Tag Archives: laminate countertops

4 Kitchen Countertops Materials You Should Try Out

Are you looking to revamp your kitchen? There is no way you can improve the look of the room without giving attention to the countertops.

If they are damaged, replace them, but if they are beyond repair, you have no way out other than to replace them. Luckily, there are plenty of materials you can use on your kitchen countertops.

Would you like to know more about these materials? Here are the pros and cons of the most popular ones:

Granite

Centuries later, granite is still the go-to countertop material for most people. According to the national association of realtors, granite is the most preferred countertop material for most home sellers. This is because it’s elegant to look at and easily fits into any kitchen style.

Granite is also tough and quickly resists cracks and chips. Due to this, you don’t have to worry about it getting damaged when you place a hot pot on it. The countertop is also easy to maintain as all you need to do is to clean it regularly.

You also should seal it annually to protect it from stains.

While the material is tough, it’s not indestructible. This means an accidental clunk with a wine bottle can create an ugly chip in the edge.

When it comes to sealing the countertop, you have to be thorough in your work. This is because if you don’t do it, oil can easily seep into the stone, forcing you to have to apply a poultice to get it out.

Since it’s obtained from natural stone, it often results in variations that can look completely different from the sample provided by the countertop company.

To avoid this surprise, always ask to see the slab to ensure that it matches the theme of your home.

Quartz

It’s known for its durability. Quartz is made from a combination of crushed quartz stone and resin. The resulting mixture comes in a variety of colors that almost resemble real granite.

Under normal kitchen working conditions, quartz is entirely indestructible. Of course, unless you hit it with a sledgehammer or any other tool. The material is also stain and bacteria-resistant, so you don’t have to keep on sealing it like it’s the case with granite.

While granite is tough, you often pay a lot for it, yet it’s not as heat resistant as the other less-pricey materials such as crushed glass.

The countertop seams are also easily noticeable, especially if an expert doesn’t correctly install the countertop or you use a lighter color.

Quartz countertops also discolor over time, especially if you place them under a lot of direct sunlight.

Many people have also cited quartz as having an ultra-contemporary and cold look, which isn’t good for a traditional-style kitchen.

Laminate

Popularly known as Formica, laminate countertops are made from paper-plastic and come in plenty of colors and patterns. In addition to having the ability to mimic anything from granite to wood, they don’t require sealing as they are stain-resistant.

Although, often the go-to material for people operating on a tight budget, it cracks and scratches easily.

According to the national association of home builders, many home buyers avoid homes with laminate countertops, so it’s not the ideal material to install in your kitchen when looking to sell the house.

Tile

Tile countertops are beautiful and highly versatile. They also easily resist cuts, stains, and heat, making them extremely easy to clean and maintain.

Tile also comes in an infinite number of colors and styles. You can install tiles of one unique color or mix and match a variety of colors to give your countertops a one of a kind look.

Although, they are easy to replace, tile countertops easily crack, so you should be ultra-cautious in the kitchen as accidentally dropping pots or pans on them will lead to damage.

The counters also have uneven surfaces that make cutting boards, plates, and glasses shaky and unstable. You also can’t roll out dough on them.

The grout lines easily catch dust and grime. For you to prevent bacteria from growing on them, you have to seal them regularly, or you will have to undertake countertop replacement Durham.

6 Ways You Are Destroying Your Kitchen Countertops

kitchen counter

Since most kitchen countertops are made from tough materials, many homeowners think they can’t get damaged. There is nothing as further from the truth as this.

Just like any other product, if you don’t take good care of your countertops, they will get damaged. To help you out, here are six things (you are doing) that are destroying your countertops:

You place hot pots and pans directly on the countertops

One of the prime reasons homeowners install granite, quartz, and other high-compact countertops is because they can tolerate high temperatures. This makes them highly convenient when cooking and baking as you don’t have to keep on worrying about them getting damaged.

While the countertops can withstand high temperatures, they crack and get discolored when you repeatedly expose them to hot materials such as hot pots and pans.

Regardless of how tough your countertops are, always protect them from heat resulting from the cooking utensils. When you remove a hot pot or pan from the fire, don’t place it directly on the countertops.

Use a towel, hot pad, potholder, or trivet as a barrier and prevent the heat from getting onto the countertops.

You place acidic foods on the countertops

Many homeowners don’t pay much attention to the nature of the foods they are preparing. Did you know some foods are acidic, and when you place them on the countertops, you damage the surfaces?

