I think we're going to install this as a compromise between regular
laminate and something like granite for our new counters. The designs
and colors are beautiful, so I'm curious whether the cohort can offer
any big negatives (besides the known issues with putting hot stuff
directly on it). Granite or any of the composite surfaces would cost
at least $2k more in our kitchen, and I don't think we'd get our money
out in our real-estate market (a friend did a high-end kitchen to sell
her house and didn't get what she wanted for it), and I think we'd be
quite happy with this new-generation laminate countertop.
I have Wilsonart tops in my kitchen. The countertops were installed
about three years ago. I haven't had any problem with mine. I am
careful to not set anything hot on it. Mine is Marine Mystic (I
think) - a dark blue color and very pretty.
Take a look at the 12 inch square granite tile approaches.
You'll have most of the advantages of granite (slab) at a
fraction of the cost. Use the thinest recommended grout
lines and a sandless (maybe epoxy) grout. It looks
pretty nice. You will need to decide how to finish the
edges - there are multiple options including standard
or custom finish tiles, hardwood molding and more. A
decent tile store could give you a lot of guidance.
I've worked with laminate from both Formica and Wilsonart.
I think the Formica product is quite a bit better in
quality and durability. Others have said the same thing
in this forum in the past.
As far as real estate values are concerned (in CA at
least) granite will add value for sure. Laminate will
not add value in itself although the general improvement
to the kitchen might.
| Malcolm Hoar "The more I practice, the luckier I get". |
On Mon, 25 Feb 2008 00:04:55 GMT, email@example.com (Malcolm Hoar)
We considered this, but an undermount sink isn't possible with this
approach, and we really want undermount.
Interesting; thanks for posting this.
Maybe in CA, but not here; the friend I mentioned did beautiful
granite throughout her kitchen with cherry cabinets and stainless
steel appliances and ended up selling her house for $40k less than she
wanted. I'm reluctant to pour that much extra money into a house
we're not sure we'll be in more than another 5 years.
Don't let anecdotal evidence be your guide. Lots of people don't get what
they want for it when they sell their houses because they ask much more than
they are worth.
I don't know your budget, but if you really want granite and have the money,
get it and enjoy it. If you are happy with a nice laminate, that is just
fine also. Choice is wonderful.
I think that granite may be more important in a certain price range of
homes. In my area that would be $400,000 and up. Below that you may get away
I just used the high def laminate as a vanity top in our master bath. I
don't think it looks much like granite at all but is a nice looking
laminate. I had to get the master bath back together quickly as my wife goes
through chemo again. I'll tear the cheap stuff out when she is done and
finish the remodel properly.
I agree with Ed. Don't rely on your friends experience. Also if you are
going to stay in your house for 8 or 10 years do what makes you happy as
granite may not be popular when you are ready to sell.
I have been making sample counters tops from concrete and have come up with
a few that will look great in our home. I will post pictures when they are
Where are you pricing your granite? Where I live, granite is by far the
least expensive counter top material because there are a gazillion
granite stores selling cheap granite from China, i.e.
If you're buying granite at Home Depot, or a high end kitchen remodeling
store than it can get expensive, or if you're buying Italian granite it
can get really expensive.
The downsides of granite are that the color and pattern selections are
more limited and that you have to seal it periodically as it's porous.
I just remodeled the kitchen and 3 bathrooms in a rental unit, and all
the counters are granite because I didn't want to spend a lot. Somehow
builders and many stores have many consumers convinced that granite is
some sort of an exotic material that is considered an "upgrade." In
reality, some of the synthetics are better (non-porous) but are more
costly than granite.
Much less but we didn't actually consider any of the "real" stone
products. IIRC, was about half Corian from same supplier on sq-ft basis
altho the pricing w/ Corian included labor whereas the material cost on
the Dovae was material-only. Still worked out at significant
differential at, at least superfically, no discernible difference in
product or look.
I'm not positive how long Chemcore has been in business but aren't all
I've installed Corian, this stuff works the same way but while an
individual can buy Corian (and others), Chemcore sells only to
fabricators which they claim is their technique for reducing cost.
Don't see how that makes the total difference personally, but then
again, DuPont has a big headstart in name recognition so they can (and
do) command the premium as the market leader.
As say, I'm completely satisfied w/ the product after having it in the
kitchen for a year so far--it does not damage easily (any more than
Corian, etc.) as far as scratching, etc., and cleans easily, doesn't
stain, etc., either, as the manufacturer claims. I was a little leery
at first, but the local building supply that recommended it gave me
their favorite installer to talk to and he provided a number of clients
who convinced me to give it a go -- I'm now convinced, too.
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