The cost difference between granite and butcher block countertops is almost double. A low-end granite countertop runs about $80 a square foot, while a butcher block is around $45.
The high end of granite or butcher block is $150 a square foot and $75, respectively.
Many people turn to butcher block to maximize the farmhouse aesthetic or to add a warm, organic material to a modern design. So the price is just one example of the pros and cons of butcher block countertops. Others include its upkeep and utility.
In the following article, we’ll take a look at the pros and cons of a butcher block countertop and how you can best integrate them into your kitchen.
The Price Is Right
Only the most exotic hardwood countertops (maple or teak) will stretch your remodeling budget. However, as stated above, products like granite, quartz, and marble are all more expensive than butcher block per square foot.
On top of that, installation costs are generally cheaper for butcher block. This doesn’t just include professional installers but also home improvement enthusiasts.
For a few reasons, the installation of butcher block is much cheaper compared to other products.
First, you don’t need a wet saw to cut the material to spec. Also, butcher block is lighter than stone products and easier to handle. In most cases, granite or quartz is impossible to install by yourself.
Also, the penalties are high for dropping those marble-like products. They will either crack or chip on impact or damage the item they strike.
Only laminate is generally cheaper than butcher block.
You can view a wide array of styles for butcher block cabinets online at sites like Foreverjointtops.com.
Wood Is Porous
While granite is porous, organic wood is significantly more likely to absorb materials applied to it. So if a liquid sits on your butcher block for too long, it will leave a ring or discoloration.
In general, water is the enemy of butcher block. Long exposure to water, humidity, and moisture can make the product soft and, in the worst cases, cause rot or warping.
However, the good news is that with an occasional treatment of mineral oil or, worst case, some refurbishment through sanding, butcher block is much easier to fix or restore than stone products.
While some course or acid-based cleaning products can take the finish and shine off your granite countertops, your best bet with butcher block countertops is to use simple soap and water.
It would be best not to use the metal scrubber to clean your butcher block or allow it to come in contact with bleach. Bleach-tinged products could lead to staining.
Needs a Little Upkeep
As stated above, butcher block does require an occasional treatment to keep it in good shape. Mineral oil should be applied to the surface every couple of weeks. The oil evaporates so you can use as much as you think you need, and it keeps the color and looks of your butcher block in good working order.
Also, since mineral oil is natural, it is safe for food preparation. If your manufacturer recommends a wood wax to keep your butcher block looking good, you should use a cutting board for food preparation.
Walnut or tung oil is also a good alternative to mineral oil, but people with nut allergies might want to avoid these substances.
For More Pros and Cons of Butcher Block Countertops
So while the pros and cons of butcher block countertops are many, you may want to consider consulting with a professional countertop installer or manufacturer before making a final decision on your purchase.
That way, you’ll know if your use matches your design and budget. The last thing you want is your new countertops to work out once you’ve installed them yourself or paid for a professional remodel.
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