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Materials

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  • Material

  • Where do you find them

  • Technical data

  • Maintenance

  • Stainless steel
  • The steel referred to is stainless steel: it has a very high chromium content to be resistant to oxidation due to exposure to water and air. Besides giving the kitchen a distinctive identity and a professional look, steel is chosen for its qualities of strength, durability and hygiene. The steel surfaces can have different finishes: glossy, satin or worn (vintage). The first finish has an unmistakable brilliance, the second has a discreet elegance that makes it harder to see any marks, while the third has a striking look that better conceals wear. Steel offers important advantages for users who are always using the kitchen: besides being waterproof, it is resistant to heat, light and shocks. Moreover, the possibility of welding a worktop to the other parts of the kitchen – for example the sink and the hob – makes it possible to create a continuity that is appealing not only from an aesthetic point of view, but also in terms of hygiene, as it eliminates joints that may represent potential areas of accumulation of dirt, with the consequent possible proliferation of microorganisms (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina).

    It is therefore a very durable material that is not however very resistant to scratches: for this reason it is necessary to protect the surfaces by using cutting boards or other supports that prevent wear and the loss of brightness. Attention to prolonged contact with salt (sodium chloride) and any solution that may contain chloride-based salts: chlorides counteract the protective function of the chromium oxide, causing oxidation. Attention must also be paid to metal objects: prolonged contact between steel and other metal leads to the oxidation of the less noble metal (galvanic corrosion). Stainless steel is normally "more noble" than other metals with which it might come into contact, but it is always advisable to keep metals separate, not "forgetting", for example, any metallic objects on these surfaces, especially near the sinks (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina).

  • Due to the "imprint" effect, steel requires continuous maintenance. However, this is not a problem because it is easily cleaned. Ordinary cleaning can be done with a microfibre cloth and mild detergents. The procedure must be completed by drying the surfaces, also with a soft cloth, to avoid streaks. The water should be carefully dried to avoid limescale stains that over time would need to be eliminated using products that are too aggressive. However, if limescale does happen to build up it is possible to remove it with a solution of water and baking soda or water and vinegar. Never use abrasive cleaners or rough cleaning materials (scouring pads or similar) as they will inevitably leave marks of abrasion. The stains should be removed when they are still fresh: food residues (oil, coffee, tomato, milk, etc.) as well as water puddles may contain salts, limestone, iron, etc. and can be corrosive with an electrochemical nature causing rust and signs of oxidation. Especially for sinks it is recommended to dry any water present after use and not to leave wet sponges, crockery, metal cans, foods, acidic liquids or salts in contact with the surface for a long time. Avoid the use of chlorine and its compounds, therefore acids, hydrochloric acid, bleach, products for unclogging drains, delimers etc. because they can cause stains and oxidation. For the same reason, avoid leaving open bottles of the aforementioned products in the area under the sink. Attention to strong shocks and to the fall of sharp objects: they can mark the surfaces without it being possible to repair the damage. For heavy cleaning specific products for steel can be used. As these are still aggressive chemical compounds, it is advisable to first test them in a hidden area. Remember that for kitchen countertops, even if steel is resistant to heat it is best not to place pans, coffee pots, etc. that have been removed directly from the flame but rather to use protections.

  • Acrylic
  • Acrylic is a product uniformly coloured throughout its body that is either shiny or matt. Ecological, 100% recyclable and non-toxic, it remains unaltered over time both in its structure and in its colours, which are resistant to UV rays. From a technical point of view, acrylic is perfectly flat and stable. Any scratches (when superficial) can be repaired with a special polishing operation. The doors made of this material consist of a wooden particle board (class E1) that is covered on the visible part and on the back by acrylic sheets. The profiles are normally edged with ABS or PMMA. Elegant, ecological, resistant: acrylic responds well to the needs of those who want to solve the problem of using glossy or opaque surfaces in environments where elegance and perfection are required.

  • Some simple precautions are necessary to optimally preserve acrylic doors over time: first we recommend never to use products containing aggressive substances like alcohol, bleach, ammonia, solvents and derivatives that could permanently damage the acrylic surfaces. Contact with acetone and ink must be strictly avoided. During normal cleaning operations only soft, slightly damp microfibre cloths should be used to avoid scratches or streaking together with mild liquid detergents (e.g. simple glass cleaning products). Avoid rough cleaning materials (abrasive sponges, scouring pads and the like) that could cause scratches and loss of uniformity of the surfaces. Any scratches (if not deep) can be eliminated with a simple polishing operation using a special kit. The repair kit can be ordered from your authorised dealer.

  • Alkorcell
  • An Alkorcell door is similar to one made with polymers: it consists of a decorative sheeting based on polypropylene (PP) without halogen, plasticizers and formaldehyde. A thermosetting paint gives the sheeting the strength necessary for use in the furniture industry. For processes with different gluing systems, the sheeting is reinforced on the back with a primer and the gluing is done with dispersion or hot melt or solvent glues. From a technical point of view, Alkorcell laminate is a continuous plastic coating that is highly performing in many different ways. Non-toxic, uncontaminated with components harmful to health and environmentally friendly, it is also impermeable: in fact, Alkorcell products resist moisture, mould and micro-organisms. For all these reasons, it is a safe material, suitable for contact with food products: odourless and tasteless, it guarantees hygiene and ease of use in the kitchen. When burned it does not produce toxic or corrosive gases: it has a combustion completely similar to that of wood with a production of light-coloured fumes. Therefore it is particularly safe in eliminating processing residues. An Alkorcell door can be smooth or with a frame, solid coloured or with the appearance of wood. In the wood version, the textured finish is both pleasant to the touch and has an important aesthetic impact that makes Alkorcell a safe and stylish choice.

