Hiring the Pros
First of all, you must aska well experienced countertop installer for help, especially if you are doing this for the first time. They can give you a professional quote by showing them the drawings with your specifications, or, ask for a time to conduct measure and consultation in your home.
Once both parties have agreed with the terms and price you may be asked to sign a contract and deposit a required amount. The material will only be procured once you have made the final selections, they will keep it until it’s ready to be fabricated. Bear in mind that your accessories, appliances, faucets and sinks must be finalized as preparation for the template.
Usually, a project manager is assigned to the customer for proper project coordination. This will ensure that all the needed information is readily available prior to the template. It’s crucial that cabinet readiness and installation checklist be filled out prior to installation.
Once you have agreed on a template date based on your availability and readiness on the project, your templater should be able to walk you through the details in order to make sure that both your expectations will be met. You will then be asked to sign off on the completed work order before fabrication begins.
Selecting the Material
When selecting the right kind of material for your countertop project, you need to determine the right amount of quantity, integrity of materials and consider cosmetic elements.
The slabs will be sold in sheets that average from 45-55 square feet. Your project manager or installer can help you decide how many slabs will be required to finish the project.
It is important that you understand the characteristics of the stone you selected because oftentimes it’s hard to see the little imperfections that may be more obvious during the installation.
So here’s a roundup of the best countertop stones to match your kitchen design.
Marble: This comes in a wide array of patterns and colors; it has a smooth surface, is heat resistant and will not dent or chip off. On the other hand, it can be expensive and some cleaning agents, coffee, citrus, and alcohol has the capability to etch its surface despite sealing it. Price ranges from 100-400 dollars per square foot.
Granite: This is known to be more durable than marble because it is stain, water and heat resistant when sealed properly, it won’t scratch, plenty of color options to choose from and is low- maintenance. This is a bit expensive because you need to reseal it at least once a year. Price range is similar to marble.
Engineered Stones: This looks like natural stone and is resistant to stains and scratches, easy to maintain and sealant free. It’s about ninety percent quarts but you have the option of mixing it with pigments to customize the color. However, this is not heatproof so you need to be careful. Price ranges from 50-150 dollars per square foot.
Lava Stone: It has lots of color options, resistant to cold, heat, scratching, and stains, low-maintenance, and highly- durable with a lovely crackled finish. Price can go high as much as 225 dollars per square foot.
Soapstone: Beautiful grey color, has a very smooth matte feel, is acid and stain resistant, scratches made can be easily oiled or sanded away. It’s less expensive because it’s just 75-150 dollars per square foot but needs regular maintenance because it may chip off, crack, and color may eventually darken.
Accessories, Sinks, and Faucets
Your accessories, sinks and faucets have to be available at the time the template is made because the templater needs to ensure that they will all fit into your cabinetry and your countertop. You will be asked to fill out a Template Readiness Sheet to make sure that they have the right appliance and fixture information as this is vital to the timeliness and success of the project.
Slide-in ranges, grills, cooktops, dishwashers, and refrigerators affect your countertops so you need to provide specifications for them in case they are not available during the template schedule. If you have a cooktop instead of a free standing range or slide it has to be on site during installation.
A lot of raised serving bars need support and these supports need to be structural in nature. Corbels in general must the sized to at least the minimum of the overhang’s half size. Homeowners or general contractors are responsible for choosing and installation.
Kitchen countertop installation takes timeand preparation, but if you’re the type of homeowner who only wants the best and won’t settle for anything less, following this guide will be as easy as 1, 2, and 3!