Tag Archive for: Laminam

Porcelain Countertops Pros and Cons – 2022

Neolith Calacatta Countertop with Waterfall Edge

Neolith Calacatta Countertop with Waterfall Edge

Are Porcelain Countertops right for your home?

WHAT ARE PORCELAIN COUNTERTOPS?

Porcelain kitchen countertops are a man-made product made from clay. The clay called ‘China clay’ is mixed with other minerals to create the strength and durability of porcelain.

The combination of these materials is put into a kiln and fired at extremely high temperatures. This creates a dense, durable material resistant to stains, heat, UV rays, scratches, chips, and cracks.

During the manufacturing of porcelain countertops, pigmented glazes are added to create different patterns and colors on the porcelain slab. Porcelain can be either glazed or unglazed. However, glazing increases the durability of the slab by making it shiny and less porous (which means there is a decreased risk of staining).

DRAWBACK OF PORCELAIN COUNTERS

One downside to glazed porcelain is that the printing is only on the surface. This means that if it chips, you can see a different color on the inside. On the other hand, unglazed porcelain has the same color on both the surface and the interior of the slab.

PORCELAIN COLORS AND PATTERNS

Just like other countertops, porcelain countertops come in assorted colors and designs that look like natural materials, like marble, wood grain, or concrete. But remember that the pattern and color won’t be on the inside of the countertop since it’s applied only to the top surface during glazing.

PORCELAIN COUNTERTOP EDGES

Porcelain countertops are unique because of the printing on the surface. The patterns and colors are only on the top, so you can’t cut a rounded edge. Most people choose a simple square edge to keep the pattern and color.

PORCELAIN COUNTERTOP DURABILITY

Although porcelain slabs are durable, they are also lightweight and thin. The typical thickness for porcelain countertops is ¼ inch (6 mm) or ½ inch (12 mm). Porcelain slabs can also be made in large sizes, which is useful for covering an entire island without seams.

Once installed, however, porcelain is extremely hard and durable. Cracking is only a big issue during the handling, moving, and cutting of exceptionally large slabs.

What Are Porcelain Countertops – Pros and Cons?

What materials come to mind when you hear the term “toughest countertop”? Granite or quartz are candidates. Sure, granite and quartz are strong. People, on the other hand, but porcelain is one of the toughest.

Porcelain is stronger than granite and about as hard as quartz.

What are porcelain countertops anyway?

While different manufacturers may use different processes to make porcelain surfacing material, it is generally made from a mixture of inorganic raw materials. In a heat and pressure sintering process the ingredients merge forming a strong bond with very little porosity. Some manufacturers liken the process to the way metamorphic rock is created.

Porcelain slabs are coated with a colored glaze when they’re produced for use in countertops. This is to give them the look of natural stone or marble and add to their attractiveness.

Pros and Cons of Porcelain Countertops

Pros

  • Heat Endurance – One advantage of porcelain countertops are that they can handle extremely high temperatures without being damaged. You can place hot pots and pans on them without any problems.
  • Hardness – Porcelain is stronger than the hardest granite.
  • Scratch Resistant – Porcelain is scratch-resistant and does not usually suffer any harm during regular use. The material will not be harmed when knives or sliding pots and pans are dragged over the surface.
  • Non-Porous – In a nutshell, the material will not take on any water. Liquids will remain on the surface.
  • Stain Resistant – Because porcelain is non-porous it is highly stain resistant without the need to seal it.
  • UV Light Resistance – Material can be in direct sunlight and won’t fade or discolor.
  • Wide Range of Colors and Patterns – Colors range from whites to black in solids, patterns, and veins. The slabs are printed, allowing manufacturers endless design possibilities.
  • Large Format Size – 120″x60″ is a typical dimension. This allows for one piece island tops without seams.

Cons

  • Easy to Crack – Though porcelain is one of the most durable materials around, it can be quite brittle. If something heavy falls on it or if it’s subject to a sharp impact, it may crack.
  • Limited Edge Styles – Extremely limited choices are available due to the core of the material being different than the surface. A mitered edge is the best option.
  • Higher Price – Because of the complexity in producing and installing porcelain, it is more expensive than other materials. Fabrication can be twice as long.

As you can see, high-quality porcelain countertops are a versatile and durable product that gives you high performance and isn’t difficult to install. Since it’s stylish, resistant to daily wear and tear, and comes in assorted colors and patterns, it can be the perfect addition to your decor.

Though it has some disadvantages, overall, the pros outweigh the cons. And with proper planning and care, they can be the most fashionable and practical decision you can make when it comes to your kitchen.