  • To clean this type of door it is advisable to use only a soft, slightly dampened microfibre cloth, adding a mild detergent free of solvents or aggressive substances in case of stains and grease. Dry immediately with a soft, dry cloth, especially along the door joints. In case of more resistant dirt, it is possible to use soft sponges with liquid detergents, e.g. detergents for glass or specific for plastic surfaces. Avoid the use of rough sponges, metal scouring pads, abrasive creams or powdered cleaning products. For limescale use detergents containing acetic acid (10-15% formulation), citric acid or, for lighter stains, warm water and baking soda. Do not use alcohol, acetone or detergents containing chlorine, bleach or ammonia. Cleaning with steam jets is absolutely forbidden because the plastic materials could deform. Pay particular attention to the care of the edges, which must not be subjected to excess heat, water or humidity.

  • Aluminium
  • The uses of aluminium are varied in the domestic space and particularly in the kitchen: backsplashes, doors, finger rails, open furnishings, backs and plinths can be made with this material. It is a light yet resistant metal with a silver-grey appearance due to the light oxidation layer that forms quickly when exposed to air and that prevents corrosion as it is not soluble. Aluminium has a specific weight that is about one third that of steel or copper. It is malleable and can be easily employed in different uses without the need for finishing, especially if it is treated by anodising. It has excellent corrosion resistance and durability. Moreover it is not magnetic and does not make sparks. Available in limited thicknesses, it is easily bent, but this a benefit more than a disadvantage as it increases its usefulness. The sheet can have different looks: raw, anodised, glossy or satin, painted, with or without finishes and decorations.

    The hi-line aluminium door of the Oltre model has a 22 mm thickness and is composed of a single panel frame made of extruded aluminium, where a deep-drawn sheet is placed on the front and a panel made of aluminium is fastened to the back. A material with sound-absorbing and heat-insulating properties is inserted in the space between the two sheets, thus adding consistency to the door while maintaining its lightness. Thanks to its design, the Oltre Hi-line door is completely recyclable. The finish of the door is made with a single anodic bath in black and titanium. The family of aluminium doors also includes the aluminium mesh door made of an oxidised aluminium frame 22 mm thick with an expanded aluminium metal panel with anodised mesh effect. The aluminium is anodised with an electro-chemical process through which the aluminium reacts spontaneously with oxygen to form a protective surface layer. The natural process, however, is very slow. By means of anodic oxidation, an oxide layer is deposited on the aluminium surface in a controlled and uniform manner. A perfectly smooth, transparent and very hard protective layer is created, thus preserving the characteristics of the metal and preventing corrosion. Thanks to its physical characteristics and the wide range of aesthetically attractive finishes, in many sectors anodised aluminium is a candidate to replace materials like steel or even painted aluminium. Using these doors creates a contrast between the smooth surfaces of the kitchen and the relief on the expanded mesh panels, with an interesting interplay of light and shadows. Also with a 22 mm thick aluminium frame, the urban oxidised finish of the Oltre programme allows you to have a version of the aluminium door with a two-sided hydro-plated MDF panel in blackboard laminate.

  • Cleaning the anodised aluminium doors (anodising is an electrochemical oxidation performed to increase the metal's resistance to corrosion) is very simple. After carefully dusting the panel, simply wipe the surfaces with a microfibre cloth soaked in water with Marseille soap or any other mild detergent. Alternatively, you can prepare a mixture of water and dish soap: rinse and then dry. For limescale stains, the surfaces can be treated with water and baking soda, water and vinegar or specific products that are not too aggressive, better if diluted. The same applies to satin and polished aluminium, for which there are specific products available in hardware stores and specialised shops. For all aluminium surfaces, avoid the use of abrasive creams or metal scouring pads that would irreparably scratch the surfaces, as well as the use of acetone, trichlorethylene and ammonia. Pay close attention to the water used because it could stain these materials as it contains salts, iron and lime. The water must always be carefully dried off. Stains must be cleaned when they are still fresh.

  • Ceramic
  • Ceramic materials are solid inorganic compounds: this means that during the production process there are no "resins" or other substances of an organic nature (i.e. carbon based), a characteristic that distinguishes them clearly – also from a commercial point of view – from other materials that are perhaps similar in appearance but made by mixing mineral powders with organic binders (resins) (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina). Sold under different names depending on the manufacturer and the type of chemical and physical combination, the worktops built with this type of material have the advantage of being able to be produced in the form of large sheets that are very hard, impermeable, low in porosity, hygienic and resistant to heat, stains, wear and light.

    Being a rigid material, a greater thickness generally guarantees greater resistance to impacts, even if proper gluing on a perfectly flat support prevents any problems. In any case, attention must be paid to shocks, which can chip the edges. For very large surfaces it is good to remember that the dimensions must be assessed very carefully during the design phase, as they are not easily modified during the installation of the kitchen, which must always be carried out by expert personnel. Finally, it should be noted that the resistance of ceramic tops should not be abused: excessive weight should be avoided, as well as excessive spills of liquids that could penetrate inside the furniture around the perimeter or joints and damage the underlying panels (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina).

