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Three weeks ago, you drooled with envy as you watched the neighbors across the street rip out their old Formica kitchen countertops and install gorgeous granite. And they did it by themselves in just a couple of days. Now you want to do it, too. But before you rush down to the local slab shop to pick out the best and most beautiful natural-edge or quartz for your counters, you need to ask yourself one big question: can your kitchen cabinets handle that?
GRANITE COUNTERTOPS & YOUR CABINETS
Most cabinets should hold up well for granite countertops,
and provide them with proper support, as long as the granite is at least 1.25”
thick. But if the granite you’ve chosen is thinner than that, you’ll need a
plywood underlayment for additional support, or you could end up mourning your
granite countertops before you’ve had them a year.
Pro-tip: If you’re installing new cabinets and countertops at the same time, tell your designer at KitchenFX about your plans for your new countertops. They’ll know whether you need additional support for your cabinets or your counters.
Flush mount countertops are out of style, and long overhangs are totally in. But before you install granite countertops with an overhang of more than a few inches, be sure you’ve gone down the safety checklist twice. Granite up to 1.25” thick can safely overhang your cabinets up to about 10 inches, but only if the counter is at least 30” deep to ensure proper cantilevered support. A lack of balance will not only create a safety issue, but potentially damage your counters and your kitchen cabinets.
professional measurements of your kitchen cabinets from KitchenFX before you
order or install any type of heavy or overhang countertops. Being 100% sure
about the measurements will save you a lot of hassle in the long run.
QUARTZ COUNTERTOPS AND YOUR KITCHEN CABINETS
Quartz countertops are heavy, and unlike granite countertops, not all kitchen cabinets can support these countertops, no matter how thick they are. In some cases, plywood or backer board can be used as an underlayment to solve this problem, but don’t always count on this as a solution with quartz.
Pro-tip: Weighty counters will weigh heavily on your kitchen cabinets over time, and both can sustain damage. Talk to your design pro at KitchenFX to determine if your current cabinets can support quartz, or if you need a change.
With overhangs of more than three or four inches, support is the best feature you can add to new quartz countertops. Corbels, columns, or other support features, properly installed, will eliminate the very real potential for disaster—cracks, sagging, etc.—that come with heavy counters.
Pro-tip: If you’re installing quartz with an overhang, talk to your design team at KitchenFX about corbels or columns that match your kitchen cabinets so your new counters will get the support they need and all of the new “accessories” will look like they belong.
Kitchen upgrades are always exciting, often to the point that we don’t always think it through before we jump in blindfolded and feet first. Know what your kitchen cabinets can handle and what they need for support before you install new kitchen countertops, and you’ll be in love for years to come.