Materials for countertops in comparison
A fine, comfortable working surface of high quality is an important component for any kitchen interior as well as for office furniture and bathrooms.
Producers most often prefer a wood particle board (WPB) with various fillers as a material for countertops. The surface of such countertop is covered with several layers of plastic-laminate. Due to the present-day technologies a color range of plastic gives wide possibilities for choosing a coating design. The WPB countertops are easy in maintenance, readily washable, not susceptible to deformation by moisture and high temperatures and are resistant to food acids and household chemicals.
Conventional but less popular material for making the countertops is a natural solid wood. Solid wood coating is very sensitive to various damages, excessive moisture, stains of household chemicals and fat; hot articles can also leave visible traces on such a surface.
Coatings made of natural stone also require the like careful approach. Porous marble countertops are very good-looking and noble, but one can easily damage them and leave some chippings and cracks. Besides, marble absorbs moisture and fat. Therefore it is not so easy to remove afterwards the penetrated stains of wine or coffee. Only granite is relatively resistant to aggressive media and mechanical damages. Moreover, its appearance is compared by beauty to marble.
The positive features of natural material surfaces (wood, stone) are their ecological compatibility and natural origin. But the quality should be paid for, hence a high price and great weight can be considered as shortcomings.
For those who is dreaming of a noble countertop but not ready to invest much money, there are modern technologies available, namely the artificial stones. Range of the artificial stone application is extremely wide; it is used not only for countertops but also for shower cabins, wash-stands, kitchen sinks, window sills, ledges and other articles of decoration.