Refacing Your Countertops: Different Types of Engineered Stone
by Melissa Bullard
Face Your Kitchen Columnist
If you love the look of natural stone but don't want the maintenance associated with it, consider its durable, low-maintenance alternative--engineered stone. Typically made of ground quartz and binding resins, engineered stone is a way of refacing your countertops with a material that boasts the advantages of both natural stone and laminate.
Choosing the Right Engineered Stone Countertops
Of course, there are a variety of brands out there, so how do you know which one to choose? That depends on what you want as far as style, durability, warranties, and environmental footprint. To get started, consider some of these popular engineered stone brands. If you're considering the ecological impact of your engineered stone countertops, then know that every single one of these brands has been certified for low VOC emissions by GreenGuard.
- CaesarStone. Like the look of limestone? CaesarStone is made of 93 percent natural quartz and offers many products that imitate the looks of both quartz and limestone. It comes in a variety of colors and patterns from soft white to deep blacks. It also comes with a limited lifetime warranty; however, this is not transferrable to the next homeowner beyond ten years from the installation date. CaesarStone is a member of the U.S. Green Building Council, and a few of its colors are made with pre-consumer recycled content.
- Cambria. If you love the look of granite, consider this engineered stone. It is made from 93 percent natural quartz, epoxy resin, and small amounts of pigments. This material also comes with a limited lifetime warranty for the original owner. Cambria is radon-free and has zero emissions, and is produced in North America for a lower carbon footprint.
- Silestone. Manufactured by Cosentino, Silestone offers many colors that use post-consumer recycled glass, as well as 98 percent recycled water in the production of the stone. Stain, scratch, and heat-resistant, Silestone also has four times the flexural strength of granite, resisting chipping and cracking. It comes with a fifteen-year limited warranty and antimicrobial product protection incorporated during production.
- Zodiaq. This engineered quartz countertop is made of 93 percent natural quartz, resulting in a countertop that allows for both the depth and beauty of the natural stone. It comes with a ten-year limited warranty from the manufacturer, Dupont, and is heat, scratch, and stain resistant. Zodiaq has a line of colors that are made with 25 percent post-consumer recycled content.
However you decide, refacing with an engineered stone countertop means you'll have counters that should last for years to come.
About the Author
Melissa Bullard earned a Bachelor's degree in English Literature, then a Master's Degree in Spanish Language and Literatures from the University of Nevada, Reno. She has taught writing, literature, and Spanish classes, and is currently working as a fre
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