Soapstone Countertops Cost – Are you considering soapstone countertops for your kitchen? Did you know that soapstone is rapidly becoming the most popular countertop surface in American kitchens? It’s true, it is! And there’s good reason for it! Soapstone is one of the most durable, lowest-maintenance countertop surfaces available. And on top of that, it generally costs less than granite and quartz. Let’s take a look at the finer points.
First of all, soapstone is the most heat-resistant countertop surface available. That’s why it’s commonly seen in laboratories and settings where heat resistance is of the utmost importance. One thing that make this a great choice in kitchens is the fact that it conducts heat poorly. Because of this, you can actually take a pot off of the stove and set it directly on the countertop. Not only will it be able to withstand the heat, but it will also keep the surface next to it very cool, due to its poor heat conductivity.
What is Soapstone?
If you’re considering using soapstone as a countertop surface in your kitchen, you may be wondering some basic questions such as: What is soapstone? Where does it come from? And, what makes it good to use in kitchens?
Let’s start with a little background first…
Soapstone is a metamorphic rock. This means that it is formed from another rock substance in a process called metamorphism. This is similar to the process that diamonds are produced from coal. The intense pressure and heat below the earth’s surface cause chemical and physical changes to the rock below—and the result is soapstone (also known as soaprock or steatite). Soapstone gets its name from the feeling that it has when being handled or touched. It feels very smooth and soft because of its high talc content.
Soapstone isn’t a new, trendy material either—in fact, it’s been used for centuries by ancient tribes, vikings, and many other civilizations for things like bowls, ovens, cookware, and other types of carvings. In modern times, it’s used by welders and fabricators for its heat-resistant properties. Soapstone is mined in quarries throughout the world, with Brazil being one of the most popular locations.
What makes it good to use in kitchens?
Heat tolerance and stain resistance are among the top reasons why soapstone is an excellent choice for kitchen countertops. Unlike granite, quartz, and other synthetic materials, soapstone is extremely resistant to heat. It can withstand a direct flame, and has very poor heat conducting properties.
This means that ovens can be surrounded by soapstone and the countertop surface will still remain cool. Pots, pans, and other hot kitchen items can be set directly on soapstone without worrying about damaging the Soapstone Countertops surface. Many other types of stone and synthetic surfaces will scorch or darken when an intense amount of heat is applied to them.
In addition to its low heat conductivity, soapstone’s resistance to staining makes it one of the best materials that can be used in a kitchen environment. Anyone who’s ever had experience with spilling something acidic on granite can tell you that it’s not a good thing. Granite needs to be sealed an specially cared for in order to maintain its appearance, while soapstone can be put to the test and will still come out looking great. This is one of the biggest reasons why laboratories use soapstone for their countertop surfaces—it is low-maintenance, and resistance to nearly everything.
With all that said, it’s clear that soapstone is an excellent choice in kitchens for a number of reasons. And those reasons don’t just relate to its physical properties either. In many cases, soapstone is even less expensive than granite, quartz, and even synthetic countertop surfaces. Another great thing about soapstone is the fact that it comes in a number of colors and natural patters. And because of this, it can be suited to match nearly any kitchen color scheme.
What about price? Cost? Do soapstone countertops cost more?
Many people are actually surprised to find out that soapstone costs LESS than most other natural countertop surfaces. Soapstone is more naturally abundant, and easier to work with as a material, making it’s cost less than other stone surfaces. On top of that, soapstone is naturally non-porous, so it doesn’t require sealers or any of the same maintenance that other solid stone surfaces require.
The only thing that can be done to soapstone other than periodic care and cleaning is oiling. For more in-depth information about pricing for soapstone, visit our soapstone countertops cost page or click the button below.
Do I need to pay someone to install my Soapstone Countertops, or is that a DIY project?
This is a commonly asked question, but the answer is really “it depends.” It really depends upon your level of experience working with kitchen remodeling and countertop installation. You’ll need a soapstone provider to mill the countertops to meet your size specifications and other criteria, and then you can install them yourself if you feel that you’re qualified.
It’s not a small project, but it’s generally something that can be done over the course of a week, especially if you have help from friends. One of the hardest parts about installing your own countertops is that the soapstone slabs are quite heavy, and you’ll need to take precautions and use the correct equipment to make sure that you don’t injure yourself.
But all in all, a Soapstone Countertops installation project of any kind isn’t really that complicated–you just need to know what to do and have the tools to do it. Even if you don’t feel comfortable installing your countertops, you can save money be removing your old countertops so the contractors don’t have to charge you labor for that.
Just remember that in some cases, you cabinets will need to be reinforced to handle the increase weight of the soapstone. To help you out with this, we’ve but together a great DIY countertop installation page that helps educate you on the process.
How do I choose a quality contractor?
That’s a great questions, and the truth is–it’s a very important one too. Simply put–people are afraid of getting ripped off and overcharged by contractors. They feel somewhat powerless in the process simply because they don’t have the basic knowledge. That’s another reason we’re here; we want to empower you with all the knowledge you need in order to get the best quality materials, for the lowest price, with honest and reliable contractors. We’re here to educate you on how to choose a local remodeling contractor.