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Archive for Granite

Corian vs. Granite: Which Counter Material Is Better?

Originally published on Thespruce.com on September 25, 2018 By Lee Wallender

Corian countertops or granite countertops? If you’ve narrowed down your options to these two premium materials, there are plenty of factors to consider before making your final decision. Here’s a look at the most important characteristics of each.

What Are They?

Corian is DuPont’s brand name for its flagship solid surface countertop material. It is a man-made product composed of 33 percent binding resins and 66 percent minerals. Corian was the original solid surface brand name. First developed by DuPont in 1967, solid surface countertops are now made by several other manufacturers and include the brands Avonite, Staron, and Mystera.

Granite is real stone. It is granite quarried directly from the earth, sliced into slabs, honed, and polished. Nothing is added, nothing is removed. While the term “granite” often is used to refer to other stone-based counter materials, such as quartz or engineered stone, these are not the same as slab granite, which is simply solid stone without additional materials. Slab granite typically is not associated with specific brand names.


The costs of Corian and granite countertops are pretty comparable. Both are commonly priced in the range of about $40–$65 per square foot, installed. Keep in mind that this price is for slab granite, not granite tile. Tile can be much cheaper and offers the option of DIY installation (for further savings), but it also means grout lines, which, for kitchen countertops, should be avoided at all costs.


Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Most people love the look of natural stone, with its color variation and deep luster, but that doesn’t mean everyone wants that look in their kitchen or bathroom. The mottled and often bold coloring of granite can a bit too busy for many decorating schemes. More notably, all that color can do an annoyingly good job of hiding crumbs and smears on the countertop surface; often a granite top looks perfectly clean when it’s anything but. On the flip side, granite looks beautifully natural, while Corian looks like…well, like plastic…or at least something not natural. That said, it doesn’t have the plasticky shine of a laminate countertop but rather a soft color that somehow has depth despite its total consistency.

Resale Value: Return on Investment

Granite is commonly claimed to offer a high return on investment when it comes time to sell a house. Note that slab granite—as opposed to tile—will give back the highest amount. But Corian is no slouch, either. Of all solid surface countertop materials, Corian is the one with the greatest consumer name-brand recognition. Again, beauty is subjective, and potential buyers may consider your choice of material or color either an asset or a liability, and of course, you can’t control that.

Maintenance and Durability

Granite should be sealed every 1–2 years to minimize the risk of staining. Yes, granite can stain, but so can Corian. Corian never needs sealing. Both materials are essentially nonporous and are considered highly hygienic surfaces and easy to keep clean (unlike grout lines in tile, for example). Granite is susceptible to etching from acidic materials, such as lemon juice and vinegar. Corian has no similar chemical vulnerabilities.

As for heat-resistance, granite wins hands-down. You can set a hot pan on it without worry. Corian can be scorched by hot pans, requiring the use of hot pads, trivets, or cutting boards to protect it from extreme heat. Finally, granite is hard to scratch or damage with knife blades. Corian is fairly easily scratched, but minor scratches—and many other blemishes—can be buffed out with an abrasive pad.

Ease of Installation

Both granite and Corian should be professionally installed. However, Corian is much more forgiving material that can be worked in many different ways and is lighter to carry. While most homeowners do not choose to install Corian themselves, it can be done. Resellers offer full and partial slabs to homeowners. Corian can be cut with an ordinary circular saw, and sink cutouts can be made with a RotoZip or router. Corian is installed with seaming materials that are perfectly matched to the product so that ​the seams completely disappear. Seams in granite aren’t always obvious, but the color variation of each piece often creates a visible seam, even with a skilled installation.

Different Types of Countertops for a Kitchen Remodeling Project

Originally Published on Footbridgemedia.com

One of the important details included as part of a kitchen remodeling project is choosing just the right kitchen countertop material. Some homeowners already have in mind exactly what they want and others may not have any idea. There are some things to take into consideration before making a choice such as:

  • Budget – some materials are more expensive than others and by quite a bit. Decide on how much of your budget you can allow to spend on this part of the renovation project before making the final choice. You should also prioritize your expenses. For example if you simply cannot imagine redoing your kitchen without top of the line granite counters then this should be the top of your list and the rest of the budget has to work out expense wise accordingly. On the other hand if you aren’t too concerned with your countertops then you can free up more money for the features that do matter to you.
  • Use – If you are planning to use your kitchen a lot for cooking and baking then choose the material that works best for taking a beating. You don’t want to select a material that looks great when installed and looks terrible within a month because you actually used it a lot. If you really just use your kitchen as a place to store food and reheat restaurant takeout in the microwave then you don’t have to give this as much consideration.
  • Cleaning and Maintenance – This is one that often gets overlooked but you have to be realistic about how much time and effort you are willing to invest into taking care of your counters. For instance, materials that are porous tend to capture dirt and will need more regular cleaning. If you don’t want to be bothered with a lot of cleaning, maintenance and upkeep then make your selection accordingly.

Examples of Material Types

These days there are almost countless possibilities for materials that can be used for kitchen counters. Try not to have your heart and head set on any one type until you understand the pros and cons of each. Although there are numerous others that could be included in this list these are some of the most common and popular choices homeowners consider for their kitchen:

Granite – Sturdy and available in a variety of colors and patterns found in nature this choice is known for coming with a higher price tag. While it is relatively easy to clean it does require sealing every so often for longevity.
Marble – Probably one of the most popular and desirable choices due to its luxurious finished look. However, it is very susceptible to stains even with sealing. Consider using another material for counters that will get the most use and this for more decorative accents.
Tile – This is a popular choice because it can have a fantastic look without eating up too much of your budget. Of course this all depends on the type of tile you decide on. One advantage is that if a few tiles are damaged they can be replaced relatively easily and inexpensively. However, keeping grout free from bacteria and stains is not always an easy task.
Laminate – Like tile this is often an option for those on a tighter budget or who would rather dedicate the majority of their finances to something like the cabinets or flooring. While it is easy to clean it is more prone to permanent stains and burns than other options.

Other popular choices include concrete, butcher block, stainless steel and soapstone – just to name a few.

The bottom line is that you should always choose what you want and not just what your contractor talks you into. However make sure the choice you make is actually practical based on the factors discussed at the beginning of the article. And you should still listen to what your remodeling contractor has to say. For example if he or she explains that your marble or granite won’t work because the cabinet base you chose isn’t sturdy enough then you are going to have to do some rethinking.