Homeowners looking for low maintenance countertops have many outstanding choices in all price ranges. Here is a list of the top 5 low maintenance countertop surface options along with the price range for each one.
A laminate countertop surface has many advantages. It is affordable, comes in hundreds of colors and patterns and is very low-maintenance. The solid surface is nonporous, the key to easy cleaning. Laminate never needs sealing or refinishing. Due to the fairly low cost, they can be replaced without great expense. You’ll find laminate kitchen and bath countertops for $20-$50 per square foot from Wilsonart, Devmar, Formica and other brands.
This is a relatively new product. The kitchen or bath countertop is made from crushed glass embedded in clear resin – the same type of resin that is used to produce solid surface counters. The finished surface is smooth and completely nonporous. Cleanup is quick and easy. In addition, recycled glass countertops are very attractive, while being resistant to staining and heat. No sealing is needed. Look for recycled glass countertops in the $50-$125 range.
There are a variety of solid surface types with Corian and Soapstone among the bestselling and highest-rated. A solid surface countertop offers worry-free upkeep and is quickly cleaned with soap and water. These low-maintenance resin countertop products are resistant to staining, and epoxy and acrylic resin countertops are heat and impact resistant too. If lightly scratched, since the pigment goes through the entire countertop, the scratch can be sanded out and the appearance restored. Most solid surface countertop products cost $75-$125 per square foot.
As a countertop material, stainless steel is as low-maintenance as it gets. No sealing or refinishing is ever required, and cleaning is easy with mild soap products. These countertops work very well in the kitchen or bath since they won’t be stained by food, juice, facial cleansers, etc. They are heat resistant to stand up to hot pots and pans or hot hair tools in the bathroom. Leading stainless steel counter brands include Specialty Stainless, Elkay, ALine, Aero, and John Boos. For a quality stainless steel countertop, expect to pay $75-$140 per square foot.
Quartz makes a very attractive countertop for the bath or kitchen. The leading brands include Silestone, Hanstone, Compaq and Cesarstone. Quartz is an ideal material because it has the look and performance of stone such as granite or marble without the inherent weaknesses. It won’t stain and is non-porous. Therefore, it is low-maintenance and very easy to clean. Also called engineered stone, it makes a very durable, long-lasting bath or kitchen countertop. The price range for quartz countertops is $100-$185.
Which One is Right for You?
Take a look at countertop galleries online to compare the style and appearance of these different worry free materials. Which ones work with your design scheme? And which low maintenance countertop surface options fit within your budget? Those that do will be a good place to start your search for the right counters for your kitchen or bath. Also, check out our article on how to clean countertops for more information on overall maintenance.