Countertop Makeovers: Options That Make You Forget Granite
Everyone knows that granite kitchen countertops are a great product and the residential use has skyrocketed in recent years. Most people who are indicating remodeling their kitchens want to replace their existing countertops with granite material.
It’s an ideal material for kitchen countertops because of its good looks, durability and longevity. It’s also used for table tops and floors because it can handle heavily used areas.
But, there are a multitude of other countertop options available to consider when planning a kitchen makeover remodel.
Quartz countertops choices can either be engineered stone, (made through a manufacturing process) or quarried slabs. Engineered stone is mixed with ground natural quartz and polymer resins. This mixture results in a natural looking, super hard, low-maintenance product that is available in a wide range of different colors. It’s resistant to heat but you wouldn’t want to directly place a hot pan on it and it is resistant to scratching but it can still be scratched.
Wood surfaces for countertops are making a comeback, due to their popularity, durability and style. Add great interest to your kitchen make over by using contrasting materials for perimeter counters is one idea.
The most common type of wood countertop material is butcher block. They can be crafted from a variety of different woods ranging from bamboo to zebra wood. The maintenance of real wood countertops consists of oiling them periodically to keep them from drying out. And the good part of having a wood countertop is that the more you use them it gives them a charming patina.
Marble is another option besides granite. This material is softer than granite which means it can be stained and scratched more easily. Some folks like the patina that gives the marble a nice, warm aged look. This look is not for everyone so be sure you know how marble wears before you make this choice for a countertop.
If you are looking for a smooth, natural stone then soapstone may be the choice for you. It comes in a matte finish and in hues of soft grey to charcoal. This material is heat resistant and is one of the only natural surfaces that is not affected by acidy liquids like orange juice and coffee. They won’t leave a stain and they are also heat resistant. Soapstone may be cleaned with mineral oils which can be used to enhance the natural beauty of the stone.
Concrete counters are more popular than ever due to new stain and colorizing techniques. Beautiful concrete counters can be created in any size, color and shape by a truly skilled craftsmen. Pieces of tile, stones or even silicone chips can be embedded to the mix to create a piece of art. The result is a countertop that is heat and scratch resistant as well as durable and beautiful, however, this type of countertop can be very heavy and is susceptible to damage from acidic liquids and regular maintenance is a must. To resist stains this type of countertop should be sealed on a regular basis.
If you’re looking for a hygienic type of counter you may be interested in glass. This type of counter can endure high heat without scorching or cracking and they don’t stain since they’re non-porous.
The glass is tempered, edge banding or a polished square edge finishing is usually recommended. Glass countertops are typically ¾ to 1 ¼ inches thick. Due to the transparent nature of glass, under-mount sinks are not recommended.
Because stainless steel countertops complement many of today’s appliances, this countertop choice can be found in any kitchen style, from traditional to contemporary. It is heat and stain resistant but is susceptible to scratches and dents. There are others types of metal countertops to consider also, copper, pewter or zinc.
Corian is considered a solid surface material which looks a lot like real stone, however, they are generally less expensive and require a lot less maintenance. One of the advantages of solid-surface materials is that they can be created with virtually no seams. It’s a great benefit in terms of cleaning and appearance but be aware they can be scorched and scratched.
Whatever your choice or budget be sure to investigate the type of countertop that suits you and your family’s needs.