  • Use and maintenance is extremely simple thanks to the reduced porosity and the superior impermeability of ceramic materials: therefore even dirt cannot penetrate and need only be removed from the surface of the material. For daily cleaning use a microfibre cloth and mild detergents, very diluted in hot water. Rinse and dry with a soft cloth. If this operation is not sufficient, for extraordinary cleaning it is possible to use more incisive cleaning techniques depending on the nature of the stain. In this specific case, however, it is essential to take note of the information given in the technical data sheets of the various manufacturers and in the labels of the products used. For best results, we recommend that you clean all stains immediately without letting them dry. It is not recommended to use detergents containing waxes or wax products (to avoid the formation of greasy layers that could compromise the cleaning and the aesthetic performance of the material), hydrofluoric acid (HF) and all its compounds. The concentration of the detergent must always be as low as possible, both to reduce costs and to speed up maintenance. For further details, please refer to the guidelines given for Laminam stoneware and Lapitec, Iris and Kerlite data sheets.

  • Composite
  • Composite materials are part of a macro-category that can be divided into two sub-categories: 1) composites based on quartz (quartz, Lab Lube, Light, Silestone, Ile Lube, Dekton, Okite) and 2) solid surfaces (Dupont Corian). All are the result of the blending of several materials: basically a reinforcing material consisting of a mineral substance that adds stiffness and hardness to the finished product, and a binding agent usually represented by a resin. Quartz-based composites are 90-95% powders or quartz particles (silicon dioxide) that can be mixed with other mineral substances (glass, granite, etc.) and colouring pigments that give the slabs particular colours and aesthetic effects. The binding agent usually consists of mixtures of polyester resins or monomers having a thermo-hardening effect: when heated they harden irreversibly. Bound with the quartz and other additives, they give the sheets a high degree of hardness and chemical stability. The dimensions of the sheets can reach 3 linear metres: the junction points are not very visible but still present. Only with solid surfaces is it possible to have the effect of continuity without joints, ensuring a perfectly uniform appearance (even with integrated sinks). The processing and cutting of quartz materials must be carried out by specialised personnel using suitable tools. Even the assembly of the top must be carried out very carefully and on perfectly flat bases in order to avoid tensions that – over time – could lead to breakage (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina). The composites defined as "solid surfaces" (marketed under various names) consist mainly of mineral substances (aluminium hydroxide) in the form of powders or particles mixed with acrylic- or polyester-based resins that – compared to quartz-based composites – are present in a higher quantity (30-35%) and have a thermoplastic nature. They tend to soften when subjected to heat, making these materials thermoformable, i.e. when heated they can be easily worked and curved, assuming very complex shapes and looks. Despite having the solid appearance typical of composite materials and stone, solid surfaces have the formability and workability of plastics and wood. This makes these materials particularly versatile for applications in the furniture industry.

    In general, quartz-based composites and solid surfaces can be defined as materials with good mechanical strength, hardness and durability. Non-porous, they are waterproof and hygienic. Some clarifications are in order: while they are certainly more effective in resisting scratches, wear and tear, for both it is necessary to pay close attention to direct contact with heat (you must always use trivets or similar protection) as well as contact with sharp blades and objects that could leave marks or grooves that can fill with dirt and germs. In this respect solid surface materials have the advantage of being able to be sanded and regenerated in the event of scratches, while composites, usually produced in batches, not only cannot be repaired, but any replacement may not be perfectly the same (this is a characteristic common to all composites and natural stones). An opaque finish of both solid surfaces and quartz-based composites is more sensitive to contact with dirt and staining substances (ink, coffee, red wine, cola, etc.). In fact, embossed, satin or opaque surfaces have the characteristic of being more porous and retaining the substances they come into contact with, making them more difficult to clean. However, it is sufficient to follow the manufacturers' instructions for use and maintenance to guarantee hygiene, resistance and durability of all types of composite materials.

  • From a use and maintenance point of view, composites require great attention when using solvents of any kind, alcohol or detergents of a basic and acidic nature (with regard to ammonia- and bleach-based detergents and anti-limescale products it is necessary to refer to the specific instructions of the surface's manufacturer since there are different types of quartz-based composites with different compositions; for example, the manufacturer of Dupont Corian recommends the use of ammonia). The surfaces must be protected from direct heat because in both cases the bonding resins could be damaged and produce indelible marks and cracks. We recommend the use of trivets and protections to avoid the risks related to excess heat, and the use of cutting boards to protect kitchen countertops against direct contact with blades and sharp objects. Attention must also be paid to contact with so-called "staining" substances (coffee, ink, coloured drinks, wine, etc.) and acids (lemon, vinegar, tomato, cola, etc.) that may leave stains and marks. Stains should be removed promptly when they are still fresh to avoid absorption. For daily cleaning it is recommended to use a simple microfibre cloth and mild detergents or products made specifically for composite surfaces. Warning: it is not advisable to overload the floors with excessive concentrated weights (e.g. avoid standing on the kitchen counter).

  • Decoration
  • The MDF or veneered doors can be hand decorated by expert craftsmen: using a panel of variable thickness as the base for the decoration, the door is treated with opaque polyurethane colours that give it a textured appearance. Given the originality of the workmanship, every door is obviously a unique piece: small differences between doors of the same type are completely normal, these difference representing elements of character and the essence of the beauty of a product of this type.

  • The decorated doors are more delicate than the normal lacquered and veneered doors. Care should be taken in daily use to avoid stains and direct contact with substances that could affect the decorative colour layer. Remove any stains as soon as possible with a simple wet microfibre cloth and then carefully rinse. A mild soap can be added to the damp cloth if necessary. Impacts and contact with blunt objects can cause tearing of the decoration. Do not rub energetically, do not use aggressive detergents or rough cleaning materials. The decorated doors are exclusive products and must be maintained and used as such.

