Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Concrete Worktops | Concrete Worktop

Concrete is used in far more than just building constuction these days. It's also now used to make solid surface kitchen worktops. Concrete worktops are taking the kitchen design industry by storm due to a combination of versatility and aesthetics.

The characterisitcs of concrete mean that it can be worked and moulded into any number of shapes, sizes and designs. The benefits of concrete worktops are many, and homeowners who have concrete worktopstops in their kitchens find it almost impossible to differentiate from other solid surface materials favoured by kitchen designers.

There are a number of looks that concrete worktops can take as a result of different colourings, aggregates and finshes.

Marbled: Using different pigments and creation techniques, concrete worktop fabricators can take concrete and make it almost indistinguishable from granite. The look is sealed in.

Trowel: Resulting a heavier textured surface than most worktops, this finish is one that many enjoy for its tactile, natural looking appearance.

Terrazzo: By adding glass shards or granite concrete worktoptops can acquire a variety of different looks in terrazzo. This add an extra dimension of lustre to the worktopstops.

Other things buyers should consider before purchasing concrete worktops include:

A Concrete worktopstops must be sealed to ensure staining and other damage are avoided. When a sealer is applied, the worktopstops can resist all sorts of problems. There are however things that can compromise the sealant, so it's important to make sure the job is done correctly and the wotktop is adequately protected from damage. The rules associated with concrete care aren't much different than most other solid surface worktops providing this stage is correctly carried out.

B While some worktops are meant to be cut on directly, concrete is not one of them. While the concrete can handle direct cutting, the sealant cannot. When cutting is done directly on the concrete worktop it damages the sealant which could lead to stain problems at a later date.

C Heat issues. As before the concrete itself can take the punishment, but the sealant might not. Therefore it's recommended that hot pans and bowls not be placed directly on the worktops. Just like working with Corian or other similar solid surfaces direct heat is worth avoiding to protect the longevity of the product.

Delivering remarkable beauty, concret worktops have much aesthetic appeal. It's very difficult for anyone who doesn't know what they're made of to tell by appearance. When properly made the designs can be simply fantastic.

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Glass Worktops Features and Benefits

Glass is not usually the first material homeowners tend to think of when it comes to solid surface worktops although it's popularity is on the rise. Glass worktops have been widely used in the commercial sector for many years especially in hotel lobbys and reception areas where it's sleek, expensive appearance fits with the image the business is trying to portray - think art deco cruise liners through to modern minimilist hotels.

Modern production methods mean that toughened glass is now a viable choice for kitchen worktops in the domestic market. Read on for more information on the features and benefits of glass worktops.

A; When low iron glass is used in the manufacture of glass worktops the green tinge that comes with ordinary glass is eliminated meaning that your colour choice is unadulterated. Glass worktops are available in thousands of colours.

B; As with other solid surface worktops the best option is to have a template made of the area you want the glass worktops to cover. The glass is then cut and heat hardened producing a very tough worksurface.

C; Undermount sinks are generally used with glass worktops and you can have drainer grooves cut into the surface of the worktop.

D; Glass worktops tend to be 19mm thick resulting in a sleek, clean modern look. Because of the relative thinness of the worktops compared to other solid surfaces some thought should be given to the type of hob used and potential plumbing issues in the sink base.

E: Often homeowners or kitchen designers who choose glass worktops also have glass splashbacks made in the same or contrasting coloured glass. All of the above applies to glass splashbacks except that they are normally 6mm thick. They can also be templated to get a good fit around plug sockets, light switches and the like.

F: Glass worktops are relitively maintenance free, hygenic and easy to keep clean.

So if you are thinking of a solid surface worktop the perhaps glass might be a consideration for you especially if worktop colour is a primary concern in your kitchen design.