Showroom glamour can really WOW us with appeal and enticement! Modern, classical, and neo-classical fixtures and appliances, gorgeous granite countertops, and the amazing in-store lighting which is often difficult to replicate in a home environment all tend to excite and dazzle our senses. But before you get carried away making emotional choices, be sure to take a look at the downsides of some of these elements which can disappoint and dismay us later on, after there’s no going back. Here’s some tips that the designers often won’t tell you.
Refrigerator door-front water and ice dispensers
These conveniences are among the most popular! Everyone wants instant, cool refreshment in the home.
What you’ll want to know: Refrigerators with these features generally require a great deal more repair and maintenance than those without. They also take up precious volume inside the fridge, as well as increasing the price.
What to do: Check out these excellent choices which don’t have a door-front dispenser, such as the Samsung RF261BIAESR, $2,100, the top-rated French-door bottom-freezer, or the $1,510 Kenmore Elite 79043, with the best conventional bottom-freezer.
Stainless steel, industrial-like ovens and pro-style ranges have the heavy-duty commercial look everyone loves. Such allure has a hefty price however, but does it have to be so heavy on our pocketbooks?
What to do: Take a look at every option. Check out the KitchenAid KDRS407VSS, $4,000. It ranked the best of the 30-inch pro-styles, but has a small oven and broiling is just so-so. In 36-inch models the KitchenAid KDRU763VSS, $6,000, was the favorite. Both of these are dual-fuel ranges, pairing a gas cooktop and an electric oven. And be sure to take a look at stainless slide-in ranges. The controls are up front so there’s no back panel and the look is built-in. Among the tested slide-ins, check out the GE PS920SFSS, $2,500, an electric smoothtop, or the GE PGS920SEFSS, $2,800, a gas range that was impressive overall but its broiling was mediocre. Both slide-ins are popular choices, but each have their pros and cons.
Granite, marble, and quartz are all very popular selections for the kitchen countertop. While granite seems often overused, style isn’t the only thing that should affect your own choice. Only quartz ranks slightly better in usability and durability, but granite tends to chip a bit easier if you’re using heavy cookware and have an accident.
What you’ll want to know: Granite can look amazing in the kitchen showroom, often because it’s never really been used. In daily usage at home, grease tends to spread around and soak into the granite, which will then accumulate dust and more grime.
What to do: As a porous stone, granite needs to be cleaned daily and be sure it’s professionally sealed after installation. A nice granite cleaner used once or twice a year will help keep the shiny, beautiful look you originally intended!