Dekton countertop cracks in Consumer Reports' tests

Countertop was resilient in some tests and then it cracked

Published: June 09, 2015 10:45 AM

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This story was updated with a response from Dekton on June 12, 2015

Kitchen countertops take a lot of abuse. Spills happen, stains can follow, with food coloring one of the toughest to wash away, and not everybody uses a cutting board or trivet—just ask teens. That’s why Dekton sounds so appealing. This new countertop material is marketed as an ultraresistant, ultracompact surface. Consumer Reports tested Dekton and found it excelled in some of our tough tests, but during others, it cracked into two pieces and edges chipped off.

Dekton countertop

What is Dekton?

“It’s made of a combination of quartz, porcelain, and glass. I would describe it as a hybrid of the best materials in the market for surfacing,” says Lorenzo Marquez, vice president of marketing for Cosentino North America, the manufacturer. “It’s a new product category. There are similar products from an aesthetic sense but nothing like it from composition. The look and feel is unique. ”

The Dekton website says that a high-tech process “produces surfaces of a size and thinness that was previously unimaginable, yet still ensuring extreme levels of performance.” In consumer talk that means that stains, abrasion, scratches, heat, ultra-violet rays, ice and thawing are supposedly no match for Dekton. It’s sold at Home Depot and kitchen design stores for $58 to $96 per square foot installed and must be professionally installed. Dekton comes with a 25-year warranty, which does not cover cracks or chipping due to impact from heavy objects.

How we test

To test durability we stained, sliced, scratched, scorched, and nicked 14 materials from leading brands, including Dekton, which is the only ultracompact in our tests. We found big differences among materials but little variation among brands, except for recycled glass, and so our countertop Ratings are by materials.

Our test results

Dekton resisted damage from heat, stains, chopping and cutting, scoring excellent in these tests, and was very good at resisting abrasion. But in our impact tests, pieces of the edges chipped off, and Dekton cracked into two pieces on samples that were 2 centimeters thick, the manufacturer-recommended thickness. Our impact tests simulate what could happen if a heavy pot fell from a shelf or pot rack up to 2 feet above the counter. None of the other 13 materials we tested cracked this way.

Dekton’s response and our reply

“We were pleased that Dekton achieved high scores in regard to its resiliency to heat, staining, and cutting,” says Lorenzo Marquez of Cosentino. “However, we were disappointed to learn that Dekton cracked in specific tests that simulated dropping a weighted object onto the surface from height. Unfortunately we are unable to validate the results, as testing conditions didn’t comply with our own installation guidelines. Cosentino stands behind Dekton and the advantages that come with its ultra-compact composition, offering high levels of performance to withstand normal levels of wear and tear.”
 
Consumer Reports’ experts tested Dekton as they do all other countertop materials and none cracked from edge to edge as Dekton did.

Shopping for countertops?

You know what you like—quartz, granite, marble, laminate— now find out how durable these materials are. We tested 14 materials and our countertop Ratings offer a glimpse into the future—life outside the showroom. Any questions? E-mail me at kjaneway@consumer.org

Kimberly Janeway 

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