Tag Archive | "restoration"

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DIY Countertops and Renovation

Posted on 12 December 2014 by cradmin

new+kitchen+epoxy

A trend in home improvement and restoration is seeing a growing number of people completing home renovations on a do-it-yourself basis. For the most part, this has traditionally been done by contractors and retirees, but new products and innovations are leading a new breed of homeowner to attempt these feats themselves. When it comes to kitchen renovations, nothing tops countertops, and while some DIY renovators have come up with some truly unique and impressive designs, others are simply buying epoxy or urethane overcoats. These products are marketed as a revolution in technology that gives buyers a like-new countertop for less than $100, but are they getting all that is being promised?

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Unique Countertops from Scratch

While epoxy coating is being used by people of all types and skill levels in attempts to improve existing countertops, others actually have the talent, time and experience to create some truly unique designs. Some of these designs use concrete, and others employ backlighting technology, both of which are being routinely accomplished by contractors in every major city. However, others have built masterpieces that can be seen nowhere else in the world. Of course, some are completely novel, like the countertop made of pennies we featured in 2013 or this new countertop constructed of 20,000 Lego blocks.

The Backlighting Trend

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Not everyone is savvy enough to complete their own backlighting projects, but at least one homeowner has done so using a new technology known as SLABlite from Tylerco, Inc. Other backlighting options are available, such as those from Nu World, Outwater and Evo-Lite, but none of them are as well suited to DIY projects. That being said, if reader interest here at CountertopResource.com is any indication, backlit countertops are dramatically increasing in popularity, and they offer aesthetic appeal and ambiance that is difficult to match in low-light environments.

Epoxy to the Rescue?

Now, the heart of the matter and the whole reason I developed this blog post is that homeowners are increasingly being steered to complete countertop restorations on their own with over-the-counter epoxy products. While, in my opinion, trying to save money on a kitchen rennovation by making or refinishing your countertops is a bad idea, it is happening. This trend has been reinforced by the concrete flooring industry, with which I have a marginal relationship through writing promotional material. Since polished concrete was “invented,” or more aptly discovered, in the 1990s, it has become a popular option for floors of all types, including those in residential living spaces. The companies that install polished concrete floors recommend that they be coated with epoxy for protection, texture or color enhancement, and this has seemingly carried over into the countertop industry.

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Epoxy coatings are available in a variety of types, and some of the work people have done with them is extraordinary in appearance. For instance, this woman created an amazing faux marble countertop using a combination of paint, glitter and epoxy for less than $30. In addition, this epoxy coating distributor based in Grand Junction, Colo., offers classes for both contractors and DIY homeowners and has some impressive work displayed on its website. Not only that, but major home-improvement box stores, such as Home Depot are providing consumers step-by-step instructions for homeowners to complete this work without the help of professional contractors. Finally, the DIY guru himself, Bob Vila, teaches the process through written instructions and video tutorials.

What I am curious to discover, and what I hope my readers hope to know, is what, exactly is the stance taken by fabricators and professional installers concerning DIY epoxy countertop coatings? What do you tell customers who want this service? Do you steer them toward higher-end resurfacing or try to sell them on the benefits of a total replacement? Do you offer professional epoxy restoration? What pitfalls should homeowners be warned about with the products available off the shelf? Do you offer superior service or an epoxy product not available in the retail consumer market.

If you have any experience with this or if you can answer any of the above questions, we want to hear from you. Feel free to tell us your story in the comments below or drop me an email at [email protected]. I look forward to what you have to say.

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Surface Link Expands, Offers New Services for Granite, Quartz, Solid Surface

Posted on 06 December 2012 by cradmin

Surface Link Corporation has announced its expansion to cover repairs and refinishing for granite, quartz and solid surface in all 50 U.S. states. In addition to being a certified warranty agent for more than 15 years for most major manufacturers, Surface Link can also handle all of your extra or unwanted restoration/repair work – allowing fabricators to focus on fabrication.

All of the company’s technicians are professionally trained and certified, and work generally takes less than one day to complete. In addition to refinishes, repairs and restorations of any size, the company also offers in-home sink replacements.

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Stone Forensics Offers Stone Inspection Training During StonExpo

Posted on 30 October 2012 by cradmin

Stone Forensics will be conducting a Stone Inspector training program in January, 2013, during Stone Expo in Las Vegas. The program is designed to teach the basics of inspecting stone and ceramic tile installations. According to Fred Hueston, who will be conducting the training, “The amount of failures, poor installations and other issues with stone and tile flooring are on the rise. There are only a few qualified inspectors in the United States and there are unfortunately few quality training opportunities in this discipline.”

The program is being offered in Las Vegas so students can observe failures of stone and tile installations in real time. “We will spend an entire day going on inspections as part of the class,” said Hueston.

The program is a a full five days with the certification test on the last day and is only offered once per year with the class size limited to 10 students. The cost of the class is $2,500 per person.

The following will be covered: the geology of stone; understanding the structure of different kinds of stone and marble materials; identification of stone and tile types; quarry techniques that affect the final product; production of tile and slabs; fabrication and installation requirements; physical and chemical testing; stone and tile forensic investigation; diagnosis of problems; stone and tile restoration; repair and replacement; stain removal; troubleshooting; report writing; expert witness testimony; slip resistance; and laboratory testing.

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Utilizing Granite, Quartz and Solid Surface Repair Services

Posted on 24 October 2012 by CRadmin2

Many countertop owners are surprised to learn that damage to granite, quartz and solid surface countertops can be repaired, often without having to remove and reinstall them. While fabricators are aware that these repairs are possible, the work may require some of their best employees, and it detracts from the primary task at hand, which is fabricating new countertops.

One solution to the dilemma caused by damaged countertops is to hire a repair specialist. A specialist, such as Surface Link Corporation, can complete repairs on countertops from most major manufacturers, and can help fulfill warranty service work that would otherwise detract from new countertop fabrication. The service has the potential to save fabricators time and money while keeping their customers satisfied.

Countertop repair firms that hire only professionally trained and certified technicians can complete any type of granite, quartz or solid surface repairs with minimal disruption to the lives of the customers requiring the repairs. Restorations, refinishing jobs and repairs can be completed onsite, and most jobs can be done in a single day, especially if they are only crack and scratch repairs.

Although they are still relatively unknown, specialist countertop repair companies seem to be catching on with both consumers and fabricators. When asked about the current market, the national account manager at Surface Link, Marty Vatis, said, “Many people are surprised to hear that their countertops can be repaired or refinished to look like new and that all the work is done without removing the countertop. In addition, many are surprised to hear that we can replace their sink without removing the countertop as well.”

As proof that the market for these specialists is improving, Surface Link has just expanded to offer service in all 50 states after 15 years as a certified warranty agent. Previously, residential and commercial restoration services were only offered by the company in a few select markets.

Before and after photos:
Countertop                                  Corian shower pan
Before                                                Before

            

After                                                   After
           


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