  • Glaks
  • The Glaks door is an acrylic door made from a panel in MDF (medium-density fibreboard) covered on the outside with matt acrylic Glaks or glossy acrylic Glaks, while the inside part is covered with matt methacrylate (PMMA) in the same colour as the outside. It is edged on all four sides with an opaque ABS in the same colour and is embellished with a glass-effect bevel in matt or glossy colours. Glaks can be defined as an organic glass with aesthetic characteristics identical to glass (transparency, gloss or opacity), but with a series of important advantages in terms of resistance and safety: it is heat resistant (up to 90°C), unbreakable, resistant to scratches, shocks, wear, chemical agents and UV rays. It is a hygienic, ecological material because it is recyclable, non-toxic, easy to clean, practical from the point of view of use and maintenance.

  • For daily cleaning use a simple damp microfibre soft cloth to which can be added a mild liquid detergent in case of stains (e.g. simple glass cleaning products). Avoid using rough materials (abrasive sponges, scouring pads and similar) and very aggressive detergents. Also avoid contact with acetone and ink. Limescale residues can be removed with detergents containing low percentages of citric or acetic acid (maximum 10% formulation).

  • Gres Laminam
  • Porcelain stoneware is a particular type of ceramic that contains kaolin (the main ingredient of porcelain) and has a very compact and homogeneous structure with a high surface impermeability (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina). Sheets of Laminam Stoneware are made with an innovative technology employing a wet grinding of natural products like quarry clays, granite rocks and ceramic pigments and subsequent hybrid firing in an electric kiln at temperatures above 1,220°C, specifically designed to guarantee product uniformity. With a squared edge (rectified monocaliber), Laminam Stoneware is the largest and thinnest ceramic surface ever seen, the only flexible and truly flat product that concentrates 3 square metres of surface in just 3 mm of thickness, offering unprecedented manageability and ease of use. Subsequent cutting or trimming guarantees dimensional accuracy.

    With the exception of the 12 mm worktop, which is produced using the slab in its full thickness, the countertops are composed of a slab of 5.6 mm of Laminam Stoneware (plus back mesh) bonded with a polymer-coated material support up to the required height, depending on the various cases running from a minimum of 40 mm up to a maximum of 170 mm, and a frontal or perimeter panel of the same height. In contrast, Laminam Stoneware doors are built with a powder-coated aluminium frame with a matte finish in the back with an ash grey HDF panel and a front in Laminam Stoneware that is 3 mm thick.

    The main characteristics of porcelain stoneware are:

    • Resistance to stains, organic and inorganic solvents, disinfectants and detergents. It can be easily cleaned without altering the surface characteristics. Hydrofluoric acid is the only substance capable of damaging the product.
    • Non-porous, does not absorb and does not release substances, does not allow the onset of moulds, bacteria and fungi, therefore for this reason being particularly hygienic.
    • Resistant to scratches and deep abrasions. Its properties therefore remain unaltered even after intensive use and frequent cleaning.
    • It is the first anti-graffiti ceramic surface: it does not scratch even in the case of direct contact with metal tools and is resistant even to the most stubborn paints.
    • A high tensile strength.
    • Does not contain organic materials, therefore it is resistant to fire and high temperatures.
    • It is totally compatible with food as it does not release any contaminating elements.
    • Resistant to UV rays. The colours do not undergo any change, even when subjected to changes in climatic conditions.
    • Fully eco-friendly and recyclable. It does not release any substances into the environment and can be easily ground up and entirely recycled in other production processes.

    Laminam Stoneware is a product that uses a sustainable and environmentally friendly technology, as it is designed to limit both waste and the use of resources. Moreover, the use of hybrid kilns that combine the use of gas and electricity allows a consistent reduction of CO2 emissions.

  • Laminam Stoneware is the first surface that combines reduced thickness and large dimensions, high resistance to mechanical stress, chemical attack, scratches, deep abrasion and bending. Its properties therefore remain unaltered even after intensive use and frequent cleaning. Attention however when using sharp blades. While they will not compromise the material from a "structural" point of view, they can produce microgrooves where dirt can build up (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina). For this reason, with stoneware tops it is advisable to always use cutting boards and not to work directly on the counters. The advanced technology used to produce the sheets allows the surfaces to be easily sanitised. Thanks to an average water absorption of 0.1% grams Laminam Stoneware is resistant to frost and adapts to all climatic conditions. Furthermore, since it does not contain organic matter it is highly resistant to fire and high temperatures (in case of a fire it does not emit smoke or toxic substances). Nonetheless, it is best not to place pots removed from the hob or hot and heated materials directly on the surface to avoid thermal shock (therefore always use trivets). Laminam Stoneware is easily cleaned: use a soft cloth, warm water and mild detergents as needed for daily cleaning. Although resistant to organic and inorganic solvents and disinfectants, it is advisable to remove ordinary stains with a damp cloth and common detergents (kitchen cleaner, Marseille soap, etc.), rinsing and drying carefully. To avoid the formation of opaque patinas do not use products containing waxes. Warning: do not abuse the resistance of ceramic materials. Avoid excessive loads (for example, do not stand on the countertop) and spillage of liquids that could penetrate inside the furniture and damage materials that are not resistant to these types of substances.

  • Lacquered
  • Doors painted with covering products are said to be lacquered: they stand out for their precious character and aesthetic impact. The lacquering of MDF panels can be glossy or opaque (the unit of measurement for shininess is expressed in units of "gloss"). There are different categories of lacquering: the differences are substantially attributable to the thinner used for the application of base resins and the paint's hardening method. In general, all types of paints are produced with the same resins or, in any case, with very similar resins (generally acrylic or polyurethane). The drying process following the application of the paints causes the evaporation of the liquid substances and the consequent hardening of the resins. For end users there is not much difference visually: what they are buying is essentially a piece of furniture covered with a resin, the liquid components used for the mixing of the paints are gone, the drying process has stabilised the final product over which a protective film is applied to guarantee safety.

