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Slate Countertops

Slate is an attractive and traditional choice for countertops in kitchens, laundry rooms, and mud rooms. Readily available in many parts of the United States, it is usually less expensive than other types of stone. It has a warm, more rustic and textured appeal. Slate comes in shades of gray, green, purple and black. There is even a rare, but more costly, shade of red. Slate is durable, dense, and heat resistant. Although it is relatively soft, scratch marks can be buffed out with fine steel wool. Slate is nonporous and usually requires no sealing.

Consider the following if you want to install slate countertops:

  • Slate comes in smaller slab sizes than granite, usually about 6 feet by 30 to 40 inches. It is available in various thicknesses. These stone countertops are heavy, so make sure the cabinets you are using can support their weight. The slabs are usually installed by gluing them to the top of the cabinets with silicone or epoxy or by securing them to a plywood substrate.
  • Slate can be purchased in two different textures: natural or polished to a silky feel.
  • Know the geographical area your slab was mined in. Some slate, such as that from Vermont, will not need to be sealed

    and needs no maintenance, but slate from other regions can be somewhat more absorptive.
  • Be aware that slate is formed in layers. It will occasionally delaminate.

Remember that slate is also available in tiles.

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