.PageText {margin-left:20px; margin-right:20px; font-weight:bold; font-family:Arial; font-size:12px; }
Fred Imler & Sons

9528 Lincoln Highway
Bedford, PA 15522
(814) 623-8346
Cell (814) 285-7412
Fax (814) 623-5754

imlerandsons@gmail.com
home Construction Kitchens Bathrooms Flooring Gallery Free Estimates Catalog Media Frequently Asked Questions Contact Us Facebook LinkedIn
Kitchen & Bath Countertops
Granite

Granite

Finish types: Polished, sandblasted, brushed, flamed.

Origin: Granite is a igneous rock that contains at least 20% quartz by volume, but also some mica and feldspar. It's mined from around the world, including quarries in India, Brazil, Norway, Italy and China. The largest granite quarry in the Unites States is located near Barre, Vermont.

Environmental Impact: Medium. Granite is durable and recyclable, but it requires large amounts of energy for transport, and mining is very resource intensive.

Pros: Each slab is unique, hard, durable, scratch-resistant, impervious to stains, heat, and water when sealed, relatively easy to clean, comes in all colors, still highly covetable with an even higher resale value.

Cons: Expensive, heavy, needs annual resealing, ubiquitous, "granite fatigue."

Installation: Very labor-intensive, expensive.

Price range: $45-$400 per square foot. Varies depending on stone rarity, thickness, origin, and manufacturing labor. Buyer beware: this price often does not include hidden costs like installation, resealing, edge details, templating, and special finishes. A standard size kitchen can expect to pay $2,500+ for a renovation.

Soapstone

Soapstone

Origin: Soapstone is a natural stone, like granite, that is quarried. It's composed mostly of mineral talc, which makes it quite soft, but soapstone used for countertops typically has higher percentages of quartz in it, which makes it harder and more suitable as a kitchen surface.

Pros: Beautiful natural grey color, smooth matte feel, resistant to etching from acids, scratches can be sanded or oiled away; great surface for making pastries.

Cons: Requires maintenance; not as heat resistant as granite; not impervious to dents and scratches; regular oiling and buffing recommended; the color darkens with age (which may be a pro for some).

Installation: Professional installation strongly recommended.

Price range: $75-150/foot

Marble

Marble

Origin: Marble is metamorphosed limestone or dolomite, and is predominately calcitic in composition. Marble usually forms from regional metamorphism associated with plate collisions.

Environmental Impact: Medium. Granite is durable and recyclable, but it requires large amounts of energy for transport, and mining is very resource intensive.

Pros: Classic, timeless beauty, and a white brightness not available in granite or soapstone. Cool Temperature - Marble is wonderful for working with pastry, since it is naturally cool; it doesn't conduct heat very well. While some rarer types of marble are very expensive, the more common Carrara (also called Carrera) marble is one of the least expensive natural countertops. Unlike some quartzes and the hard-to-find quartzite, marble is available from nearly any stone fabricator or stone yard.

Cons: Marble can scratch easily, especially when touched for a long period of time by something acidic. A slice of lemon laid down on a polished countertop overnight can leave a mark in the shape of the lemon slice, duller than the surface around it. Marble can also stain; red wine and some fruits are infamous for leaving indelible stains on the marble. Honed countertops (the more matte, less shiny finish that comes from abrading the stone) can be much more kitchen-friendly.

Installation: Professional installation recommended, as these countertops are very heavy and expensive.

Price range: $50-550/foot

Quartz

Quartz

How It's Made: Quartz countertops are man-made engineered stone countertops formed by combining 90% ground quartz (a natural hard mineral) with 8-10% resins, polymers, and pigments. This forms a very hard granite-like surface. The appearance depends on how the quartz is ground: coarsely ground quartz produces a flecked appearance, while finely ground quartz produces a smooth look.

Major Brands: Italian company Breton owns the patent to manufacture solid surfaces from quartz and resins. All other companies use that patent for their own brand of quartz countertops, including Cosentino (Silestone), DuPont (Zodiaq), Cambria, CaesarStone, Avanza, and Technistone.