    The lacquered doors allow a great variability of colours and special effects/textures. In some cases it is even possible to use lacquers based on RAL colours, but these require specific care and attention to avoid scratches, stains, scaling and discolourations.

  • Lacquered doors require few yet fundamental rules of use and maintenance. Normal cleaning must be done with a soft, slightly dampened microfibre cloth. For stains, a mild liquid detergent can be added to the damp cloth, for example a glass cleaning product. To remove any traces of humidity and streaks, wipe the doors with a dry microfibre cloth. Do not use abrasive products (creams and powders) or those containing aggressive substances like alcohol, acetone, trichlorethylene, bleach, ammonia and their derivatives. Also avoid the use of rough cleaning materials, e.g. abrasive sponges or scouring pads, which would irreparably scratch the doors. The glossy and matt lacquered surfaces must not be excessively cleaned. In fact, excessive rubbing can compromise the uniformity of the coating (the matt finish can become polished, while the shiny surfaces may lose their flatness and take on the look of an orange peel). In any case, stains must be promptly removed and not allowed to dry, and the same goes for water and humidity. In this regard, maximum attention must be paid to staining substances like coffee, red wine, ink, etc. (in particular on light colours): "the natural or artificial dyes contained in these products can sometimes 'migrate' deeply into the lacquer, forming an indelible stain or streak" (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina). Direct and prolonged exposure to sunlight should be avoided or reduced and managed (e.g. with the use of curtains). Attention also to collisions and contact with sharp and cutting objects: the paint film covering the lacquered panels could be damaged. Small scrapes can be retouched. With a small brush apply just the right amount of paint to cover the damaged area. A touch-up bottle can be ordered from an authorised dealer.

  • UV lacquered
  • A door is called lacquered when it is coloured with various types of paints instead of being covered with a superficial layer of wood or laminate. In recent years lacquering has taken giant leaps, both in practicality and in resistance, not to mention in its attention to the environment. Curtain lacquering with UV technology is done on an acrylic base for a high level of surface and colour stability over time. In this case the products applied are hardened thanks to irradiation carried out by special lamps that emit high-energy ultraviolet light. These systems allow for a very quick and effective hardening of the resins, which normally produce very hard and resistant films (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina). The surface's finish is therefore highly resistant to scratches and wear and is easily cleaned.

  • Lacquered doors require few yet fundamental rules of use and maintenance. Normal cleaning must be done with a soft, slightly dampened microfibre cloth. For stains, a mild liquid detergent can be added to the damp cloth, for example a glass cleaning product. To remove any traces of humidity and streaks, wipe the doors with a dry microfibre cloth. Do not use abrasive products (creams and powders) or those containing aggressive substances like alcohol, acetone, trichlorethylene, bleach, ammonia and their derivatives. Also avoid the use of rough cleaning materials, e.g. abrasive sponges or scouring pads, which would irreparably scratch the doors. The glossy and matt lacquered surfaces must not be excessively cleaned. In fact, excessive rubbing can compromise the uniformity of the coating (the matt finish can become polished, while the shiny surfaces may lose their flatness and take on the look of an orange peel). In any case, stains must be promptly removed and not allowed to dry, and the same goes for water and humidity. In this regard, maximum attention must be paid to staining substances like coffee, red wine, ink, etc. (in particular on light colours): "the natural or artificial dyes contained in these products can sometimes 'migrate' deeply into the lacquer, forming an indelible stain or streak" (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina). Direct and prolonged exposure to sunlight should be avoided or reduced and managed (e.g. with the use of curtains). Attention also to collisions and contact with sharp and cutting objects: the paint film covering the lacquered panels could be damaged. Small scrapes can be retouched. With a small brush apply just the right amount of paint to cover the damaged area. A touch-up bottle can be ordered from an authorised dealer

  • Laminate - Eco. panel
  • The structures and internal shelves of Lube furniture are made with "ecological panels" guaranteed by certifications and compliant with the "F 4-Star" standard according to the Japanese Industrial Standards (JIS), the strictest when it comes to safeguarding the environment. The eco-panel consists of wood particles of different grain size pressed with resins containing very little formaldehyde. It is a laminated industrial product made of recycled wood material, thus avoiding the felling of new trees. The recovery process takes place through a careful inspection of the incoming material, with the elimination of impurities that are in turn sent for recovery or disposed of in accordance with the law. For this product adhesives with low formaldehyde content have been used. The production process takes place in full compliance with current environmental regulations. The ecological panel is produced by companies with a certified UNI EN ISO 9001 quality system. Lube's certification can be downloaded at the link below: Ecological Panel Certification.

  • The ecological raw chipboard panel is laminated with a sheet that can have different finishes: matt, glossy, satin, decorated (e.g. wood effect, canvas, etc.). It is resistant to the wear and action of external agents, does not undergo changes in colour when exposed to sunlight, and its maintenance does not require great effort. The use of chemical or particularly aggressive detergents is not recommended. For everyday cleaning use a damp cloth, preferably microfibre. For stains, add a mild detergent or glass cleaner (98% biodegradable products are preferable). Never place hot pans on the laminate or use scouring pads, acetone or abrasive detergents for cleaning. Pay attention to the edges: excess water, heat and humidity can lead to detachment and deformation. Always dry water and steam with care, avoiding prolonged contact with sources of heat.

