Tag Archives: Marble Countertops

How To Update Kitchen Countertops

kitchen countertops

Old or damaged countertops do nothing but detract from the value and beauty of your home. Thankfully, you can update them and restore the look. To help you out, here are ways on how to update kitchen countertops:

Paint the countertops

If your current pieces aren’t damaged, painting them can go a long way towards restoring them. If you have the skills, you can paint them by yourself, but if you have never done it before, let an expert help you out. When choosing the paint color, ensure it complements the cabinet color and design. It also should be high quality; otherwise, you will keep repainting the surfaces every few years.

Resurface the countertops with a cement finish

Looking to improve the look of the countertops but strapped of cash? How about resurfacing the countertops with a cement finish? Begin with protecting the neighboring areas with painter’s tape. In addition to this, ensuring you don’t sand these areas, it also makes your work easy as you don’t have to clean the cement in the event you accidentally graze them during application.

To make the application easy, sand the surfaces with coarse sandpaper. Don’t make the surfaces smooth as cement sticks better to irregular surfaces.  Once the surface is ready, apply the first coat and let the cement dry. You should then use medium sandpaper to remove any noticeably uneven surfaces and apply a second coat.

Wait for the cement to dry again and repeat the process until you have a beautiful, even surface. Complete your work by sealing the cement. To do it, you should pour water-based sealer into the paint tray then use a roller to apply the sealer over the cemented surfaces.

Tile your countertops

This is as simple as it sounds. Buy tiles and arrange them on your existing countertops. Like paint, you should be cautious about the type and design of tiles you go for. In addition to the tiles complementing the look of the kitchen, they also should be made by a reputable company. This way, you are sure they will withstand the chaos in the kitchen.

If you are looking to create a tiled backsplash on the wall behind the countertop, first remove the backsplash, creating a continuous effect that makes your project easy as you will have only one right angle to deal with between the wall and the countertop.

If you have the skills, you can lay the tiles by yourself, but if you have never done it before, let an expert help you out.

Replace the countertops

Another great way to improve your countertops is to replace them with other countertop materials. There are plenty of these materials you can choose from. The most common ones being:

Laminate

Laminate is extremely cheap; therefore, a great option when operating on a tight budget. The cool thing with installing laminate is it doesn’t make it obvious you are using cheap material. This is because it comes with plenty of designs that even resemble high-end materials such as granite and marble.

When choosing the material, go for a textured surface instead of a flat one. This is to have an easy time concealing scratches and other forms of wear and tear.

Wood

Want to give your kitchen a more natural look? Why not install wooden countertops? Wood comes with plenty of benefits that include: gives the house a natural rustic look, it’s easy to repair, and you can confidently prepare food on it without worrying about contamination.

On the flip side, you need to keep applying mineral oil, varnish, and beeswax to maintain the look. Wood is also easily damaged by heat and moisture, so you can’t use it around sinks or over the dishwasher.

Marble

If you have the budget and want to give your kitchen a fancy look, you should install marble countertops Durham. Like the other materials, ensure the marble pieces you choose match the design of the house. They also should have a classic look so you won’t keep replacing them when they grow out of style.

To keep your marble in good shape, seal it regularly. You also should avoid placing heavy items on it to prevent it from chipping.

6 Benefits Of Marble Countertops

marble countertops

Marble countertops are one of the most popular countertop materials in the market. Their subtle sheen evokes an air of elegance that adds a timeless ambience to any home. In addition to these benefits, the countertops come with plenty of other benefits that include:

It’s affordable

When you look at marble, you might have the impression it’s expensive, but this isn’t the case. Compared to other countertop materials, marble is extremely affordable. Although, the cost of the stone varies depending on the type and thickness, it’s much cheaper than granite or quartz.

It’s durable

Marble comes from natural stone, so it’s more resistant to cracking, scratching, and breaking. This makes it  durable as long as you take good care of it. The cool thing is that while the stone is tough, it’s much softer, making it easy to incorporate attractive design elements such as fancy edges during the fabrication process.

In addition to the popular edge profiles such as bullnose, straight, bevel, and demi bullnose, you can cut marble into chiselled,  chiselled, elegant cove bullnose and even the waterfall edge, the most popular premium edge cut that features three cascading convex arches that add texture and interest to the countertop.

