Selecting the Right Material for Your Kitchen Benchtop
When performing a kitchen remodel in your home, you should consider replacing or upgrading the benchtop. This is a major feature in the space, so it will affect the aesthetics of the entire kitchen. In addition, the kitchen benchtop is an important functional area for food preparation, so the improvement can enhance the general cooking efficiency. There are numerous factors that you must assess before installing a new kitchen benchtop. One of these elements is the material selection; this will affect project costs, long-term maintenance demands and the appeal of the countertop. Here are the primary modern materials that you should consider selecting for the kitchen benchtop.
Natural stones are favourable for kitchen improvements because of their unique visual appeal. Moreover, these materials are formed in adverse geological conditions, so they can withstand heavy-duty applications without damage. The common natural stones that are ideal for countertop fabrication are granite, slate and soapstone. Granite is a strong material which is formed after volcanic events, and it is available in numerous colours, including variegated patterns, mottled white and vibrant blues. This stone is slightly porous, so the surface must be sealed. Soapstone is a dense, non-porous stone; it is durable, stain-resistant and virtually maintenance-free. Slate is a relatively inexpensive and an aesthetically subdued choice. It is durable but it will require periodic sealing for ideal performance.
If you are looking for an inexpensive but durable kitchen benchtop material, you should consider polished concrete. This type of material can withstand heavy usage without breakage or deformation. In addition, there are numerous decorative options that can improve the visual appeal of your countertop. The main options include integral pigments and acid stains. Integral pigments are essentially dyes that are mixed into fresh concrete before it is poured to form the benchtop. This will create an evenly coloured surface to match your preference. Acid stains are used on completed countertops, and they form an interesting variegated appearance. If you install this material, ensure that the surface is sealed and well-polished because concrete is highly porous.
Stainless steel is an ideal benchtop material for contemporary and minimalist kitchens. This type of feature has clean, sleek lines, and the surfaces are resistant to tarnish, rust and general staining. Additionally, stainless steel is a strong material, so it is not vulnerable to distortion or surface damage. On the other hand, this type of high-quality metal can be relatively costly to purchase. Moreover, exposure to extreme acidity or salinity can cause some level of visual damage.