Pros and Cons of Solid Surface CountertopsMarch 22, 2022
There are many options when it comes to countertops in your custom home. Solid surface is one of those options. Here are the pros and cons of solid surface countertops to help you determine if they could be the right choice for you:
What is a Solid Surface Countertop?
A solid surface countertop is made with resin as the bonding element and is one of the popular kitchen countertop materials. Each solid surface countertop is made of three main elements – the resin as the bonding agent, the added pigments for color, and the mineral particles. The resin can be acrylic, polyester, or a combination of both. The combined resin is the most common type of solid surface countertop.
6 Pros of Solid Surface Countertops
When it comes to the pros and cons of solid surface countertops, they provide several benefits. Here are a few pros of solid surface countertops:
1. Solid Surface Countertops Are Durable
One of the biggest pros of solid surface countertops is that they are durable. Acrylic-based and combination countertops are more durable than polyester-based countertops, but all options are relatively durable and are comparable to other durable countertop materials.
2. They Are Nonporous and Easy to Clean
Because they are manufactured and sealed with resin, solid surface countertops are nonporous. They do not collect moisture, which means they are not susceptible to mold and do not encourage bacteria growth.
In addition, they are easy to clean. You simply wipe them down. And, because the bonding agent is resin, they never have to be resealed. So, aside from cleaning, these countertops are practically maintenance-free.
This waterproof nature makes solid surface a popular countertop material and is also a popular choice for areas around sinks, bathroom wall options, and more. This material is particularly popular in healthcare and industrial facilities and settings because they are so easy to clean and do not require maintenance.
3. Solid Surface Countertops Are Easy to Repair
Although this countertop material is durable, it can also be easily damaged or stained by heat. This is a potential drawback, but one of the pros of solid surface countertops is that they are easy to repair compared to other materials.
4. They Can be Any Color or Mimic Other Materials
Because of the way they are made, a solid surface countertop is highly customizable. They can be manufactured to be seamless, look like stone, marble, granite, or other materials, or be any color you want. This includes bright, vibrant colors as well. Depending on the type of resin used, you can also get a more matte or glossier appearance.
5. Some Solid Surface Countertops Are UV-Resistant
Polyester-based and combination solid surface countertops are UV-resistant, so you don’t have to worry about sun damage to the color over time. This makes them a popular choice for kitchens with a lot of natural light and for bright colors.
6. They Can Have a Seamless Appearance
Solid surface countertops can also have a seamless appearance, especially when installed by a professional. Once installed well, the seams of this countertop practically disappear and become invisible. This gives a seamless appearance of a continuous countertop.
Not only does this seamlessness look great, but it also creates an impermeable surface that prevents the collecting and buildup of moisture. This is also a great option for integrated sinks as the seamless appearance of solid surface countertops extends to complete seamlessness with fully integrated sinks.
3 Cons of Solid Surface Countertops
As with anything, there are some potential drawbacks to solid surface countertops as well. Here are some cons of solid surface countertops:
1. The Type of Resin Used May Not be Obvious
Because of how popular this material has become and the various ways it can be made, it’s not always clear whether the countertop is acrylic-based, polyester-based, or a combination. In some cases, you may need to seek out the technical specifications to get an idea of whether the product is what you want and need.
2. Solid Surface Countertops Can be Damaged by Heat
Solid surface countertops are durable, but they can be stained or damaged by extreme heat. They are manufactured to withstand temperatures up to boiling water, which is 212 degrees Fahrenheit.
However, the bottom of a hot pan or pot, especially one that is close to or exceeds 212 degrees, will likely stain, scorch, or damage the countertop. The good thing is that these countertops are easy to resurface and repair, but you still want to be careful with hot objects.
3. They Are Susceptible to Scratches
Although solid surface countertops tend to be durable, they’re also made of a relatively soft material when compared to something like granite. Knives, metal utensils, and other things can scratch or damage the counter and leave unsightly marks behind.
These scratches will appear white, so they may not be that noticeable on a white solid surface countertop, but will be very visible on any other color. Additionally, if the scratch is deep, it can compromise the nonporous nature of the countertop and create an area for moisture and bacteria to collect.
Making sure you use a cutting board or have a protective cover in place when you are cutting, chopping, etc. can go a long way in reducing scratches. You can also buff out shallow scratches easily. With these countertops being easy to repair and resurface, it’s a good idea to resurface them if they have sustained damage to keep them performing well.
These are just a few pros and cons of solid surface countertops to help you determine if this countertop material is a good option for you. When it comes to designing a custom home, there are a ton of details and options to consider for every room.
Partnering with an experienced custom home builder that has an in-house design/build process can help make the whole journey easier and ensure you end up with a custom home you love. If you’re ready to make your dream home a reality, contact Custom Home Group at 717-284-4090!