  • Fenix NTM laminate
  • This is an innovative material Made in Italy belonging to the laminate family. Developed by Arpa Industriale for interior design it is produced with new generation resins and the simultaneous application of heat (around 150°C) and specific high pressure (> 7 MPa) to obtain a uniform and non-porous high-density product. FENIX NTM is bonded to chipboard panels and edged on the visible sides with 1 mm thick polypropylene in the same colour. Its core is made of paper impregnated with thermosetting resin, while the surface, obtained with the help of nanotechnology, consists of a decorative paper treated with acrylic resins, hardened and fixed with Electron Beam Curing. FENIX NTM stands out for its particular characteristics like high resistance to scratches and heat, anti-fingerprint, softness to the touch, low reflection of light and high opacity (specular reflection value: 1.5 and 60°), thermal repairability of micro-scratches, high reduction of bacterial loads (anti-mould). It also has a pleasant soft touch.

    These characteristics have allowed FENIX NTM to obtain NSF, Greenguard IAQ and IMO MED certifications. NSF certifies that the material is suitable for contact with food. NSF International is an international organisation for technical and scientific consultancy in the health and safety sectors. The NSF registration guarantees the user that the formulation and composition satisfy food safety rules. Greenguard IAQ - Indoor Air Quality certification guarantees that the product has low pollutant emissions indoors. Greenguard IAQ is an independent, non-profit organisation which checks and certifies the low level of chemical emissions of products and is an international reference point for many sustainable building programs. FENIX NTM in the 0.9 mm thickness is certified according to the IMO MED shipping rules as a suitable material for ship applications, as far as concerns its fire resistance and heat release characteristics. IMO MED is a set of international shipping standards relating to safety for ships. FENIX NTM also has a “green” component. A piece of furniture in Fenix cannot be damaged easily: longer duration means less waste, more efficient use of resources and greater global energy saving. In other words, more respect for the environment. Since it is not a hazardous product (it is made of paper and thermosetting resins), it can be burned in incinerators authorised for urban waste or used as energy recovery at the end of its life cycle. The residual ash can be treated as solid urban waste (EAK Code 120105). At the Arpa Industriale plant, FENIX NTM production waste is used as fuel to produce part of the energy needed for production.

  • For best results when cleaning FENIX NTM, it is always good to remember some precautions: while it is very resistant, the surface of FENIX NTM must never be cleaned with products containing abrasive substances, rough sponges or unsuitable tools like sandpaper and scouring pads. Products with a high acid or very alkaline/basic content (bleach and ammonia, alcohol, anti-limescale, vinegar) should be avoided because they could leave stains. When using solvents, the cloth must be perfectly clean so as not to leave marks on the surfaces. Any marks can still be removed by rinsing with hot water and drying. Avoid furniture polish and, in general, detergents containing waxes because they tend to form a sticky layer on the compact surface of FENIX NTM that dirt will stick to.

    The surface of FENIX NTM must be cleaned regularly but does not require any special maintenance. A microfibre cloth moistened with hot water and/or mild detergents is sufficient for everyday cleaning. All normal household cleaning products are well tolerated, but avoid those that are too strong. If there is dirt that cannot be removed with normal domestic detergents due to the irregular texture of the FENIX NTM surface, the use of non-aggressive aromatic solvents (acetone) is recommended. In case of micro-scratches, please follow the instructions for carrying out repairs (with a heat source and magic sponge) outlined on the manufacturer's info sheets. The use of the magic sponge (melamine) is recommended, when necessary, for the proper regeneration of the material. See the technical data sheet for more information: CLEANING-INSTRUCTIONS.

  • HPL laminate
  • The abbreviation HPL (High Pressure Laminate) refers to the thicker laminates produced at high pressures. "They are produced as sheets with several layers. The visible layer on the surface has a primarily decorative function, while the inner layers – made of kraft paper (kraft in German means strength) impregnated with phenolic resins – have properties that make the laminate rigid and resistant to various types of agents. The presence of a so-called "overlay" on the surface, a sheet of pure cellulose impregnated with melamine resin, acts as a protection for the underlying decorative layer, above all against surface wear. The thicknesses of the HPL laminates and their characteristics vary greatly, having various surface aspects in terms of colour, brightness and 'three-dimensionality', by this term referring to concepts like roughness, embossing and the reproduction of the porosity of the wood" (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina).

    The HPL layered worktop consists of layers of Kraft paper impregnated with amino plastic thermosetting resins that comply with EN 438 and ISO 4586 standards. It is subjected to a high pressure of 9MPa and high temperatures of 150°C in special multi-daylight presses, where the polycondensation of the resins takes place in such a way as to obtain a non-porous material. They are available with two different surface finishes. One has a black or brown profile (core) as the inside is made of black or brown cellulose layers, the top part covered by the sheet in the chosen colour. The other type is in the same colour (coloured core), which is different from the other type because the paper used is the same colour as the decorative surface, making it uniform even on the edge. The stratified HPL POLARIS finish, a variation of the aforementioned types, is differentiated by the fact that the new-generation surface layer is made of an acrylic film applied with radiation that gives the surface superior characteristics and performance. The inner core is always the same colour as the surface (kraft full colour) and has an accentuated matt finish that is soft to the touch, resistant to fingerprints and whose colours are all deep and rich. When looking at it from close range or from particular angles it is possible to see a thin line of colour discontinuity with respect to the surface. HPL is a non-porous stratified laminate created to minimise the damage caused by water, steam and oil infiltration, making it possible to avoid joints and offer dimensions and shapes that were previously not allowed by other materials. All this allows the installation of flush-top hobs and PITT systems (burners integrated in the worktop) keeping the temperature of the counter low because the heat transfer is limited and it is not affected by particular thermal shocks, leaving its physical and mechanical properties unchanged. It is also possible to install flush-top and under-top sinks. Furthermore, it is possible to produce squared integrated sinks in the same finish as the countertop. The particular compactness of HPL laminate ensures an excellent combination of mechanical characteristics, like flexural strength and resistance to traction, compression and impact. The uniformity and high density of the panels guarantee a high resistance to the extraction of fastening elements like screws or inserts. As a result of natural phenomena, therefore, the stratified HPL undergoes a moderate dimensional variation: it contracts in low humidity and expands in high humidity.

