When it comes to affordable countertops, many homeowners choose laminate countertops because they are easy to maintain and provide good durability for the price.
The Formica Group and Wilsonart companies make countertops that offer consumers an array of options and designs. When comparing the products from these two companies, keep the intended use -- kitchen or laundry room, for example -- color, style, grade and quality uppermost in your mind. Compare similar products together, as both companies make a variety of products.
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Consumer buying guides from reputable companies or magazines can offer insights and information on color, finish and grade options.
Survey different styles and color options offered by both Formica and Wilsonart. Both companies offer an array of finishes and textures in laminate countertops such as solid colors, wood grains, patterns and faux metal or stone motifs.
Review the different edge options that are available. Each company offers different types of edges such as beveled or bull-nosed edges, which give a laminate countertop the finished look of a higher end granite or stone countertop. Both companies also offer different styles of laminate countertops that are designed to hide where the laminate seams come together. The dark line from a seam is one of the telltale signs of a laminate countertop.
Finally, when you have narrowed it down to a handful of options, you can request samples of the colors and styles you are interested in. This can help you decide the options you prefer the best and would be a good fit for your home.
Compare Quality and Prices
Both companies offer affordable options for countertops, but each brand offers different products at different levels of grade and quality and in different price ranges.
For the best results, compare similar products of the same grade or quality. To put it simply, make certain you compare apples to apples and not apples to oranges. If you are looking at higher grade products from one company, look at similar grades from the other company to widen your choices.
The Formica Group's higher grade products include its Jonathan Adler Collection, which sport bright and bold patterned laminates, and its 180FX line of laminates, which offers realistic looking granite and stone patterned laminates. The Wilsonart company offers HD High Definition Laminates and Premium Laminates, both of which include faux stone and granite motifs with a higher end finish and increased durability.
Both Wilsonart and Formica have standard 12-month limited warranties that cover manufacture defects in materials and workmanship. Each product line may come with its own warranties and stipulations that differ from the norm.
When you visit dealers or distributors, inquire about installation options and services they offer. Compare the level of service and the price of installation offered by the retailer or distributor of both companies if all other issues equal out. In the end, when comparing products of similar quality, price and service rules.
Product Reviews and Buying Guides
Product review and buying guides allow you to get a sense of what other consumers have to say about these products. Look for consumer reviews on the laminate countertops you are most interested in, but keep in mind that reviews are only written by a small percentage of consumers. Focus on reviews that offer an objective viewpoint. Look to agencies that offer an unbiased review of products to weigh both the pros and cons of the chosen products.