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What is the Best Material for an Outdoor Countertop?

An outdoor kitchen is a beautiful place for entertaining or relaxing, a practical and stylish extension of indoor living space. When you are designing your outdoor kitchen, choosing the right countertops is key to making the most of the investment you’re putting into your space. The countertops you choose must be durable and attractive, but what are the best materials for an outdoor countertop?

Factors to Consider When Choosing Outdoor Countertop Material

There are so many options from which to choose that it makes sense to take your time deciding. While you are shopping, keep a few things in mind, to narrow down your list. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • How will these countertops be used? Will you be putting hot items, like hot pots or pans, on your countertops? Will you be cutting on the countertop or placing heavy things on it? Will the layout of your outdoor kitchen be complicated? Not every countertop material is suited to every use.
  • Do the outdoor countertops need to be easy to maintain? Consider how much work you are willing to put into maintaining your countertops, and this will help inform your decision.
  • What is the budget? When you are choosing countertops, it’s worth looking not only at the upfront cost but also the cost to maintain them.
  • What is the specific vision for the outdoor kitchen? You will want your countertops to fit your vision for the ideal outdoor living space.
  • Which weather conditions will the countertops have to endure? If you live somewhere with harsh winters, where the countertops will be exposed to freeze/thaw cycles and high humidity, you will need to plan accordingly. On the other hand, in areas with intense sunlight, countertops need to be UV-resistant.
  • Will the outdoor kitchen be subjected to direct sunlight? You won’t want your countertops to be too hot, so if they are in direct sunlight, you will need to be cautious and avoid choosing a material that absorbs heat.
  • Is the material under consideration safe for food preparation? Whether intentionally or unintentionally, food will come into contact with your outdoor kitchen surfaces. Before you choose a countertop, make sure it’s made of food-safe material.

Great Options for Outdoor Countertops

Certain countertop materials are not designed to hold up to outdoor use, especially manufactured countertops. You will want to steer clear of laminate countertops, which are made of particleboard and will warp or rot in the heat or humidity. Quartz. Limestone, bluestone, and marble are beautiful for indoor counters, but outside, they are too delicate to be a good option. Instead, consider stone, tile, or concrete.

  • Stone: While porous stones like marble, limestone, and bluestone will easily become stained and damaged, other stones are durable and easy to maintain.
    • Granite is a popular option because it is durable, doesn’t absorb stains and odors, and won’t fade in the sun. Choose a mid-range color, without much veining. Darker colors can get too hot when used outside, and heavily veined granite can contain epoxies and fillers that respond negatively to UV rays. Granite must be sealed periodically, but beyond that, it is relatively low-maintenance.
    • Soapstone is another durable option, and while it comes in limited colors, it has many positive attributes. It’s non-porous, so it doesn’t require sealing, and it is heat-, stain-, and bacteria-resistant. Soapstone is also able to stand up to acidic foods like vinegar, citrus, and tomatoes.
  • Tile: Tile can be beautiful, and it comes in an astonishing array of options. It can be colorfully patterned, neutral, and sleek, or even made to look like stone. Tile is often affordable, easy to install on your own, and doesn’t require sealing. If you choose tile, go for porcelain or freeze-proof, so that it won’t fade or become discolored. However, grout can be extremely difficult to keep clean when used outside, and in a cold climate, tiles will often crack during the freeze-thaw cycle.
  • Concrete: It has a sleek, contemporary look, and can be made in a wide variety of colors. If installed incorrectly, however, it can be prone to cracking. An experienced installer will reinforce a custom concrete counter with tensile steel, and these countertops must be sealed and then resealed regularly.

Call Signature Marble and Granite for New Countertops

For professionally installed countertops, contact the team at Signature Marble and Granite for a free estimate, and we will send a team to you for a more precise consultation. We are committed to doing the right thing for our customers, doing each job as it should be done, and providing each customer with a pleasant experience. Once we’ve installed your gorgeous new countertops, we’ll provide you with a one-year limited warranty, to give you peace of mind. A local Utah company, we take pride in helping you select the perfect countertops that you will enjoy for many years to come. Contact us today for your free estimate and consultation.