A Granite or Tile Backsplash: Which Is Better?

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A kitchen's backsplash is often made from either granite or a variety of tiles. Granite has been utilized since the 26th century B.C. as a common resource for building architectural structures such as the Red Pyramid of Egypt. Since 1990, granite increased in popularity as a kitchen countertop or backsplash. In contrast to granite's solid design, tile is very versatile as a combination of tiles may be used to create a mosaic, or a single tile itself may be decorative. Choosing the right backsplash requires a deeper look into the granite and tile background and the pros and cons of each.

Tile

  • Tile may be found in marble, travertine, terracotta and granite as well as many other types of stones. However, one of the most commonly used tiles is made from ceramic, which has a clay center. Ceramic tiles may or may not have a glaze, which provides abrasion, frost and stain resistance and controls water absorption because, unlike its body, the tile's glaze is nonporous. Maintenance for the ceramic tile is minimal as only a damp wash cloth is necessary to clear dust and other residues. Other types of tile, such as terracotta, may require occasional waxing.

Granite

  • Granite is a type of stone that is available in a wide array of colors, ranging from black to blue to pink, due to its natural mineral composition. It is considered one of the hardest stones, making it scratch resistant and durable. Maintenance is simple as only soap and warm water are necessary for a quick clean up.

Backsplash

  • A backsplash is a type of vertical decorative covering along the kitchen wall that is located between the countertops and the upper cabinets. It serves to protect the wall against stains, spills and other substances. A backsplash is purely optional as not all kitchens have it, and it may be made from either tile or a solid slab of granite or other stone.

Comparisons

  • Choosing between a granite or tile backsplash depends on budget, personal preferences and individual needs as well as the current design of the kitchen. In terms of price, granite is more expensive than ceramic tile. Granite is also available in tile, which may help to keep costs low. Other types of tile, such as marble or travertine, are more expensive than ceramic tile. In terms of design, if the kitchen countertops are currently granite, both granite or tile backsplashes look attractive. However, if the kitchen countertops are tile or corian, a granite backsplash may not be the best choice in terms of aesthetics. In terms of home value, granite improves home value as homebuyers often look for the expensive granite touches found throughout the kitchen or even on the floor. In terms of functionality, both perform equally well the task of protecting the wall's surface against spills, are low maintenance and are scratch resistant.

References

  • Photo Credit Thomas Northcut/Photodisc/Getty Images
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