Although porcelain has been a common countertop material in Europe for a while, it has just recently come to light in the United States as a viable alternative. A combination of minerals, often comprising kaolinite (sometimes called China clay), are heated at high temperatures between 1,200 and 1,400 °C (2,200 and 2,600 °F) in a kiln to produce porcelain, a form of pottery. During the glazing process, a pattern is imprinted across the porcelain slab that we see in the finished product. The end product is a surface that closely resembles any natural material, such as stone, marble, wood, or concrete, and is very resilient and impermeable. Unglazed porcelain is another variety in which the color pervades the whole thickness. Due to its rather porous character, this material is less typically used for countertops and will not be covered in this article.
Like other materials, there are advantages and disadvantages, and application-specific factors may affect lifetime.
Advantages of porcelain counters
- Durability: Porcelain worktops are comparable in durability to porcelain floor tiles, which have been proven to withstand decades of heavy use, including the placement of furniture, water, chemicals, and different forms of spills. However, if large things are dropped, there is a chance of chipping and cracks. Because ceramic blades may also leave wounds, using the countertop as a cutting board is not advised.
- resistance to heat Porcelain, which is subjected to extreme heat throughout the production process, can readily tolerate heat from hot pots and heated pans. Nevertheless, we advise getting advice from the manufacturer of your porcelain worktops before setting the hot ceramics down on the surface.
- Look: Porcelain is astonishing for its ability to accurately mimic natural materials. Modern printing techniques produce surfaces that resemble genuine marble, granite, wood grain, rusty metal, or polished concrete nearly perfectly. There is a choice to match every kitchen with any style or design thanks to the wide variety of colors and decors available.
- Glazed porcelain requires minimal maintenance since it is non-porous. It resists stains, cleans up easily, and can take any liquids or cleaning agents.
Cons of Porcelain Countertops Price
- Porcelain countertops are more expensive than quartz and less expensive than granite. The overall cost, including installation, may be comparable to real stone depending on the supplier, thickness, and quality.
- Porcelain is robust and lasting once it has been put in. Large and relatively thin slabs, however, should be handled and transported carefully before installation since they are brittle. DIY installation is not advised; qualified professionals should install the device.
- Limited Supply & Availability: Since porcelain countertops are still relatively new, there aren’t many businesses that maintain them in stock and are skilled at working with porcelain surfaces.
- Porcelain countertop edges: As previously noted, the porcelain’s designs and colors are printed across the top of the surface. Rounded edges are thus not feasible. It is required to maintain a straightforward square edge in the same style and color. Additionally, many kinds of metal moldings may be employed.
Surprisingly, porcelain can hold its own against a solid surface, quartz countertops, and real stone. It is attractive, sturdy, long lasting, simple to clean, and simple to maintain. It merits a spot on your list of possibilities despite having a few minor flaws to take into account.
Find more information about PORCELAIN countertops.