When choosing the right countertop material for your kitchen, bathroom, or bar area, you have a wide variety of choices. And a wide variety of price points!
Educating yourself on the options and their costs – both initial investment and lifetime value; will be an effort most worthwhile. In this article, we will outline the various options, and show you how granite can be a high-value option, without the high price.
Let's start with laminate. Laminate countertops are your basic, low-cost countertops. Typically made of a plastic laminate material glued to a pressed wood surface, laminate countertops offer a seemingly limitless array of color and pattern options.
Today's laminate can even mimic the look of natural stone with photographic representations of granite, and edges that are similar in style to those you see on natural stone countertops. But because laminate is the lowest priced countertop option, it has its limitations.
Laminate is easily damaged, and not easily repaired. Knives and other sharp objects can scratch or gouge laminate, and heat from hot pans and dishes can scorch or bubble its surface. Since laminate is like a veneer, there is no room to buff out damage. Laminate countertops will not last a lifetime, either. You should expect to need to replace laminate within 10 to 15 years.
Solid Surface Countertops
Next, we have synthetic solid surface countertops. The most widely known solid surface countertop product is Corian. Solid surface countertops are composed primarily of plastics with flecks of glass, plastic, and other materials to provide color and pattern variations.