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Stone vs. Wood vs. Other Countertops

Most people think Stone Countertops are a new concept, but the truth is Stone was the original material that counter tops were made out of. The original countertops were made from fieldstone, basic rocks found on the surface of the earth or just below. Wood was very close behind as a counter top material when people were more than just cooking around the fireplace. Counter tops did not change much until the 19th century when different materials started to be used. Soapstone and Slate were two of the first stones to make an appearance as countertops. They were plentiful in the Northeast quarries of Europe. Marble was popular in pastry shops where bakers rolled out dough on the cool surface. Soon after Marble’s introduction, Granite Countertops were introduced. Wood did not stay the same during this time either. Wood countertops were made out of different types of wood, such as oak, maple, and imported woods from various countries, with different finishes, and evolved into the butcher block wood that we see today. After Word War II metal and laminate countertops started to become popular, with laminate taking off and are the most common type of countertop today.

Wood Countertops Addison

Wood countertops or laminated wood countertops are what most people think of as the conventional countertops. This is because wood was the typical countertop used in kitchens, while the more decorative countertops were saved for areas where guests would visit. Wood is a sturdy counter top material, with a variety of natural and artificial colors. Laminated wood countertops combine the durability of wood with a resistant surface that comes in a wide range of colors and patterns. Wood countertops are almost always custom made. Laminate countertops can be found in premade configurations, reducing their cost. Natural wood countertops are high maintenance. Even with proper sealing, it is important to make sure that they stay safe. Meaning no hard objects placed directly on the surface such as glasses, plates, or metal objects and cleaning liquids up soon after contact with the wood. Wood also can warp or distort when hot materials are placed on the surface, without a protective pad underneath.

Stone Countertops Addison

Stone countertops are the most sturdy and resilient material for countertops. Stone countertops have a wide variety of natural stones and even come in artificial stone, called Engineered stone. The most common types of Stone Countertops are Marble and Granite, but Slate, Soap Stone, Limestone, and Quartzite are also available. Stone countertops resist scratching but can chip if struck hard enough or when a sharp enough object makes contact with the surface. Stone can also be vulnerable to water, but proper sealing will keep water and other substances from staining your stone countertops. Some stones, such as Quartz, can become damaged from heat. Other stones like Granite can resist hot pans placed directly on the surface. Stone countertops also come in a variety of colors based on the different types of natural stones, and engineered stone countertops can be shaped and colored to customer specifications. Stone countertops can be more expensive than their wooden counterparts, but the durability and strength of stone will often last longer than wood.

Other Countertops Addison

In addition to stone and wood, materials such as steel, plastic, and even compressed paper have made an appearance in countertops. Steel countertops became popular after World War II When the steel supply boomed from scrapped tanks and other military equipment, in addition to factories not requiring as much steel to build for the military. Steel countertops are sturdy and durable like stone but are easier to scratch. Steel countertops, like stone, are very sanitary as germs do not have a lot of pores in the surface to hide in. Steel, however, does not have the same aesthetic appeal that stone or wood does. Plastic, Glass, Tile, and Compressed Paper countertops round out the list. They often imitate the look of stone or laminate countertops, while Glass and Tile have the same heat resistance, all of these materials do not have the durability or shock resistance of stone countertops.

Countertop Installation Addison

Ultimately, it is your style and home that your countertops should fit. Like most things, Stone Countertops use to be a luxury, but over the years the price has dropped dramatically. This makes Stone Countertops affordable and cost effective for your next kitchen remodel. Global Marble and Granite can help you pick out the right Marble, Granite, Soapstone, or Quartzite countertop for you. So give Global Marble and Granite a call for your next kitchen remodel, and see how stone would look in your kitchen.