Kitchen worktops – features of choice
Tops of modern kitchen are the facade of the kitchen, an apron of the working area and a tabletop. These three whales create the overall concept of the kitchen interior. But if the choice of the first two is dictated primarily by their aesthetic component, and only the second by the functionality, then the tabletop is a rigid symbiosis of two principles. It would seem that aesthetics is secondary compared to its performance characteristics. However, the mood of the person who cooks food is crucial. And in order to ensure a good mood to the chef, the aesthetic component of his workplace is very significant. Therefore, the kitchen countertop should be beautiful.
What is the functionality of the countertop?
The tabletop is a monolithic or multi-part stove, mounted on kitchen pedestals. Its thickness depends on the material of manufacture and ranges from 2 to 7 cm. Usually the tabletop consists of a base (most often plywood) and lining. The plastic tabletops, which were quite popular some time ago, did not perform well – they turned out to be extremely short-lived. Now, thanks to the development of innovative technologies in the furniture market, a significant list of materials for the manufacture of worktops for kitchen sets is offered:
a natural stone
These materials are more or less resistant to high temperatures, abrasion, are not afraid of moisture, do not accumulate fat and are easy to clean. However, each of them has its own characteristics, positive and negative aspects, both in terms of performance and relative to their aesthetic component.
Wooden countertops – a tribute to tradition.
Wooden countertops most organically look in the style of Provence and loft. They look quite simple, so they fit perfectly in eco-style. Their soft, warm texture brings comfort and tranquility to the kitchen interior. However, despite the fact that the wood is subjected to thorough grinding and coating with special oils, it is not strong enough and is subject to mechanical damage in the form of dents and chips with a strong physical impact. Modern processing methods as much as possible protect the wooden countertop from moisture, but its operation still requires careful handling. Over time, it is beautifully darkened, but still the time of its operation is not as durable as tabletops made of other materials. Hot items can ruin its appearance.
Laminated chipboard worktops – a symbiosis of strength and decoration
This is the most budget option. The protective transparent layer with which the laminated table top is covered makes it thermo-, light-and wear-resistant. In addition, its positive operational characteristics include invulnerability to mechanical shocks, to the chemical effects of solvents, cleaning products, and other aggressive substances. Rack laminated worktop and to scratches, high temperatures and sunlight. Due to its heat resistance, this type of tabletop can be used near a cooker without the risk of ignition and deformation. Embedding sites of built-in appliances and washers should be carefully treated with sealant.
Countertops made of natural stone look luxurious. They are made of sheets of stone blocks, which are attached to the special equipment complete features. Since making them is very laborious, the cost of tabletops made of natural stones is quite high. They are very dense and hygroscopic. Their disadvantage is a lot of weight. In addition, they are not amenable to recovery. Therefore, it is impossible to eliminate chipped using a wax pencil. Given their porosity, after installation, the tabletop made of natural stone must be treated with a protective composition. Otherwise, the erosive stains from the liquid can be removed only by re-polishing it.
The beauty of these countertops is that, realistically repeating the pattern of natural stone, they are not deformed and do not get dirty, they are heat-resistant and hygroscopic. These countertops are easy to maintain and have an unlimited service life, making them the most practical option. Thanks to the greatest variety of textures and color solutions, countertops made of artificial stone harmoniously fit into any kitchen set.
Very organic for loft or high-tech kitchens. They are characterized by high resistance to mechanical and thermal damage, increased moisture resistance and hygiene. Have a very long life.
Their disadvantage is that the slightest stains and drops are extremely noticeable on them, even traces of the touch of hands are visible. Therefore, they are suitable for those who maintain sterile cleanliness in the kitchen.