    The main benefits of a stratified HPL countertop are:

    • Non-porous material that is not subject to mould and/or bacteria formation according to the European Standard ISO 846 and certified for short or prolonged contact with food.
    • Resistant to scratches, impacts, abrasions and wear.
    • High resistance to chemical and organic agents.
    • High impermeability, dustproof and easy to clean.
    • Non-toxic and suitable for contact with food.
    • Compatible with the environment.
    • Not flammable.
    • Heat-resistant (up to 170°C).

    In addition to HPL Certifications, it has been subjected to resistance tests like:

    • Resistance to artificial ageing.
    • Surface resistance with respect to dirt retention.
    • Resistance to cold liquids.
    • Resistance of the edges to heat and water.
    • Resistance to hot water + metal weight.
  • For the daily cleaning of HPL laminates it is recommended to use a soft microfibre cloth and commonly used liquid detergents (e.g. degreasers, multi-purpose) or simple dishwashing detergent. Never use abrasive or scouring substances (abrasive powders or detergents, scouring pads or rough sponges), aggressive detergents, sanitary or descaling agents, cleaners for drains containing acids or strongly acidic salts (based on hydrochloric, formic or aminosulphuric acid, etc.) produced for the cleaning of metals or the oven. Once you have everything you need, we recommend diluting the detergent and following the instructions on the label. Use the sponge or soft cloth with circular and delicate movements, rinsing very well with warm water and drying carefully without leaving streaks. For integrated HPL sinks, avoid pouring hot liquids directly into the sink without first opening and running cold water on the bottom of the bowl (heat resistant up to 180°C). For stubborn limescale, vinegar can be used in the affected area, leaving it to act for a maximum of 5 minutes and rinsing immediately afterwards. If the limescale persists, repeat the operation. The use of concentrated descaling products (e.g. Viakal or similar) is not recommended because their prolonged contact will damage the laminate. Before proceeding with the cleaning of the counter, observe the surfaces to understand well what type of dirt has contaminated the surface and how to remove it. Never allow the stains to set for a long time. Intervene promptly. It is recommended to always start from a small portion of the top to assess the result and then proceed with the entire affected area. HPL high-pressure decorative surfaces must be used with the same care given to other common surfaces of interior furnishings. It is a good practice to always keep the surfaces dry, especially near the joints, so as to protect them from the risks related to excess water and humidity.

  • Melamine laminate
  • Melamine doors are made from a chipboard panel (class E1) covered on one or two sides with melamine paper, a synthetic material made up of very thin sheets of paper impregnated with special thermosetting resins. A further layer of resin with a protective function is then spread on the surface. Initially used as a low-cost product to replace "real wood" or plastic laminate, today, thanks to the development of increasingly realistic papers that are able to simulate the pores of the wood creating roughness that replicates the original material, and thanks also to its remarkable qualities of hardness and resistance to scratches, ease and speed of production, this product has become one of the most valued and popular in the world of furniture. "For these materials it is also important to take into consideration their resistance to light, which tends to be better than that of wood, since the paper is printed with artificial colours" (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina).

    TSS Laminate - Thermo Structured Surface (available only from Creo) is an irreversible thermosetting process: in addition to the particular preparation and workmanship of the surface, it allows for effects of considerable depth, bringing life to surfaces with extraordinary technical performance, high resistance to scratches and to chemicals, as well as an astonishing feel.

  • For the cleaning of melamine laminates only mild products and a soft microfibre cloth can be used. Acidic detergents like bleach or basic cleaners like ammonia are not recommended. In case of limescale stains, products containing weak acids (acetic acid at 10-15% max and diluted citric acid) or lukewarm water and baking soda may be used in case of light traces. Do not use abrasive pastes, powdered products, rough sponges and scouring pads that might compromise the integrity of the surfaces. Products for cleaning glass or specific for laminated materials are recommended. To avoid streaking, when finished wipe the fronts with a dry cloth. Ink stains can be cleaned with denatured alcohol and a soft cloth, but in general alcohol should be used with caution because it is too aggressive. Do not use acetone and other solvents/thinners. When using and maintaining the surface, pay attention to the edges of the panels. In fact, if they are neglected or subjected to excess heat, water and humidity they can weaken and facilitate the occurrence of faults. For this reason, always dry damp vapours, condensation and water and do not use cleaning devices that produce steam at high temperatures.

  • Wood
  • The veneered doors are composed of a chipboard panel by a sheet of veneer (cut) glued with special adhesives. Thin sheets of wood of various thickness are called slices. The panels obtained in this way are cut and edged with a solid wood edge about 1 mm thick. Everything is then painted. The paint (coloured or transparent, to which a final protective coating is added) constitutes an aesthetic variable, but at the same time a protection of the door against external agents, therefore it must be preserved through appropriate use and maintenance. The veneers are made from various woods, and thus also the finishes obtained (called "species"). For the framed doors, the panel is veneered while the frame is in solid wood.

