Countertops are a unique and diverse field. Detailed below are simple
explanations of the variety of countertops that we provide. We will
replace countertops only, or provide them as part of your new kitchen.
Laminate Countertops are the
least expensive way to provide a work
surface. They can also be upgraded to provide unique surface solutions
without much cost.
Laminate Countertops have a
"rolled" front edge and an integral
backsplash. They are premade, and trimmed to length for the specific
installation. They are best suited for straight runs. These tops come
in standard depths and are not suited for unique shaped islands or
configurations of cabinets.
Edged Laminate Countertops are
so named because the countertop
fabricator must install the edge himself. These countertops are
available in 200 or more colors. They are custom fabricated to each
individual situation. Radius corners and curves are all possible,
thereby giving unique shaped kitchens an economical surface.
Edge Laminate Countertops are
the same as the self edged
countertops, but with an upgrade edge, either in wood or some beveled
piece, or sometimes even solid surface material. Again this is a way to
spruce up your countertop without adding a great deal of money.
Deck Laminate Countertops are
the same as self edged countertops
with upgrade plastic laminates on the deck. Some of these combinations
would include color through laminates, and those with special finishes,
such as Touchstone® or Crystal®. It doesn't cost very
for these upgrade laminates, you just have to know they are out there,
and be willing to wait an extra week or two for your countertop.
Countertops are suited for
specific locations. We generally use
them for desk tops in kitchens, office or study tops in rooms of the
same designation, and for bar tops. They would have wood edges on them.
There are three ways to make them. The first is with a veneered deck.
This is generally the most used because it is cost effective and the
technically preferred solution. A second way is to make the top of
solid hardwoods showing faces. This is adequate for some applications
but because wood moves with changes in humidity and temperature, this
is not acceptable for larger tops. The third is with solid wood showing
edge grain. This type of top is traditionally called a "butcher block"
top, and is commonly made of long oak or maple laminations of stock
turned sideways. The rotation in the grain helps overcome the tendency
of the wood to expand and contract. This method is also moderately
expensive because of all the labor involved in assembling all of the
laminations. In all instances these tops can be stained and finished as
the customer desires.
Surface Countertops are upgrade
tops for the kitchen industry. Here
again there is a wide gamut of products; styling and pricing varies
widely. All solid surface countertops have common features. Materials
are stain resistant due to low porosity, and repairable because of
color through manufacturing. Cleaning is with a damp cloth and ordinary
household cleaner. When properly fabricated seams between two sheets
are almost always imperceptible. Corian by
Dupont is likely the most popular solid surface selection. Please use
the link page for more information. Carter's Cabinet Shop offers a wide
range of solid surface countertops and encourages you to discuss your
specific countertop requirements with your designer. Oh yes, these tops
are generally templated after the cabinets are installed; you should be
prepared to wait a week or so for them after the cabinets are set.
Stone Countertops are very
popular now. They behave opposite of the
solid surface materials. They have no problem with heat or scratching.
The seams are butt jointed and sealed, and will be obvious. These
countertops come in a variety of stone from all over the world. Please
link to the Marble
Institute of America
for more information. We use many subcontractors, but prefer our
relationship with Johnson
Granite. For more information on
granite fabrication and
national accreditation, visit the following
page courtesy of the Marble
Institute of America and Johnson
Pricing is competitive with the Solid
Surface Tops or higher, depending on the stone and edge option
selected. Again, these tops are templated and will normally take two
weeks to be installed.
Countertops or Engineered
Countertops such as Silestone,
man-made products meant to simulate granite. They have no
with heat or scratching, and will never need to be sealed.
counters are priced comparable if not higher to natural stone because
it is currently a buyers market for granite in this
Tile Countertops are
also popular. However, we don't do them. We suggest you contact any
number of tile setters in the area. We will be glad to prepare the deck
and edge if you so desire.
Concrete Counter Tops
are a newer item offered. Concrete countertops are composed of concrete
mixed with special additives for additional support. Method of
production varies from company to company. Just like concrete used
elsewhere in construction, concrete countertops must be sealed in order
to protect the material's integrity from everyday wear and tear. Such
countertops will develop hair-line cracks over time, but are seen as
part of the natural appeal of the surface, and a contrast to smoother,
polished solid surface countertops seen in granite. These countertops
can also feature drain boards or other additional kitchen support
items, varying by provider.