Custom Kitchen Renovations and Designs
Kitchen benchtops are a big part of any kitchen renovation, and choosing the right one is a big decision. The benchtop is arguably the hardest working area of a kitchen. It's also one of the most visible areas of a kitchen. So, it's important to take a little time to research the worktop that's right for you!
The following is a guide to assist you in choosing the right benchtop for your kitchen:
Laminate benchtops have proven for many years to be a cost effective yet durable worktop surface alternative. Available in a vast range of colours and finishes, you are sure to find a suitable look for your renovation. Laminate benchtops are the process of laminating your chosen laminate material to a HMR particleboard substrate, finished with the edge detail of your choice. This typically includes a square edge in either laminate or ABS, post formed in a range of shapes (rolled edge) or even a solid timber edge. Generally you will find laminate benchtops, especially when postformed in 33mm thick but there are certain suppliers and manufacturers that can offer different thicknesses. Square edge tops are normally made to the thickness of your choice, subject to the material availability.
Solid Timber Benchtops
Like timber doors ,there are few products that can bring a natural warmth to a kitchen like solid timber benchtops. There’s a huge range of solid timbers available. Some timbers are harder than others and some are more prone to movement that others. All timber tops should be sealed, either with a polyurethane coating, or for a more natural feel, with a wood oil. It is important to remember, that no matter what timber or coating is used, timber can dent and scratch and should be cared for accordingly.
Natural Stone Benchtops (Granites & Marbles)
Natural stone benchtops are a beautiful and individual product that you can add to your new kitchen. Every piece of stone is unique in it’s colours and patterns which is it’s allure to so many. When making the decision to use natural stone surfaces you will typically be asked to visit a stone wholesaler to look at the available slabs, as each slab is different. Both granites & marbles are a natural product which are porous and can be subject to staining should care not be taken. Although generally sealed during the manufacturing / installation process, it is sometimes necessary to have it re-sealed in the years to come.
Engineered Stone Benchtops (Re-Constituted)
If you're looking for something more consistent, with the durability of natural stone benchtops, then engineered stone may be the option for you. Made from crushed quartz, with a bonding agent, this product is both strong and much less porous than natural stone. Available in a vast range of colours and finishes, we find this to be the most popular surface used in kitchen renovations today. Although this is a manufactured product, giving it a consistency in colour and pattern, it is recommended with certain colours to make sure you’ve seen this in a large format rather than just small samples.
Solid surface acrylic benchtops are a non pouros, seamless and hygenic benchtop option for those looking for something a little different. The design options with an acrylic benchtops are almost endless, including intergrating sinks, splashbacks, and much more, with invisible joints. Although softer than natural or engineered stone, most scratches are easily repairable with great results. Acrylic surfaces (at a cost) can also be manipulated to create curves and other interesting shapes. Also, having the ability to have seamless welding done, you can create extremely large areas with acrylic benchtops without visible joints. This is not possible with most other benchtop surfaces, which are generally limited to 3000mm to 3600mm before joins are required.
Stainless Steel Benchtops
Stainless Steel is probably the most heat resistant and hygenic surface available for your kitchen benchtop, which is why it is widely used in commercial kitchens. It also has the advantage, like acrylic benchtops, that you can have sinks and splashbacks welded to your benchtop to again give you a seamless look or wet area. The downside to a stainless steel benchtop is it will scratch and can dent quite easily, and for this reason you should know that it is not going to look new and polished for long.