ECO-FRIENDLY COUNTERTOPS

Eco-friendly countertops are now being offered in a larger and more interesting green variety.  They can be installed in the kitchen, bathroom vanity countertops, in the playroom and home theater or, very popular these days, the outdoor patio kitchen.

The kitchen is the place where the family and, most often, guests gather to talk while waiting for mealtime. So it goes without saying that a functional, highly eco-friendly kitchen will add value to your home.

Start with this material to set the tone and give character to the space but make sure that the color will hold up over time.

May I suggest using a mix of green materials within the same space? For example, you could install granite on the main countertops, but use wood countertops on a central island. VETRAZZO or ICESTONE recycled glass surfaces could be installed on an island with concrete eco-friendly countertops in the rest of the kitchen.

Today’s consumer looks for solid materials, products with resistance and beauty combined. There is on the market materials that are more eco-friendly such as glass, wood, natural stone, concrete and certain laminates. Colors and textures inspired by nature, in the case of natural stone, and engineering are much in demand and create exceptional designs.

Warm browns and soft fawn tones are more popular, but many consumers’ taste will favor green or blue pastels. In all the cases listed below, you should do business with responsible people who furnish professional service and warranties for the eco-friendly countertops and its installation.



RECYCLE YOUR COUNTERTOPS

We are very consumer-based, so we should think of recycling what we already have instead of replacing it. Painting your countertops is an environmentally alternative considering that it is an inexpensive solution. Good preparation is extremely important.

Repair where necessary; clean the surfaces with an eco-friendly degreaser and apply a specialized primer before finishing with two coats of no VOC high quality paint.

Ecofinishers offers a very interesting green solution if you want to recycle. The toxin-free, eco-friendly water-based product must be installed only by a duly accredited professional as there are no do-it-yourself kits. Counters damaged by burns and scratches are repaired before the system is applied. You will spend about 700$ for 35 square feet of countertop instead of approximately $1600 for new laminate.



Skimstone has also good solutions to recycle your countertop with a look of Venetian plaster and stones without all the hazardous toxic chemicals and messy clean up. They also offer a large color chart to answer your designer’s tastes

An Encore countertops system is a DIY environmentally responsible alternative to recycle your countertops. There are 5 different colors available and very simple follow how to videos.

WINDFALL LUMBER COUNTERTOPS

Windfall Lumber is just beautiful, sustainable and often local. They turn salvaged and sustainably harvested wood into fine countertops to make them unique and an eco-friendly countertop choice.


STAINLESS STEEL COUNTERTOPS

Stainless steel is an alloy of steel, nickel, and at least 10.5 percent chromium. Because of the impact of chromium mining and the energy used to produce it, stainless counters are not judged green. However, stainless steel typically contains 65 to 80 percent recycled content—up to 100 percent is available—and it’s fully recyclable. This designer handbook about ‘’stainless steel the green material’’ will increase your knowledge and clarify your questions about the subject.

LAMINATE COUNTERTOPS

Companies such as Arborite, Formica, and Wilsonart offer varied collections of certified, eco-friendly laminate surfaces. You can reference yourself to the specification sheets found online which clearly illustrate their credentials.

You will be pleasantly surprised by their products’ vast choices of colors, finishes and textures. An attractive eco-friendly countertop alternative, if you have a tighter budget, is to use a laminate and add a natural stone border overhang.




ENGINEERED STONE

An engineered stone surface such as Caesarstone Quartz, is a material which unites nature and technology. Non-porous, scratch-resistant and very stain-resistant, this product doesn’t need sealers or waxes and requires practically no maintenance. Caesarstone quartz surfaces are approved by the NSF for installation in hospitals, restaurants, hotels and more.

The American GEI (GREENGUARD Environmental Institute) certification ensures that Caesarstone surfaces are safe for the environment and do not release harmful substances into the air which is a good choice for your eco-friendly countertops.

This product is more expensive, but many of my clients are very happy to have installed a Caesarstone quartz counter and do not regret the expense because it is of superior quality and high performance product.


CONCRETE COUNTERS

An attractive, contemporary alternative is the concrete eco-friendly countertops made from recycled material that is, of course, recyclable. Unique and hand-crafted from scratch for each client, this product has a natural look and lots of character. Since it’s molded for your project, there is surprising flexibility in the size and form as well as the color of counter you can order. Depending on the desired finish, coats of sealant are applied which bring out its distinctive characteristics.

You should search for a manufacturer with the necessary competence and professionalism. The web sites Concrete Countertops and Abusca Design are particularly helpful with its “Questions and Answers” section. The price is comparable to that of marble and granite.


RECYCLED GLASS COUNTERTOPS

Another high-performance, eco-friendly countertops product is from Icestone whose surfaces are made from 100% recycled glass and cement. This product is just as easily installed on vertical surfaces also, increasing installation possibilities.

It is slightly porous like natural stone and therefore requires yearly maintenance. A good variety of color choices gives you various design options for the room.


The glass counter VETRAZZO is truly exceptional and good for the environment because it uses 85% recycled glass. The color palette is a dream come true, like this Bistro Green color, and is available from their palette which evolves from the manufacturer’s new supply sources. They will even, if possible and because they care for the environment, recycle your Vetrazzo counters when you do future renovations

Eco by Consentino is manufactured from 75% of recycled materials. They convert useless materials into material of value to become eco-friendly countertops.


PAPERSTONE

Paperstone is the greenest architectural surface on the market today. It has two series of products, the original which is made from 100% post-consumer recycled cardboard and the Certified series which is made from 100% post-consumer standard office paper. The possibilities for ways of using these products are so vast that it would be a good idea to visit their website so you can learn more. The cost of this product is about the same as that for quality granite or quartz surfaces.

You can DIY Paperstone counters…measure, order and save!!! 


Going green by reducing, reusing and recycling with your eco-friendly countertops.

Choose the right eco-friendly paint.

Contact us to share your comments.

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