Edge-Grain or Blended countertops, Boos places their logo on both long sides, approximately 2 inches in from the left edge of the counter.

Boos Block logo

If you wish to deviate from default logo placement, during checkout include specific instructions in the Comments box. Indicate approximately where on the countertop's edge(s) you want the Boos logo to appear.

Are these countertops shipped via UPS or a freight carrier?
If via Freight, will the truck driver help offload the top?

Smaller sizes ship via UPS. Large/heavy countertops ship via freight carriers, whose trucks are equipped with liftgates used to offload goods. If you will require assistance getting your countertop off the truck, consider adding Curbside Liftgate service to your order.

pallet on truck liftgate pallet on liftgate lowered to ground

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Can I install my new countertop myself? Are installation instructions included?

Installation is fairly simple and we include a link to them in the Butcher Block Co. Help Center. Note it's best to install these countertops over base cabinet framing. They should not be glued down as this might hinder the natural expansion and contraction of the wood.

Are there any restrictions on where I can install butcher block countertops?

Ensure adequate air movement around your countertop so that moisture cannot build up in the wood. For example, you should not attach your counter top on a solid underlayment such as particle board. If installing butcher block next to a brick wall, you should apply a moisture barrier between the brick and wood, or leave a small gap between the materials to prevent the transfer of moisture to the wood.

Can I put my butcher block counter above a dishwasher or oven?

You can place butcher block above a dishwasher or an oven. Just make sure the appliance is properly insulated so that heat will not transfer from the appliance to the butcher block.

Can holes be cut in these counters to accommodate drop-in sinks or stoves?

First, note that cutting or drilling into any countertop will void the manufacturer’s warranty. If you would like a factory-cut hole for a drop-in sink or stove, please call us. You will need to supply detailed drawings.

An experienced carpenter should be able to execute a cut-out for you without difficulty, although this will void the warranty. Also note that metal fasteners are used in blended-grain countertops to add structural strength, and in edge-grain counters over 96 inches long.

Under no circumstances does Boos recommend cut-outs in end-grain or commercial-grade counter tops, nor under-mounting sinks in any style of butcher block countertop.

I intend to use my countertop as a breakfast bar. What do I need to know about designing a cantilevered counter?

If your edge or blended-grain butcher block counter is installed so that the overhang runs along the length of the piece, parallel to the wood rails, the maximum allowed overhang without additional supports is 8". If your overhang will be more than 8", it must be supported by brackets underneath. If your counter is installed so that the overhang runs perpendicular to the direction of the wood rails, the maximum allowed overhang is 12". Any overhang greater than 12" must be stabilized underneath by brackets.

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What are the ideal temperature and humidity for maintaining a countertop’s beauty and integrity?

The level of moisture in a wood countertop is continuously adjusting, based on changes in ambient conditions. Equilibrium moisture content (EMC) is the level at which wood no longer gains from or loses moisture to the atmosphere. Before crafting hardwood into an island or counter top, John Boos kiln-dries the wood to bring it to a moisture-content level close to that which it will likely experience while in service – about 7.6%.

In order to minimize expansion and contraction of your new butcher block counters, you must:
1) Allow 72 hours for your butcher block to acclimate to its new environment prior to installing it; and
2) Monitor and adjust temperature and humidity so they are within these acceptable ranges:

  • temperature should always be within the range of 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit\; and 
  • relative humidity should always be within the range of 30% to 50%.

The accompanying table shows the equilibrium moisture content level toward which wood will naturally creep, depending upon relative humidity and air temperature. Keep in mind that Boos shoots for 7.6% moisture content out of the kiln.

Remember that depending upon your locale, it’s often necessary to humidify air during winter months and to dehumidify air during summer months in order to maintain environmental conditions that are optimal for your butcher block counters.

countertop temperature and humidity guidelines

How long will it take to get my countertop?

All our butcher block counters are built to order. Since new orders must be fit into a complex production schedule, normal lead time is approximately 4 weeks.

What is the warranty on these countertops?

All of these John Boos butcher block counters come with a one-year warranty against defects in material and workmanship. The warranty does not apply to damage caused by neglect or regular wear and tear. If you make any alterations to the block you will void the warranty. Butcher blocks that are special-ordered to ship "unfinished” are not warrantied in any way, since boards unprotected with either a natural oil or Varnique finish are at risk.

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