For example, marble countertops are highly sensitive to acidic substances. Splashing vinegar, lemon juice, wine, or tomato sauce on them causes dull spots.

To keep the surfaces in top shape, clean the acidic substances as soon as they happen. Cleaning the spill with water isn’t enough. Also, consider neutralizing the stain. One of the most effective ways of doing it is sprinkling baking soda on it.

You chop directly on the countertops

After investing in durable countertops, some homeowners think they can abuse the countertops as much as they want. They dice, cut, slice, and chop directly on their quartz and granite countertops. Don’t do this.

While the countertops are tough, they aren’t scratch resistant. This means as you continually chop and cut on the counters, you increase the chances of damaging the countertops. The tough nature of the countertops also damages the knives.

Just like with the hot pots and pans, take measures to protect the countertops from damage. When cutting anything, always use a cutting board.

You allow water to stay on the countertops for a long time

When you seal granite countertops or any other countertop surfaces, you make the surfaces waterproof, right? Wrong!

Sealing the countertops only prevents water from seeping through and creating stains. When you allow water to stay on the countertops for a long time, you increase the chances of water seeping through and staining the surfaces.

While you don’t have to be in great hurry to wipe out the spills, you shouldn’t let them sit on the countertops for a long time. For example, until they evaporate.

A good rule of thumb is to never allow water to sit on the surfaces for more than five minutes. After wiping the surfaces, dry them to prevent future problems.

You place a lot of weight on the countertop edges

Placing heavy items and objects near or on unsupported sides increases the chances of the countertops developing cracks, ruptures, and fractures that are difficult and expensive to repair.

One of the most common mistakes homeowners make is placing a microwave directly on the countertop overhang.

For you to avoid damaging the countertops, always think twice when placing a heavy object on the surfaces. If you have to put the object on the countertop, place it at the center.

You allow a lot of sunlight on the countertops

Sunshine is good as it lights up the kitchen and makes it appear spacious. Unfortunately, a lot of direct sunlight causes laminate countertops to fade. The sunlight also fades the sealants on the countertops. This leads to a cheap-looking kitchen.

During the peak daylight hours, pull down the shade. This is to minimize the amount of sunlight getting into the kitchen hence reducing sunlight effect on granite kitchen countertops Raleigh.

5 Inexpensive Ways To Update Granite Kitchen Countertops

kitchen countertop

Old granite kitchen countertops not only give your home a cheap look, but they also look dirty and are hard to clean. Many homeowners have the impression that you need to have ultra-deep pockets for you to update your countertops. This is further from the truth. Here are inexpensive ways to give your countertops a makeover:

Paint them up

Save yourself money and the trouble of getting new countertops by simply painting the countertops. Before you get the paint, decide on the look you want. Painting is easy, and with minimal skills, you can effectively paint the surfaces by yourself.

Choose a paint that is specifically designed for laminate countertops. These paints are cheaper than the others in the market and don’t need priming. Buy enough paint for the job. You can do this by taking the measurements of the surface area to be covered. The paint should be enough for two coats.

Before you begin the painting, protect your surfaces. Line all the walls and cabinets with painter’s tape at the areas where they meet. Also, consider removing or covering your appliances such as stoves and sinks to prevent them from getting the paint.

Paints are toxic; therefore, you should protect yourself. You can do this by minimizing the amount of paint you get in contact with. Also consider wearing protective gear such as gloves, long pants, respirators, and even foam collars.

You can sand the surfaces using a pad sander but if you don’t have one, use your hands. Avoid sandpapers with a rough grit as they will damage the surfaces. Smoothen the surfaces using fine sanding block and scrape away any substances that might have congealed, dried, or stuck on the surface. Aim to create a smooth surface as much as possible.

To avoid brush marks on the surfaces, use spray paint, and sealer. After applying the paint, seal the surfaces with three or four coats to protect the finish.

Finish the countertops with cement

Begin with sanding the countertops using coarse sandpaper. Don’t worry about making the countertops smooth as cement sticks better at irregular surfaces. After the surfaces have air-dried, lather them with cement. Give the cement 24 hours to dry.

If there are noticeably uneven surfaces, sand, and clean them. Concentrate on getting rid of as much rough cement as much as possible. Once you are done, seal the cement using a liquid sealer. When buying the sealer, go for one that is food safe. If you don’t find a food-safe sealer, take care that your food never gets into contact with the countertop.

