Comparing Granite and Concrete for Kitchen Countertops
Kitchen countertops come in many types of materials, ranging from laminate to lava stone. In most cases, people choose something durable as well as presentable, and the top choice has always been quartz or granite. However, new choices come up that warrant consideration, and a trending one is concrete.
Concrete countertops might seem like a joke to the uninitiated, but it is actually very popular in design circles. To appreciate this, you need to think outside of the usual concrete that has been around for centuries, used for roads and buildings. Concrete used for kitchen countertops use the same technology, but with some important upgrades, specifically in coloring, staining, and polishing.
Granite also has a long history with builders, but has a much longer one than concrete does for use as kitchen countertops. It might be of interest comparing these two materials for use as kitchen countertops if you are having a hard time deciding.
One of the major factors ruling a decision on countertop material choice is the price. Making a comparison between concrete and granite countertops in terms of budget is thus an important one.
Granite countertops range in price per square foot, installed, from $34.99 to $200. The wide range is due to many factors, one of which is the rarity and grade of the stone. This does not have anything to do with the durability of the granite.
The most common types of granite are the speckled gray and brown varieties, sometimes local, but usually imported from Brazil, Italy, Spain, India, and other countries. Less common types include blue, red, green, and black varieties. If you want something in the lower end of the price range, you want to choose something that is not too rare or exotic.
If you have a very small budget, you can still get granite countertops by choosing tiles instead of slabs. Granite tile prices go for as low as $5 per square foot, and you can install them on your own. Kitchen countertops using granite tiles will have numerous seams as you can imagine, but that can be charming as well.
Concrete countertops, on the other hand, are less flexible in terms of price. The range per square foot is from $65 to $135, and the price will depend on the intricacy of the design you choose, installation costs not included. Installing concrete countertops is per hour, not per square foot, and you can expect to pay between $30 and $90.
If you are surprised that concrete is more expensive than granite countertops, this is because you are still thinking of it as a building material. Concrete countertops go through a long and complicated process, and they are quite tricky to install. Typically, concrete countertops can take two to three to design, make, and set, and several hours to install.
Granite and concrete countertops are both very tough. They are both heat resistant and can take quite a bit of use in the kitchen. With reasonable care, both types of kitchen countertops will last for many years.
However, concrete countertops have quite a few issues. It can chip along the edges quite easily, and show scratches on the surface. It also has a tendency to develop hairline cracks over time, particularly in the immediate vicinity of sink and other cutouts.
Pre-cast countertops are especially vulnerable to this type of damage. However, you can minimize this by putting in proper support, and you can usually repair them if they are not too bad.
Granite countertops are not vulnerable to these types of damage, provided professionals fabricate and install them. Granite can crack without expert fabrication and proper support, so it is important to get a reliable company to do it for you. Additionally, it will not chip or break easily, and you can easily repair any minor damage on your own.
The real problem with concrete countertops is maintenance. Both granite and concrete are porous, but granite is much less so. In most cases, sealing granite countertops once is enough to last for many years. This is not true for concrete countertops.
Concrete countertops are extremely porous, and stains go deep, making them difficult to remove by the usual means. Worse, their porosity makes bacterial growth a real possibility. You can avoid this by making sure the kitchen countertops are well sealed.
Another problem with concrete countertops is they might need a regular coat of wax to keep them looking spiffy. This is probably not true for concrete countertops with complex designs, but plainer ones are likely to need it.
New trends in home design are always interesting, especially when planning a kitchen remodel. Concrete countertops are enjoying a good run currently, but it is not a good fit for all homeowners. Some early adopters experience serious problems with them, and many have concluded that they are not worth the trouble and expense.
You might agree, or you might not. In either case, comparing granite and concrete for kitchen countertops should enable you to make an informed choice. Your next step is to find a supplier to help you bring your kitchen countertops to life, and KNC Granite is your best bet for granite countertops.
We are experts in kitchen remodeling in the areas of Maryland and Virginia. KNC Granite is a local company with a large collection of natural stones and engineered stones from which to choose.
You can check actual granite and marble slabs at our showroom in Lanham, Maryland, as well as representative samples for engineered stone from the
top brands in the industry including Cambria, Caesarstone, Silestone, and MSI, all of which come with manufacturer warranties.
We deal directly with stone manufacturers and fabricators, so we can give you the best prices possible. In fact, we have a best price guarantee.
Additionally, you only pay for what you use, so it does not matter how big or small your project is; you will not be forced to buy a whole slab.
We do not only supply top-quality stones, however. We are experts at fabricating and installing kitchen counters or bathroom vanities. Also we specialize in kitchen remodeling and bathroom upgrade projects, delivering on time and on budget.
Give us a call or email us for your free in-home consultation and quote.