The Most Common Questions We Are Asked
What Are Epoxy Tables and Countertops?
Epoxy tables and countertops are the solution for consumers seeking a high end, customizable looks for lower prices than natural stone such as granite, quartz, marble or quartzite. Each of our surfaces are custom made to fit your design needs and our unique coloring process allows for any color combination and sheen. We’re not limited by stone availability, slab size, or even large price increases for the look of exotic stone. Veins and other mineral effects found in natural stone can be mimicked or even enhanced to complement any home or business, allowing for a versatile and dynamic element to any design.
How long does it take to install?
If you choose a high gloss finish, your countertops can be completed in approximately 30 days after your order is finalized and installed in one days. If you choose to use our ultimate topcoat in gloss or matte finish, the timing can be cut in half. Over 90% of the countertop process is completed off-site which minimizes the time, inconvenience, and mess of onsite construction.
More about our process and timing.
What kind of surface can epoxy be applied to?
We can apply epoxy over most materials, including Formica, Laminate, Ceramic, Metal, Wood, Concrete and Glass.
How durable are epoxy surfaces?
Our epoxy countertops and tables have a very durable surface that is both scratch and heat resistant. As with all countertop surfaces, it’s possible to damage countertop epoxy, however, the Artisan Design Concepts epoxy top process makes fixing those small repairs relatively simple. When other countertop materials are damaged, they are hard to fix and sometimes even un-repairable.
Are the epoxy surfaces food-grade safe?
Our tops are 100% non-porous and never need to be re-sealed. They are 100% anti-bacterial, food-grade (approved for commercial restaurant use), seamless, stain and moisture resistant, scratch resistant, impact resistant and heat resistant up to 475 degrees. Our epoxy surfaces are also environmentally friendly. The epoxy we use contains very low VOC (volatile organic compound, qualifying as a green building material).
Are epoxy tables and countertops affordable?
Our surfaces are very economical. Other materials are much higher in price:
– Granite costs $90+ per sq ft
– Solid Surface such as Corian costs $75+ per sq ft
– Quartz costs $95+ per sq ft
– Natural Stone costs $75+ per sq ft
– Marble costs $100+ sq ft
Every project is different in size and style. Please contact us to receive a free personalized quote.
How do I care for my epoxy surfaces to keep them looking beautiful?
Epoxy is heat resistant and scratch resistant but even with its durability, keep in mind that this is a coating. Treat it with care just like you would any other surface. Don’t cut directly on the countertop unless you want to risk getting a scratch on it. Use a cutting board! We recommend using felt pads or trivets under the feet of heavy appliances and place Crock Pots or Pressure Cookers on a cutting board when in use. Don’t use harsh, gritty, or abrasive cleansers. Do not drag or scoot appliances or heavy items across the surface. These countertops can be buffed out if you get them scratched, but keep in mind, the deeper the damage, the harder it is to repair. While epoxy is durable, it does stain easily if spills are not adequately cleaned. Always clean food or drink spills immediately to reduce the risk of permanent stains.
Epoxy countertops are incredibly easy to keep clean. You can use a wide variety of cleaning products and methods without damaging the surface, but there are a few details to keep in mind. Avoid using abrasive cleaning products, as they may scratch or dull the surface. In some cases, the abrasive cleaner may leave swirl marks on the countertop. You should also skip the scouring pads, waxes, or polishes. We find that a streak-free glass cleaner works great or dish soap with water. To maintain the brilliant shine, we also recommend that you perform a simple maintenance task.
Once per week maximum or monthly, use a small amount of mineral oil on the surface. The oil helps keep the surface from dulling, unless you use too much, which can produce the opposite effect. Pour a dime-sized amount of food-safe mineral oil on a microfiber towel. Rub it into your countertop using a circular motion until you give the entire surface an extra gloss. Adding too much oil can create a cloudy appearance. If you add too much, wipe it away with a dry cloth. You can buy mineral oil, also known as finish oil, online or at most home improvement stores. To avoid stains, clean up your spills immediately with a paper towel or washcloth. You can also make a baking soda paste to help prevent stains on your epoxy countertops.
When you discover the stain too late, you may still have a chance to remove it before it causes permanent damage. To clean spills with baking soda, make a paste by mixing your baking soda with water in a ratio of 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of water for ½ cup (104 g) of baking soda. Apply the paste to the stain, let it sit for 5 minutes, and wipe it off with a washcloth. Never use bleach to attempt stain removal. The bleach can create its own stain on your countertops.
Are there any other important instructions or details?
Epoxy reaches full hardness in 30 days, however, it remains soft enough to flow over the edges of counters and tables without cracking or breaking. Due to the structure of epoxy, if a heavy item is left on your surface for a long period of time or an item where the weight isn’t evenly distributed, you may see slight ripples or indentations appear. Do not panic! This is normal! Epoxy has a memory and will return to its original state after you move the item. It may take a day or two, or if you want to speed the process up a bit, you can use a hairdryer to lightly heat the area and the indentations will disappear before your eyes. Use caution…do not use high heat and leave concentrated in one area. Keep the dryer moving around the affected area and then remove the heat and examine. Apply more heat if needed.
