What is Granite and Why Use it for Countertops?
Granite is an igneous rock composed mostly of mineral quartz, feldspar, and mica. The different proportions of these minerals and other minerals find their way into the rock, creating massive variations in granite color and appearance.
Once it has been sealed, granite is non-porous. At a hardness six on the Moh’s scale, it is the hardest material commonly used for countertops. Granite is also heavy and durable, standing beautifully against the test of time. These characters make it the most desirable countertop material to the average customer.
What is Laminate?
Lamination describes the process of gluing two pieces of wood together so that they become one piece of wood. Laminate refers to particleboard laminated with either a veneer or real or engineered wood or plastic, trying to replicate the appearance of fine wood or stone with an easy-to-clean surface.
Laminate surged in popularity in the sixties and seventies as it offered a cheap and low-maintenance alternative to traditional countertops. The easy to clean nature and replicability of laminate made it the choice material for counters and flooring. In the modern-day, the feeling tends to be much the opposite, with a growing preference for the actual thing.
Five Reasons Why Granite is a Better Choice Than Laminate.
1.) Granite’s quality and long life span will save you money over the years.
At the longest, laminate lives upwards of ten years when given the best care. Even by then, it tends to fold, chip, discolor, delaminate, and warp by the time it is replaced. Granite can last more than fifty years when cared for correctly. Well-cared-for stone will also maintain its look and integrity to the end of its life span.
The cost of granite is several times more than laminate per square foot and costs more to install. That said, the granite countertop cost and its installation will be offset by how long it will last. Its long lifespan and durability make granite more cost-effective over time. So buy it once, buy it for life.
2.) Granite’s durability and damage resistance make it a better-suited surface for preparation.
Tied closely in with its quality, granite countertops have better durability and resistance to particular types of damage, like cutting and water. Not only does its hardness make it hard to scratch, but it also doesn’t pit or chip easily. The surface can stand up to pan bottoms, knives, and whatever mess might spill on them.
In addition to the scratch, cut, heat resistance, granite is not vulnerable to water. While laminate is waterproof, it tends to become damage provides plenty of opportunities for water to get below it into the particle, which will cause expansion and warping in the countertop. While granite should be treated with care, you can expect it to stand up to repeated use well. Unlike aging laminate, a little extra care will keep granite looking beautiful and strong throughout its long life.
3.) Granite has superior beauty and character, elevating spaces in a way that laminate cannot.
Virtually no one would deny that granite countertops have a better look, feel, and appearance than laminate. Even the best laminates only do a decent job at hiding the fact they aren’t made of real stone or wood. The mystery and allure they present at a distant glance disappears when you get close enough to see it for what it is—an imitation.
There is a reason half the laminate styles you will see as you look at redoing your counters are made to do their best to resemble the beauty and presence of an actual stone counter.
Kitchen spaces are elevated by the presence of stone counters that laminate cannot replicate. They catch the eye from across the room and are equally appealing up close. Even the touch makes the granite inviting. In a kitchen built with quality wood cabinets and complementary appliances, like stainless steel, a laminate countertop would not do. Some looks cannot be created without the real thing.
4.) Granite Countertops Increase Home Value and Saleability.
While not appropriate for every circumstance, say if the neighborhood’s average house price is well below what you would plan on selling your home for after a kitchen remodels with granite countertops. It will be hard to sell your home for a significantly increased value compared to neighboring properties and may not be the right choice in that circumstance.
However, in most other instances, especially in the modern housing market, adding granite countertops can add visual appeal and functionality to the kitchen that will make the house more appealing to buyers and sell for more.
5.) Granite Countertops are Custom Made to Order, Providing more Options for Counter Design and Layout.
Granite is versatile, coming in all kinds of colors, striations, patterns, and shapes depending on how it is formed. As a result, many showrooms have hundreds if not thousands of granite options for home customization.
In addition, Granite countertops allow for other high-end kitchen options like under-mounted sinks that are otherwise unavailable to laminate counters.
How Arch City Granite & Marble can help build the counters of your dreams.
The question of which is better, laminate or granite, has been asked time and time again. In the end, the only features laminate has that give it advantages over granite is its affordability and more approachable care. While granite does require special cleaning and may require resealing over its life, care for granite is not hard.
Many prospective buyers may be deterred by the upfront cost and settle for laminate. Although in many circumstances, the investment in granite will save you money over the life of the countertop.
Residents of St. Louis, Missouri, and the surrounding south of Illinois have trusted Arch City Granite & Marble Inc. for custom countertop design, fabrication, and installation since 2005. We use digital stone cutting for machine precise measurements and cuts. It produces the most consistent quality and the best design for your budget. Click here to contact us to schedule a consultation to see what we can do for you.