Published at Friday, March 15th 2019. by Emese Ketola in Kitchen Countertops.
Granite tile countertops are generally less admired than solid granite or even modular granite countertops, but they are an option for homeowners seeking to save money by installing the countertop themselves. The many grout seams make upkeep and maintenance difficult.
Each material has its advantages and disadvantages, all of which need to be weighed when choosing. The more esoteric materials, such as bamboo, zinc, and stainless steel. may prove to be too expensive and hard to maintain for most people. For most homeowners, the more practical options will include materials such as slab granite, engineered stone (quartz), solid surface material, as well as traditional laminates and ceramic tile.
Unless you live in a major metro area, it's difficult to find fabricators who will deal with glass counters. This is probably not a great choice unless you are determined to have unique countertops and can find an installer interested in working with them.
Marble is a relatively soft and porous stone that MUST be carefully and repeatedly sealed if used for kitchen countertops. Like granite, marble is available in three forms—solid slabs, modular marble, and marble tiles. As with granite, solid slabs are the best choice for countertops.
The final natural stone commonly found in countertops is slate, which is quarried straight from the earth, cut into slabs, and surface-grinded to a matte finish. It is a surprisingly good material for countertops, since it is relatively non-porous and resists stains well.
A laminate countertop is formed from a thin layer of plastic laminate material bonded to a core of particleboard or MDF (medium-density fiberboard). Laminates are made by many manufacturers, including Formica and Wilsonart, and hundreds of color and style options exist.
Yet another way to make use of recycled glass is a countertop made from individual glass tiles applied over a cement-board core, much the same as ceramic tile. Although not uncommon, this is generally not a very functional countertop—glass tiles are better suited for backsplashes.
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