Kitchen Benchtops: A Complete Buying Guide
When it comes to remodelling or constructing a new kitchen, one of the biggest decisions you would make is the type of benchtop suitable for your home. Aesthetics is not the only factor you have to consider, as the quality of your benchtops may affect the performance and maintenance of your kitchen.
To help make the process easier, we’ve compiled a list of factors you must consider when buying the ideal kitchen benchtops for your home. These insider tips will help you choose the right style and material that will suit your budget and taste.
If the benchtop is located against a wall, the maximum depth should be around 650mm. If you choose anything deeper than that, it would be difficult to reach across to clean it. On the other hand, such a guideline is not applicable to kitchen islands which allow you to access both sides.
When you are choosing the length of your benchtop, you have to consider whether one person will be using it or if there would be two people side by side. Of course, you have to take into account the size of your kitchen, as well as your budget when deciding on the size of your benchtop.
You can choose from a range of edging options, including bull-nose, wood, bevel, round nose and half round nose. The material you use for your benchtop determines the edging you would choose. If there are young children running around the house, it would be best to have round varieties to avoid painful bumps on their heads.
Splashbacks are essential for protecting the wall behind your benchtop from oil, water, steam, and sauces. So, it would only be fitting to choose something that is waterproof and easy to clean. You can opt to use the same material as your benchtop. While glass is one of the most popular options, the more durable alternative is natural or engineered stone.
It would be best to set a definitive budget before you go shopping for kitchen benchtops. As with any material involved in renovations, your spending limit affects your decisions.
High-Quality Benchtop Materials
Engineered stone materials are made of natural stone aggregates, typically quartz-based. This benchtop material is non-porous, durable and is offered in a wide range of patterns and colours. Some of the designs can even mimic the look of natural stone. Compared to natural stone, engineered stone benchtops do not need ongoing maintenance. They are also the more affordable alternative to natural stone. However, you have to know that some finishes that closely resemble natural stone can get as expensive as the real thing.
Granite is becoming more and more popular in the market. It offers the same level of beauty as marble, but this material is far more resistant to chipping, staining and scratching. Depending on the quality and looks, the prices of granite can range from low to high.
Marble is absolutely luxurious when used for kitchen benchtops. It is loved for its beautiful veining and sheer sophistication. However, it is important to note that this option is more expensive than other materials. Aside from that, the surface is porous, soft and quite difficult to maintain. You will be able to find more affordable options which can also be durable. If you want the luxury and class that this material provides, you have to be ready to re-seal it on a regular basis.
While travertine has been used since the ancient times, it is still quite popular in modern architecture. It is ideal for buildings and other applications due to its practical and aesthetic qualities. There are many good reasons why travertine is also an ideal kitchen benchtop material.
For instance, this material is more affordable than marble. You can achieve the same luxurious and classic look of marble with travertine. It offers a timeless appeal, but it is considerably more affordable than marble or even granite.
You will also be delighted to find travertine in a wide range of designs and colours. You will find something suitable for your kitchen. If you wish, you can even find smooth and rough varieties of travertine. So, if you intend to build an outdoor kitchen, you will find the ideal material for your benchtops.
As we’ve mentioned, travertine has been used for thousands of years and structures made from it have survived the test of time. It goes without saying that choosing travertine will provide you with long-lasting kitchen benchtops.
While porcelain is in the middle of the kitchen benchtop spectrum, it still offers several advantages. Stone production companies like Aurora Stone can design it in a way that it mimics natural materials like marble, timber, concrete and even rusted steel. Its surface is also easy to clean, has low porosity and is resistant to UV, staining and scratching. You can use porcelain benchtops for your indoor and outdoor kitchen.
Ceramic is one of the most affordable materials for kitchen benchtops. High-quality ceramic tiles can be durable and long-lasting, as long as they are properly taken care of. They also have a solid surface, so they do not attract allergens like dirt, pollen, and dust. When these elements land on a ceramic surface, they stand out. As such, it is easy to wipe or mop them off. So, one your family members suffer from asthma, ceramic is the ideal benchtop option. You can enjoy a kitchen with cleaner air.
Factors to Consider When Selecting the Colour and Finish
Resistance to Stain
The level of stain resistance in natural stones can vary greatly depending on the colour. In general, when the stone is lighter, it is more porous and more vulnerable to staining. On the other hand, there are some exceptions to this rule. So, it is best to ask Aurora Stone for more details.
Resistance to UV Rays
UV resistance also depends on the material and colour. There are certain engineered stones and colours that have better UV rating than other materials. If you need more information regarding this, you are free to contact Aurora Stone, and a member of our team will be happy to answer your questions.
Your Kitchen’s Overall Look
It is important to choose a kitchen benchtop colour that will complement the look of your walls, floors, and joinery. When in doubt, it is best to opt for neutrals. Neutral colours will suit kitchens with cool or warm tones.
Aurora Stone – Your Top Choice for Kitchen Benchtops
If you are having trouble choosing the right material for your benchtop, do not hesitate to contact Aurora Stone. As one of the largest stone production companies in Western Australia, we offer a range of benchtop materials that will suit any taste, lifestyle or budget.
Contact Aurora Stone today, and we will be happy to help you find the ideal stone solution for you.