While these fancy edges come at a premium, they often cost lower than with granite and other countertop materials.

It’s perfect for baking.

The countertop naturally stays cool and always remains below room temperature. This makes it an ideal working surface for bakers working with dough, pastries, chocolate, and ice cream. These features not only make the countertops ideal for bakery, but you can also install it and use it in your home.

It has a luxurious appearance.

As mentioned above, one of the most attractive features of marble is they have a unique luxurious appearance that is timeless. As long as you take good care of the countertops, they look excellent for a long time.

It’s easy to find

One of the prime reasons the countertop is affordable is because you can easily find it. Since marble is softer than granite, quartz and other countertop materials, most countertop companies have large supplies of it.

The soft nature of the countertop makes it easy to shape and edge without damaging the surface hence making it an excellent option for different areas of the house.

It’s bright

Part of the reason many homeowners find marble appealing is that it has a natural glow that reflects light in any room. If you have a small bathroom or kitchen or your kitchen doesn’t have a lot of natural light, marble is an excellent countertop material for making the room brighter and larger.

How to take care of marble

For you to make the most of the benefits of the countertops, you should take good care of it. Some of the ways in which you can do it include:

Seal the countertops: Like granite countertops, you need to seal marble to retain its look. Since the countertop is porous, spilt wine or water can potentially stain it, making it the end of your all-white kitchen. To avoid this from happening, seal the countertops as you are installing them then once every year after that.

Clean the countertops: You need to clean the countertops to keep them looking good. For daily cleaning, use a mild dish or stone soap then rinse with water to keep the marble spick and span.

If you haven’t been taking good care of your countertops, it’s normal to have a stain. If the stain is stubborn and not coming out, use a mixture of hydrogen peroxide with a few drops of ammonia. You can also sand the countertops to remove the annoying stain.

Avoid acids: Acidic substances such as lemons should never come into contact with marble as it will etch the surfaces. To avoid this from happening, granite contractors Durham recommend you use a cutting board and stay away from cleaning agent that might have lemon or vinegar in them.

Always use a trivet: While marble is tough and heat resistant, you should never place hot pans and pots directly on the surfaces. To be safe, always use a potholder or trivet.

What Are Laminate Countertops Made Of

Although laminate has been around for a long time, many people still don’t know much about them, so you will often hear them wondering what are laminate countertops made of. If you are one of the people asking this question, here are a few things you should know about the countertops:

What are the countertops made of?

The countertops were invented in the early 1900s by engineers from Westinghouse Company. They invented the product from phenolic resins that serve as an industrial insulator. The engineers later left Westinghouse and created the Formica Company that popularized the material.

The countertops are made by combining layers of resins and paper into a single, semi-rigid plastic sheet. The manufacturers use Brown Kraft paper for the bottom layers. The layers are pressed together while cooked, which forces all of the resins and papers to chemically bond into one plasticized sheet.

The countertops come in different grades, often referred to as “grades.” The most popular grades are: horizontal and vertical. The horizontal grade is the thickest type engineered for heavy use and high impact. Since it’s the thickest, it lasts for a long time. Unfortunately, it’s stiff hence difficult to form.

The vertical grade is often used for backsplashes and other areas that can’t withstand a lot of abuse as the other countertops.

Why should you buy a laminate?

Laminate comes with plenty of attractive features that make it a great choice. Some of these features include:

It’s affordable: If you are strapped for cash, laminate is one of the most affordable materials in the market that you can go for.

Elegant appeal: While the countertops materials are cheap, they resemble their more expensive, premium competitors such as granite and marble. This means you can give your home a high-end look at a meager price.

They are easy to install: Since the countertops are lightweight, they are easy to install. You can easily install them on your own without requiring the services of a professional.

Easy to clean: When you pour a potentially staining product on the countertops, getting rid of it is easy. You only need a clean, moist material. When cleaning, avoid using chemicals and abrasives as they can dull the surface or even destroy the resin.

Unlike marble and granite countertops, the countertops are practically maintenance-free as you don’t need to seal or oil them.

