There are four main types of kitchen counter tops used in kitchen design, Formica, granite, solid wood, and man made tops. This page will be discussing the benefits and downside of each option. We will also be showing the colour range available for each.
Granite counter tops
| Wooden counter tops
| Quartz counter tops
| Concrete counter tops
Formica kitchen counter tops, Pretoria
Formica is a name brand of laminate tops that has become the industry name for all laminate work tops. There are many manufacturers of Laminate tops and also the laminate. For the sake of ease I am going to start with PG Bison's Life seal top colours which are most commonly used. I have heard people refer to these as Melamine counter tops, but Melamine is not the right material to use for counter tops. The laminates are not as hard wearing as the counter top laminates. To read more about Melamine click here
Cost: This is the cheapest type of kitchen counter top currently available in the industry.
Ease of use: The most complicated tool required for fitting is a circular saw.
Range: The range of colours available has something for everyone.
Durable: Can handle high temperatures, will not fade and I have seen tops of 25 years and older, still looking good.
Easily water damaged: This may seem like a major problem but I have a solution for it, I have not yet been called out to replace any formica top after treating them the way I do.
Can be scratched: With enough violence many things can be done including scratching Formica tops. This is only a disadvantage if you have hooligans and uncivilised people dancing on your counter tops.
Formica Colour Range
PG Bison's offering is a firm favourite in the laminated counter top stakes.
There are other laminates available from various manufacturers, yet the PG Bison range is most commonly used.
Granite Counter Tops - Pretoria
Granite is a natural product, is not renewable and harvesting granite destroys mountains. This is not a green product and in my mind is the least desirable top to use. It is however the next most common counter top found in kitchens. The range of colours is pretty varied from almost white stone to pitch black. The most commonly seen granite is the black one known as Rustenburg due to it's low cost in comparison to other products.
Durable: Granite is a hard wearing stone and can last many years.
Cost: Granite varies in price from 3x the cost to many x the cost of laminate counter tops.
Cannot be repaired: Granite is known to break at weak points, notably where cut outs have been made for sinks and other appliances.
Cost to environment: Mountains are lost to granite mining.
Granite Colour Chart
To be added soon
Solid Wood Counter tops - Pretoria
The greenest option is solid wood, this is because trees can be planted and they will grow. There are some woods that are harvested from forests and these forests are dwindling, I prefer using plantation grown timber but this is not always an option. Solid wood tops are manufactured by laminating planks together to the required size.
Hard wearing: I have seen many examples of furniture made with solid wood that have lasted centuries.
Easy to repair: Most mishaps can be fixed with little more than some sandpaper and mineral oil.
Environmentally Friendly: If you are feeling guilty about using wood, plant some trees, this is a renewable resource.
Requires regular maintenance: Wood is live and needs feeding, a regular feeding with mineral oil is recommended.
Cost: Making solid wood tops is labour intensive, it is best to laminate wood rather than use wide boards.
Solid wood counter tops colour chart
Man made Quartz Counter tops, Pretoria
Man made counter tops are generally manufactured with a combination of natural products and resins. Caeserstone and Silestone are both examples of this type of top.
Silestone Kitchen Counter tops Pretoria
According to the Silestone website, their product can be found anywhere in the world. It has the feel and weight of natural stone but higher quality. Silestone is comprised of 90% inorganic components, mostly silica and natural quartz.
Quartz is crystalized Silica Dioxide, it is normally white or transparent. It can be found in it's pure state or be present in other components. It is durable and resistant to acids.
Amongst the features responsible for this popularity are that Silestone quartz worktops present extreme durability in kitchen and bathroom spaces where traffic and daily use is high, and also the colour range offered with this product.
Durable: Silestone is hard wearing and can last many years.
Hygienic: Because the product is non-porous, bacteria and other contaminants cannot find a place to live.
Wide range of colours and textures: There is something here for everyone.
Specialised equipment required for installation
Costs can be high.
Silestone Life Counter tops, colour pallette
Silestone Rivers Counter tops, colour pallette
Silestone Platinum Counter tops, colour pallette
Silestone Zen Counter tops, colour pallette
Silestone Mithology Counter tops, colour pallette
Silestone Stellar Counter tops, colour pallette
Silestone Stone Counter tops, colour pallette
Silestone Mesopotamia Counter tops, colour pallette
Silestone Tropical Forest Counter tops, colour pallette
Silestone Cielo Counter tops, colour pallette
Concrete work tops - Pretoria
Concrete tops are gaining in popularity. The American style top from a mould is not readily available in Pretoria as yet. We don't have access to the required hardeners to make them solid and stable from the mould.
We build old farmhouse style concrete work tops on site, These kitchens have brick walls seperating them and the concrete is cast in situ using forms made with plywood. After they have been cast, the walls are plastered and the tops are finished with a range of toppings. Once all the wet work is complete and cured cabinets are fitted in the spaces allowed for them.
If you liked this please share it, it really makes my day and I really appreciate it.
See more blogs by tag