Everything you need to know about Lapitec
Wednesday, 12th November 2014, Jane Gibson
You may not have heard of it before, but lapitec is a unique product that makes a perfect kitchen countertop, hearth or bathroom floor. In fact, it has a wide-range of uses, but what makes it so good? Well, think about the positive properties of ceramic, granite, quartz and porcelain - lapitec has them all.
What exactly is lapitec though, and why should you consider using it in your home? We're about to reveal all...
How is Lapitec made?
Lapitec is a form of sintered stone. To create it, only the best ceramic materials are selected and then bonded together under extreme heat and pressure. This method, called metamorphosis, is a recreation of a natural process, and results in a product like no other. The stone is 100 per cent mineral and no resin or hydrocarbon-based binder components are used.
It's also a completely green product, as no petroleum-based substances are used to create it. Moreover, it is totally inert and will therefore release no substances into the air. Many natural stones, such as granite, naturally contain radioactive materials. Although this is nothing serious, it does mean a small amount of radon gas is admitted, something which you don't have to worry about with lapitec. If in the unlikely event you decide to get rid of your lapitec heath or flooring at some point, you can easily recycle it too.
What colours and designs is Lapitec available in?
Whatever room you're thinking of updating, you're sure to be able to find a style of stone that will suit. Lapitec's different styles and colours are split into four collections: Lux, Satin, Vesuvio and Fossil. The stone in the Lux collection is highly polished, giving a mirrored effect. Like its Latin name suggests, it's perfect for bringing light into a room, and tends to work best in brightly-decorated, modern rooms. Satin is a toned-down version of Lux, so the colours are softer and smoother. The surface itself is subtly coarse, adding a bit of texture to the room.
The stone in the Vesuvio collection tends to come in natural colours and patterns which reflect its volcanic name. It's also perfect for outdoor use, thanks to its anti-slip properties, but it's equally ideal for busy kitchens. Fossil stone, like Vesuvio, is a little rough, due to the fact it's been sandblasted during production. However the colours tend to be much softer and go down well in traditional or rustic-looking kitchens.
How long does Lapitec last?
How long is a piece of string!? Lapitec is designed to stand the test of time. If you're buying a lapitec work surface, don't be surprised if you never buy another work surface again (until you move house, of course). It is incredibly hard-wearing and near impossible to damage as it's resistant to almost everything, including scratches, impact and acidic substances. Normal stone can be permanently damaged by a few drops of lemon juice left on the countertop, but not lapitec.
Lapitec is also resistant to sudden changes in temperature, so it shouldn't be scarred after a hot pan is placed on its surface. Nor will it catch fire, as it is non-flammable.
The manufacturer claims the stone does not change over time either and that UV light has no effect on it. So as long as you clean it on a regular basis, it should look exactly how it appeared when you first had it installed.
How easy is Lapitec to clean?
Lapitec is non-porous, meaning it doesn't absorb whatever's spilt on it (which is how those most infuriating stains are formed). With most other stones, you need to wipe up your wine spillages straight away, but you won't find yourself scrubbing away for hours with lapitec.
The stone also uses Biotech technology, which is designed to tackle bacteria and create an anti-bacterial and anti-fungal surface. Essentially, micro-organisms decompose safely in the surface, so all you need to do it get some soap and water and wash them away. Cleaning your lapitec worktop is as simple as that. No sealing is required, nor are fancy cleaning products.
For this reason, lapitec is ideal for kitchens where a high-standard of cleanliness is required, such as those in a care home or restaurant. Of course it is just as suitable to use in your own home, especially if you have young children who have no qualms about licking spilt cake mix directly off the worktop.
How easy Lapitec is to install?
Although - like any stone installation - you'll want a professional to do it, you'll be pleased to know that lapitec is incredibly easy to install. This is partly due to the fact it is so light, but also because it is very 'workable', which is handy since the slabs tend to be huge. The scale of the slabs also means you can pretty much guarantee that your kitchen worktop will have a very uniform look, as you'll probably be able to use one slab for the entire job. Lapitec, unlike natural stone, doesn't include any veins or fissures. However, some people believe such 'faults' are what make natural stone attractive, so it really is a matter of taste.
It's hard to fault lapitec, as it truly is engineered to be the perfect stone. Although it looks natural, some people would prefer to have real natural stone in their kitchen or living room. Before you decide on anything, we advise you pop down to a showroom first, so you can see and feel all the different options available to you.