Stain-resistant: Since the countertops are made from plastic, they are waterproof. This means they easily repel stains, so you don’t have to worry about them getting stained and looking ugly.

Versatile: The countertops come in a wide range of colors, textures, and patterns. It’s all up to you to choose the ones that are ideal for you. The beauty of it is that you can even get the countertops customized to your liking.

Cons of the countertops

While the countertops are excellent for use in your home, they have several setbacks:

Easily get damaged: Since they are made from layers that are glued together, they easily get damaged when you aren’t cautious when handling them. When you place hot pans or a cigarette on them, you can easily melt them.

The top of the countertops is also highly susceptible to scratches from sharp knives and other items. Unfortunately, unlike other materials that you can easily repair, the countertops are difficult, so you have no option, other than to replace them.

Don’t have a huge impact on the resale value of the house: Compared to granite and marble countertops, laminate doesn’t add much resale value to the house. So you can’t invest in the countertops with the hope that you will recoup your money once you sell your house.

How do you take care of the countertops?

For you to prevent the countertops from getting damaged, you should take good care of them. As motioned above, when you are cleaning the countertops, always ensure that you don’t use abrasive cleaners. You also should avoid harsh chemicals such as bleach.

Since you can only hire countertop replacement NC professionals to replace the damaged countertops, you should be ultra-cautious what you place on the surfaces. As a rule of thumb, never place hot pans on the surfaces. You also should never place any hot material on the surfaces.

6 Questions To Help You Decide On New Kitchen Countertops

kitchen countertops

In addition to being beautiful, kitchen countertops need to be durable and economical. For you to buy countertops with these features, you need to ask yourself several questions that include:

How will you be using the countertops?

How you use the countertops depends on how you cook. Do you cook more often? Do you bake a lot? Do you chop a lot? Do you have multiple people using the kitchen at the same time? All of these will determine how you use the countertops and how long they last.

If you use the kitchen a lot and you have the luxury of space, consider going for countertops made from different materials. If you chop things when cooking, go with butcher’s block as it creates a better cutting board.

If you bake a lot or you handle a lot of dough, go with marble countertops.

Mixing and matching different countertop materials helps you save more as you spend less on the countertops. For example, if you have a kitchen island, instead of installing premium granite countertops there, install a cheaper material then spend more on the adjacent areas that take up fewer feet.

Do you lead a busy life?

We are different and can withstand different types of maintenance. Some have a lot of time and can clean the countertops several times a day while others are busy such that they don’t have time to clean their houses even once.

Your lifestyle will significantly determine the type of countertops you should go for.

If you are busy, consider going for non-porous materials such as quartz. These require a simple wipe down, and you are good to go. Other materials such as limestone, marble, granite, and other porous materials are easy to maintain, but you have to oil and seal them once a year.

If you are still confused about the right type of countertop you should go for, get the input of a professional.

What is your ideal kitchen look?

We all have a way we want out kitchens to look like. Some want a high-end look, while others don’t mind a simple look. How you have always envisioned your kitchen will significantly determine the countertop materials you choose.

Do you love a particular color? You should go for it. As you are making your choice, remember that preferences change over time, so you should go with materials with veins or splashes of color as they will keep your options open.

Have you always wanted a premium look? Granite countertops are your go-to pieces. On the other hand, if you want a simple countertop, wooden countertops aren’t bad for you.

How big is your kitchen?

The size of your kitchen influences plenty of things, including the design of the kitchen, your material of choice, and other things. If you have a large kitchen, you can get away with more than one material, but if your kitchen is small, you have to stick with one material to avoid giving your kitchen a confused look.

What is your budget?

Different materials go at different prices. High-end marble or granite countertops cost much higher than butcher’s block. If your pockets aren’t deep enough, you will be limited to the types of countertops you can go for.

Many people shy from the material of their dreams because they think it’s going to be too expensive for them, but this isn’t always the case. Before you give up on the material of your dreams, check with the countertop stores. Visit a few stores and compare the prices.

It’s not surprising to find the prices low enough for you to afford the pieces.

While this is the case, you should note that how you maintain the countertops is the most important thing. If you don’t give good care to granite, it won’t last long.

Which materials match your home design?

