9 Reasons Why You Should Not Buy Laminate Countertops

Laminate is one of the cheapest materials that can be used for kitchen countertops. Here are some reasons why you would want to think twice before choosing laminate countertops and instead of laminate, choose quartz countertops.

Disadvantages Of laminate Countertops

It Looks Cheap

It’s a hard hit, but it’s true. Laminate countertops, even though they have a very versatile and can be made to look like any material you want, can look cheap at times. You can definitely tell if your kitchen countertops are cheap or luxurious just by looking at them and sadly, laminate countertops don’t pass the beauty test.

The feel of the material isn’t the best as compared to natural stones and the look is similar to shiny plastic, which might sound okay, but it’s not.

There is an array of colors and patterns to choose from, but there is not a single one that exudes a contemporary and lux vibe. It’s entirely generic and the ones that look like wood or natural stones still appear a bit fake.

Yes, the material is inexpensive, but that doesn’t mean that the looks need to be compromised. Even concrete countertops look better in appearance when compared side by side to laminate. Looks matter the most to a majority of people and laminate countertops just doesn’t cut it.

It Can Get Stained

You might think that because of the super hard and non-porous surface, laminate can’t get stained. Well, this demerit is going to burst that little bubble. Laminate countertops are susceptible to stains, especially if you don’t clean them every single day. Food, liquid spills, and even dried-up food can be a nightmare to remove if you let these things sit on the surface for too long.

While it’s recommended that you clean your countertops daily, this fact can still be off-putting for a lot since laminate is marketed as a low-maintenance material. Given its characteristics, however, it’s not different from natural stones that need to be maintained by regular sealing, polishing, etc. So, why not choose something that’s at least pretty to look at and will add some value to your space? This is why quartz countertops are much better than laminate. But it comes with a bit higher price tag.

Not Scratch-Resistant

This one is truly discouraging because laminate is a hard material. When you see those ugly and deep scratches on the surface of laminate, your heart will drop to the floor. As unfortunate as it sounds, it’s something that you need to accept. Laminate is not scratch-resistant.

Sharp knives, pointy skewers, and even certain utensils will scratch the hard surface and it will stick out like a sore thumb. You would know how a single scratch can ruin the look of your countertops and laminate falls right into that category. At least, with natural stones and even some man-made options, scratches don’t occur that easily.

You can take quartz, limestone, tiles, and even soapstone and these options will sustain scratches, so they’re better materials than the seemingly cool laminate. So, whatever you do at the end of the day, choose the material wisely.

It Can Get Chipped

Laminate might look like a material that could, at least, resist breaking, but unfortunately, that’s not true either. Laminate is highly susceptible to breakage and even though it’s not primarily because of impact forces, it’s still quite a letdown.

Usually, the main culprit is temperature which can allow the surface or the sides of laminate to crack and chip, and you know what that means. One small chip can lead to a trail of them in no time and it can ruin the countertops.

So, if you’re considering laminate countertops, then keep this detail in mind, otherwise you will be highly disappointed.

Heat Stains

Speaking of temperatures, high heat and laminate also don’t go together when appearance is concerned. If you put hot pots and pans directly on the surface of laminate countertops, then be prepared to greet hideous heat stains. They’re extremely unpleasant to look at and the worst thing about them is that they are essentially irreversible. You can’t get rid of them no matter what unless you want to change the countertops altogether.

This is highly inconvenient as there are better stones, like granite and quartz that seem unfazed by the rising temperatures in the kitchen. Since natural stones are made under the influence of high temperatures and man-made stones like quartz and engineered stones are reinforced with strength and durability, hot things aren’t an issue for them. However, the same can’t be said for laminate countertops.

Full disclosure though, if you have natural stone or quartz countertops, you should still avoid putting hot pans directly on the surface.

Not Long-Lasting

With the continuous list of downsides of laminate, it won’t come as a surprise to you that this material is also not as long-lasting. Yes, it can last a couple of years, but that’s still not enough to justify the already low price of laminate.

If you’re looking for a countertop material that’s fairly decent in durability, then there are other materials that you can choose from and they won’t have other problems that laminate has. Laminate countertops are the epitome of the saying “You get what you pay for”.

