Composite Kitchen Worktops
Welcome to this blog post all about Composite Kitchen Worktops. This blog post is part of our blog series on Kitchen Worktops. If you haven’t already, feel free to read about Granite Worktops, Laminate Worktops, Quartz Worktops and Solid Wood Worktops. If you are unsure about which worktop is right for you, our blog post “What is the Best Kitchen Worktop” will help you.
Composite worktops are man made materials and are manufactured in a number of different ways. These are solid surfaces manufactured using a blend of polymer resins and quartz, others use mineral fillers blended with acrylic resins. The range of worktops vary in thickness generally 20-37mm. Most surfaces up to 30mm will be a solid surface right the way through with thicker versions being a 6-12mm layer of the composite material bonded to a chipboard or MDF sub frame or back board.
Composite worktops are available in a wide range of colours and are generally supplied in either a matt or satin finish. Composite worktops are the only worktops where a moulded bowl sink can be installed. Although moulded bowl sinks give a seamless finish, lots of customers think that these will match the worktop itself. This is rarely the case and these are normally supplied in a matt white finish so please be careful and take this into consideration when choosing your sink. Up stands are available and composite worktops can incorporate any type or form of sink. Some worktops can have different profiles applied to the edge detail.
Composite worktops can be supplied, templated and installed by the manufacturer, some worktops are only available in this form. Your worktops will be templated on or around the 4th – 5th day of the fit. Most suppliers will then install your new worktops 7 –10 days after templating. Only once your worktops are installed can the final connection of any surface mounted appliances be completed. Reputable installers will leave you with a temporary worktop and sink and possible hob for the interim period. Do check with your installer though as there may be an additional charge for this service.
Scratches can be easily sanded out and repaired.
Some composite worktops can now be supplied as a self fit worktop. Do not be confused though as this is still a highly specialised process of works and we would not recommend a customer or fitter undertake fitting these themselves without prior experience. Self-fit versions can be more cost effective and the installation process is quicker as there is no templating involved.
Composite worktops are installed with a resin compound applied to each joint. When dried the compound sets as hard as the worktop material itself and can be sanded back flush with the worktop, giving a smooth, seamless joint that is hard to see. You will sometimes hear the joints referred to as ‘invisible’. These are inconspicuous joints and not invisible. If you look hard enough you will see the joint between the two slabs, but well fitted these are barely visible to the naked eye and leave a magnificent finish and feel of a modern work surface.
Due to the nature of the manufacturing and installation processes, composite worktops can be repaired. Any dinks or scratches can be filled and sanded away to give a ‘feels like new’ finish.
Pro’s, Con’s and Tip’s of a Composite Kitchen Worktop
- Extremely hard wearing and more heat resistant than either granite or quartz.
- Inconspicuous joints very hard to see when well fitted.
- Solid surfaces are ideal for bakers as is a solid material all the way through and stays cool to the touch.
- Man made product so the pattern and texture on each slab is totally consistent.
- Wide range of colours and finishes, definite ‘wow factor’ with seamless joint finishes.
- Long guarantee’s generally 10 years or more.
- Available in varying thickness up to 37mm.
- Matching splash backs, up stands and window cills.
- Available with different edge profiles.
- Easily repairable if accidents do happen.
- All types of sinks can be used; these are the only form of worktop where moulded bowl sinks can be fitted.
- Top brands will be more expensive than either granite or quartz.
- Other brands generally slightly lower in price than granite or quartz but still one of the more expensive forms of worktop.
- Some products require templating leaving a time delay between kitchen installation and worktop fitting.
- Always use mug mats and trivets.
- Never place hot pans or mugs directly on surface or joints.
- Check that your installer will fit temporary worktop, sink and hob in between templating and installation.
- Scratches can be easily sanded out and repaired.
We hope you have enjoyed reading this blog post and that you now have a better understanding about Composite Kitchen Tops. If you are still unsure if a Composite Worktop is for you, then we suggest you read this post here, entitled “What is the best kitchen worktop”. This will help you identify what type of kitchen worktop will suit you and your lifestyle.
If you have any questions, please feel free to leave them in the comment section below, or get in touch with us, we will gladly answer them and give you any advice you need. Also come and see us on Facebook and say hi, we regularly give tips and advice you will find helpful when it comes to kitchen design and installation.
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