Kitchen Countertops / September 14, 2018 / Banner Jones.
Countertops are typically fabricated from 14- or 16-gauge material, which is then glued to a substrate of plywood or medium-density fiberboard (MDF) to form a rigid surface. Type 304 stainless steel is commonly used, due to its higher chromium content (and therefore corrosion resistance) and ability to be welded without affecting its durability or strength. Most common is a number 4 brushed finish, but stainless steel is also available in satin (smooth), antique matte and any number of specialty patterns.
Concrete, the humble material behind many a building foundation, makes for nearly indestructible kitchen counters and offers artisan-crafted customization in both color and layout. With these bragging rights, concrete rises above much of the countertop competition. Learn more below and see whether concrete counters are right for your kitchen.
The basics: Plastic laminate countertops consist of a wafer-thin finish adhered to a plywood or particleboard substrate. That thin finish is a high-pressure laminate (HPL); it’s made of three layers of material bonded together by high heat and pressure: a clear melamine top for protection, a decorative layer and a backing made of phenolic resin-coated kraft paper. Well-known laminate manufacturers include Formica, Wilsonart and Nevamar.
Advantages: This is a classic and timeless choice for a kitchen. It can perform for decades while maintaining its elegance. For those whose heart is set on a white, natural stone counter, few other options are available with the breadth of choices that marble offers. You can also opt for marble’s drama in any of its myriad other colors. Experienced bakers know that marble’s naturally cool temperature makes for great pastry making.
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