Water Can Damage Them

Water can damage most countertops like natural stones and wood especially if you don’t seal them and laminate countertops aren’t safe from the throes either. It won’t cause the material to disintegrate, per se, but it will lead to water stains and an overall murky appearance that’s not pleasant to look at.

If you let water or spills sit on the surface of laminate countertops for too long, then it could lead to penetration inside the material, and over time, fungus and mold can form, and those are things you certainly don’t want in your kitchen.

Need Professionals For Repair

Considering that laminate countertops are very easy to install, this con might surprise you. Laminate countertops, when damaged, aren’t so easy to repair and you are going to want to have professionals on speed dial if you don’t want matters to worsen even more. Professional repair costs shoot through the roof and they can add up over time, especially if your countertops are always damaged. Not to mention, it also takes some time for the countertops to be reinstalled in the kitchen again, depending on the severity of the damage. So, here’s a question: Are laminate countertops worth going through all of this trouble?

Don’t Look Like The Real Stones

Laminate countertops are marketed as countertops that can mimic almost any material on Earth. Well, this is a huge claim and it is also one of the major selling points of laminate as well. But does it mimic natural stones to the T? No! Some things are just too good to be true and this fact about laminate countertops is one of them.

Even though there is a slight resemblance, you can still tell if the countertops are the real thing or a fake. So, save yourself from the embarrassment.


Even though laminate is a good choice for people who don’t have an elaborate budget, there are better options out there that can look as pretty as well as they function. Contact quartz countertop contractors Rockville and you will find some slabs that are durable and also affordable.



What Are The Cheapest Kitchen Countertop Materials?

Replacing a countertop can get expensive. The driving factor of the cost of a countertop is the price of the material so if you choose the material carefully, you can have a countertop installed without breaking the bank. Can you get granite countertops at a lower cost? Well, here are the most cost-effective countertop materials.

Ceramic Tile Countertops

Although ceramic tiles are common for backsplashes, they can be installed as countertops too. Ceramic tiles are stain-resistant and waterproof and make cleaning easy for the most part. Moreover, you are not limited to a few options when it comes to the designs, patterns, and colors of ceramic tiles.

However, there are some downsides to using ceramic tiles for your countertop space. The tiles themselves are super easy to clean but the grout lines are a pain in the neck when it comes to cleaning. Also, due to these grout lines, the surface won’t be perfectly smooth and many home buyers don’t like kitchens where ceramic tile countertops are installed.

Another disadvantage of ceramic tiles is that they can crack on slight impacts as well. After a crack, you can repair it or replace the tile with a new one.

That being said, ceramic tiles are one of the cheapest materials you can find for kitchen countertops.

Laminate Countertops

Laminate countertops are also known as Formica countertops because Formica was the company that introduced these counters. Modern laminate countertops have improved a lot from their old counterparts due to technological advancements.

Laminate countertops are made with kraft paper and resins to form a thin and durable layer. Another solid layer is bonded to that layer for the formation of a laminate surface.

Modern laminate countertops are also known as high-pressure laminate where plastic resins and cellulose layers are mixed in high heat and pressure to create a solid surface. These countertops are considered more durable than traditional laminate counters.

Laminate countertops are cheap yet stain-resistant due to the use of resins. You can clean a laminate countertop with soapy water. But be careful and avoid using abrasive cleaners because they will scratch the surface.

Furthermore, laminate counters can be made to look like any countertop material. There are laminate countertops that look like granite, marble, quartz, steel, wood, and other materials.

Moreover, these countertops are lightweight so they are easy to install. It can help you save on the installation costs as well.

On the flip side, laminate countertops don’t add value to your house because they are not as durable as granite or quartz. They are also prone to scratches and heat damage. Moreover, the counters will delaminate if moisture penetrates into the surface.

All in all, if you want the cheapest countertop but can’t stand ceramic tiles, select laminate countertops.

Granite Tile Countertops

Granite is the most popular countertop material and granite slabs are commonly used for a smooth and durable surface. However, if you don’t have the budget for granite slabs and want granite as your countertop, you can choose granite tiles.

