Think slate’s the new thing in kitchens? It might be, but there are a few things to consider before going for the natural material.
This blog will provide an in-depth look at what makes slate so desirable and how it can really help your kitchen’s appearance. From aesthetics to durability, the pros and cons of installing slate countertops are quite enticing.
What is Slate?
Slate is a natural material used in countertops on both commercial and residential properties. Slate is formed from compressed layers of clay, shale, and quartz.
Slate’s texture comes from the way the stone settles during formation to create a solid surface. A rough and uneven surface is what you’ll typically find in slate.
It has been used for thousands of years, most commonly for roofing and flooring in residential and commercial properties.
They are available in a wide range of colors. In fact, they’re often dyed on the job site to ensure the best color results.
Slate Countertops Pros
The pros of installing a slate countertop are:
It’s very durable
Slate will last a lifetime and is designed for everyday use. It can withstand the test of time and heavy foot traffic, which makes it a perfect match for your family’s kitchen.
It is unique
You’ll be able to find a slate color that best suits your style. Whether you want something subtle or more dramatic, slate offers something for everyone.
If you are looking for the best kitchen countertop for your budget, slate is the way to go. Many homeowners opt for slate, and it has a proven track record of quality and durability.
Slate is mined throughout the world. The material can withstand a variety of climates without crumbling or cracking. This makes it a good fit for your family’s kitchen.
Slate Countertops Cons
The cons result from a few things that you might not like about slate:
It can be heavy and fragile
Small pieces of slate could break if you’re not careful. The slate’s surface is also very rough and could scratch easily. It’s best to use soft sponges or non-scratching cleaners in your kitchen.
It isn’t easy to install
You’ll need professional experience to install a slate countertop. Slate is difficult to install. With no standard patterns established for such a project, the installation could be difficult and time-consuming.
Finishes & Textures for Slate Countertops
Most natural stone countertops are stained to give them their uniform color and to protect against scratching.
Some brands are made with special materials to resist scratches, staining, and the appearance of dirt and stains. Slate is no exception.
Slate countertops come in a variety of different finishes and textures:
Natural Cleft Finish
Cutting the stone in a cleft way keeps the natural appearance of slate. It creates a wavy surface for your countertop, giving it an aged look. It’s also perfect for stained colors or with colors layered atop each other.
The finish is made by stacking smaller pieces of stone, sometimes called “cascades.” It’s made up of massive slabs of stone that look like small rocks cascading down the countertop’s front.
A honed finish is the smoothest of the slate finishes. It’s created by polishing the surface to make it very smooth and even. This type of finish is also known as a satin finish. If you’re looking for a very smooth surface, to the point of being non-reactive, then a honed finish is what you’ll want.
Slate Countertop Care & Cleaning
Scratches and chips are a major issue with slate. You’ll want to make sure that you’re as careful as possible, especially if you have kids or pets.
For cracks and chips, try filling them in with a colored stone filler. If you want to match the color of the countertop, use an epoxy product.
If your slate countertop is stained, it will need to be cleaned using a different technique than just cleaning the rest of your countertop.
Do slate countertops stain?
The slate doesn’t begin to stain. However, you might find one of the darker colors has a slight tint to it. If this is the case, you can prevent staining by keeping a towel and a lighter colored sponge in your hand. Wipe down your countertop after breakfast and lunch.
Are slate countertops smooth?
They are not as smooth as granite, but they aren’t rough like marble. Their texture is created by the way the stone settles during formation. The result is a natural surface that you’ll love in your kitchen.
How expensive is a slate countertop?
Most slate countertops cost about $50 – $65 per square foot. You’ll save yourself some money and enjoy a unique look that’s still priceless in your kitchen.
Is slate less expensive than granite?
The cost of a slate countertop will be about the same as a granite countertop, with the exception that you won’t need to pay for installation.
Is slate cheaper than soapstone?
If you’re looking for cheaper alternative countertops, soapstone is the way to go. It’s about the same price as a granite or slate countertop.