Toni Sweet. Countertop. May 09th , 2017.
Concrete can be used in copious applications using a variety of techniques. It is durable enough to last for decades to come, strong enough to be used in structural applications, and malleable (before cured) to be molded to almost any form or shape. It can be used in flooring, wall, and ceiling applications, or it can be employed to construct statues and furniture. It can be made to look industrial and cold as well as traditional and warm. With so many applications, it is nearly safe to say that concrete can be used to make almost anything, and countertops are no exception.
Marble does have some distinct drawbacks as a countertop material. For starters, marble is a much softer stone than granite, so it has a greater tendency to scratch and mar than granite countertops. Additionally, polished marble is vulnerable to etching when acidic liquids are invariably spilled on it. These spots and marks can destroy the finish of your countertop; you can avoid this issue by choosing a honed finish in place of a polished finish, but most homeowners prefer the appearance of polished marble. Finally, marble is a porous, absorbent stone, meaning it tends to stain. While some homeowners like the patina their marble countertops develop over the years, many do consider it a drawback.
Over the past several years bamboo has come to the forefront as one of the premier green products. Some of the many uses bamboo has in the building trades include, countertops, cabinets, flooring and furniture. Additionally there are applications of bedding and clothing fabric. It’s green since it is very renewable. Some varieties used for building products, grow up to a foot every day! There is no tree that comes anywhere close to that, and because of this, it is much more eco-friendly to use than traditional wood products.
There are a variety of techniques used to achieve a certain color in a concrete countertop. One of the most basic methods is adding a pigment into the concrete mix before the countertop is poured. These colors are often called integral colors or integrated colors. Integral colors add color throughout the countertop, making the center of the countertop the same color as the surface. This is especially important if any grinding or polishing is to occur after the pour. Post-pour colors will grind off, exposing the original color of the concrete. Some post-pour concrete coloring techniques include stained concrete countertops, tinted concrete countertops, and dyed concrete countertops. Each coloring method will result in a uniquely different result. Generally, the same rules apply for concrete countertop pre- and post-pour coloring techniques as they do for regular concrete slabs. Make sure to check rules and tips for each of these techniques before attempting. For example, you will likely want to wait until the concrete countertop is completely cured before applying any stain, which may take up to 60 days for interior applications.
The best kitchen countertop ideas are those that you hear about before you buy your home or remodel your kitchen. I live in a hard water area and my black granite is impossible to keep looking nice. It is completely impervious to water so every drop sits on it and leaves behind a calcium residue that is a constant struggle to avoid. I also live in a subtropical climate and ants are our constant companions. My beautiful black granite countertop is the perfect camouflage background for insects.
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