Granite tiles are much cheaper than even the lowest-cost granite slab. This is because granite tiles can be made with smaller pieces of granite. However, you would need to deal with grout lines if you install granite tiles. So, cleaning can become difficult due to this reason.

Moreover, any granite countertop whether slab or tile requires sealing so you would need to seal the tiles as well. You would also need to refill the grout lines every few years if you use counters a lot.

An advantage of granite tiles is that you can install them yourself if you have some knowledge of countertop installation. But if you go for professional installation, it costs almost the same as granite slab installation.

If you don’t want granite, you can choose tiles of any other stone as well that is available in tiles.

Solid Surface Countertops

Engineered stone countertops have two basic types solid surface and quartz. As quartz is a premium countertop material and priced in the same range as granite, you should look into solid surface countertops that are cheaper and have some advantages.

Keep in mind that solid surfaces cost more than laminate or ceramic tile countertops but they have many benefits that laminate and ceramic tiles can’t provide. Moreover, it costs similar to granite tiles and has some benefits over them as well.

For instance, there are no seams in solid surface countertops whereas ceramic and granite tiles, infamously, have seams that make cleaning difficult.

Moreover, solid surface countertops have a non-porous surface. Even though ceramic tiles are non-porous, the grout lines create the same problem that non-porous surfaces do. On the other hand, granite tiles can be sealed but they also have grout lines. Lastly, laminate can resist moisture but if the surface becomes damaged, moisture will enter the surface and damage the countertop.

In addition to that, you can easily repair solid surface countertops by sanding them out whereas laminate countertops can’t be repaired. Plus, solid surface countertops are more impact resistant than ceramic tiles and laminate countertops.

But solid surfaces have some problems as well. They are susceptible to heat damage. Hot pans can discolor or even cracks the surface. Granite tiles are better in heat resistance than solid surface counters.

Also, solid surface countertops are soft and more susceptible to scratches than granite tiles. So, you must use a cutting board for chopping food. However, to be fair, the suggestion of using a cutting board is valid for every material mentioned in this blog.

Wood Countertops

The accessibility and variations of wood allow for cheaper butcher block countertops that look beautiful and cost much less than granite and quartz. You don’t need to rely on brands for having a wood countertop because a woodworker can create a durable countertop for you and if you have some woodworking experience you can create one for yourself. This will drastically reduce the cost of your countertop installation.

Butcher block countertops provide a rustic appeal better than no other material. Still, they match any kitchen style. However, they are high-maintenance countertops. Even if you seal your wood countertops, any spill must be cleaned immediately.

Low-Cost Granite Slabs

As granite is so popular, many homeowners only want granite as their countertop. If granite tiles don’t work for you yet you can’t splurge on a high-quality granite slab, look for cheaper and low-cost granite slabs.

They won’t be as durable and long-lasting as premium granite slabs, but they would still last for many years given that you care for them well. However, as with any granite slab, you should not try DIY installation because it can result in damage to the slab. Hiring an installer will increase the overall cost of your countertop installation, but it will be for the best.

To keep your granite slab in good condition, avoid putting hot pans on it, use a cutting board, and clean it with cleaners made for granite cleaning. Moreover, cheaper granite slabs are less durable so make sure to never sit or stand on the countertop.


You don’t have to spend a fortune for purchasing a countertop material. Look into the above-mentioned countertop materials that are budget-friendly and fairly durable. For installing a granite countertop, get in touch with a granite contractor Potomac for low-cost granite slabs or tiles.



How Long Does It Take To Install Kitchen Countertops

When installing quartz kitchen countertops or any other kitchen countertops, the time it takes to install them is vital, as sometimes you might be having guests over, and you want to complete the installation before they arrive.

Wondering how long does it take to install kitchen countertops? Well, the time varies depending on the type of countertops you are looking to install.

Laminate countertops

They have the fastest turnaround times, so if you are looking for fast-to-install countertops, these are the best to go for. You will even install them faster if you go with off-the-rack countertops often found in home improvement stores.

You should note that while the off-the-rack countertops are easy to install, they often aren’t as beautiful as the custom laminate countertops, so you should be ready to make the compromise.

