Collection: Primaloc Epoxy Blog

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Primaloc Answers: What Is the Downside to an Epoxy Countertop?

Epoxy resin, a relatively modern addition to lists of common sealants, has quickly become a favored choice for providing a durable and glossy finish. It is widely used to protect and enhance various surfaces, including those made from traditionally vulnerable materials like wood, marble, and granite.

However, no material is without its vulnerabilities. Wood, even when treated, can deteriorate or become damaged. Marble is prone to scratches, cracks, and staining. And while quartz is lauded for its durability, it's not entirely impervious to liquid absorption and can sustain stains and harbor bacteria, contrary to popular belief—particularly at risk are areas exposed to substances like red wine.

In many of these scenarios, a layer of epoxy resin can provide an effective shield, enhancing durability and resistance to damage. But what about epoxy itself? Despite its many benefits, epoxy resin isn't perfect. What drawbacks might one encounter with an epoxy-coated countertop?

Continue reading to discover the potential pitfalls of epoxy countertops and what you should be mindful of when considering this material.

A wooden epoxy countertop.

What Is the Downside to an Epoxy Countertop?

While epoxy resin offers numerous benefits as a countertop finish, there are a few limitations to consider before making your choice. Below is an overview of these drawbacks, which we'll explore in depth:
  • Medium Heat Resistance: Epoxy resin can withstand moderate heat, but it may not be suitable for extremely high temperatures. While it copes well with the heat from a cup of coffee, it might not hold up against a hot pan directly from the stove.

  • Potential for Yellowing: When exposed to direct sunlight, clear epoxy resin can yellow over time due to UV radiation. This effect can be mitigated with UV-resistant formulas or by ensuring the countertop is not placed in continuous direct sunlight.

  • When Damaged, Repair Can Be Tedious: Epoxy is robust and durable, but in the rare event it is damaged, making seamless repairs can be a bit tedious. Often, the best repair method involves sanding down the entire surface and applying a new coat.

Below, we'll explain each point in more detail, so you can make informed decisions for your countertop finish.

An outdoor epoxy countertop with a built-in fire pit.

Possible Downside #1: Medium Heat Resistance

Though epoxy resin is renowned for its durability, it does have limitations in heat resistance. It tends to soften and potentially deform when exposed to temperatures above 140°F, which might not be an everyday concern but is worth noting for kitchen countertops where hot items are commonplace.

Our Primaloc Bar & Table Top Epoxy, for instance, is engineered to withstand temperatures up to 135°F, which is above the threshold for causing burns to human skin and higher than most everyday heat sources. This level of heat resistance is a significant step up from many budget epoxy options, which might sacrifice quality for cost.

In real-world settings, encountering temperatures above 135°F on countertops isn't typical, except perhaps in kitchens where hot pans and pots are part of the daily routine.

An Easy Solution

The solution to this concern is rather straightforward: using a high-quality epoxy resin like Primaloc can equip your countertops with a robust finish capable of enduring everyday kitchen heat. And for those extra-hot items, the simple use of trivets can effectively shield your epoxy countertops, maintaining their integrity and appearance without sacrificing functionality.

An outdoor epoxy countertop shaded by its natural surroundings.

Possible Downside #2: Potential for Yellowing

Epoxy resin features stunning clarity, which has a singular drawback: a tendency to yellow under prolonged UV exposure. The quality of the epoxy plays a major role in determining how quickly this yellowing occurs, with higher quality products showing resistance to discoloration longer than their lower-quality counterparts.

This yellowing effect is primarily aesthetic and does not affect the structural integrity of the epoxy, but it nonetheless can diminish the appearance of the finish. Thus, for those desiring a clear, unblemished finish in environments with significant UV exposure, epoxy might not be the best choice unless mitigative steps are taken.

Thankfully, there are several ways to avoid this issue.

Prevention Tips

One effective solution is to incorporate epoxy pigments into the resin. These pigments, often derived from mica powder and possibly combined with other color-stable additives, provide a durable, non-fading color. When mixed with the epoxy, they can mask or prevent the yellowing effect while adding depth and vibrancy to the finish.

Mica-based pigments are particularly beneficial for outdoor applications due to their inherent color stability and insolubility, ensuring the finish remains vibrant and unaffected by sunlight.

Beyond just countering yellowing, these pigments are also sought after for their aesthetic qualities, enhancing indoor and outdoor projects alike with their rich colors and textures.

Our store features a premium selection of epoxy pigments from Pigmently, offering an extensive palette to enhance the beauty and longevity of your epoxy projects while addressing the challenge of UV-induced yellowing.

A second way to avoid yellowing is to provide your epoxy project constant shelter from direct sunlight. The less time epoxy is exposed to direct contact with the sun's powerful UV rays, the less it's likely to yellow.

Shelters, overhangs, natural shade from trees, etc. are all way to provide your epoxy finish with protection, even when located outdoors.

A kitchen with a set of epoxy countertops.

Possible Downside #3: When Damaged, Repair Can Be Tedious

The potential need for sanding and reapplying a fresh layer of epoxy due to damage might seem daunting, but in reality, this issue is relatively infrequent.

If epoxy becomes damaged, restoring it to pristine condition typically involves sanding down the affected area and applying a new flood coat. However, thanks to epoxy resin's robust nature, such instances of damage are quite uncommon.

Less of a Problem Than It Seems

Given the exceptional durability of high-quality epoxy resin, significant damage under normal usage conditions is unlikely. While unforeseen incidents can occur, it would require a considerable force or impact to compromise the integrity of a fully cured epoxy finish.

With that, we've now considered the drawbacks. Next, let's focus on the benefits that epoxy resin offers.

What Upsides Does Epoxy Bring to a Countertop?

Epoxy resin boasts several outstanding qualities that underscore its preference as a countertop finish, particularly favored in DIY projects for its:

  • Exceptional Durability: Epoxy resin stands out for its toughness. Once applied and cured, it forms an incredibly hard, protective layer over the surface, offering waterproofing and resistance against various forms of physical damage.

  • Glasslike Clarity: High-quality epoxy resin cures to a transparent, high-gloss finish that not only maintains clarity but also enhances the underlying material's appearance by enriching its colors.

  • Ease of Maintenance: Once it cures, epoxy is remarkably low maintenance. Its solid, non-porous surface doesn't degrade or thin over time, resisting liquid penetration and making cleaning straightforward with just basic cleaning agents.

  • Single Application Longevity: Epoxy's enduring appeal includes its one-time application promise. A correctly applied layer of premium epoxy, such as our Primaloc Bar & Table Top Epoxy, can last upwards of 7 years, with minimal upkeep and the option for a simple reapplication to refresh the finish.

With these benefits, it's easy to see why epoxy resin is a top choice for both commercial establishments and home settings as a countertop or bar top finish, showcasing significant advantages over the few drawbacks it presents.

A softly lit kitchen with a full set of epoxy countertops.

Primaloc Epoxy: Premium Epoxy for Premium Results

When it comes to epoxy resin, Primaloc Epoxy gets the job done. Our epoxy resin is premium-grade, with high performance in every category.

Epoxy resin can be beautiful, strong, and long-lasting—which is why you shouldn't compromise on quality. With Primaloc Epoxy Resin, you get the ultimate finish in durability and visual appeal.

Protect your surfaces by giving them a rock-solid epoxy finish. Choose strong. Choose reliable. Choose Primaloc.


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