The Pros and Cons of Crushed Glass Countertops

crushed glass countertops

Considering a stylish addition to your kitchen?

If you’re following trends, then you already know that crushed glass countertops are hitting the market. They’re a new, eco-friendly way to ensure that you have a durable, great looking counter.

Are they right for your home?

Read on and we’ll go over the pros and cons of these recycled countertops and you’ll be able to see if they might be the right addition during your kitchen remodel.

What Are Crushed Glass Countertops?

Recycled glass countertops are made by setting crushed up glass pieces in either concrete or an acrylic matrix. What you end up with is a rough mosaic of matrix and glass, providing a unique aesthetic to the countertop.

Acrylic countertops tend to give the impression of floating glass chunks while those with a concrete base have a classic mosaic art feel to them.

They’re a little bit different in their care. Concrete is a bit tougher and more chemically resistant but still needs to be sealed like a stone countertop a couple of times a year.

Don’t confuse them with regular glass countertops, which are made of a single piece of glass.

They come in a wide variety of colors, each with their own unique charm.

Of course, the important thing for those looking to invest in a crushed glass countertop is how they compare to other materials.

The Good Stuff

There’s a lot of pros to using a crushed glass countertop.

The biggest one, for most people, is the price as compared to natural stones like granite or marble. Depending on the recycled glass pattern you go with, often they’ll end up costing less per square foot installed than you’ll pay for the material costs of high end-granite.

There’s another big factor for most people: crushed glass countertops are mostly made with post-consumer glass.

That means you’re looking at a use for the massive quantities of glass which makes its way into recycling plants and isn’t always disposed of properly.

As a counter material, crushed glass is also remarkably resilient. Like most stones, you can cut directly on it if you wish without fear of scratches and it’s quite resistant to impact.

They’re also extremely easy to keep up. For some matrix materials you’ll need to reseal occasionally but the materials are more resilient to chemical attack than granite or marble which means you don’t need to purchase specialized cleaners.

Anything which makes cleaning your kitchen a little bit easier is likely to be appreciated in the long run.

Finally, they have the same “uniqueness” as you’ll find with stones at a much lower price. While some of the lower end materials available, like Formica, are created with a repeating pattern, each crushed glass countertop has its own unique look thanks to the construction of the slabs.

It’s a lot of good for the average home.

The Cons of Crushed Glass Countertops

Unfortunately, nothing is perfect.

The biggest flaw?

They’re not natural stone, which is still the hallmark material of high-dollar kitchens. Nothing yet has quite been able to match the beauty of real granite and marble.

Those with an acrylic base, as opposed to concrete, don’t boast the same acid resistance either. That means you’ll need to be careful what you cut on them in order to make sure you don’t cloud the acrylic which can harm the look of the counter.

Since it’s a new material there’s a caveat as well. Not everyone who offers recycled glass countertops is quite up to speed on the unique properties of the material. Instead, you need to spend some time making sure you have someone with the experience and facilities to treat your slab properly.

Lastly, despite their green construction, there’s some criticism for those that use concrete for their base. Concrete is an enormous contributor of greenhouse gasses.

If the whole idea for you is to purchase a countertop which is environmentally friendly you’ll want to look for a slab which is made with an acrylic base instead.

Is a Recycled Glass Countertop Right for You?

Due to the lower costs and relative novelty, more people than ever before are looking at these counters.

Fortunately, they’re comparable to stone in durability and the choice for most people largely boils down to environmental sustainability and the aesthetic.

Of course, the lower price doesn’t hurt either.

Those who want them… well, the downsides are pretty minor compared to the majority of good stuff that comes with them.

Basically, if you’re considering them then they’re a viable option. The only place where they’re not a great choice is commercial kitchens, which are almost inevitably stainless steel anyways.

Take a good look at the different varieties available, they might be exactly the choice which you’ve been looking for.

They’re a budget way to add a splash of color and life to a kitchen without having to go through the massive expenses which characterize marble or granite.

The only time they’re not recommended is if you’re remodeling a kitchen for sale, particularly in high-end homes where natural stone is still the rule.

Basically: if you want them, then they’re a safe choice for almost any home.

Ready for Your Recycled Glass Countertop?

If you’re ready to start planning your remodel and you think that the unique look of a crushed glass countertop will suit you, then you’re in luck.

While they’re new to the market, there are already some great name brands who work with reputable fabricators like International Granite and Stone to help you bring your imagined counter to life.

If you’re ready for something new and environmentally sustainable in your home, then contact us today and let’s see what we can do for you.