If you want that perfect look, install custom laminate countertops, and these take a long time as the contractor will have to visit your home and demonstrate the various laminate countertops they have in stock.

After you have selected your preferred pieces, the contractor will then take a few weeks or even months to make the countertops. Once the countertops are ready, the contractor will schedule a time to remove the old countertops and install the new ones.

Installing the new custom laminate countertops takes about a few days to a week, depending on the size of your kitchen and the contractor’s experience.

Granite and marble countertops

If you ask any homeowner, the type of countertops they are looking to install, they will tell you granite or marble. And there is a good reason for it: granite and marble countertops are tough and give your kitchen an elegant look.

The time it takes to install these countertops is similar to the other countertops, but with these countertops, instead of the contractor coming to your home, you have to visit the contractor’s showroom to see the various countertops available.

When you are in these stores, don’t simply pick the slab that sticks out the most for you. Remember, your kitchen size, the lighting in your kitchen, cabinet design, and color, will heavily impact how the slab looks in your kitchen, so always take a sample with you in your home and see how it looks there.

Only buy a slab if it looks good in your kitchen.

After you have settled on a given countertop slab, the contractor will find similar slabs as your chosen slab and begin preparing them for installation. This process often takes 1-3 months to complete, depending on the availability of the chosen slabs and the size of your kitchen.

Wood, glass, stainless steel, and engineered stone countertops

These take the same time as laminate countertops to install, and you have to follow the same installation process. The countertop contractor comes to your home with countertop samples, and it’s up to you to choose the ones you like.

You should then wait for the contractor to make the countertops, return to your home, remove the old countertops, and replace them with the new ones.

In most cases, from the time you begin looking at the countertop materials to the time you install them, it takes about 4 months.

Concrete countertops

You can go about the installation in two ways: have the countertops made offsite or have the concrete formed and poured on-site.

The contractor will visit your home and measure the size of your countertop surface so that he can make a countertop of the right size. It often takes longer to have the countertop made on site, as the contractor has to bring everything on the site.

Tile countertops

Unlike marble and granite countertops Rockville that come in large slabs, these countertops are usually small tiles (often 4” X 4”), so as you can expect, they take a long time to install.

You have to follow the same process where the contractor comes to your home and shows you their samples. After settling on the tiles, they make them, then come to your home and install them.

Unlike other countertops that you can begin using immediately after installation, wait for at least a week for the tiles to completely stick to the counter surfaces before using them.



Replacing Kitchen Countertops On A Budget? 7 Countertop Options To Choose From

If your countertops are damaged, worn out, or you want to revamp your kitchen or bathroom, you should contact countertop replacement services providers to replace the countertops.

If you have a large budget for the work, you do not worry as you can use any material you want, but you can only go with cheap materials if you are working on a tight budget.

Thinking about replacing kitchen countertops on a budget? There are several countertop materials you can go with. The most common ones being:


Although laminate countertops were popular a few decades ago, you can still install them in your home at an affordable price. The beauty of modern laminates is that you can find countertops that resemble almost anything. Thanks to advances in technology, you can find laminate countertops mimicking stone, wood, and other materials.

The main flaw with laminate is it tends to easily scratch, so you need to be cautious when preparing your meals or cleaning so you don’t cause substantial damage. Thankfully, you can reduce the chances of scratching by sealing the countertops. When doing it, ensure that you use sealant materials specifically designed for laminate countertops.

Cultured marble

This is faux marble that resembles real marble but comes at a much lower price. The countertops are made from a mixture of polyester resin and pigments, marble dust and fillers.

These surfaces replicate the marble appearance, but they are more stain-resistant than the real marble, making them easier to maintain.


Many people use paint to revamp their walls, but did you know you can also transform your counters using it? The cool thing is you can easily paint the surfaces by yourself without requiring the services or contractor.

All you need to do is to find a color that will give your surfaces a brand new look you are looking for. You can paint any counter surface, so whether you want to transform tile, laminate, solid surface or any other surface, you can definitely use paint.


Bamboo isn’t the most popular countertop material, but it can give your surfaces a unique natural look when properly done.

