What Are the Pros and Cons of Corian Countertops?
Decide if Corian is the best material for your kitchen or bathroom counter
By Kathryn Keep
Corian countertops, manufactured by DuPont, are solid surface countertops, meaning it is the same piece of material throughout the surface. Corian is made from acrylic polymers, like plastic but more durable. Some colors have stone mixed in with the polymers. Those who like countertops made of very solid, hard materials should like Corian's products. Though they can be pricey, the investment in your countertop can be well worth it should you decide to sell your home.
Color and Style
Corian has a wide variety of colors and styles to suit any decor. The Illumination series actually allows light to pass through the material, creating different color effects depending on the lighting. You shouldn't expect Corian to shine up very nicely, however, as the plastic tends to have a matte-like look to it even after it's been polished. You'll want to consider the overall style of your kitchen as well before purchasing Corian countertops. This plastic material may not look natural in all kitchens, especially those that emphasize a homey or country feel.
Cleaning and Stains
Corian is very easy to clean. Soap and water are usually enough to keep a Corian countertop clean, but you can use a more abrasive cleaner if necessary. Like other solid surface countertops, Corian does not stain easily. In fact, Corian holds up so well that you can even sand its surface to get rid of a scratch or indentation. This gives Corian an edge up over granite and marble; though these materials also don't stain easily, they do not respond well to abrasive cleaners.
The Corian Terra collection has 6 percent or 13 percent post-consumer recycled content, depending on the color. The Zodiaq countertop line, also by DuPont, offers up to 50 percent post-consumer recycled content.
Scratch and Dent
The soft surface of a Corian countertop may help keep you from breaking dishes, but it is fairly easy to scratch or dent. Fortunately, sanding is always an option, though you may want to hire a professional to do this job.
Unlike granite or stone, Corian is not very heat-resistant. Its hard plastic surface is prone to melting, so never place a hot pot or pan on a Corian countertop. Coffee cups full of hot coffee should do fine, but nothing coming directly off the oven or stove should be placed on these countertops. Instead, place a baking rack on the counter and the hot pan on top of that.
About the Author
Kathryn Keep is a regular contributor to DexKnows. She is an eco-consultant, with expertise in environmental issues, home decorating, green building, and general sustainable living.
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