Kitchen Counter Tops

Whether remodeling or designing your kitchen for you new home, one of the most important considerations to make is about your kitchen counter tops. These surfaces will be the most visible areas of your kitchen and the most used as well. Choice of material will play an important part in both the appearance and ease of cleaning of your kitchen counter tops. Some of the materials available are ceramic tiles, stainless steel, stone, stone composites and man-made materials.

Ceramic tiles can make a beautiful surface for your kitchen counter tops. The variety available is only limited by your imagination and pocketbook. There are artists available that will design your tiles to suit your d��cor needs. This may be the easiest way to design a d��cor suitable to your hopes for your new or remodeled kitchen. The biggest drawback is the extra effort required to keep a tile counter surface hygienic for your food preparation. A sealant coat should be applied to the grout used to hold the tiles in place and extra attention will be needed to keep that area of your kitchen counter tops clean and bacteria free.

Stainless steel kitchen counter tops will bring the appearance of modern technology to your kitchen. Easy to clean surfaces of bright shining metal make for a space age appearance that will suit almost any kitchen d��cor. This tough material will take the abuse that an active kitchen can endure from the use of harsh cleaning chemicals and everyday food preparation. Stainless steel will resist scratching and dents from normal use and does not chip. If a sleek modern look is what you want to achieve in your kitchen d��cor, this material should be on the top of your list for consideration.

Another metal not often considered for kitchen counter tops is pure copper. This softer metal, when in its pure state has a “lining finish” and is extremely hygienic. Tests have shown that pure copper will kill many bacteria that live in kitchen environments. The soft brown finish that copper achieves over time will give a mellow appearance to your kitchen d��cor. The softness of the metal will scratch more readily than other materials, but the “living finish” will repair the appearance of your kitchen counter tops very quickly. Just buff or sand the metal smooth again and in a few weeks, the warm brown color will reappear.

There are a variety of stones used for kitchen counter tops. The most popular are marble, granite, travertine and slate. These stones come in a variety of colors with travertine having the most variety. The drawback of travertine is the natural pits and grooves this stone has. Filler is needed to give the smooth surface desired in kitchen counter tops. Marble is smooth and comes in several shades, but the porous nature of this stone requires a sealant to resist stains and liquids. Granite also needs to be sealed against liquids and has limited shades available. Natural slate is highly water and stain resistant and very easy to keep clean and hygienic. Slate resists scratches well due to its very dense nature as well. These properties make this material highly sought after for laboratory counter tops.

Stone composites have all the natural toughness of stone, are already sealed against moisture and come in a variety of shades that extend all through the composite. These are readily available in both granite composite and quartz composite materials. Granite composite is a bit tougher than quartz composite due to the higher density of stone in the composite material. Quartz composite comes in more shades than granite and the colors extend throughout the material. Both of these composites will give you strong long-lasting kitchen counter tops that can fit into your kitchen d��cor easily. There are aggregate composites available that use natural material mixed with durable resin filler that is almost as tough as the fore-mentioned stone composites. This aggregate composite can be found in more shades than other stone composites, giving you flexibility in your choices for d��cor.

Man-made materials will offer you the most choices for your kitchen d��cor. From the older Formica kitchen counter tops to the solid surface choices available today, the variety of patterns and colors available from man-made materials gives you more leeway in designing your kitchen d��cor than other materials. Solid surface is a solid one-piece kitchen counter top that has the basins for your kitchen sink included in the counter top. This makes for easier cleaning of the surface and has a space age appearance as well. The color of this style of surface extends all the way through the material and is easy to take care for. It is available in a veneer like Formica to save on expenses and maintain the beauty of these materials. Man-made materials should be given consideration for your kitchen counter tops in your new or remodeled kitchen.

This should give you some more ideas of how you want to design your new or remodeled kitchen. There are a wide variety of materials available for your kitchen counter tops to be made from. All of these materials have their advantages and disadvantages, but the possibilities presented here will help you to make your choices for your new or remodeled kitchen. Your choice need only be limited by your budget. You can allow your imagination to soar when picking out your new kitchen counter tops.

Steve Galashaw
Permission by