Bamboo surfaces are known to be stylish, tough, and eco friendly. The only flaw with them is they require significant levels of maintenance. For example, you need to paint them or seal them, so they aren’t damaged by water.


Are you looking for durable countertops, but you are operating on a tight budget? These are the countertops to go for. Besides being tough, the countertops are colorful, so they will significantly transform your surfaces with their unique colors.

To make the countertops more appealing, use them in conjunction with plainer, more affordable styles.


Wood or butcher block counters add warmth to your surfaces and give them a unique natural look. The beauty of wood is it’s cheaper than stone countertops, so you will save a significant amount of money by installing them.

Bamboo and maples are two of the most popular wooden countertop materials, but you can install any other wooden countertops of your choice. When you install them, you should note that the countertops require regular oiling to prevent them from wood-boring insects. You may also have to seal the surfaces to prevent them from water damage.

Stainless steel

Although a good quality stainless steel countertop isn’t cheap, a properly constructed custom made steel countertop can double as a kitchen island, meaning you don’t need to build a kitchen island, and as you can imagine, this saves you a lot of money.

The cool thing is many freestanding stainless steel counters provide plenty of storage space beneath, so you don’t need to construct storage cabinets for your produce.

Recycled glass

This is a new entrant in the market and has quickly risen in popularity. Recycled glass surfaces are made by mixing pieces of recycled glass with cement and other binders. At first look, the countertops are beautiful and easy to maintain, but this isn’t the case.

You need to be ultra-cautious when preparing your meals or placing hard objects on the countertops as they can easily chip or break. So like granite countertops Rockville and other countertop materials, you need to be careful, so you don’t damage them.



7 Excellent Kitchen Countertop Cover-Ups

Don’t like the current look of your countertops? Don’t rush to hire countertop replacement services providers, as there are several ways you can cover your countertops without requiring contractor services. To help you out, here 7 excellent kitchen countertop cover-ups:

Tile the countertops

Tiles are excellent at covering floors, walls, and showers, and there is no reason you shouldn’t use them to cover up your old countertops. When choosing the tiles, go for glazed ceramic and porcelain tiles as they are the most stain and heat resistant.

They also come in a wide range of sizes, shapes, and colors. Avoid natural stone tile as it requires periodic sealing that can be too much work on your part.

You can install the tiles directly on your countertops without removing the old countertops. You only need to ensure the tiles are flat and stable enough to prevent the new tiles from cracking.

As you are installing the tiles, you should note that while tiles are durable and easy to maintain, the grout joints are prone to staining. To minimize the stains, seal the countertops as soon as possible after installing the tile. You should then apply the sealer every few years to maintain the protective barrier.

Lay laminate over the countertops

If you have old laminate countertops with square edges, you can cover them with a new laminate layer. The layers are sold in sheets of up to 5 feet wide and 12 feet long, and all you need to do is to visit your local store and place your order.

If your countertops have raised and rounded edges, often known as waterfall edges, you can’t cover them with new laminate surfaces as the new material can’t conform to the edge contours.

Use a countertop refinishing kit.

Refinishing kits have everything you need to cover your countertops. The refinishing kits include an epoxy-like paint and decorative stone chips that create the natural stone look.

To cover your countertops using the kit, you simply need to follow the kit’s instructions. While this method is highly effective, you should note that it involves a lot of hard work, it’s messy, and you need to pay close attention to the kit’s details.

Cover your countertops with wood

Have you always wanted butcher block, or are you drawn to the beauty of real wood countertops? You can cover your old, beaten countertops with wide planks of solid hardwood. You can even get creative and use a blend of hardwood and bamboo plywood.

The cool thing with hardwood is it’s more durable and repairable than plywood. Only plywood comes in larger pieces and is more affordable.

Bamboo plywood offers the best of both worlds. It has a thicker top layer that ensures it’s durable and easy to repair and at the same time comes in 4 x 8-foot sheets like regular plywood.

You should note that covering your countertops with hardwood requires woodworking skills and the right tools. You can do the work by yourself if you have the skills or hire a professional to help you out.

Install modular granite

Also known as granite or stone overlay, modular granite is a system of small thin stone slabs designed to cover old countertops. The stones are 16 by 18 inches wide, which means there are fewer joints between the pieces.