Cover the countertops

If you don’t want the look of cement, you can use other materials such as wood, fabric, veneer, paper, or even metal. Identify the material you want to use then get the right measurements for it. If you have the skills, you can apply the materials on the surfaces but if you have never done it before, hire an experienced contractor to help you out.

Tile the countertops

Did you know tiles aren’t only ideal for floors? You can also use them on your countertops. The beauty of it is that they aren’t expensive. Measure the dimensions of your countertops then get tiles that will fit the surface.

Depending on the design of your countertops, you may have to remove your stoves, disposal units, sinks, and other kitchen appliances before you install the tiles. If you have the skills, you can install the tiles by yourself but if you have never done it before, hire an expert to help you out.

Replace the countertops

If your current countertops are too old or you can’t stand them, consider replacing them. There are many cheap replacement options you can go with, the most common ones being:

Laminate: Laminate countertops are the most affordable countertops options in the market. When installing them, choose a textured surface instead of a flat one. This is to have an easy time concealing scratches and other signs of wear and tear.

Wood: Wooden surfaces are perfect when you are looking for a natural look. When undertaking countertop replacement Raleigh, choose wood that is durable and easy to manage. Some of the options you have include teak, walnut, cherry, maple, and many others.

 

Knowing about the kitchen countertop materials

At first glimpse, kitchen countertop can make the kitchen look beautiful and new. Kitchen countertops are one of the major elements of any kitchen. To maintain the beauty of kitchen countertop for a long time, it is important to select a kitchen countertop material which is not only pleasing to the eyes but also posses the scratch resistant quality.

Upgrade the countertop and add value to your kitchen

There are a number of countertop materials available in the market like the granite, Silestone, marble, natural stone etc. But while selecting a countertop for your kitchen do not make the mistake that everyone does by selecting the top trending countertop material. Select a cost-effective countertop that is beautiful and strong at the same time.

5 Budget friendly countertops materials

If you are planning to upgrade your kitchen, then below mentioned are 5 most cost effective yet attractive countertop materials:

Ceramic countertops

The ceramic countertops are easy to set up. There installation is so easy that you can install them by yourself. If you like to keep your place plain and simple then the ceramic countertops are one of the best options available for you.

Silestone countertops

Silestone countertops come in a variety of dynamic colors that boost their visual allure. You can choose this material for your countertop as the silestone countertops are less expensive compared to the quartz and granite countertops.

Laminate countertops

In the crowd of countertop materials, the laminate countertops are the most inexpensive countertop material. The laminate countertops are beautiful and easy to install, but their only drawback is that they are vulnerable to abrasions, cuts, and high temperature.

Quartz countertops

Quartz countertops can make anyone fall in love with their appearance in just one glance. They are less porous and long-lasting countertops. However, they are a bit expensive than the other countertop materials mentioned above.

Granite countertops

The granite countertops do not require any introduction or specification, almost everyone knows about the specialties of this countertop material. Granite is the most preferred countertop material all around the world. The granite countertop can bear every type of wear and tear without losing their luster. Yes, they are expensive, but the price worth the granite countertop material.

Bathroom countertop materials, from good to best

Cultured Marble Vanity Tops

Are you looking for a new countertop for your bathroom vanity? Are you searching beyond the traditional bathroom countertop options? Or is your search related to budget friendly bathroom vanity tops? Well, if so, then below mentioned information can be helpful for you. Today, market is full of variety of countertop materials. It is not easy to select the apt material for bathroom vanity, because not all material possess the all the qualities that homeowners want in their bathroom vanity tops. However, there are certain countertop materials that can full fill maximum needs and requirements of the homeowners.

Bathroom countertop materials

Bathroom vanity tops do not need to be boring. You should pay attention over the material, style, edge, color, design and texture. A good vanity top will improve the overall look and feel of your bathroom. It can’t be the focal point of your bathroom (like kitchen countertop), but it can definitely enhance the beauty of your bathroom décor.

Take a sneak peek over below mentioned 5 best bathroom countertop options:

Ceramic Countertops

Ceramic can be a great choice for bathroom countertop surfaces, especially for those homeowners who are looking for budget friendly countertops. It is very cheaper and available in plenty of designs and textures. The installation of ceramic countertops is pretty easy that you can opt for DIY installation as well.

