Looking for a way to update the look of your kitchen? While new cabinets can go a long way toward transforming your space, nothing beats replacing your old countertops with something new. You have quite a few choices when it comes to material, though, so it pays to know a bit more about those options in order to make an informed decision. Two of the most popular materials are natural stone and solid surface countertops. What are the differences, and which is better for your needs?
Solid Surface Countertops
Let’s start the discussion with solid surface countertops. If you think laminate counters are the only choice, you need to dig a bit deeper. We’re not talking about low-quality plastic here.
Modern solid surface counters go well beyond laminate in terms of durability, lifespan and even color options. For instance, our Meridian Solid Surface is bold, beautiful and eye-catching. It’s also nonporous and incredibly durable. In fact, we back it with a 10-year warranty, which is not something you will find with most other materials.
We manufacture your Meridian Solid Surface countertops in house, right in our own facility. We also customize the counter to your specifications, including size, thickness and colors. If you’re worried that the seams will stand out (like older laminate types), rest easy. They’re inconspicuous and sometimes completely invisible. And, because this material is stronger than stone, you’ll have a beautiful countertop that will last almost forever.
When it comes to natural stone countertops, granite is the number one choice (note that quartz counter tops are not considered natural stone, so they don’t come into this particular discussion). You can also find marble and soapstone countertops on the market, but we do not recommend these. Both are softer than granite, and will require considerable maintenance over time. They’re also more easily damaged.
Granite is indisputably beautiful. It’s also available in a range of colors and patterns. No two granite countertops will be identical, either, because each piece of stone is unique. Of course, this also means that if your counter requires two pieces of granite joined together, there will be some difference in grain and pattern where they meet at the seam.
Stone is also very durable and will last for a long time. However, there are some drawbacks here. For instance, the seams are actually more visible with a granite kitchen countertop than with Meridian Solid Surface.
Another consideration here is the fact that granite must be resealed every few years to prevent staining. Unsealed granite is porous, and any liquids spilled on it will seep into the stone itself. Of course, there is also the fact that granite, while very durable, is susceptible to temperature fluctuations. That means setting a hot pan down on the counter itself is a very bad idea, as the heat can crack the stone, leaving you with a damaged counter in need of replacement.
Making Your Choice
In the end, choosing between Meridian Solid Surface and natural granite can be tough to do. Both are beautiful and durable. Both offer a long lifespan (when properly cared for). Solid Surface is the more affordable option, but both can be customized to fit your design needs and sense of style, too.
We offer both granite and Solid Surface countertops to fit your home’s design, and your budget. To learn more about the options available to you, get in touch with us today.