For the problematic inside and outside corners, there are special pieces made for these sections, as well as the optional edge pieces.

Cover the countertops with film

Countertop film is thicker than shelf or contact paper. Many people refer to it as a cross between vinyl flooring and shelf paper and have a self-adhesive backing for sticking directly to the old countertop surface.

To install the film, layout the film, trim it to a rough size, and align it to the countertop edges. You should then stick it down using a squeegee tool to remove the air bubbles.

While the film will cover your ugly surfaces, you should note that it’s not a long-term solution, so use it as a temporary way of covering your surfaces.

Paint the countertops

Painting your countertops is easy, fast, and gives you immediate results. You can also do it by yourself without involving granite contractors Rockville or other professionals.



Forget Granite Countertops For A Moment: 7 Features That Make Laminate Countertops The Best Countertops In The Market

When looking to install countertops in their homes, many homeowners only think about granite countertops. What they don’t realize is that there are plenty of other countertop materials in the market they can go for.

One of the best materials is laminate. Laminate countertops come with plenty of attractive features that make them one of the best materials in the market to go for. These features include:

They are easy to find

Regardless of the texture, color, or print you are looking for, you will find laminate countertops that match your desires in hardware supplies or kitchen supplies store in your local area.

You can also easily find the countertops in your walk-in and online stores. As long as you know the countertops you want, you will find them in a store near you.

Plenty of options to choose from

The countertops are not only easy to find, but they also come in plenty of choices to choose from. Some of the common options include:

  • High-pressure laminates
  • Color core or color through laminates
  • Post-formed or drop in laminates
  • Marbled, glossy, or matte textured laminates
  • Thickness based graded laminates

If this is the first time installing the countertops, you should discuss it with your contractor and agree on the right ones for your home. As a rule of thumb, avoid those that don’t give your home an elegant appeal.

They are affordable

When they ask for a countertop quotation, most homeowners are shocked by the amount of money they have to part with to install their preferred stone countertops. Laminate countertops are affordable, with most of the brands costing less than half the price of most natural stone countertops.

This makes them an ideal choice when you are operating on a tight budget.  The countertops are also cheap and easy to maintain.

They are easy to install

If you have installed quartz countertops or any natural stone countertops, you have to hire a countertop installation professional to help you with the installation, which is added to the cost.

This isn’t the case with laminate countertops

Due to their ease of installation, you can even install them by yourself, especially if you are a DIY enthusiast. During the installation, don’t shy from getting creative with the design and color combinations.

You also should create different edge options such as the bullnose, beveled, eased, and ogee. It’s all up to you to decide what looks good for your countertops and go with it.

They are easy to clean

Laminates have a highly moisture repellent surface. This comes in handy at preventing grime and dust from sticking to them. As a result, you have an easy time cleaning the countertops.

You can easily clean laminate countertops using basic cleaning supplies such as water, vinegar, and other household cleaning agents.

Avoid harsh cleaning chemicals that can damage the surfaces.

They are impact resistant

Even the mighty Quartz, Dekton’s, and granite countertops easily chip or crack when you drop heavy pots or ceramic bowls on them.

This isn’t the case with laminate. Laminate countertops can take a literal pounding. Even when you drop a cast iron skillet on them, they won’t even flinch. Also, when you accidentally drop your tools on the countertops, they won’t get damaged.

They have antibacterial properties

Most of the manufacturers produce countertops with antimicrobial protection backed into them. This means that the countertops kill pathogens, which comes in handy at reducing your chances of getting sick. This also eliminates the chances of mold and fungi growing on the countertops.

They allow you to have an under-mount sink

Years ago, you could only have a drop-in sink when you installed laminate countertops. Courtesy of great innovation strides, it’s now possible to install an under-mount sink in your home. This gives your home an elegant, modern look.


If you are looking for affordable but elegant looking countertops, laminate countertops are your best bet. You can install them on any surfaces but not in the wet areas of the house, such as in the bathroom. For you to get the most from the countertops, ensure the pieces are installed by expert granite installers Rockville or any other professionals.