While we can surely create your epoxy surface in almost any color combination, please note that all epoxy will also have the tendency to amber over time. In addition, lighter colors, especially white, will show yellowing much easier. We do use epoxy with added UV protection but suggest to not expose the lighter surfaces to direct sunlight for long periods of time.
What kind of warranty do you offer?
We offer a 1-year adhesion warranty. If the coating lifts, peels, bubbles, or cracks due to improper installation or workmanship we will address the issue and make any necessary repairs. While our aim is to deliver top quality and client satisfaction, there are some things we are unable to accept responsibility for. When you sign your contract, it will include an Important Instructions addendum which provides clear instructions on how to use and care for your epoxy counters or tabletops. If our instructions are not followed and there is damage to the surface, we will not be held liable. Scratches are not a warrantable item. Please contact us directly for our maintenance and touch-up program.
What kind of custom handles do you create?
We can build you a custom epoxy handle to fit all your design needs. In addition, we can create handles for a variety of products such as tool handles, beverage taps, gear shift knobs, and more…
Do you pour epoxy over existing surfaces?
Why We Don’t Do It
There are many companies that do offer the service of “pouring in place” which means pouring epoxy over existing surfaces. You’ve likely seen some DIY videos of it and may think it looks pretty easy to do. I’ll be honest, we did that exact thing to our counters when we first started, before we created our business. But when we created Artisan Design Concepts, we agreed that we would not pour in place, and instead build brand new counters for every job. I’d like to share with you why we came to this decision and how it benefits our customers.
When pouring in place, much of the cost is the prep involved. This could include filling in grout lines with a concrete-like filler to make tile counters flat. It could be sanding a shiny surface down so the epoxy will have a good adhesion. It could involve using a router on hard edges to allow the epoxy to flow over the sides. It may include removal of backsplashes since we would not pour those on a vertical surface. It will always involve a lot of plastic sheeting and tape as well as a thicker Ram Board for floors to ensure epoxy does not leak through. All the prep takes a lot of time to do it right!
POTENTIAL DAMAGE & OTHER FACTORS
Even the best tape and plastic can sometimes fail leading to epoxy dripping on cabinetry…come look at our cabinets for proof! Additionally, when someone is occupying the home, we contend with things like air flow, temperature, pets, children, and yes, even curious adults who cannot help but touch it even when told not to. Another possible issue is that most floors and cabinets are not level, which means the countertops on them are not level either. Epoxy is self-leveling so when the surface is not level, it could flow off your counter unevenly and effect the overall design.
The labor time is much higher for a pour in place versus new build. Instead of being able to work on multiple projects at a time in our shop, it takes all our labor to do a pour in place. Not only do we need to pack and transport all our supplies, but on Day 1 we must prep the cabinets, walls and flooring and prep the surfaces as mentioned above followed by a bonding primer which needs to off gas for 24 hours. Day 2 we return for the color coat which includes using chemicals that can often have a strong odor, such as spray paint that can also leave overspray in other areas. Then we either stay for 4-5 hours or return after 4-5 hours to manage the drips and remove the tape and plastic on your cabinets so it does not get stuck and permanently attached to your epoxy countertops. On Day 3, we return and again prep with tape and plastic and sand the epoxy for the next layer, creating epoxy dust particles in your home. We then pour the clear coat and have the same 4–5-hour drip management and tape pulling. On Day 4, we again sand the counters and prepare for the durable topcoat that we roll on. This is where any dust that falls into it, stays in it. It cannot be touched for at least 10 hours and cannot be used at all for the following 2 days while it reaches its full cure and hardness. On Day 7 we return for our final touches which includes installing sinks, faucets and stoves and applying a ceramic coating that sits overnight before you can finally use your counters and have your home back!
BUILDING NEW COUNTERS
When we build new counters, you are inconvenienced far less. Less time in your home, and less time without usable countertops. We come to your home to template the counters to ensure the perfect fit. We start your build and all the mess including sticky epoxy, paint fumes, and epoxy dust is created in our shop in a controlled environment. The epoxy is poured on a level surface and you are only charged for the labor involved when we are working on your project. No extra fees for travel time or prep time or management time. We return typically about 2 weeks later to install and by the time we leave, your counters are ready to use!
Let’s assume the average kitchen takes 12 hours to build, 6 hours to pour, and 6 hours to install. That’s about 24 hours of labor. Pouring in place, where we can’t work on more than 1 job at a time, for days 1-4 we’d need 8 hours of labor each day and on day 7 we’d need 2-3 hours for final touches and installation of the sink, faucet, and stove. If we poured separate backsplashes, this is when we’d install those as well. That’s an extra 10 or 11 hours of labor which is far higher than the material costs of just building brand new countertops.
Overall it is far more cost effective for us to build you brand new countertops and far less inconvenient for our customers…and yet still prices out lower than high end stone.
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We appreciate you considering us and look forward to creating something spectacular for you!
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