The kitchen is often the most frequented room in the home and, therefore, a magnet for all kinds of stains. Wherever you look, there’s enormous potential for mess. Small wonder you decided to design a low maintenance kitchen.
On the brighter side, it is truly the heart of the home, a warm and cozy center where you share all the things that truly matter (except maybe for chocolate).
With all that in mind, how do you balance the time you spend in the kitchen enjoying and cleaning? If you’re about to remodel or build your new kitchen, the following tips are meant to help.
Tip #1: A low maintenance kitchen design begins with a floor
Spills in the kitchen are inevitable; the only question is how often and how hard you plan to clean the floors. You’ll make a good choice with large format porcelain tiles, vinyl planks, or even hardwood floor with square-edge planks.
Your focus should not only be on choosing the easy-to-clean surface but also on minimizing the crevices between the tiles. If you prefer tiles, larger size means fewer grout lines. To avoid grout stains, use epoxy grout instead of the conventional kind.
So, when you think about kitchen flooring, bear two things in mind: their durability and resistance to stains. Then, your only tasks remain to make sure the floor color and style fit your kitchen design and get that chef cookbook ready.
Tip #2: Select non-porous backsplash and countertop materials
Marble and granite are both durable materials and are commonly chosen as kitchen surface materials for their luxurious note. However, they are not that easy to clean and protect. Both are porous and require periodic sealing. Also, they are not immune to stains and acids.
If you genuinely wish to design a low maintenance kitchen, you will choose either glass, porcelain, or quartz. The first two are great backsplash options. Quartz is even harder and more durable than granite, making it ideal for countertops.
Using non-porous materials in your kitchen is also a way to make your home more eco-friendly. Flat, durable surfaces like these are easily maintained with steam cleaners, making dangerous chemicals obsolete. Not only will you have a super-clean kitchen in a matter of minutes, but you will also save on cleaning supplies.
Tip #3: Invest in a good kitchen ventilation system
The more steam, smoke, and grease you remove from the kitchen through the vent, the less sticky grime you’ll need to clean. A powerful range hood will save you hours of cleaning.
Choosing a low-noise hood will motivate you to use this critical appliance instead of merely opening a window. Of course, nothing can beat the fresh air and natural ventilation.
However, cooking steam often needs to travel over your kitchen furniture to reach the windows while carrying particles of grease and dust. When buying a range hood, make sure you choose the one with dish-washer safe filters.
Tip #4: Skip shelves and ornaments on your kitchen cabinets
Shelves are not only useful but also a visually attractive kitchen design element. On the other hand, they require frequent wiping as steam from cooking will glue the dust to all open surfaces, especially those too high to reach.
For easy clean-up and maintenance, better avoid the open shelves. If you insist on showing off your spice collection, put the shelves within a glass-door cabinet.
If you choose the push-to-open flat-surface cabinets, you will soon forget about wiping dust and crumbs from your cabinet fronts. The good news is that last year’s trends are still here, so you don’t have to worry about remodeling your kitchen any time soon.
Tip #5: Pick cooktops and ovens that help you clean them
Pyrolytic ovens, also known as self-cleaning ovens, are truly low maintenance appliances with a feature. Using a high heat program (932 F° / 500 C°), these ovens incinerate any leftovers. It is worth the time, effort, and cleaning chemicals you’ll save.
Truth be told, the pyrolytic oven doesn’t clean itself; it just helps you remove the hardcore grime and grease. You will still need to wipe off the burnt debris or ash with a damp cloth.
Electric glass cooktops and induction cooktops are equally easy to clean due to their smooth surface. Keep in mind, though, that they require a special kind of non-abrasive cleaning supplies.
With induction tops, you won’t suffer baked spills as the top is always cool to the touch. Its heating method requires special dishes, though. An unwritten rule is that the more low-maintenance something gets, the more expensive it is.
Tip #6: Install modern, easy-to-clean, and hygienic sinks
From floor over cabinets to fixtures and appliances, the materials you use in your kitchen will determine how much time you’ll spend cleaning and scrubbing. Your best allies in the kitchen are modern composite materials designed with low maintenance in mind.
One of these materials is used for the production of under-mount sinks. If you upgrade your kitchen with one of these, you will enjoy all the benefits of a hydrophobic surface, one that hinders the growth of bacteria and requires gentle cleaning.
Tip #7: Choose washable wall paints
Washable wall coating is ideal for kitchens as it repels stains. The paint simply doesn’t allow the stain to break the coating, making cleaning incredibly simple. As long as the paint is treated gently during washing, the walls will remain clean for longer.
Regarding the finish, there is often a dilemma between two types of sheen: semi-gloss and satin. Both are luxurious in appearance and also low-maintenance. However, semi-gloss paint is longer lasting and much easier to clean, being glossier than satin paint.
At the same time, the higher reflectivity of the semi-gloss paint doesn’t appeal to all. Satin paint has a slightly subdued sheen, making it perfect for imperfect walls. It hides uneven surfaces better and costs less than its semi-gloss counterpart.