When it comes to buying a new kitchen, choosing the right benchtop is probably the biggest decision you’ll make. Not only does it need to perform well with the rigours of cooking, but it should harmonise with your kitchen cabinetry and have an enduring style that will last at least several years. The most popular choices include natural and engineered stone, Corian, laminate and stainless steel, each with its pros and cons.
What Are The Main Benchtop Choices?
Materials such as Vstone and CaesarStone are made with around 95% natural quartz, giving you the look of natural stone, but with added durability. Engineered stone is scratch, stain and chip resistant, and will give your kitchen a sophisticated, modern look. It’s less costly than granite and marble, and requires no special maintenance.
Natural granite will give your kitchen the wow factor, but it’s expensive and does require sealing. Choose between a glossy polished finish, and a more contemporary, honed finish. Liquid spills should be mopped up immediately to prevent staining.
Corian is an acrylic material and can be formed into just about shape, making it possible to create a curved benchtop or an integrated benchtop and sink. It’s non porous, stain and scratch resistant, and has a chic, modern look.
You can recreate the look of just about any material you like with laminate, including stone, concrete and timber, at a fraction of the cost. Look for quality laminates that are specially withstand the rigours of a busy kitchen – it will have a tougher, more scratch resistant surface than standard laminates. Can be installed by a competent DIYer.
The benchtop material of choice in professional kitchens, stainless steel will give you a professional look at home and blends in well with both contemporary and traditional kitchen styles. It tends to scratch and show fingerprints, so probably not the best choice for families.
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Worktops & Countertops for Kitchens
Countertops and Worktops for kitchens are available in a variety of materials. The most popular options include: Laminate, Granite, Stainless Steel, Wood, Quartz Surfaces and Corian.
The countertop is not only necessary for a kitchen it is also an integral part of its design. Food preparation can deliver a large amount of wear and tear to the surfaces in the kitchen. Within this article we look at the various materials used for countertops and discuss the reasons for choosing them for your kitchen. Whether its durability, hygiene or cost, you can find both the advantages and disadvantages of each material below.
Elegant Kitchen Countertops
Three considerations to remember:
- When you choose your countertop, select a color and texture that compliments your cabinetry, floor or paint selection.
- Don’t be afraid to combine two or more countertop materials in one kitchen. Complimentary colors or textures on adjacent surfaces can create visual interest.
- Remember also that it pays to select a material that will withstand years of use without extraordinary maintenance requirements and is easily repairable should an accident occur.
Granite is…well…hard as a rock. Though costly, when buffed to a shine it creates a smashing look for kitchen counters. It is also riding a crest of popular style that began over 10 years ago. With granite tops, the experience and expertise of the fabricator is vitally important.
Granite, marble, and limestone, all popular for countertops, are beautiful natural materials. In most areas, you’ll find a great selection of colors and figures.
The quality of the countertop edge treatment is important. As an example, a solid surface counter is easy to clean and repair and will take years of use. It might look terrific with a wood edge to match the cabinets, but the wood will not withstand constant exposure to water and household chemicals like the solid surface material. Restrict the wood edge to an area such as a freestanding hutch and use matching or contrasting solid surface material for the front edge.
Consider combining quality decorative materials such as tile, granite or marble with solid surface. Many fabricators can create custom designs for a spectacular visual effect without compromising durability and easy maintenance.
When there are budget constraints, it makes sense to use the highest quality material for the counter areas that will sustain the greatest amount of use, specifying other materials to less often used areas.
Stainless Steel Countertops
Stainless steel countertops are not very elegant and look “cold”. They do not absorb stains oils or odors, but it will scratch easily and scratches cannot be repaired. You can view stainless steel countertops on this page
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