When you’re choosing material for new countertops in your kitchen or bath, you may not know exactly where to start to find the best choice. Since countertops are a significant design element and a frequently used surface, you’ll want to choose well. The good news is that there are many types of materials, each with varying looks and characteristics, to fit a variety of tastes and budgets.
The main factors you should consider are durability (is the material tough enough to stand up to the type of use it will see?), look (does the material fit with the overall design aesthetic of the room?), and cost (is it within budget, and does it fit with the overall quality of the rest of the construction or remodel?). With that in mind, you can better evaluate some of the more popular countertop options for your specific needs.
Granite: This natural stone is a popular choice in kitchens and baths for many reasons. You can find it in a huge assortment of colors and patterns, and it holds up well against heat, splashes, and nicks. It can be found in polished or matte finishes. Because you can obtain large slabs, a countertop can be fabricated with few or no seams. To avoid staining, though, you’ll want to wipe up spills (especially of oils or acidic liquids) quickly and make sure to have the countertop sealed periodically.
Marble: Marble has a high-end, classic look. However, it is not quite as durable as granite. Marble is porous, and thus more susceptible to staining. It can also be scratched or chipped. It is not often used as the primary countertop surface in kitchens for those reasons.
Solid surface: Made of acrylic and polyester, solid surface countertops are completely nonporous, which eliminates the need for sealing or special cleaners. These can be fabricated entirely without seams, and even with integrated sinks out of the same material. While solid surface countertops can be scratched or burned, marks can be sanded out of the surface. The look of this material is completely different from natural stone, but the cost is fairly similar.
Engineered Quartz: Engineered quartz combines a natural stone look with the easy maintenance of solid surface counters. It is made out of colored quartz chips and resin, so it can be manufactured in hues you wouldn’t be able to find in natural stone. Like solid surface counters, it can be made without seams, and it doesn’t need to be sealed. Its regular patterning (as opposed to the random patterns seen in natural stone) may give away the fact that it is a manufactured product, though, and it tends to be on the pricey side.
Laminate: As one of the most reasonably priced countertop options, laminate (think Formica) has been a popular choice for countertops for years. Made out of paper impregnated with resins over a particleboard core, laminate is remarkably durable and easy to clean. There are hundreds of different patterns to choose from. You do have to be careful not to scorch it, however, and it can be susceptible damage if water seeps in through the seams.
There are many more options to choose from, but the general principles remain the same. The best countertop choice for your kitchen or bath will be not only functional but also beautiful, giving you years of enjoyment. Contact the experts at Sea Pointe Construction today for help in finding the perfect solution.