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Countertop Materials that Work

Jun 6, 2008
Countertop Materials of Stone, Wood, and Ceramic

There is such a wide range of Countertop Materials available in the market, that it is difficult to make a choice. However, one has to look at the advantages and disadvantages of the materials and the suitability for your kitchen and your own needs. There are differences in price, durability, and maintenance.

Stone-based

One of the best Countertop Materials is undoubtedly granite, if expense is no concern. It makes your kitchen look elegant and even the most modest kitchen starts looking beautiful with granite. It is heat-resistant and has a range of about three thousand colors, and is durable, trouble-free and maintenance free. But it is expensive and some stones tend to absorb stains.

Engineered Stone is very similar to granite and is also one of the expensive Countertop Materials. It is made up of quartz particles and the color range is larger than granite. It resists scratches and is easy to maintain.

For stone-based Countertop Materials there are soapstone and marble counters as well. Soapstone is very smooth and has a dark gray color. It has a rich, deep color and is stain-resistant, but needs regular maintenance with applications of mineral oil.

Marble is definitely classy, mainly because of its price. . Since it is one of the most luxurious Countertop Materials, it is used just on an island or an inset at a baking center in the kitchen. It is waterproof and heatproof, but it requires constant maintenance.

Ceramic Tile

The most popular of the Countertop Materials is the ceramic tile which is easy to maintain and durable too. For the average home it is the ideal choice, because it is affordable and a very practical choice for countertops as it can take hot pans. Its installation is easy too.

There is a large variety of colors, textures and designs available in ceramic tiles. Custom-designed tiles are expensive, and the counter surface is often uneven. The tiles can crack or chip and the grout lines become stained which makes it look ugly. But it is possible to replace the tiles, which cannot be done for other Countertop Materials.

Wood-based

Laminates are made of plastic-coated synthetics, and are relatively easy to maintain. The surface is smooth, and the pieces can be cut to size and finished on the ends. Laminates are one of the most inexpensive Countertop Materials, and they are quite durable, but not as much as granite or ceramic. There is a vast range of colors and designs available to match your kitchen cabinets. Laminates are prone to scratches and chips, but they are not possible to repair.

Many hardwoods are used as Countertop Materials lending the kitchen a warm and beautiful look. Maple and oak are the commonly used countertop woods. They are easy to clean, but can be easily damaged by water or stains.

Steel and Concrete

Stainless steel is used often as one of the Countertop Materials for big kitchens. The material is heat resistant and very durable. The countertop can be totally seamless, because it is fabricated according to size. Therefore it is expensive and may be noisy too.

Concrete Counters also belong to the high price tag of Countertop Materials, because it is generally cast right in your kitchen. It is resistant to heat and scratch and looks exotic and unusual. But it may not look beautiful, as it has a somewhat industrial look.
About the Author
Charlie Reese enjoys discussing with countertops and building them. He also likes to get astrology and free psychic advice.
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