Laminate Countertops

Laminated countertops are new craze in the market. These countertops look rich and royal. They are available in plenty of styles. Laminate countertops are best for the bargain installation, whereas worst for the high end installations. These countertops can be good for guest bathrooms or basement bathrooms.

Solid Surface Countertops

Solid Surface Countertops can be an amazing choice for bathroom vanities. This material is the combination of flexibility and functionality in total style. It is the manmade countertop. If you are looking for a stylish countertop surface to adorn your bathroom décor, solid surface countertop is the best option for you. However, these countertops are a little bit expensive.

Granite countertops

Be it kitchens, fireplaces or bathrooms, granite is the ultimate choice. Granite is non-porous, bacteria resistant, stain resistant and heat resistant material, which can be best for the busy bathrooms.

Quartz countertops

If you are looking something different and ready to spend, then quartz countertop can be the apt choice for your bathroom vanity top. It got look for granite without maintenance hassles.

How Long Does It Take To Replace Countertops?

Concrete countertops

Once you have decided replacing your old and out of date countertop, you might want to know how long it takes to replace the countertop. Well, it is not possible to generalize the time required for the kitchen countertop replacement. How much time required depends on several factors, such as –skills of handyman, countertop material used, availability of installation tools, size and shape of your countertop, and your budget.

Kitchen countertop replacement

No matter which type of countertop material you choose for countertop replacement, there is thing you need to keep in mind: Get started only after understanding the specifications. It is very much important that the person who is installing the countertop has the required skills and knowledge. If you are versed with general handyman tasks, you can take kitchen countertop installation in your hand. However, it is always recommended to hire a professional contractor for this purpose.

Laminate countertops

If you are looking for fastest turn-around, then laminate countertops is the best option for you. This is especially applicable when you select “off the rack” countertops from the countertop store. The finish and fit will not be as good as customized laminate countertops, but as far as time is concerned, they are unbeatable.

Engineered stone and stainless steel countertops

Installation time required for engineered stone and stainless steel countertops is almost same as the time required to install laminate countertops, and the process of installation is also same. From the time you begin to think about countertop replacement, plan at least 4 months. That provides you the time to explore what you really want without rushing.

Granite and marble countertops

Installation of natural stone countertops (like granite and marble) is quite different from the installation of engineered stone countertops. It is not possible to install these countertops using DIY hacks. You need a professional countertop contractor for the kitchen countertop replacement job.

Concrete countertops

Concrete countertop installation is tricky and time-consuming. There are a lot of things required to be taken care of while installing concrete countertops. The installation of concrete countertops can take up to a week, even when you hire a professional contractor.

 

Interesting facts about kitchen countertops

best countertops

Kitchen countertop installation is a big decision, both in terms of longevity and cost of the material. There are so many types of countertop materials available today. Finding the apt countertop surface from the crowd of luring materials is not an easy task. However, it is important to pay attention while selecting the kitchen countertop. No matter you are looking material for kitchen countertop replacement or fresh install, your countertop will play an important role in building the look and feel of your kitchen. The better is your countertop choice, the more luxurious your kitchen will look.

Kitchen countertop choice

The role of countertop in kitchen is more functional then aesthetic. Along with look, you should consider other aspects while choosing the countertop material for your kitchen island. In order to install the best countertop in your kitchen, you must understand the pros and cons of various countertops.

Granite Slabs

Granite slabs are one of the most popular countertop surface options. These slabs look amazingly good and offer world-class working substance. Granite is durable, scratch resistant, heat resistant and germ resistant material. It can bear the daily wear and tear of the busy kitchens.

Pros:

  • Increases the value of kitchens
  • Look incredibly good
  • Come with little or no seams

Cons:

  • Requires regular sealing
  • Quite expensive

Quartz Countertop

Quartz is a perfectly engineered material for kitchens, especially commercial kitchens. This material is made up of f pulverized waste rock and resins. This material is ideal for kitchens because it has attributes of natural stone as well as manmade stone.

Pros:

  • Amazingly beautiful surface
  • 3D texture
  • High resale value

Cons:

  • Very heavy
  • Difficult to install

Solid surface countertop

Solid surface countertop is another manmade countertop material for kitchen. It is cost-effective, durable and beautiful countertop.

