The Best Countertop Surfaces to Minimize Germs in Your KitchenCapitol Design Build
Some of the most popular kitchen countertop materials are porous. Surfaces such as wood and natural stone provide microscopic nooks and crannies for germs to hide in, creating a breeding ground for bacteria, viruses, fungi, and mold. As the COVID-19 pandemic highlights the importance of sanitation, you may be eager to know which countertop surfaces reduce germs in the kitchen. The key is to choose nonporous materials that you can easily wipe clean.
Quartz is an engineered stone made of 90 to 94 percent natural minerals and 6 to 10 percent resins and pigments. The finished product is a durable, nonporous surface that’s smooth, shiny, and effortless to maintain. Not only is quartz naturally resistant to abrasion, scratches, dents, and etching, but it also never requires sealing. Daily maintenance involves cleaning with a nonabrasive cloth dampened with soapy water.
Solid Surface Countertops
Solid surface countertops have been around for over 40 years. They combine natural minerals with pure acrylic resin to create a perfectly smooth, nonporous surface. With no visible seams or grout, there’s nowhere for germs to hide. Solid surface counters are ultra-durable and easy to repair if they somehow become scratched or heat damaged. Just be sure to steer clear of harsh commercial cleaners, which could damage the material.
As a natural stone material, it’s vital to seal granite to reduce its porosity. Professional sealing does more than just prevent the countertop from harboring bacteria and viruses—it also helps maintain the stone’s natural beauty for decades to come. Avoid using harsh chemicals, such as bleach, when cleaning granite countertops.
Laminates have come a long way in recent years and are now available with a high-end look at an affordable price. Specific types of laminate are antimicrobial, allowing you to mimic virtually any look you want, from butcher block to concrete to stone, without any of the germs normally associated with these porous surfaces.
Tips to Keep Your Kitchen Clean
While it’s helpful to have a nonporous or even antimicrobial countertop material, you should also take steps to reduce the presence of coronavirus, E. coli, salmonella, and listeria from kitchen surfaces. Here’s how:
- Clean up as you cook.
- Wash cutting boards, pots, pans, and dirty dishes promptly, so germs don’t have time to multiply.
- Don’t allow raw meat to touch any surface except a dedicated cutting board and utensils.
- Wash your hands frequently, especially after handling raw meat.
- Wipe your countertops regularly. Use soap at least once a day.
- Change out your washcloths and towels daily.
- Empty the trash frequently.
If you’re interested in replacing your countertops or remodeling your entire kitchen, rest assured that Capitol Design Build can serve you in a safe, responsible manner. We have temporarily closed our showroom to walk-in traffic, but we continue to be available by appointment via Zoom meetings, video calls, and telephone. Contact us online or call 703-436-6919 to begin redesigning your kitchen today.