Comparing DEKTON® With Granite
When it comes to selecting a surface material for your project, you will likely come across many options. Knowing what the differences are between materials can help you make a better decision. In this article, we will look at two materials that are good choices. We will explore some of the characteristics of both granite and Dekton. Along the way, we will consider how each material's qualities plays a role in the processes for installing, caring for, and maintaining your new surface.
Granite and DEKTON® Characteristics
Comparing Dekton surfaces with granite opens up a level of understanding that can truly benefit anyone that deals with the materials; whether working with them or owning them. So let's look at some of the characteristics of each and how they compare to one another.
Engineered Stone vs. Natural Stone. One basic difference between Dekton and granite is the type of stone that each of these surfaces are. Dekton is an engineered material and granite is a natural stone. This sometimes can confuse potential buyers because of the terms used to describe them. Let's look at each material individually.
Granite: when we speak of granite on this website, we mean natural stone that is quarried out of the ground and cut into slabs to be used for surfaces. This stone is a hard material that is made of natural minerals; one of which is quartz. Natural granite is a porous material that offers beautiful visual texture and color combinations. Its long history in the countertop and kitchen industries means that it is a familiar material to many professional stone workers.
Dekton: this material is an engineered stone that can be produced via a very specific and scientific process. What does this process consist of? During the process of producing Dekton, raw minerals are combined and put through a sintering process using pressure, heat, and other forces to cause the same transformation that natural stone goes through during the process metamorphosis - only more rapidly. The material that results from this process is what Cosentino - the producers of Dekton - have referred to as Ultra-compact surfaces. Dekton is much harder than granite and is non-porous. Now that we have defined the basic characteristic of both granite and Dekton, we can compare some specific aspects of them.
Fabrication and Installation
One of the first parts of the process when it comes to your surface, is the fabrication. Now you may be thinking to yourself, "I am not going to be fabricating or installing the surface myself, why do I need to know about this?" That is an understandable question. Understanding differences in the fabrication process can help you select a capable fabrication and install company to handle your project. Is it really that important though?
Fabricating DEKTON® is a bit different from fabricating granite. This is because of the differences we mentioned above. Namely, the hardness, porosity and compact nature of the material. As a result, cutting, shaping, and moving each material will have variations in the procedure. Now we aren't going to go into a detailed explanation of the ins and out of fabricating Dekton or a class on working with Dekton in the fabrication shop. However, let's briefly look at what you need to keep in mind if you or your fabrication pro is new to the material.
One of the main differences between Dekton and granite is that Dekton is "ultra-compact". The process used in engineering it makes it very hard and compact without pores. This brings the benefits of stain, heat, and scratch resistance; not to mention resilience in the face of temperature change. Yet, its ultra-compact nature means that the fabricator must use some specific techniques to allow for the "internal stress" of the material. Here are some aspects of "best practices" to keep in mind for fabricating Dekton:
- Material Handling
- Preparing Dekton
- Cutting Slabs
- Polishing Edges
- Blade Recommendations
- Cut Parameters
- Waterjet Specs
Each of those areas has specific techniques that need to be employed when working with them. Knowing these will translate into the best install. For granite, there are some things to keep in mind as well. However, as a general rule installing Dekton has some additional procedures to account for the internal stress in the slab.
Care and Maintenance
While reading the section above, perhaps you were thinking to yourself, "Wow, fabricating Dekton has a lot to keep in mind." That's true. However, once it is installed, the advantages of the material become clear. Let's look at some of those benefits.
Dekton does not need to be sealed. This is one maintenance requirement of granite that Dekton does not have. Because of the porous nature of granite, sealers must periodically be applied to the surface to protect the slab from absorbing liquids that could discolor the stone by staining it. Some of the stain-causing liquids that sealers protect granite against include:
- Red Wine
- Olive Oil
- Orange Juice
- Other Colored Liquids
Dekton, on the other hand, is resistant to any kind of stain that occurs through absorption. This is because the surface has no pores for the liquid to penetrate. As a result, there is no need for sealing the slab.
Resistant to Scratching
Another area that Dekton shines is in scratch resistance. Because it is so hard, Dekton resists scratches that might affect other materials. And even though granite is very hard (6-7 on the Mohs scale of hardness), Dekton eclipses that measurement. The result? Dekton is so hard and scratch resistant, that cutting boards are not needed; although, not using them will wear your knives. The point is, you will not need to worry about scratching your Dekton surfaces.
So, if you did a scratch test on both granite and Dekton, you would find that the granite scratches before the Dekton. Again, this makes caring for Dekton much easier.
High Heat Tolerance
Even though granite is heat resistant, Dekton is able to withstand amazing amounts of heat. Remember the engineering process we described earlier. The material is created by using extremely high heat and pressure. Heat and pressure that you are probably not going to be able to come even close to in your kitchen. As a result, you can place pots right off the stove directly on the surface without worrying about it damaging the surface.
So how does Dekton compare to granite? In short there are some similarities because both materials are hard and resist specific kind of damage. However when it comes to stain resistance, you won't have to fret over penetrable stain causing liquids. And even though the fabrication process may seem more delicate for Dekton than it is for granite, following best practices can ensure you have a smooth install process.