While it’s always wise to think ahead about the material you are going to install as you are designing and constructing your house, in most cases this isn’t possible. Of course, you should choose the countertops that match your home design.

If you aren’t sure about the right material to go for, get the input of granite contractors Raleigh or any other professional.

5 Factors To Consider When Buying Marble Countertops

marble countertops

Marble countertops are affordable, durable, and unique. While this is the case, you can’t buy just any slab you come across—you need to take your time and find the perfect one for your surfaces. For you to do this, you need to consider several tips that include:

Variety

Marble comes in a wide range of varieties with different qualities. The most common varieties being:

Carrara: When people are talking about marble, this is the one they are talking about. Carrara is usually stark white or white with gray veining. Carrara marble is the most common type in the market and the least expensive.

This is the same variety that sculptures and buildings are made out of.

Calacatta: Due to its white coloring with gray veining, many people confuse it for Carrara. While there is white Calacatta, there are other varieties that have darker, thicker veining.

There are even gold varieties often bought by those looking to give their homes a luxurious look.

Emperador: It varies from white to gray to brown. Brown marble is accompanied by white or gray veining, which creates a beautiful contrast. Due to its elegant colors, Emperador marble looks extremely elegant in a room with gold or brass furniture.

Crema Marfil: Often found in a light-beige or yellow color, Crema Marfil is used in combination with darker stones. The stone has an irregular pattern and varying veining intensity that gives it a unique look that spices up any room.

For you to choose the right variety for your home, work with an experienced marble contractor who will not only help you in choosing the right slab, but also help you install it.

Cracks

Are there cracks on the countertops? Cracks are a sign that marble has been dropped or improperly handled. Many people confuse cracks with fissures. You should note that the two are quite different.

A fissure is naturally occurring in the stone, and it doesn’t change the plane of the marble surface.

When shopping for the stone, carefully inspect it and ensure that you don’t discard it, thinking it has cracks. When a marble slab has fissures, you can slide your nail across the fissure without it catching.

If you looking for a stone that will give you a more rustic look, there is no harm in buying a slab with fissures as they don’t change the integrity of the stone.

Origin

The other factor you should consider is where the stone is coming from. Due to the high demand for marble, some unscrupulous business people try to pass fake marble as genuine.

For example, they will take a white stone from china or any other part of the world and try to pass it as white marble from Calacatta. When making the purchase, always ask where the marble is from.

True Calacatta originates from mountain quarries in Carrara, Italy. So does Statuario.

The key to telling whether a slab is genuine or not is asking an expert to accompany you to the stores. The contractor will help you with the inspection and advise you on whether to buy the stone or not.

Color

Marble comes in a wide range of colors, including white, gold, red, green, neutral, gray, and black. The veining greatly determines the look of the slab. For a great look, choose a color shade that is similar to the walls and floor.

Your needs

Where are you looking to install the stone? Since it’s made from carbonate materials, it’s reactive to acids such as those found in soda, coffee, fruit juice, alcohol, and salad dressing.

Due to this, you should refrain from installing it in the kitchen. This is because if the stone comes into contact with acids, etching will result. The etching is a process that breaks down the polish, leaving a dull, lightly colored spot in the stone.

While sealing the countertops will protect the surfaces from stains, it doesn’t prevent etching. Marble also easily scratches, which makes it challenging to work with in the kitchen.

The best place to install marble is in the bathroom. Here it won’t be affected by serrated knives or salad dressings. Countertop replacement Durham contractors also recommend installing marble in tile flooring, vanities, and shower surrounds.

9 Benefits Of Marble Countertops

marble countertops

Are you thinking about updating your kitchen? One of the best materials you should go for is marble. While not as popular as granite, marble countertops not only transform the look of your kitchen, but that of the entire house. The countertops come with plenty of benefits that include:

They are easy to find

While granite and quartz countertops are trendy, they don’t easily come by. Due to this, they delay installation and you have increased overhead costs.

Marble on the other hand is easy to find. You can easily find it on most stony yards and fabricators. This means when you are looking to install the countertops in your home, you won’t have to wait for days or even weeks for them to be delivered.

You can walk into a yard and drive home with the marble slab, install it, and enjoy a hot meal on it that evening. Convenient, right?

