Outdoor kitchens can have all the same features as indoor kitchens – but they’re twice the fun! Cooking, eating, and entertaining is never more fun than when you’ve got a fully outfitted, custom-made backyard kitchen. Using the right outdoor kitchen materials is critical for ensuring that your outdoor kitchen will remain functional and attractive for years after it’s installed. Outdoor kitchens are exposed to a range of elements, including winds, rain, and even freeze-thaw cycles that can do damage to outdoor structures like cabinets, counters, and decking. The best materials for your outdoor kitchen are materials that won’t absorb water, fade in the sun, crack or chip during freeze-thaw cycles or rot without proper sealing or refinishing.
If you’re a homeowner planning to install an outdoor kitchen in your home, it’s important to work with a quality contractor that will help you choose the right materials for your outdoor space. Below are some of the materials that you can use in your outdoor kitchen.
Quartz is almost impossible to crack, chip or scratch. This non-porous countertop material won’t absorb water during freeze-thaw cycles, which means it’s highly resistant to cracking over time. Its lack of porousness means it also doesn’t stain, so there’s no need to worry about stains from leaves, petals, or organic outdoor materials.
Quartz can fade in the sun, take on a yellow-ish hue, and may even warp when exposed to direct sunlight. However, a covered outdoor kitchen shouldn’t experience this problem because the countertop should be protected from exposure to sunlight.
Granite is another countertop material that homeowners have long sought for their outdoor kitchens. It’s a porous stone that can absorb water and may crack during freeze-thaw cycles. Granite isn’t as porous as other types of natural stone (like marble), so it’s still very durable.
You’ll need to reseal your granite from time to time to prevent it from absorbing liquid. If kept protected from rain and snow, granite is unlikely to absorb water and become cracked.
Granite doesn’t fade in the sun, but it can become stained if the seal isn’t properly maintained. Plan to reseal your granite every six months to one year, depending on how much you use your granite, what kind of sealer you use, and how protected granite is from the elements.
Concrete is a trendy countertop material with a nice, industrial look, but it’s important to use an experienced contractor to install concrete. Improperly installed concrete tends to crack. Talk to your contractor to find out if this type of countertop material is right for your home.
When you’re installing an outdoor kitchen it’s important to remember that indoor and outdoor grade appliances don’t always share the same qualities and can’t be used interchangeably. Outdoor grade appliances are more resistant to water and are designed to perform in outdoor spaces, where they may be exposed to high or low temperatures, rain, wind and more.
Outdoor-grade appliances are also designed to resist rusting and corrosion, even with exposure to precipitation. Some of the best brands for outdoor appliances include:
- Marvel Outdoor
Working with an experienced contractor who designs outdoor kitchens can help. An experienced contractor will know which appliances are best for your outdoor kitchen spaces, and can make recommendations for appliances based on your criteria.
Outdoor cabinets must be resistant to regular exposure to water and UV rays from the sun. Natural wood cabinets can warp easily and need to be regularly restrained and re-sealed in order to avoid warping.
At Orlando Outdoor Kitchens, we install cabinets constructed from solid sheets of High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE). These weatherproof cabinets are resistant to fading, staining and water. They come with a waterproof seal that never fades or wears off. Our cabinets also come in a range of colors, so you can choose the cabinet colors that look best with your outdoor kitchen.
Years ago, outdoor kitchens on decks weren’t a possibility because wood is so vulnerable to water damage. Today, outdoor kitchens can be found on decks because of the invention of composite decking, which never needs to be refinished or repainted. High-quality composite decking lasts for decades without fading or warping.
Priorities for Outdoor Kitchen Materials
Here’s what to prioritize when you’re choosing an outdoor kitchen material for your home.
- Durability – Materials must be durable in order to withstand exposure to the hot Florida summers, chilly winters, and regular exposure to rain.
- Non-porous, water-resistant – Water resistance helps outdoor materials last without warping, cracking, chipping, or staining.
- Fade-resistant – Exposure to UV rays can cause materials to fade, so it’s important to find a fade-resistant material. Materials that can fade should be sheltered from direct sunlight.
- Easy to maintain – Ease of maintenance is critical for your outdoor kitchen material. After all, your outdoor kitchen should be fun, not a burden.
How to Protect Your Outdoor Kitchen Materials
Even when you’ve chosen your outdoor kitchen materials wisely, it’s still important to protect your outdoor kitchen materials. Working with an experienced contractor that understands outdoor kitchens can help.
- Cover your kitchen area with a durable roof.
- Clean up after the end of every meal.
- Use well-placed plants and screens to provide shade.
Ready to Design Your Outdoor Kitchen? Contact Orlando Outdoor Kitchens
At Orlando Outdoor Kitchens, we help homeowners like you design the outdoor kitchen of your dreams. For more information about designing the perfect outdoor kitchen for you, contact Orlando Outdoor Kitchens today.
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