A kitchen worktop you can count on
Whether you are splashing out on a dinky new kitchen or in hot pursuit of an almighty kitchen makeover – a new worktop is a MUST!
Like many products and finishes, you may find that you are ultimately spoilt for choice or that you are simply bamboozled with the countless options available. Over their lifespan, worktops are destined for a certain level of punishment, so they need to be highly functionable and suit your lifestyle.
Kitchen renovations can prove costly, so you should take into consideration the various factors and set your budget in motion. One of our previous blogs may prove useful when looking at the bigger picture and help guide you on the various kitchen crunching decisions. Check out our blog https://www.placelift.ie/blog-entry/2017/2/1/tips-for-planning-your-success-kitchen-layout-plan.
Okay, back to your worktop..…......
A stylish worktop is a great investment in your kitchen and a good quality one can transform an otherwise ordinary fitted kitchen into something special. Keep in mind that the material you choose is going to be on full show and its’ something that everyone is going to be able to touch and feel. Once you set your budget, this will effectively determine what you can actual AFFORD!!
Worktop - The Practicalities
- Ideally be able to resist heat, staining and scratching.
- Thicker worktops are more durable, having a greater resistance to heat, cracking, or warping.
- Keep joins to an absolute minimum, so carefully consider this aspect at your kitchen planning stage.
- Aim to fit sinks flush with the top or undermounted.
Timeless but priceless
Trends tend to breeze in and blow out for many aspects of our homes but when it comes to purchasing a “big ticket” item like your kitchen - you want it to stand the test of time. You would like to think that the worktop you choose NOW, will work with your kitchen doors, if you choose to paint them LATER.
With a very low budget kitchen, avoid splashing out on an expensive stone or quartz worktop, however, for a mid-range, premium kitchen or a very small kitchen - I would say GO FOR IT!
WORKTOPS - PRO'S & CON'S
Solid wood worktops are available in a variety of wood and grain and can add a real sense of natural warmth to your kitchen.
Overtime it will develop character but can be easily sanded back to look as good as the day our installed it! On the downside, it can scratch stain or scorch easily and will require oiling at least bi-annually.
With natural beauty and the hardened properties of polished granite, it makes it an ideal choice for a worktop. It is heatproof, water proof and stain-resistant and is available in a variety of colours and textures. When it is sealed and maintained it will last a lifetime. Due to its weight, kitchen units may require bracing to support it and it is costly (but worth it)!
Also know as engineered stone, quartz is produced by fusing quartz with resins and minerals. It is more durable than granite, stain resistant, heat-resistant.
Quartz is available in a vast choice of colours and with the option of including glass and metallic flecks. It is pretty much maintenance free with no sealing required and it is also naturally anti-bacterial. Worth noting that while it is on the expensive side, it is not an natural stone.
While it is a softer stone than granite, the natural beauty of marble tends to compensate for this factor. This natural material has veining in various hues of grey, brown, black and pink creating gorgeous, timeless, and unique worktops.
In saying this, it requires sealing and is prone to staining and scratching. While it is heat resistant, it can be prone to discolouration and can burn.
Very much trending for 2018, neolith is a ground breaking sintered stone which is created by combining glass, granite, and natural oxides under an extreme temperature.
You will be spoilt for choice with neolith, as it is available in an extensive range of colours, patterns and finishes and it is also maintenance free. Sounds almost to good to be true (I know), but of course you will have to dig real deep to pay Neolith!
A concrete worktop will give your kitchen a rugged industrial appearance and can be cast on site or to suit any size/shape for a bespoke finish.
It is very durable and is available in a selection of concrete colours. Pigments can be introduced to create more interesting tones making this worktop somewhat unique. On the negative side, it must be sealed to prevent staining and it tends to stain easily and become blotchy overtime. Also worth noting is that it is particularly heavy and your kitchen units may need to re-enforce to support it. Concrete would fall under the high-end pricing
The reason most commercial kitchens have stainless steel worktops is because it is extremely hygienic and can hold its own in a hard-working kitchen. Stainless steel looks smart and is highly resilient to heat, water, and staining. However, it will scratch easily particularly if it polishes as opposed to brushed and show up those dreaded finger marks. It may dent over it life span and can look and feel cold and clinical.
Laminate is a synthetic product, made of layers of paper and resins compacted and glued to a wooden substrate. Getting a laminate worktop to work seamlessly with your new kitchen is paramount, getting it wrong can be a DISASTER!
Like laminate flooring, laminate counter tops have come on leaps and bounds and often at a glance it is tricky to tell the difference between some laminates and the real thing! You will be spoilt for choice, however be mindful that some high gloss laminates will scratch easily.
AT PLACELIFT, WERE LOVING……..
A seemless quartz worktop and splashback in the same material. If you can steam-line your wall units raising them slightly above standard (about 150mm), this will showcase your "masterpiece quartz splashback" It will scream luxe in your kitchen, clean and contemporary with no grubby grout to worry about. While it is bound to pull on your purse strings - it will be so worth it!
TENDER LOVING CARE......................
No matter what worktop you commit to, you should be sure to find out the best practice of care and treat it with the respect it deserves. NO chopping your veggies directly on it, DON’T place your hot saucepans on it and AVOID cleaning with any products that contain bleach.
Are you hoping to transform your kitchen? Call Placelift for a chat on 01 2548070