Marble is extremely durable

Although marble requires more maintenance than granite, it doesn’t mean that it’s not lasting. Due to its combination of strength and beauty, marble has been used as a building material for centuries.

Some monuments were constructed from it hundreds of years ago, and they are still standing. If the stone was fragile, these buildings won’t be standing.

The countertops don’t require a lot of care

As mentioned above, compared to quartz and granite countertops, marble requires more care. This is because it’s porous, which makes it more prone to staining and etching. While this is the case, it doesn’t mean you have to go out of your way to keep the countertops looking great.

First of all, you don’t need any specialty cleaner. To clean marble countertops, use dish soap or any other mild cleanser and a soft cloth. Stay away from harsh cleansers such as bleach and vinegar.

When spills happen, especially those resulting from wine and deep-colored liquids, wipe them immediately. You don’t want your countertops getting stained, do you?

When you notice a stain, use hydrogen peroxide to rub it away. Remember that hydrogen peroxide can etch the surfaces, so rinse it thoroughly once you are done.

Marble is cool to the touch

This is a unique quality that makes it a staple in a chef’s kitchen. The cool stone surface makes it ideal for rolling out the pastry, so the butter doesn’t heat up and compromise the integrity of the dough. The cool nature of the countertop also makes it easy to prepare other foods.

They are affordable

Due to its beautiful nature, marble looks extremely high end and unaffordable. When you are on a budget, you can’t imagine it in your house.

You will be shocked to learn that the countertop costs less than granite, quartz, and other natural stone countertop materials. Although, costs vary depending on the type of countertop and thickness, marble is more affordable than you can imagine.

You should note that some sellers might try to rip you off. When doing your research, take time to visit different stores and see what they have in stock. Settle at a store selling top quality countertops at an affordable price.

They come in more design options

Are you looking for a worktop that requires more than basic fabrication? Marble is your best bet. Marble is soft hence easy to work with. This means you can easily create countertops with fancy edges or give your countertops extra fabrication.

Marble is aesthetically beautiful

This is the major selling point for the countertop. The bright white color of the countertop dramatically improves the look of any home. The white color also makes a room appear larger, which contributes to its elegance.

Marble is heat resistant

Unlike other countertop materials, you can place hot pans and pots on the marble surfaces and not worry about the surfaces staining or getting damaged.

While this is the case, you should note constant exposure of the countertops to heat puts them at the risk of cracking. Even if the countertops can withstand a lot of heat, always have trivets and pads in place where you place the hot pots and pans.

The countertops are bright

The countertops have a natural glow that reflects light in a room. This makes it an ideal countertop replacement Durham option if you have a small kitchen or bathroom that you would like to make appear larger and brighter.

4 Factors To Consider When Buying Kitchen Countertops

If you are remodeling your current kitchen or constructing a new one, you need kitchen countertops. For you to buy the right countertops for your kitchen, you need to consider several factors that include:

Your activities

While the look of the countertops is vital as it’s what makes or breaks the kitchen, if you choose a countertop material that doesn’t blend properly with your activities, the material will wear out fast forcing you to keep on replacing it after every few uses which will be equivalent to throwing money down the toilet.

If you cook, entertain a lot or have kids in the house, you can’t buy the same countertops as someone who doesn’t cook often and lives alone.

If you like the look of a given countertop and still want the surfaces to be functional, consider getting more than one type of countertop surfaces. For example, if you love chopping things when cooking, install butcher’s block in one area of the kitchen and you will have a built-in cutting board.

If you often bake, install marble countertops in half of your countertops and you will have a surface to work with dough.

Mixing more than one countertop material also helps you to spend less. This is because you can install one less expensive material in one area and another that costs a little money in another area, and you will have an excellent looking kitchen.

Your budget

How much money are you looking to spend on the countertops? This is an essential factor to consider as it dramatically determines everything from the surfaces you will get to the countertop contractors you hire.

If you are like other homeowners, the look of the countertops is the most critical factor you consider. In such a case, buy countertops that closely resemble the ones you can’t afford.

For example, if you can’t afford marble countertops, go with Quartz countertops that have a similar look like marble but cost a little less.

