Glass countertops have been growing in popularity for kitchens and bathrooms. The number of options has increased significantly in the last few years and many homeowners are unaware of the dynamic new developments. This article explores glass countertop costs, styles, and concepts, to get you thinking about the possibilities for your own home.
Recycled Glass Countertops
There’s no doubt that this is the fastest-growing trend in glass countertops. Waste glass is crushed and then embedded in concrete or resin, providing two very distinct looks for any kitchen or bath. These eco-friendly countertops are attractive, durable and easy to clean. The recycled glass comes in a wide array of colors and each countertop is unique. For more details, see the Recycled Glass Countertops page under Countertop Materials.
Solid Glass Countertops
There’s a lot you can do with glass countertops. Of course, if you want solid, clear glass, that’s an option. It works well for breakfast bars without cabinetry under them. It can also be used over cabinets, but since it is clear, a substrate sheet should be installed to cover the cabinets and provide the background color or style of your choice. This underlay can be made from many materials, but wood, laminate and metal are the most common. Each type comes in dozens of color and finish options.
There are several edge treatments you can select for your glass countertop, including beveled, textured, polished and brushed. Many manufacturers also produce color-infused glass for countertops that give it a very innovative look. Your color choices are extensive, from bright and cheerful, to understated and cool. While the surface of glass countertops is typically smooth, a texture can be embedded below the surface to add interest and diffuse the color of the substrate.
LED Backlight for Glass Countertops
Glass is the perfect medium for lighting. Adding LED backlight strips to glass countertops is an exciting concept that is still being perfected. Typically, a backlight LED panel or strip is embedded in the glass or installed beneath it. Embedding the LED panels enhances the diffusion of light. The brightness of the LED, spacing of the bulbs and even different colors can be chosen to control the final look of the counters.
Manufacturing and installing these countertops can be a challenge, even for professional installation contractors. It’s important to know exactly what you’re doing to get the proper backlight diffusion throughout the counter. When successfully done, the look is stunning and original.
Reusing and Rethinking Glass
Old glass is being salvaged from the waste stream to produce vibrant and functional recycled crushed glass countertops. New concepts are being used by professional installers and DIYers alike with solid glass countertops to give them a fresh, innovative look. If you haven’t checked out the possibilities for using glass in your kitchen and bathroom countertops, maybe know is the time to rethink it.