No matter how small or large, the great majority of kitchens have counters for storage and food preparation. Countertops have become one of the many elements that influence the look and feel of a kitchen, so their properties are important. Here’s a guide from Alair Homes Orlando to choosing the perfect countertop for any kitchen:
These counters are made by pressure-bonding laminate sheeting over particleboard. For homeowners on a budget, these counters are inexpensive, easy to take care of and come in a variety of colors and patterns. They can be prefabricated or special-ordered. Some are color-through, which means the color goes all the way through the thickness of the top sheet. This makes the color-through laminate more expensive but gives it a more elegant look. It’s also true that laminate counters show their blemishes even as they’re long lasting. One trick is to buy laminate counters with light colors, matte finishes, and interesting patterns.
Granite is one of the most popular type of stone to use for a kitchen countertop. It’s beautiful, smooth, cool to the touch and very tough. Like other types of natural stone, granite is expensive, so some people use granite inserts in counters made of less costly material. Marble is softer than granite, also cool to the touch and used largely as an insert for pastry making. A piece of marble may even be an insert in a counter that’s made of granite. Another thing about stone is that it needs to be sealed every few years to guard against staining. It’s also heavy, so the homeowner needs to make sure that the cabinets can support it. Still, stone gives any kitchen a look of great sophistication.
Solid surface counters seem miraculous. They’re made of acrylic resins and can be dyed to match any color scheme in the kitchen. They can even be made to look like natural stone. Solid surface counters are clean, smooth, durable, can be made in many shapes and can even come with integral sinks and drainboards. They are easy to clean, and stains and small burns can be removed with sandpaper or steel wool.
Wooden counters are made with strips of hardwood that are glued together. They contrast beautifully with white floor or wall cabinets, and give the kitchen a rustic flavor. Experts claim that the best wood for countertop is hard rock maple, which is good-looking and tough. Though wood shouldn’t be used right next to the sink, it’s excellent as a cutting surface and doesn’t harbor bacteria the way some people fear. A contractor such as Alair Homes Orlando can give homeowners tips on choosing wood counters for their kitchen.
Ceramic tile and porcelain tile are popular materials for kitchen counters. Tile can be glossy and smooth or rough and rustic, depending the overall style of the kitchen. They are excellent for counters in a kitchen where people actually do a lot of cooking and food preparation, for glazed tiles repel water and resist pathogens.