Solid surface countertops are part natural, part man-made manufactured materials that come in an assortment of colours and varieties. There are numerous different types of solid surface materials out there, but the most common types are Corian and Quartz. As stated earlier, since these materials are manufactured, they always come in specific styles and colours that can be reproduced, an advantage that is common for all solid surfaces. We’ll look into the advantages and disadvantages of these materials further right now.
Corian has the unique advantage of being very vibrant and colourful. There aren’t many countertop options that come in orange, purple, green, blue, etc. but with corian you can choose almost any colour imaginable to compliment, contrast, or make a truly unique look in that kitchen or bathroom. As well, since this is a solid surface, it is non porous, and is essentially for the most part stain free. Stains can occur on these tops (extremely rare), but if you wipe up spills and take proper care of your top, it’ll look like it did on day one years down the line.
With every material, there are disadvantages that come along with it, and corian is no different. Although it is a solid surface and stain resistant, it is not overly scratch resistant. Knives and jewelry can scratch corian countertops, and if the material is scratched, it is difficult to cover up or fix. Also, corian is not heat resistant, and hot pans or pots laid directly on the surface can be a cause for damage to the top. Lastly, corian is an expensive material to purchase, it is almost as much as granite, and due to it being partially man made, this price point can be a deterrent for something that is not 100% natural stone.
Quartz has perhaps a suiting name to it, as it sounds high end, which it certainly is. Quartz is a material that is stain resistant and requires no sealant, and since it is essentially stone, the material will never stain. As well, quartz is very heavy and extremely durable, meaning that it is scratch resistant, the material itself is so hard that it will actually dull knives instead of scratching the countertop, if you use knives without a cutting board (so be careful). Quartz is extremely bacteria resistant as well, meaning that a quartz countertop will be cleaner then most countertops usually are (on a microscopic level at least). Lastly, most quartz suppliers will provide an extended warranty, and even a lifetime warrant on quartz countertops, as tests have shown that when done properly, quartz tops should last a lifetime, and still look as good as they ever did the day they went in.
With all of these advantages of quartz, it’s hard to imagine that the material could have any disadvantages. As stated earlier, quartz is high end, and that leads to its disadvantage of cost. Quartz tops are up there with the most expensive of all solid surface materials, usually running around $99 a square foot installed. If you want to have a kitchen countertop, and never have to worry about it damaging or being replaced however, an investment in quartz could easily be worth it.
There are other materials on the market available in solid surface materials (soapstone, caesarstone, etc.) but they are generally only used in special applications, or requested if the customer already has that specific material in mind. For further information on corian or quartz countertops, our suppliers’ contact information can be found here. As well, you can always talk to the team at Handcrafted Wood Furniture & Kitchens if you have any questions about these materials.