The Best Material for New Kitchen Countertops: A Guide

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New Kitchen

If you are considering remodeling your New Kitchen in time for Thanksgiving and Christmas, you’ve probably been completely overwhelmed by the seemingly endless list of options for lighting, tiles, cupboards … the list goes on. When it comes to countertops, however, the range of options are no less overwhelming. There are pros and cons to each type of countertop, and the one that you should choose will depend first on your personal preferences and secondly, the way you like to use your kitchen. In the below article, we explore what you should know about some of the most popular choices.

Butcher Block Countertops

Butcher block countertops are crafted from different types of wood, joined together and sealed to create an attractive pattern. They are a popular choice because they create a warm and inviting look, and look wonderful in a rustic style kitchen.

They are a good choice for kitchens that get a lot of use, because they bear heat and scratches well. Even if you were to scratch the surface this just adds to the rustic appeal because of the non-uniform nature of the surface – plus you always have the option of periodically sanding and resealing your counter to make it look new again.

The downside is that they will need to be sealed when they are first installed, and periodically resealed over the years to prevent water from getting into the wood and causing damage. Some manufacturers recommend oiling butcher block countertops every 1-3 months.

Granite Countertops

Granite is one of the most elegant countertop materials you can choose. These countertops are made from igneous rock, so they can really bring a sense of the majesty and wonder of the natural world into your home.

Granite countertops are incredibly strong, and they are resistant to scratches and to heat so they can withstand the rigors of a family kitchen. When they are sealed correctly they are also stain-resistant. If they are not properly sealed, this can lead to staining, however, and if it’s not properly sealed, bacteria can get into the porous stone so you will need to be mindful of this if you are choosing granite for your kitchen.

Marble Countertops

Marble is another elegant choice for a countertop. Like granite, marble is a naturally occurring material, so each piece is truly unique. As they age, marble countertops will develop an aged patina that give them a vintage look. Some people like this and some don’t, so it’s worth doing some research on how this will look before choosing marble.

Marble countertops need to be resealed once each year, otherwise they will become stained due to the porous nature of the material. It is also, unfortunately, more prone to scratching than granite, particularly if you choose a high gloss finish. Plus, it may etch if you spill acidic materials on it like tomato juice.

Laminate Countertops

Laminate countertops are an incredibly popular choice because they are affordable, and you can get them in a vast array of colors and finishes, so it’s easy to fit them around the kitchen you want. The laminate surface means that cleaning up is incredibly easy, and there isn’t the risk of staining that there is with more porous materials.

The downside to laminate is that it isn’t very heat or scratch-resistant, so you will need to ensure that you do your chipping on a board if you don’t want to damage your countertop.

Reclaimed Wood Countertops

If you are environmentally conscious, then reclaimed wood countertops are an excellent choice. You are taking wood that would otherwise have gone to waste, and making a unique looking feature for your home. Reclaimed wood is a great choice for a rustic looking kitchen, giving a feeling of warmth. It’s also a durable material.

The downside to reclaimed wood is that it is often expensive, as there is a limited supply of material. Plus, as with the butcher block option, you will need to ensure that it is properly sealed in order to prevent bacteria from getting into the wood. Reclaimed wood is often not very heat or scratch-resistant, which may not be an issue as it will add to the rustic aesthetic, but this is a personal choice.

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