Kitchen Countertop Options, Making the Best Choice for Your KitchenBy Ron Hilton
When selecting kitchen counter tops for your home, there are a lot of options to pick from, each with there own pluses and minuses. Each countertop material will vary widely based on it’s expensiveness and the amount of difficulty to produce it. This article lays out the many different choices of tops and lists the pros and cons of each.
Formica and Other Brands of Laminate
Laminate counter tops are a good value if your on a budget and are looking for a cheaper option. Laminate comes in hundreds of colors, as well as in real wood veneers and metals. In recent years, manufacturers have started to make laminates with textures as well, further increasing your choices of counter tops.
Laminates are fairly durable, though not as durable as most other kitchen counter top options. It is also vulnerable to water damage, if you have a seam to close to the sink or a roof leak.
Corian and Other Solid Surface Counter Tops
Solid surface countertops, which include brands such as Corian, Meganite, and Wilson Art are made of an acrylic or polyester resin. Solid surface counters come in a large variety of colors and patterns, many which mimic the look of natural stone. They are durable and resist water and staining. One great feature of solid surface countertops is that they can be made virtually seamless. Another plus, is that any small nicks and scratches can be buffed or sanded out, making your countertops look like new again. They can are susceptible to heat, so if you set a hot pan on them it could make a mark. Another drawback is that solid surface countertops aren’t cheap and nearly rival the price of marble.
Granite counter tops are the cream of the crop as counters go and will definitely help transform your kitchen into a thing of luxury. They come in many different colors and patterns and as they come from nature, every piece of stone is unique. Natural stone counters are durable and resist scratches and heat. One drawback to granite countertops is that granite is porous and needs to be sealed periodically. If unsealed, granite can harbor bacteria that can cause illness.
Quartz countertops are made from engineered stone and closely resembles natural stone. They have many of the same advantages of granite, without the disadvantage of needing to be sealed. Quartz is durable, resists scratches, and is resistant to heat.
Marble Counter Tops
Marble counters are beautiful and tend to come in a lot lighter colors than granite, but marble doesn’t come without its disadvantages. Marble countertops can be scratched fairly easily and prone to staining and damage from acids. Especially like those in fruit or red wine. Marble is widely available and many common types are much more affordable than quartz or granite.
Other Kitchen Countertop Ideas
Some other counter top ideas are:
Concrete counter tops are becoming more popular in recent years. Concrete counters are very flexible in that they can be made in any shape, size, thickness or color. You also have the option of embedding things in them. They also are very durable and don’t suffer from many of the issues that other stone or solid surface counters have.
- Butcher Block
Butcher block counter tops are made of narrow strips of wood that are glued together. Butcher Block counter tops can be made out of a variety of different woods and come in different thicknesses.