Before you buy the countertops, consider the consistency of the countertops to the other parts of the kitchen. Ask yourself whether the cost is consistent with the other materials you have used.

This is because you can buy premium marble countertops, and when you install them in a kitchen with vinyl flooring, you create a quality imbalance.

A good rule is to spend 15-30% of your budget on kitchen countertops. If you find yourself spending less than 15% of your budget on countertops, the quality of the countertops is most likely inferior to the other kitchen materials.

On the other hand, if you find yourself spending more than 30% of the budget on countertops, you will most likely be overdoing it.

You need to find a sweet spot where the countertops you are looking to install match the quality of the other materials you have used in your kitchen.

Ease of maintenance

Different countertops require different maintenance methods. Before you fall in love with a given countertop material, think about the amount of work that goes into maintaining it.

Porous materials such as limestone, granite, and marble need to be oiled and sealed once a year.

While the butcher’s block is durable, it requires regular sealing to protect it from excessive damage.

Other materials such as quartz require you to wipe them with a cloth, and you have excellent looking surfaces.

If you aren’t sure of the right surfaces to go for, ask an expert to help you out.

Color of the countertops

The color of the countertops not only affects the look of the pieces in the kitchen, but it also affects the ease of maintaining the countertops.

For a great look, choose a tone that coordinates or contrasts with your cabinets. You should note that the tone doesn’t have to be a close match. For example, install brown countertops on natural which oak cabinets.

Choose countertops with a versatile color. This is because the paints and accessories change with time, so by choosing a versatile color, you are sure that your granite countertops Raleigh will match most of the kitchen accessories.

Countertop experts recommend that you keep your options open by picking materials with veins or splashes of color as they blend in with many accessories.

5 Kitchen Countertops Options

best kitchen countertop contractor

Are you looking for kitchen countertops? There are plenty of options you can go with. From stainless steel to granite, limestone, wood, and quartz, you can be confused about the right countertop surfaces to choose from. For you to make the right choice, you need to consider three factors:

Your budget: How much money do you have? If you are on a budget, lean towards laminate, stainless steel, and tile.  On the other hand, if you have a larger budget, gravitate towards natural stone, granite, and glass.

Your lifestyle: How do you lead your life? If you have a large family with children, go for more durable countertops. If you love cooking, go for a tough material that can withstand heavy usage.

If you are a single person and you are more interested in how the countertops look than their functionality, go for the most beautiful countertops in the stores.

Color and texture preferences: Countertops come in all types of colors and textures. When you visit a countertop store, carefully go through the countertop materials and choose the ones that accentuate the look of your house.

As mentioned above, there are plenty of countertop materials to choose from. The most popular ones being:

Granite

It’s the most popular countertop material in the market, and every new homeowner wants to install it. The good side is that when you take good care of it, it can last for a long time. It’s also heat resistant, so you don’t have to worry about it getting burnt.

It comes in an array of colors such as white, green, pink, black, and beige. This gives you peace of mind you will find the color of your liking.

You have two choices when choosing granite: polished or honed. Polished granite has a shiny finish while the honed finish has a matte look to it. If you aren’t sure of the one to go for, consult your countertop contractor, and he/she will recommend the best one.

While the countertop is an excellent kitchen and bathroom countertop, it’s expensive, so you need to have a large budget. You also have to re-seal granite at least once a year to prevent it from staining.

Marble

Marble countertops are the go-to pieces for bakers as they provide a soft, cold surface for rolling dough. Just like granite, they come in an array of colors. Since they are natural, no two marble slabs are the same, which gives them a unique look.

They are also heat resistant and won’t mark even when you put a hot pan or pot on it.

While bakers love marble, it quickly develops knife scratches, so if you love chopping things on the countertops instead of using a cutting board, this isn’t the best option for you.

The cool thing is you can prevent the scratches from coming about by covering the surfaces when working.

Since it’s soft, marble easily scratches and chips. This calls for you to be ultra-cautious when using it.

While it’s tough, marble is super porous. This means oil, wine, and other spills easily seep into the countertops, making them harder to remove.

Engineered stone

Termed as the hardest countertop material, engineered stone is mainly composed of quartz, which is a known hard material that doesn’t require any sealing. Quartz comes in a wide range of colors and patterns.

