What good is a kitchen counter if it’s not durable enough to handle all your cooking and entertaining? Almost every countertop material today has a degree of durability, but there are some materials that are ranked higher than others. With countertops being the basis of any kitchen, you not only want them to be attractive and maintenance-free but also strong, resistant to stains, heat, scuffs, cuts, scrapes, and everyday battering.
Here is a listing of the most durable countertop materials ranked on their durability.
You can count on quartz countertops for both durability and beauty. The combination of natural crushed quartz and binding adhesive agents, along with mixtures of color, results in a nonporous material that is strong, and easily maintained with no sealing.
With the man-made engineering involved, you get a countertop that is not only resistant to stains and scratches but one that can take on the characteristics of both granite and marble. Its durability is well known, making it a good choice for commercial use in restaurants, bars, and other areas where constant use is inevitable. The durability of quartz is hard to beat. In fact, it ranks quite high for both residential and commercial use, and here are the positive and negative aspects of quartz.
Quartz countertops are everlasting. The material is strongly resistant to most cuts, chips, or cracks, no matter what you do to it. You have to go out of your way to be careless with it. It’s also both stain and bacteria-resistant and doesn’t require sealing.
You’re going to dish out a lot of money for quartz and it’s less resistant to heat than say granite or crushed glass. Also, if quartz is subjected to direct sunlight, it loses its color. Another thing with quartz, any seaming is noticeable, particularly with lighter colors choices. If you like the minimalist or contemporary look, quartz is a good choice; however, it can appear cold-looking and is not a good choice for more traditional kitchens.
Though granite is a natural stone and is still among one of the top choices with homeowners for kitchen countertops, there may be competition from engineered granite manufacturers. Compared to natural granite, the engineered version is very durable and is heat and scratch resistant as well.
Engineered granite takes it another step further in durability, along with a list of color and pattern choices. This version brings enhanced features with a more consistent look compared to its natural counterpart.
If you’re in the market for granite countertops, seek the advice of granite companies nearby the area where you live. They can give you information on the details of engineered granite and natural granite. One thing with engineered granite is a polymer resin is infused within the granite, which eliminates the need for sealing them. That alone limits yearly maintenance. Here are the positive and negative aspects of granite.
Granite has its own beauty that is inspiring and it basically goes with almost any style of kitchen. It’s also a very tough natural stone that’s resistant to cracks and chips and even heat. Intermittent sealing keeps granite resistant to stains.
Though granite is tough, it’s not shatterproof. Any kind of blunt force can cause a chip or some other accident, which means polishing the area. Also, without regular sealing, stains can make their way into the stone.
With stone variations in granite, you may not get what you looked at in a sample with your countertops, plus it’s difficult to conceal seams with granite countertops. You want to watch where you put seams.
You wouldn’t think of crushed glass as a sturdy material, but in reality, it’s quite strong. Don’t let its shiny and beautiful appearance fool you as it’s a product new to the industry with a contemporary feel that’s durable and is made from recycled material.
All those brightly colored empty beer and liquor bottles, as well as old windshields and traffic lights you see in recycle bins, are just some of the glass pieces used in combination with engineered stones to generate an environmentally friendly finish. Crushed glass is resistant to heat, scratches, and stains, which makes this kind of glass great for kitchen countertops, bathrooms, and even commercial projects.
The styles with crushed glass include pieces that are placed in acrylic that look like they’re suspended in water or glass pieces set in cement where you achieve a mosaic quality. Here are the positive and negative aspects of crushed glass.
Fading is almost nonexistent with crushed glass and the counters won’t chip, stain, scratch, or burn. They’re also nonporous so they won’t require sealing.
Any use of acidic foods on crushed glass could erode the countertops and any heavy objects put on any of the corners of a countertop could cause cracks. You want to be sure to wipe away any acidic spills.
Concrete is another durable selection that is one of the newer looks in kitchen countertops, whether for home or business use. Concrete has a similar look and feel to materials like natural stone, wood, or metal. The material makeup consists of mortar, sand, and pigments and is available in a variety of color choices. Here are the positive and negative aspects of concrete.
The material is suitable for farm, minimalist, and industrial-styled countertops.
Concrete countertops can be susceptible to stains because of their porous nature, so sealing is important both during installation and at regular intervals after that. Also, any visible seams could be a problem with large kitchen countertops and fillers will help minimize that.
With their literally seamless appearance, solid surfaces are useful for countertops, backsplashes, and sinks. Manufacturers make them from acrylic, polyester resins, and marble powders and they are resistant to almost any stains and mold, and mildew but they aren’t resistant to heat, scratches, and cuts.
One advantage with solid surfaces, you can manipulate them into almost any size and shape with exposure to high heat and that leads manufacturers, such as Corian, to use solid surface materials for other basic designs for both home and commercial use. Here are the positive and negative aspects of sold surfaces.
There is a myriad of choices in colors and patterns with solid surfaces, plus it’s nonporous and you won’t have to worry about sealers or cleaners. You can sand any scratches away and the material is moldable for backsplashes and sinks.
Solid surfaces are costly, and they simply don’t have the appeal of granite or quartz. Though you can sand out scratches, sold surfaces do scratch and burn. The surfaces are not exactly renewable and require intense energy to manufacture, plus it’s hard to recycle. It’s not always a wise green choice.
Count on Marble Concepts for a Durable Countertop
Countertop durability is a big factor with many homeowners and without great strength, countertops lose their durability, stability, luster, and overall effectiveness. With the reviews here, granite and quartz choices would be of benefit. So, you want to choose wisely and Marble Concepts can help you with making those choices with durability in mind. We have been in business for over 30 years and offer a variety of durable stone materials and services that go along with them. Call us at 215-396-7393. You might just find the right durable countertop that you’ve been looking for all along!