Porcelain Countertop ...Why or Why Not
When considering kitchen countertop, water resistant, high heat resistance, and very hard are often stated properties of Porcelain. Porcelain is a great product in some situations, however, is it the product you are looking for in a kitchen countertop?
As a fabricator and installer, we would like to point out several other considerations.
1. Porcelain slabs are smaller and harder to safely transport leading to more waste and more seams
2. Porcelain countertops are very-very difficult to fabricate. Porcelain slabs are very thin (0.25 to 0.5") compared to natural stone or quartz (normally 1.25" thick). Porcelain is very rigid. This makes Porcelain very pron to breakage during cutting and moving of material and finished countertops.
3. Limited Edges Options. Square build-up and mitered or the only two options we can presently offer. Mitered is limited to straight lines. Build-up and Mitered greatly increase the precision cutting needs, increasing fabrication time, often include breakage of the thin strips and will most likely show the glue line. With the breakage, any movement in the stone becomes extremely difficult to account for.
4. Challenges of undermounted sinks with porcelain should be considered. Mounting methods typically uses for granite, marble, quartzite or quartz are more difficult due to the need to edge support.
5. Porcelain is not new, one may remember or find old porcelain sinks in that are very stained and chipped. Although the sink area may be more prone to stains and chips, it does make one wonder.
6. Porcelain Sealer Porcelain is "nonporous", making it resistant to staining. However, no surface is 100% stain proof. Porcelain may be sealed with nanotechnology porcelain sealer with particles small enough to get into the microscopic imperfections in the surface.
7. Porcelain cookware, plates and diamond jewelry that drag on the countertop can scratch the countertop. A special a scratch repair system is required for porcelain.
8. Porcelain countertop overhangs require much more support. Being a thinner and very ridged material, it is very important to insure adequate support for any overhang area.
9. Porcelain countertop require buildup, similar to that of acrylic which is the same thickness.
10. Moderate life span compared to natural stone. Cracks, breakages and scratches lead to shortened life span. Being an extremely rigid thin material, great care must be taken to avoid flex or hits with other hard objects.
Please review other sites, and other countertop options before you decide on your next countertop.