Epidemic? Coronavirus? How to make your kitchen safe and beautiful? Enjoying quarantine in your favorite kitchen?
The main surfaces that we come into contact with inside the kitchen are the facades and countertops, and they can definitely use some layer of protection.
In addition to the hygienic features of this material, which is not afraid of bacteria, mold, exposure to chemicals and acids, this material also has the following unique properties:
- Zero reflectivity. The use of nanoparticles allows to obtain material that practically does not reflect the color of the sun. Unique super matt surface.
- Thermal “healing” of micro-scratches. It is enough to “iron” the scratch with an iron.
- Fingerprints do not remain.
- High tactile sensations – “velvet”, “silky” surface to the touch.
- High abrasion and scratch resistance.
- Low thermal conductivity.
You can also make worktops from this material – which is a very cool advantage.
But if you do not want a plastic countertop, but want a stone, and so that it also has an antibacterial layer, what should I do?
Innovative sintered stone, with the highest physical and mechanical properties, combining the potential of technical porcelain and the naturalness characteristic of natural stone.
Yes, I’m talking about Lapitec stone.
The surface of Lapitec® does not have porosity, does not absorb water, does not get dirty and resists the growth of bacteria and mold. In addition, it is easily cleaned with warm water and a cloth.
Lapitec® does not contain tar or petroleum products, it is antibacterial and is a completely inert material.
This is a material that is not affected by time and atmospheric effects, as well as acids, alkalis and solvents, it is very hard, shock and wear-resistant, non-combustible, frost-resistant and insensitive to the destructive effect of UV radiation. In addition, it is completely protected from graffiti.
Lapitec® can be turned into a wide variety of products for construction and interior decoration: from facing internal and external walls to flooring, from kitchen worktops to ventilated facades.
Sintered stone surface in the largest format on the market. It is available in the form of XXL boards with a calibrated thickness of 12, 20 or 30 mm.
Thicknesses of 12 and 20 mm guarantee a plate size of 3365×1500 mm (5.05 sq.m.)
All these materials are presented in our studios; you can personally verify the unique properties of each.
We wish you a beautiful kitchen, and a healthy year 🙂
ACRYLIC OR HPL PLASTIC. WHICH TABLE TO CHOOSE? PROS AND CONS OF EACH MATERIAL
In the continuation of the column on kitchen countertops, we continue to delight you with new articles, this issue is devoted to two types of countertops:
– Countertop made of acrylic stone
– Worktop made of HPL plastic
You will learn all about these materials, what are the pros and cons of acrylic stone countertops and HPL plastic, how and where to best use these surfaces, how to care, and how to make the right choice.
Acrylic stone is a composite material consisting of fine mineral chips and color pigments with acrylic resin.
Acrylic is sheet and liquid. Sheet acrylic has a size of 3600 by 760 mm, and is 6 and 12 mm thick, 6 mm thick acrylic can not be used for countertops, why? I’ll talk about this later in the article.
The thickness of liquid acrylic varies from 4 to 6 mm. I do not recommend liquid acrylic for use !!! The problem is that during the polymerization (chemical hardening) of the resin, a huge amount of styrene is released, which is toxic and dangerous to human health, so in this article, below we will only talk about sheet acrylic.
The scope of sheet acrylic is very extensive, not only kitchen countertops are made from it, but also window sills, sinks, bathtubs, steps and even whole sculptures.
Due to its properties, acrylic is a universal material from which you can make a countertop in almost any geometric form without damage to strength, without seams and joints.
The popularity of acrylic as a material for countertops raises a number of questions. How practical and durable is it? What can be put on it and what not? What are the pros and cons of acrylic stone?
Now we will consider the pros and cons of this material based on our experience.
Pros of acrylic countertops:
- A single surface of the countertop without joints and seams – due to the fact that acrylic is amenable to grinding, places at the joints can be sanded until their joints are completely invisible.
- The ability to make a sink and countertop from a single stone – creating the solidity of these two elements.
- Some colors imitate natural rock types.
- There are decors that let in sunlight, they are perfect for creating a luminous countertop.
