How to Remove Scratches from Plastic Cutting Boards?

If you’ve been looking to learn how to remove scratches from plastic cutting boards in the comfort of your home, we have you covered!

Plastic cutting boards are awesome-they’re affordable, versatile, and easy to clean. Yet, they’re not perfect.

With use and time, plastic (polyethylene) boards tend to worsen. Eventually, they become an unpleasant and unhygienic surface. This elevates the risk of cross-contamination and foodborne illnesses.

These boards can become ragged due to all the food stains, cut marks, etc.

But, not all is lost if you notice your plastic cutting board is out of shape. In fact, there are several ways you can restore its glory.

One of the most popular is sanding. This method will save you money and time in the long run.

Why Do Plastic Cutting Boards Develop Scratches?

Though they’re a popular choice due to their non-porous surface, as time goes by, plastic cutting boards develop scratches.

These scratches and indentations develop from improper knife use. But, even if you’re doing it perfectly, they will eventually appear.

Wood is also known to sustain scratches, but these aren’t usually as deep as those on plastic. What’s more, some wooden boards are superior due to their hard-wearing and self-healing abilities.

On the other hand, plastic doesn’t have the capacity to self-heal. The worn-out plastic with cracks and scratches becomes the ideal breeding ground for bacteria.

This is why it’s important to resurface the board and thus, remove these scratches.

In this way, you restore the cutting board and prevent bacteria and foodborne diseases. Some of the most effective disinfecting options are bleach, hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, and white vinegar.

Is a Plastic Cutting Board with Scratches for the Trashcan?

No, not necessarily!

Thanks to methods like sanding, plastic cutting boards can be refreshed and may not yet be ready for the trashcan or for recycling.

Daily use of plastic cutting boards will eventually result in various cracks and scratches. They’ll make the board look unsightly and unhygienic.

Regular cleaning with warm water and dish soap is highly recommendable. Also, running it on a hot cycle in the dishwasher, and occasional deep cleaning of plastic cutting boards is pivotal.

This will help remove stubborn stains and improve the board’s condition.

How to Remove Scratches from Plastic Cutting Boards?

Before tossing the board in the trashcan or recycling it, try to restore it. You can do this by sanding the board.

Interestingly, wood isn’t the only material that can be sanded. The key is to be gentle while doing this and avoid the heavier types of sandpaper.

Once you resand the board, it will look like new and it will be ready for use.

By sanding plastic cutting boards, you won’t need to invest in a new one every time its looks start to diminish.

Why Is Sanding Beneficial & How to Sand Plastic Cutting Boards at Home?

Did you know that by sanding a cutting surface like a plastic cutting board, you refine the surface and prolong its duration? We usually discard plastic boards when it starts staining, releasing odd smells, or if it has plenty of deep cuts that can’t be fixed.

This may also happen due to improper cleaning and disinfection so make sure you’re caring for your cutting boards the right way.

Replace boards when your sponge or rag starts to catch on the scratches. Or, try sanding it!

This may help solve the scars and stains and give your boards a new chance. To sand a plastic cutting board, you need sandpaper that is 25 grit through 80 grit.

You’ll need to clean the board and dry it well first. You’ll also need a sponge, sander or elbow grease, gloves, eye protection, dish soap, and protective eyewear. After cleaning the board with bleach and in the dishwasher, you can go on to the next step, i.e., the sanding.

With an orbital sander and a lower number of coarse sandpaper, sand off the stains and scars. Gradually, move to the finer grit (a higher number) and sand until you feel that the surface has become smooth.

Never leave any scars untreated; this is ideal for bacteria to thrive! Once the board is smooth, rinse it off and clean it well to remove all flakes.

How Often Should You Sand Plastic Cutting Boards?

Sand your plastic cutting boards once you notice they’re not getting cleaner with handwashing, bleach, or other cleaning methods.

Or, do it if it has too many and too deep scars. The time between sanding usually depends on how frequently the board is being used and with what types of knives.

If your plastic cutting boards have a lot of deeper scars, sand or replace them. Otherwise, there’s a higher risk of cross-contamination and foodborne illnesses!

Plastic cutting boards aren’t the only cutting boards you can sand and restore! In fact, most of the other options, besides glass, can be sanded.

Final Thoughts

You can remove scratches from plastic cutting boards by cleaning and disinfecting them regularly and by sanding them. Sanding requires only a couple of tools and it’s easily done at home.

By doing this, you won’t need to invest in a new board once the old one starts looking grisly. In addition to sanding as a way of removing scratches from plastic cutting boards, proper care for your plastic cutting boards is a must.

This helps reduce cross-contamination and minimizes the ability of bacteria to thrive. In this way, you’re optimizing the safety of the food you and your family and friends consume!

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