When it comes to commercial countertop projects, durability is essential. Heavily utilized countertops in such spaces as office buildings, retail stores, and restaurants require long-lasting strength. So, which material should a contractor, architect, or construction manager select? To help you make the best decision, let’s look at five options and the pros and cons related to each.
Granite is the most popular natural stone, and it’s very practical for heavily used areas. Innately strong, granite has been used in sculptures and monuments as well as countertops.
Pros to Using Granite Countertops:
- Natural beauty, providing a unique look – like a snowflake, no two slabs are alike
- A variety of color options
- Available in large slabs, which may reduce the number of seams
- Stain and heat resistant
Cons to Using Granite Countertops:
- Requires sealing upon installation as well as annual resealing
- Colors are not necessarily uniform, due to the unique, natural material
- Not suitable for healthcare environments because of its porous nature
- Granite can be more expensive than other alternatives, especially exotic selections
Quartz is an engineered stone, meaning crushed quartz crystals are bound together by an adhesive material.
Pros to Using Quartz Countertops:
- A plethora of vivid color options
- Colors and patterns are more uniform than granite and other natural stones
- Very strong material
- Stain and scratch resistant
- Easy to maintain; no sealing required
- Mimics the look of granite
Cons to Using Quartz Countertops:
- Not as resistant to heat as granite
- More expensive than solid surface countertops
Concrete countertops are manufactured surfaces that use dyes, pigments, and epoxy coatings to provide the look and feel of natural stone, and are becoming an increasingly popular option.
Pros to Using Concrete Countertops:
- Very durable and versatile
- Heat and stain resistant
- Multiple color options
- Can be made to mimic the look of stone, metal, or wood
Cons to Using Concrete Countertops:
- Requires initial sealing and regular annual resealing thereafter
- Installation requires longer amounts of time due to concrete curing requirements
4. Plastic Laminate
Plastic laminate is a low cost, high-volume, manufactured product made with plastic resin overlaying particleboard or plywood.
Pros to Using Laminate Countertops:
- Heat, stain, and scratch resistant
- Resilient and long-lasting
- Easy to clean
- Low cost
Cons to Using Laminate Countertops:
- Can be damaged by high heat or deep cuts, neither of which can be repaired
- Has a lower quality appearance
5. Solid Surface
Solid surface countertops are man-made and created from a unique blend of acrylic resins and natural materials.
Pros to Using Solid Surface Countertops:
- Non-porous: resistant to mold and mildew growth
- Highly stain resistant
- Renewable and repairable; scratches or cuts can be easily sanded or refinished
- Multiple colors and options can mimic the look of stone or concrete
- Wide variety of colors
- Easy to clean and resistant to bacteria and mold
Cons to Using Solid Surface Countertops:
- Not as resistant to heat.
- Can be scratched (but easily repaired with sanding or filling)
When you’re making your commercial countertop choice, solid surface countertops may be the right fit, but your decision should be based on the required look and utility of the project. Be sure to always weigh that against the cost and desired ongoing maintenance.
Not sure which countertops are right for your project? Call us today at 330-837-2216, or contact us here to discuss your needs.