The kitchen is the center of our home. It’s where the entire family gathers to start the new day with a cup of coffee and breakfast. The design of this family bonding area requires special attention and no kitchen is complete without its focal part – the countertop. A good kitchen countertop has to be durable, as well as heat/scratch/stain resistant. Therefore, it’s understandable that you only want the best granite countertops az has to offer for your kitchen.
People love being surrounded by beauty. So naturally, we tend to make many of our choices based on aesthetic appeal alone. Though you may be tempted to do the same when it comes to choosing your kitchen countertop, you’d be wise to think the matter through before deciding.
The natural granite stone is a widely used structural and ornamental material, due to its beauty, massiveness, density and hardness. In fact, the hardness of the natural granite stone is next to that of a diamond.
Granite countertops are the preferred choice of many homeowners due to their elegant look, resistance and durability. Here’s what you should consider when choosing the perfect granite countertop for your kitchen:
Choice of color
Granite comes in a number of different colors and shades – black, white, beige, gray, green and coral. The color and shade of each granite block is more or less unique.
Make sure the color you choose is compatible with your kitchen cabinets, walls, floor and appliances. For instance, dark kitchen furniture combined with black granite may feel too strong and uncomfortable. White or beige shades of granite would be a more aesthetically pleasing choice in this situation.
White granite makes your kitchen area bright and welcoming. Keep in mind that 100% white granite stones are not easily found. White granite is usually mottled with specks of gray, black, red or blue.
Black granite creates a modern, fashionable atmosphere when combined with lighter colors. Its shades range from almost completely black to black with specks of white, grey, blue and green.
While black and white granite can be used in a limited number of combinations, brown and beige granite fit into most kitchen styles. For a richer, softer and more romantic look of your kitchen area, you should consider red granite.
If you live alone and like to keep things tidy in the kitchen, you can choose any color of granite you like. On the other hand, if you have children that are constantly making a mess in your kitchen with their sandwiches and ketchup spills, you should consider the darker shades of granite.
Light colored granite is the preferred choice for smaller kitchens as it makes them appear bigger. Dark granite, speckled with light streaks, is also an option.
You should also consider the amount of natural light in your kitchen when choosing the granite color.
Even the most exquisite granite surface will be unnoticeable if the lighting is poor.
As a rule, kitchens lacking natural light look better with lighter shades of granite, such as white or gold. Darker colors, like blue or black, should be reserved for kitchens receiving a fair amount of light.
In general, when deciding on the color, it’s best to choose the main color first and then check different shades of that color subset.
The color, look and maintenance of your granite countertop also depend on the surface finish. For example, polished granite looks darker and shinier. Honed granite appears softer and matte.
The terms polished and honed refer to two different types of surface finish applied to granite countertops. The surface of polished granite is smooth, shiny and reflective. It darkens the stone and enriches its colors.
As a rule, the firmer the granite, the harder it is to polish. Polished granite countertops are easier to maintain. Namely, polishing closes most of the pores in the stone’s surface structure. This enhances the moisture-repellent properties of the stone and protects against stains. As a result, polished granite is almost completely resistant to damage caused by weather and chemicals.
If you prefer really glossy finish, make sure to ask your manufacturer if the granite you like can be polished in that manner, as not all stones can be polished to a sufficient degree to achieve high shine.
Once polished, your granite countertop will remain shiny and smooth for a very long time.
Honed granite has a smooth, relatively non-reflective surface and a softer, matte appearance. It is the preferred choice for floors, stairs and other surfaces where polished granite could get slippery. It is widely used for kitchen countertops and tables, though the absence of polish may make it more prone to staining.
You can also choose the type of edge finish you’d like for your granite countertop. If you have small children, consider fully rounded (bullnose) countertop edges. They are a lot safer than the standard sharp edges and will prevent cuts and scrapes if your little ones bump against the countertop.
Cost of granite countertops AZ has to offer
The price of your granite countertop depends on its color, finish, rarity and the place of origin.
The hardness and durability of granite stones make them an excellent material for construction of buildings and household elements. These characteristics, coupled with the rarity of certain colors and shades, as well as the special treatments applied to the stones, can drive the prices high.
If your finances are limited, you can choose granite tiles or granite overlays. Another alternative is to purchase the granite through a wholesale company. This will reduce the price as the stones are imported directly from the source.
If your mind is set on granite as a solution for your kitchen countertop, the first thing to do is measure the surface area of your kitchen counter – this way, you can also determine the price.
Thickness is another thing to consider when choosing granite countertops. Thicker blocks cost more, but their thickness allows them to span longer distances without the need of additional support.
Making your final choice
You can pick your favorites online or from a catalog, but make sure to check the stone in person before making the final decision. Photos can’t always convey the intricacy of the granite texture and the subtle shade differences. To avoid any unpleasant surprises, it’s best to visit a showroom or order some samples from the manufacturer.