Pros:

  • Cheaper than quartz and granite
  • Small scratches can be sanded out with fine sandpaper

Cons:

  • Prone to scratching
  • Lifespan is shorter

Laminate countertops

Laminate countertops provide amazing look and feel. They are good for kitchens. This countertop surface does not require much maintenance.

Pros:

  • Inexpensive
  • Easy installation

Cons:

  • No re-sale value
  • Get chipped, cracked and damaged easily.

The Kitchen Countertop Selection Guide

good kitchen countertop

The countertop acts as workbench for kitchen. It is more functional than decorative. Along with beauty, you should consider durability, maintainability, heat resistant capacity, scratch resistant capacity and strength of the countertop material. A wide range of kitchen countertop material choices are available on the market. You will find many countertop materials to choose from that suit your taste and style. The best material is one that fulfills performance standards, available within budget and looks beautiful.

Things to know before choosing countertop surface

Countertop selection is one of the important parts of the kitchen remodeling. In spite of the wide range of options available, it is important to thoroughly observe every material. Each material has its own advantages and disadvantages. It is mandatory to determine your needs, requirements and budget before opting for any countertop material. Spare sometime and check out the following aspects of countertop material before making your decision:

  • Check both look and feel of the countertop material
  • Think about practicality and maintainability of the selected material
  • Analyze the long term durability of the material
  • Ascertain about the environmental friendliness of the material
  • Check if material require sealing

Types of kitchen countertops

Laminate Countertops

These are affordable and low-maintenance countertop surfaces. Although they do not offer heat resistance, get scratched and chipped easily, they are available in many colors and textures. If you are not going to use your countertop for heavy duty work, you can think about installing laminate countertops.

Solid Surface countertops

Solid surface countertops are basically plastic. They offer renewable surface. The cuts and scratches can be blended. This surface allows you to use of integrated sinks. Solid surface countertops are non-porous and do not contain any visible seam. You can get fully customized solid surface countertop.

Natural Stone Countertops

90 % homeowners opt for the natural stone countertops for their kitchens and bathrooms. Natural stones such as marble, granite, soapstone and gemstone offer amazing countertop surface. These countertops inherit the beauty of the stone from which they are made. These countertops are scratch and heat tolerant. Natural stone countertops lasts lifetime, if maintained properly. However, you should purchase natural stone countertops from reputable and trustworthy kitchen countertop company to get genuine product.

How much does countertop resurfacing cost?

All granite countertops and quartz countertops need a little touch up every now and then!  No matter how high quality your countertop materials are, they are bound to get at least a little scuffed up after months or years of regular use.  At The Countertop Factory, we provide complete countertop maintenance and countertop repair services!  That includes countertop resurfacing for a low, affordable price.  We repair and resurface tons of kitchen countertops and bathroom countertops on a daily basis throughout North Carolina.  We can even install brand new solid surface countertops in your home if you need them!

It’s easy to get lost in our sea of endless countertop options!  We’d be happy to make countertop recommendations to you based on your needs and budget.  We highly recommend laminate countertops, soapstone countertops, silestone countertops and recycled glass countertops for the bathroom.  On the other hand, some truly great choices for the kitchen include marble countertops, Corian countertops, tile countertops, wood countertops and recycled glass countertops.  Whichever style you choose, you won’t regret it!  New countertops can make or break any kitchen or bathroom, so it’s important to be absolutely sure of the countertop style you select.  Your brand new kitchen or bathroom awaits you!

Who are the most experienced countertop installers in North Carolina?

Are you looking for new laminate countertops for your kitchen?  You’re in the right place!  At The Countertop Factory, we provide the widest range of countertop options in North Carolina.  Whether you are looking for butcher block countertops for your kitchen or recycled glass countertops for your bathroom, we have got you covered!  When you work with us, we guarantee that you’ll find the best countertops for any room of the house.  Just a few of our most popular materials include granite countertops, marble countertops, tile countertops and silestone countertops.  We offer a large number of discount countertops to our loyal customers, so make sure to ask our countertop contractors about our sales!

We offer many popular granite countertop brands, including Corian countertops, Cambria countertops and Formica countertops.  We also have many eco countertops options if you are interested in a more environmentally friendly option.  Additionally, if you are not satisfied with any of our ready made wood countertops, we would be happy to create custom countertops for you in our very own countertop shop.  Take a look at our countertop photos to get an idea of the stainless steel countertops and copper countertops we have installed for our North Carolina customers in the past.