Move over granite countertops, there’s a new player in town in the form of stainless steel countertops. There’s a good reason why stainless is used in most of the restaurants across the country: it’s virtually indestructible. Now homeowners can receive all of the benefits that come with them in the convenience of their own home. Of course, as with anything else, stainless steel countertops do have some drawbacks to them that we’ll be going over here along with the benefits. There are some amazing advantages of this material but also some shortcomings. Here are the stainless steel countertops pros and cons.
The Pros of Stainless Steel Countertops
As a proud of these countertops owner you’ll have bragging rights to the following benefits:
Durable and resilient to almost anything
Not only are steel counters aesthetically pleasing but they’re resistant to water, heat, stains and just about anything else! Stainless steel has a non-porous surface, which means that no type of liquid or substances can penetrate into the material at all. Bacteria, mold and other common household germs don’t stand a chance with stainless. You are being given the opportunity to enjoy a completely hygienic surface for preparing meals as long as you practice regular cleaning habits.
You don’t have to fear oils, beets, acids, wine, grape juice or even working with food coloring any longer. This stainless steel countertop does not stain. This makes it perfect for families with young children that are aspiring chefs and love to work alongside mom and dad to prepare the evening meal. When accidents happen you can put your worries aside as a parent and simply clean up the counter without a second thought about any stains setting in.
As far as heat goes, feel free to put down all of your pans and pots without having to worry about any damage occurring. The stainless steel countertop will heat up in the area where the pot is placed, but this heat doesn’t travel along the length of the counter. As an added bonus, your stainless steel kitchen countertop will stay cool during the hot summer months.
An elegant tailored look
These worktops are custom-made to perfectly fit your kitchen. You’ll end up with a tailored and elegant stainless steel countertop that looks absolutely perfect once it has been laid down.
The metal is flexible enough to make it a joy to work with. You can come up with interesting designs for your stainless steel countertop and may opt to incorporate a backsplash with it. Many people also have a counter that is made complete with sink attached. This makes cleanup a breeze since there doesn’t have to be any edges between the sink and the counter.
Perfect for contemporary kitchens
Steel offers a distinctive feel and look that blends perfectly into modern contemporary kitchens. When you need something sleek with a shiny modern look to it, look no further than stainless steel countertops. Because the metal is also neutral in color, it can be used in any type of kitchen. Even the most traditional kitchen decor can accept a stainless steel countertop without a problem.
Create a larger kitchen
This is absolutely brilliant! By working with the stainless steel you can reflect the various surfaces in your kitchen to create an illusion that makes the room appear much larger and brighter. You may want to consult with a design specialist if you’re interested in achieving this end effect in order to see optimum results. Proper lighting will be key if this is your goal.
The Cons of Stainless Steel Countertops
Don’t rush out and purchase a stainless steel kitchen countertop just yet! Although the benefits listed above are far and wide, there are some cons that you should know about first. Be sure to find a countertop installer on Angie’s List that is willing to discuss these drawbacks with you.
They will scratch
When you first purchase your countertop of stainless steel it will be shiny and free of any scratches. You need to be aware, however, that this effect is not going to last very long at all. After some wear and tear your first scratch is going to appear and if you’re not prepared for it you may feel like crying. Don’t worry though, it’s going to be the first of many and should be completely expected.
In fact, this should be recognized as one of the defining features of your new stainless steel countertop. As it scratches, it starts to patina and in the process it becomes much better looking. If you’re at all worried about what this scratching and patina affect will look like, take a trip down to Home Depot and look at the counter that is being used in the paint department.
That stainless steel countertop sure gets a lot of wear and tear – a lot more then you’d be giving yours through regular use! You’ll want to visualize that type of look in your kitchen.
After you receive your first set of scratches you won’t even worry about scratching the counter any longer. The scratches seem to miraculously blend together and look natural after a while.
You can dent it if you’re careless
You can expect your stainless steel countertop to acquire some dents after a certain amount of time. The best way to avoid these is to have a professional install your counter that has had a lot of experience with stainless steel. The metal is put over wood to keep the denting and dinging effect to a minimum.
With hardwood used and a tight installation, there is less risk of dents forming. As well, the gauge of the metal will affect the amount of dings that appear on the counter. If you decide to go with metal, make sure that you talk to an expert about your various gauge options. Remember, the higher the number the thinner the material.
For some people, it’s a cold look
Some people work in a profession where they have use a stainless steel kitchen countertop on a daily basis. A nurse, for example, working in a hospital setting, may not appreciate the look of it in her home. The same may apply for kitchen workers that spend 8 hours working at these and would sure like to see granite or quartz countertop at home instead.
Others that don’t even have to work with metal counters in their profession just don’t like the look of steel and consider it too cold to appear in a home.
These counters are noisy!
Remember when you were a child and you were bored and your mother would take out some pots and pans and a wooden spoon and allow you to bang away? Now you have the idea of what you can expect when you have this type of counter in your kitchen.
Although you can keep the noise down to a dull roar, the sound level can take some getting used to. If you’re the type that doesn’t like clanging noises, this is one type of counter that you may want to stay away from.
Low maintenance yet high maintenance
Stainless steel countertops will maintain themselves and you’ll never have to worry about stains for as long as you own it. They does tend to show smudge marks and fingerprints though and some counter owners say that you’ll be able to notice small crumbs more.
If you are the type of person that would be bothered by a few fingerprints or smudge marks, be prepared to wipe the counter more often than you would another type of countertop.
You’ll find it’s an incredible material for both household and commercial use as a countertop. When it comes to inviting this metal into your home, it will all come down to personal preference.
Now that you know both the stainless steel countertops pros and cons, you’ll be able to make an informed decision. Is stainless the right fit for you? For many, the answer is a resounding yes based on its look, durability and sanitary benefits.