- The homogeneous structure of acrylic – positively affects the sanitary qualities of the surface and also it is impervious to any bacteria.
- better than other materials suitable for the formation of complex ideas, non-standard, round and curved shapes.
- a very wide variety of colors and patterns.
- more “warm” to the touch than natural stone, as it “heats up” to room temperature.
- You can polish, grind, thereby independently eliminate minor scratches.
- harmless to humans and the environment.
- on such a surface there are traces of mechanical stress – traces of cuts, dents, scratches, etc.
- susceptible to acids – if such liquids get on the surface, it must be wiped off immediately.
- can absorb strong dye.
- low thermal stability, in addition to the fact that a black spot may remain from a hot pan, and it can even burst due to temperature changes.
- in case of significant surface damage, it is necessary to call a specialist to carry out professional grinding. And this means that during polishing your apartment will be filled with a thin layer of dust, and you will need to call for cleaning.
- Without an additional substrate made of harder material, it sags over time, especially in the hob area.
- It burns out under the influence of ultraviolet rays.
Such a worktop is suitable for those who want to realize in their kitchen an original design of a work surface with complex geometric shapes, while doing all this without joints.
High pressure laminate was invented in the USA in 1913.
Due to their high density, HPL panels are used as building facades, outdoor furniture, for wall cladding inside a building and other places where durability and practicality are needed. HPL plastic is between 0.8 and 20 mm thick; in the furniture industry, 12 mm is used.
One of the first who applied HPL panels in Ukraine was McDonald’s, tables and chairs, which until today have served with the same stability.
The end face of HPL panels does not require additional processing and is functional immediately after cutting the material. As a rule, the end (core) of the HPL panel is made in white, brown or black. There are also additional colors of the core of HPL panels, such panels often have a specialized direction or are made as design panels.
For the production of countertops, a 12mm thick plate with double-sided lamination is used, the dimensions of the HPL plate can reach 4100 by 1850 mm.
Pros of countertops made of HPL plastic
- 100% moisture resistance, even if you damage the top layer of the laminate – the countertop will not swell and not swell.
- A variety of end chamfers – with a thickness of 12 mm there is the possibility of making a straight, rounded or 45-degree end face, also for fans of thick countertops, you can remove any thickness by washing down to 45 and gluing.
- It has individual decors, as well as natural decors for copper, stone, wood, 12 mm thick has a double-sided coating.
- You can install a bottom-mounted sink.
- High resistance to weathering – therefore, it can be used not only in home kitchens, but also for outdoor furniture.
- Optimum light fastness – does not glare in the sun.
- Improved resistance to solvents, Easily cleaned from dyes without damaging the surface.
- HPL plastic is not susceptible to cracking.
- The self-supporting panel due to the high density of the material is very durable, does not bend at large sizes.
- Corrosion-free, this material is frost-resistant and fireproof.
- Non-toxic, non-polluting. Does not contain organic halogen (chlorine, fluorine, bromine) and sulfur compounds, heavy metals and asbestos.
- Ease of installation – installed just like any other countertop.
- Easy to perforate, but only on special equipment! – if it is necessary to make ventilation around the window for the battery.
Cons HPL countertops:
- Low scratch resistance, same as chipboard countertops.
- Low impact resistance, you can beat off a piece of the countertop when a pan or other heavy object falls, the “sore” place is the outer end of the countertop and the place in the washing area of the lower mounting.
- Under the influence of high temperatures, it is possible to spoil the laminated coating.
- There is no way to bend – only flat surfaces.
- Without special equipment, it is impossible to cut openings for the hob and sink.
- There is no possibility of fitting in place, if you suddenly made a mistake in size, Any manual work threatens with chipped plastic and a damaged worktop.
- Marked joints, even if using an anchor joint.
- The core can be in only 3 colors white, black and brown – keep this in mind when creating furniture designs using HPL plastic.
In general, countertops made of HPL plastic are very worthy material – they are often used in high-tech, minimalism, and loft kitchens. It creates the effect of a thin countertop and, unlike acrylic stone, is very resistant to bending.