Design

Work plans: choose the one that suits you

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D.R

Worktops are far from being incidental: they alone can change the look of a kitchen and there is something for every taste and price. Our tips good plans!

Beautiful but fragile materials

Marble, granite, slate, lava stone, blue stone of Hainault, Burgundy stone
In general, for a worktop, stones adapt well to the constraints of the kitchen: granite, marble and lava stone have a very long life and are known for their resistance. But be careful, although they support the heat perfectly, a thermal shock (between the cold plane and a very hot dish) can burst a vein in the stone and damage it for a long time. You should also know that marble, Burgundy or Hainaut stones are more sensitive to scratches, impacts and stains (especially wine), especially acid (Coca, vinegar, lemon, among others). An oil repellent treatment is essential and must be renewed regularly because, over time, these stones become porous. Slate can be sanded and then treated.

Our advices :

there are different finishes: polished, flamed, aged. Opt for a polished stone, it will be easier to live every day. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for maintenance.
Stéphanie: "I just moved out and I regret my granite worktop, I put my hot pans directly on it, I hatched without using a board ... I was not particularly careful because this material is resistant and superfacile to maintain. "

Ultra resistant but expensive stones

Synthetic stones (Silestone®, Compac®, Caesarstone®, etc.)
Composed of a mixture of quartz (up to 95%, depending on the brand), resin and color pigments, synthetic stones have the best performance. Resistant, totally hygienic and non-porous, they are easy to live with and do not require special treatment. Other assets: they are cut out "at will" and are available in many colors and material effects. Only downside: the price. Count up to 15% more than for granite.

Our advices :

check the composition of the synthetic stone proposed by the cook to ensure its quality (including the proportion of quartz). Prefer a Silestone® type quartz that contains an anti-bacterial treatment. Avoid placing hot dishes directly on the work surface.
Bérangère: "Our old worktop was laminate, and at the time we could not afford anything else, today we enjoyed a beautiful black Silestone® plan, like It is elegant and really easy to maintain. "

Solid wood, charming but demanding material

Wood is a living material whose appearance evolves over time, which is what gives it its charm and unique appearance ... but also its fragility. It must be maintained several times a year with linseed oil to waterproof and strengthen its resistance to scratches. Beech, birch, teak, oak, walnut, iroko, ipe ... only medium to hard wood species are suitable for the manufacture of solid wood worktops. The choice of gasoline determines the strength of the worktop and its price.

Our advices :

for hygienic reasons, make a habit of removing food residues from the surface and then wash with detergent.
Sylvie and Olivier: "To respect the retro style of the house, we have chosen a worktop in light oak, from an aesthetic point of view it's perfect but everyday, wood is a constraining material."

Special small budget: we opt for laminate

It is the cheapest material and the one that offers the widest range of decorations: dozens of colors, patterns, material effects (concrete, wood, stainless steel) ... But these are not the least of its assets. Composed of a thickness of chipboard covered with a decorative sheet protected by a water repellent resin, it is also resistant to water, stains and shocks, but not to heat.

Our advices :

do not intend to cut directly on a laminate plane, it would be scratched immediately. And be careful also to acid stains.
Stéphanie: "I opted for the laminate to stay in my budget and I do not regret it.Although the work plan is white, it remains clean.It is enough to take the good habits of maintenance. I like the furniture of my kitchen, the day when I would have the means, I would only change the work plan. "

Glass, trendy but risky

The latest addition to the family of worktops, glass finds its place among the most stylish materials. Thin (less than 15 mm), it combines shine and lightness and allows many sets of materials, inlays patterns. Safer but also heavier, Securit glass (tempered glass) offers less originality. In a dark kitchen, the shiny surface of the glass reflects light (artificial or natural) and changes the volume of the room. Ultra hygienic, the glass remains beautiful ... as long as it is clean and new! The products used for the ceramic hob are suitable for its maintenance. Whatever its thickness, the glass does not support thermal shocks. Many cooks advise against preferring to reserve credence.

Our advices :

Avoid placing heavy objects on a glass worktop, especially on edges that are more fragile. Also beware of friction or shocks that cause micro scratches.

Resistant and hygienic: stainless steel

Alloy steel, chromium and nickel (in varying proportions), the stainless steel used for kitchens is called "stainless steel 10/18" is 10% nickel and 18% chromium. For a worktop, the stainless steel sheet must be in one piece and placed on chipboard. For worktops and credence, prefer stainless steel "tin" style brushed stainless steel. Resistant and 100% hygienic, stainless steel has a lifespan of several decades and skates over time.

Our advices :

use a board to cut, because stainless steel is easily scratched. It is also recommended to use a trivet because heat can cause the material to expand.
Gaëlle: "It's obvious that a stainless steel worktop is skating over time, but on the hygiene and durability side, it's unbeatable.To keep it impeccable, I talk to it with a mixture of hot water and vinegar. . "

Corian®, a chic and integrated material

Created and produced by DuPont de Nemours in the late 1960s, Corian® was born from the combination of mineral powder and resin. Each Corian® worktop is thermoformed in one piece, resulting in a totally smooth, seamless surface. This mode of manufacture allows to realize very beautiful sets plan-basin of kitchen for a perfect harmony. This great flexibility, combined with a palette of 100 very contemporary colors, makes it a very attractive material ... and a dream product for designers! Solid and hard as stone but much lighter, Corian® can be sanded and is resistant to high temperatures (180 ° C).

Our advices :

Beware, Corian® marks fairly quickly and some spots leave traces that only a sanding done by a professional can erase. Beware of materials that are sold as Corian® but are not.
Isabelle: "When I remodeled my kitchen, I was advised Corian®.If it was again, I will choose another material because in the end the work plan always looks dirty.For me, it is not not compatible with family use and is too restrictive to maintain. "

Sandstone, an economical and sustainable solution

Long shunned because considered as old-fashioned, porcelain stoneware has a second youth for flooring and walls, but also for work plans. This new success, ceramics is due to the arrival of large format slabs and new manufacturing processes that can reproduce almost all materials: wood, waxed concrete, leather, glass, metal ... Used for decades, the ceramic has real qualities: resistance to shocks, scratches, heat and is hygienic.

Our advices :

check that the porcelain stoneware chosen, has all the qualities required for a use worktop. Prefer large slabs in order to limit the number of joints.

Tips & tricks: Ask a professional for the installation and cutting of your work plan. Make sure that its intervention is under warranty in order to be liable if the installation does not comply. Whatever the material, it is better to use a cutting board to limit acid stains (tomato sauce, red fruits, fat sauces ...) which often leave traces. Most materials do not withstand high temperatures and thermal shocks, so always have a trivet on hand.

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