Environmental Impact: Light-Moderate. Quartz is the second most abundant material in the earth's crust (which is good), but the acrylic resins used in quartz countertops are petroleum by-products, and they often contain alumina trihydrate fillers made from bauxite ore, which is mined primarily under toxic conditions in developing countries. However, the countertops are still extremely durable and non-porous. Additionally, a few major brands including Zodiaq, Formica, Wilsonart and Silestone have been certified by GreenGuard as low emitting. Other brands, like Cambria Quartz, are mined and made entirely in the USA.

Pros: Extremely hard and durable; glossy sheen; non-porous and stain-and-crack resistant; does not require sealing or resealing; wide range of colors; easy to clean with mild soap, water, and a soft cloth.

Cons: Expensive; not heat tolerant; seams are inevitable for large countertop designs.

Installation: Professional installation strongly recommended. Quartz countertops are quite heavy!

Price range: $60 - $100 per square foot

Synthetic Solid Surface

Synthetic Solid Surface

Origin: Synthetic or manufactured solid surface countertops are made of man-made materials, most often acrylic, but also polyester resins, marble dust, and other pigments.

Popular Brands: Dupont Corian, LG Hi Macs, Formica, Wilsonart, & SileStone.

Environmental Impact: High. Made primarily from non-renewable resources like petrochemicals and aluminum trihydrate (ATH); production and manufacturing is very energy-intensive, and the material is not recyclable.

Pros: Non-porous, so it's stain-, mildew-, and germ-resistant; strong and self-supporting, needs no plywood underlayment; easy to buff out scratches; can be installed seamless and made to imitate other high-end materials like marble and granite.

Cons: Vulnerable to heat, dents, and scratches; relatively expensive.

Installation: Professional installation recommended, as these countertops are very heavy and expensive. Higher-priced solid surface may include the price of installation.

Price range: $50-$200 per foot.

Recycled Paper Composite

Recycled Paper Composite

Origin: Paper composite countertops are made of post-consumer recycled paper and other fibers held together by a formaldehyde-free thermoset plastic resin. Available in thicknesses ranging from ¼ inch to 2 inches.

Environmental Impact: These countertops come from non-petroleum recycled sources (excluding the resin), but are not recyclable because of the small amount of plastic resin content. They can, however, be recut and retooled for future use.

Pros: Durable, handles heat well, resistant to stain and nicks; low-to-mid range cost; easy to work with; nonporous construction; lighter than natural stone.

Cons: Requires a sealant like mineral oil; not suitable with abrasive cleaners.

Brands: Richlite, PaperStone, and Shetkastone.

Price range: $45-$75 per square foot. Richlight sample price: $65/sq. ft. for 5/8" thick, $50/sq. ft. for 1/2"

Ceramic Tile

Ceramic Tile

Origin: Ceramic tile is made from clay, which is fired at a high temperature and then glazed.

Pros: Can be customized to suit specific shapes and sizes; heat and stain resistant; damaged tiles are replaceable.

Cons: Uneven surface; grout collects food particles and can be difficult to clean, prone to staining; tiles can chip and crack; aggressive scrubbing can ruin a high-gloss finish.

Installation: An epoxy or acrylic grout is recommended since it won't stain quite as easily as other grouts. Scouring powder and bleach is the best way to keep the grout sparkling and white.

Price range: $4 - $8 per tile for solid color tiles, which are the most inexpensive. Custom tiles are much more expensive.

 

Home
About Us
Free Estimate
Photo Gallery
Price Guarantee
Privacy Policy
Refund Policy

Construction
Completed Projects
Warranty




Kitchen Center
Kitchens
Cabinets
Faucets
Countertops

Bathroom Center
Bathrooms
Vanities & Faucets
Faucets
Countertops

Flooring Center
Floor Coverings
Hardwood
Laminate
Ceramic
Carpet
Vinyl

Product Catalogs
Kitchens
Bathrooms
Faucets
Countertops
Flooring
Lighting

FAQs
Carpet
Ceramic
Vinyl
Hardwood
Laminate
Kitchen Cabinets

Social Media
Facebook
LinkedIn
Angie's List
Home Advisor

 

Designed & Maintained by Success Unlimited©