Friday, November 11, 2011

What's in a Counter Top?

                  With so many choices today for counter tops, how do you decide what's right for you and your new space? Let's explore some of your options and discuss the pros and cons of these options.


Tile-
    • Wide variety of colors, sizes, patterns and types of materials that tile can be made out of. Such as porcelain, ceramic, natural stone, glass
    • Tile is a good heat resistant material
    • Some types of tile are nonporous and some can stain easily if they are certain types of stones.
    • Tile can last a long tile and withstand a lot of heavy use.
    • If you grout with the basic grouts - you will have to maintain with sealers and cleaning. Some of the new grout products on the market with alleviate this by being non porous that won't stain and needs no sealing.
    • If you do tile for counter tops make sure the installer is experienced. Tops could end up not completely flat and level.
    • Price- you have the materials and the labor costs that have to be considered.
    • Can use as back splash
    • Lead time- depends on tile materials and installer availablity

Solid Surface-
    DuPont(TM) Corian® Colors for 2011
    • A wide variety of colors and patterns
    • No maintenance required - no sealing 
    • Stain restraint
    • Many colors, and patterns
    • Seamless
    • Under mount seamless sink
    • A variety of edge profiles 
    • Price- can vary depending on brand name
    • Must be installed by a professional 
    • Can use a back splash 
    • Long lasting material
    • Can Scratch- but also can buff out scratches
    • Sinks can be made of same material and integral
    • Lead time- 2-4 weeks from measure to install
Corian Solid Surface
Wilson Art





Granite/Marble/Stone -

    • A natural material, varies is size of slab and thickness of slab- Nature's artwork
    • Many colors, types of materials available
      • Granite- hardest of the stones
      • Marble - softer look than granite, smaller variety
      • Limestone - soft solid look
      • Soapstone - blue/gray or green/gray coloring 
      • Onyx- Softest of the stone
    • Price- wide spectrum of pricing
    • Requires maintenance - each type of stone the maintenance varies
    • Installed by professionals
    • Seams needed
    • Can be 2-6 CM thick counters 
    • Sinks Can be under mounted
    • Can use as back splash
    • You select the slabs that are used
    • Sealing required- some stones are softer than others, they can stain and scratch. It varies on the type of stone.
    • Long lasting material
    • Sinks can be made of same material 
    • Lead time 2-4 weeks from measure

Wood -


    • Wide variety of species, grains and colors
    • Thickness choices
    • Finish - top coat choices
    • Many Shapes and edge profiles to choose from
    • Can scratch, also can be sanded and restored
    • Wood is a natural material
    • Pricing- varies with edge profile and species, and grain choice
    • Maintenance required 
    • Installed by professionals 
    • Your home's environment can affect the wood 
    • Lead time- 2-6 weeks from measure 

Grothouse Lumber
Craft- Art





Quartz Materials-
    • A natural and man-made combination
    • Hardest material
    • Stain and  heat restraint
    • Color choices grow every year 
      • Colors, patterns
      • Some to reflect granite, marble, concrete
    • Hard to scratch
    • Pricing- varies by brand name
      • Some companies are now charging for the actual sq. ft. that's used, they are now pouring only what 's needed for each project. This has bought the price down
    • Seams are required 
    • No maintenance, no sealing required
    • Installed by professionals 
    • Can use as back splash
    • Sinks can be made of same material
    • Lead time- 2-4 weeks from measure 


Silestone


Concrete/ Stainless Steel/ Copper/ Glass

  • Concrete
    •  
    • Can be many colors
    • Materials such as glass, mirror can be added
    • Price varies depending on how the concrete is made and treated
    • Installed by professionals is recommended
    • Can be hard to find in smaller metro areas
    • Can Stain, needs to be sealed
    • Some maintenance
    • Can crack and chip if not done properly
    • Can scratch
    • Sinks can be made of small material a
    • Lead time 2-3 weeks from measure

  • Stainless/Copper/ Metals 
    • A few finish choices, hammered, satin, brushed,
    • Other metals such copper 
    • Heat and stain restraint
    • Scratches
    • Can be made into many shapes
    • Edge profiles are limited, but new ways of fabrication are expanding this area
    • Must find a good fabricator, most won't install
    • Can be hard to find in smaller metro areas
    • Need separate installer 
    • Pricing - a custom quote is needed 
    • Lead time- 2-4 weeks from measure 



Stainless Tops

  • Glass/ Recycled Glass 
    • This is the newest material to take the counter top market by storm
    • Thickness can vary
    • Color can also play a interesting role
    • Can shaped 
    • Can scratch
    • No maintenance 
    • Sinks can be made of same material
    • Prices are considered on the high-end
    • Lead time- 6-12 weeks sometimes longer
    • Recycled Glass can be a shorter lead time 2-4 weeks from measure  
    • Can be lighted to highlight the top
    • Can be used form more than tops




Thinkglass
Recycled Glass- Vetrazzo




                    Know the pros and cons of the materials you select. Some many choices, do your homework, write down the things you want from a counter top to help you determine what you want and need from your counter tops. So you can enjoy your counter tops for many years to come.


Sincerely Yours
Angie Keyes CKD






1 comment:

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    Undermount sinks

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