Upon installation, it’s hard to find the seams, the material is extremely durable, and stains aren’t too prominent.

While the stone is excellent, its main flaw is its expensive (almost as expensive as granite).

Concrete countertops

While not as popular as the others, concrete countertops are extremely tough and durable. They also come with plenty of finishes such as ground, trowel, and pressed. To give the surfaces a unique look, embed a glass into them.

While the countertop is tough, you need to seal it regularly. Sealing concrete countertops is highly expensive as temperature changes and acidic spills alter the shape of the surfaces.

Since the surfaces are made by the same materials used to build sidewalks, the countertops can crack. Countertop replacement Durham professionals recommend you add fiber reinforcement or wire mesh to the countertops to prevent them from breaking.

Wooden surfaces

They are also not popular, but they are excellent additions to your home, especially if you are operating on a budget. You have plenty of wooden surface options to choose from, such as oak, teak, walnut, and cherry.

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.

10 Reasons You Should Give Marble Countertops A Shot

Whether looking to upgrade the look of your kitchen or bathroom countertops, some of the best countertop materials you can go with are marble countertops. Here are 10 of the top reasons you should consider the pieces:

Sophisticated look

Marble has a classic look that sets it apart from plenty of other natural stones. When properly installed, the countertops add elegance and warmth to the house, making it fun and comfortable to live in.

Rich history

The use of marble dates back to ancient Egypt. The Athenian treasury, built in the 6th century, was the first building to be constructed entirely from marble, and it’s still standing up to date. This is a clear proof of the durability and resilience of the material.

Plenty of color choices

Marble slabs come in a wide range of colors that include white, green, brown, red, and deep black. The varying colors and veining come from mineral impurities within the stone. The many colors give you plenty of choices and assurance that you will get a color that will fit your house.

Unique designs

Since the slabs are natural, they are un-replicable. No two slabs are the same; therefore, when you install them in your home, you can be confident that no other person in the world has a similar piece. For you to get the most from the unique designs, try out different slabs to find the most fitting.

Easy to clean

While the countertop materials give your home a high end look, they don’t require special cleaning materials. Mild dish soap and warm water are enough to give the surfaces a sparkling look. Don’t use harsh chemicals to clean the countertops as you will damage them.

Some specialized stones require experts to clean them, but that’s not the case with marble. You can easily clean marble by yourself with simple materials. When the surfaces get a stain, you can easily remove it using an alkaline product that will pull the stain from the stone and dry it out.

Heat resilience

While marble is soft and porous and tends to stain and etch easily, it’s exceptionally resistant to heat. The marble surfaces don’t burn even when you place hot items on them. The naturally cool temperature makes the countertops the top choice for pastry chefs and other professionals that deal with hot items.

Durable

As mentioned above, there are plenty of buildings built in ancient times, and they are still in good condition. While marble will require some maintenance, it tends to last for a long time when you take good care of it.

Easy to fabricate

Although it’s sturdy and resistant to heat, marble is soft hence easy to fabricate. This feature makes it easy for fabricators to create decorative edges and fancy details that improve the overall look of the stone.

Don’t settle on the cheapest contractors as they often don’t understand their craft. Marble slabs don’t come cheap; therefore, when you hire cheap contractors, you end up losing a lot.

Readily available

Unlike other stones that you have to order from a unique area, marble is readily available in most countertop stores. While you can easily find the stone, many people end up buying the wrong pieces as they are often in a hurry when making the purchase.

For you to get the most from the stone, take time to research and find a store selling high-quality stones at affordable prices. This might require you to visit a number of stores and make comparisons.

Even when you find a good store, don’t proceed to place a large order. Take a few marble samples and go with them to your home. Place them on the countertops and see how they look. Only consider buying pieces that perfectly fit your home.

Increase in home value

The high-end look of the countertops dramatically improves the home value. If you are remodeling the house for sale, you end up selling the house twice or thrice the price you would have sold it had you not installed the countertops.

While this is the case, you don’t have to install ultra-premium pieces as you might not recoup your investment. Work with expert kitchen countertops Raleigh experts who will professionally install moderately priced countertops giving your home a classic look.