Stone For Your Outdoor Kitchen
Outdoor kitchens have become a popular way of adding the indoor-outdoor feel to a home and are a common addition to new builds and renovations alike.
However, unlike for interior use, not all stones are suited for outdoor applications. Outdoor kitchens and luxury BBQ kitchenettes are becoming a central outdoor space for entertaining and in a warm climate like Australia – a place to do everyday food preparation and cooking. With this, we know you want the space to look amazing but as the area is usually exposed to the elements it is important you are aware of the considerations when choosing a durable and suitable stone for outdoors.
Although engineered, or reconstituted, stone is a cost effective and low maintenance option for indoor kitchens and vanities, it is not recommended for outdoor use. This material may warp in the sun and ruin in wet and hot conditions. It is worth noting that some engineered stone suppliers have picked up on the outdoor kitchen trend and introduced UV resistant outdoor-suitable colours within their range, such as Caesarstone. This is a fairly new innovation, but great for those who want the low maintenance of reconstituted stone and don’t mind paying for these premium colours.
Porcelain is a less popular but very suitable selection for an outdoor application as the material is non-porous, unaffected by UV fading and as it is bonded using high heat it is naturally heat resistant – which helps in a BBQ benchtop application or when being installed directly under a sun-lit spot. Another benefit of porcelain is the variety of thickness and colours. As a manmade material, you can achieve a unique or natural-stone look without the cost or maintenance of a piece of genuine stone. As the material can come as thin as 6mm it is ideal for splashback and cladding, which when matched or complimented with your porcelain benchtop can take the space to a new level.
Natural stones have been used for outdoor applications for years, and as they are genuine pieces of stone turned into slabs are also naturally heat and UV resistant. Any natural stone feature in your home will require some maintenance as this material is porous and should be sealed regularly. As natural stone comes in many types, such as limestone, marble, granite and onyx, the exact material for your application will be dependent on where you are located and what it will be used for. For example, those near salt water may want to select a stone with a higher level of sandstone or limestone within as they are more salt resistant. However, our recommendation would be granite as it is a hard and durable material suited for almost any application.
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