  • "Those who choose a kitchen in wood know that they have to treat it with care. The more you use 'natural' materials – with finishing effects that further enhance the design, colour and warmth of this material – the greater attention must be paid to its surfaces" (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina). Cleaning should be done continuously, avoiding prolonged contact of dirt with the surfaces. Wipe gently with a damp microfibre cloth and dry carefully. Avoid using detergents that are not specific for wood. In any case dry any drops of water and steam to avoid swelling and peeling paint, especially under the sink, near the dishwasher, oven and hood (wood is a hygroscopic material by nature, for this reason all areas exposed to steam, heat and direct contact with water should be carefully monitored). Never use products containing solvents (acetone, alcohol, etc.) or other aggressive substances (bleach, ammonia and derivatives, degreasers, etc.) that could irreparably change the appearance of the wood. To avoid swelling or cracking, ensure a healthy climate in the kitchen environment, neither too dry nor too humid. Wood continuously absorbs and gives off moisture in an uninterrupted exchange with the surrounding ambient air. This dynamic results in the continuous swelling and shrinking of the wood itself, a phenomenon that – if you don't keep the humidity of the kitchens under control, avoiding prolonged periods with "extreme" values ​​– can cause serious damage to the wood (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina). Attention also to light: wood is a natural material that over time matures and changes according to the characteristics of the environment in which it is situated. The colour of wood, for example, is not chemically stable and changes with light radiation over time. Kitchen furniture that is exposed to the sun's radiation with varying intensity can change colour unevenly. For all the reasons above, respecting the natural characteristics of the wood itself it is also a good idea to avoid any form of energetic cleaning (e.g. excessive rubbing, steam jets, etc.).

  • Mortar
  • Cement mortar is a particular type of coating comparable to lacquering: it is an applied product, not a real paint, with a component of craftsmanship that makes this material unique and never the same. The main feature of cement coatings is the appearance, since even if they are applied with a thickness of a few millimetres on the surface of a panel they simulate the "weighty" effect of a building rather than the "lighter" look of a piece of furniture (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina).

    A door in mortar is composed of a support made of wood agglomerate covered in cement mortar or natural lime-based mortar. Cement mortar is made with mixtures derived from carefully studied mixtures of hydraulic binders and aggregates based on quartz and mineral sands with controlled grain size, free of salts and impurities. A percentage (1-2%) of stabilising elastomeric polymers is added to this compound to avoid tensions or cracks generated by sudden changes in temperature and particular dynamic stresses. The surfaces are then treated to allow the application of the skim coat, strictly by hand by expert craftsmen. Once dry, multiple coats of transparent acrylic coating are applied to the surfaces. This treatment protects against the infiltration of grease and dirt. The particular nature of the product and the method of application results in a cement appearance with small imperfections, small holes and angles that are not perfectly squared; the uneven marks of the trowel enhance the craftsmanship even more. The colour of the panels can never be perfectly uniform for this reason: the aesthetics of light/dark as well as the dynamic aspect of the colour is attributable to the material effect of the mortar. Obviously none of these traits can be interpreted as a defect, but are simply attributable to the nature and look of the product itself.

  • For use and maintenance, doors in cement mortar are resistant to abrasions, scratches and any stains. In any case, proper treatment and punctual and precise product maintenance are critical, paying particular attention to the angled parts and the edges, especially for the darker colours (where scratches or wear are more evident). As for the cleaning of the surfaces, it is best to use mild detergents diluted in warm water (proportion 1:10, for example 1 l of water to 0.1 l of cleaning product) with a simple microfibre or wool cloth, just like for the lacquered doors. It is recommended to always rinse the surfaces treated with detergents using a soft cloth dampened with water only, as this considerably reduces any wear of the coating layer that protects the surface. After this step it is advisable to carefully dry the doors with a soft dry cloth. Promptly remove staining and colouring agents like oil, coffee, wine, etc. and acidic substances (vinegar, fruit, vegetables, cola, etc.) to prevent absorption. The use of concentrated products or those containing aggressive substances (acetone, descaling agents, anti-limescale, etc.), abrasive sponges and generally rough materials for cleaning is highly discouraged because they would compromise the integrity of the surfaces and edges. For the same reason avoid shocks or contact with sharp objects (e.g. knives, scissors, etc.), direct heat sources (pots, coffee makers, irons, etc.). Never use steam cleaning systems.

  • Metals
  • Handles

    For handles, daily cleaning should be done with a simple microfibre cloth. For stains just dampen the cloth. More stubborn stains, grease and the like can always be treated with a soft cloth and a mild detergent (better if diluted). The handles come into contact with the hands of those who cook, therefore a mix of grease, dirt, sweat, etc. Obviously all these substances have a corrosive power. It is therefore good not to let them set for a long time, so they should be regularly cleaned with care. This constant attention and care in avoiding aggressive products are fundamental. In fact, the handles have a protective, transparent and invisible patina that once worn off by the substances mentioned above or by aggressive detergents exposes the underlying metal to external agents, thus making them vulnerable to stains, flaking or oxidation.

    Hardware and metal surfaces (drawers, baskets, extractable systems, trays under the sink, legs of tables and chairs/stools, appliances/hobs and painted ovens)

    To ensure the long life of hinges never force the opening angle of the doors or hang on them when they are open. Cleaning should be done with a simple dry microfibre cloth or a dust sweeper. The hinges and other opening systems are treated by their respective manufacturers with special protective pastes that protect the metal parts against stains, oxidation and rust. The removal of this protection can lead to deterioration of these surfaces over time. Therefore, it is useful to lightly dust these components, only using delicate detergents for extraordinary cleaning (stains, presence of foreign substances). All the other metal surfaces must be treated in the same manner, whether painted or with a chrome or satin finish. It is good to clean them with a certain regularity using a dry microfibre cloth, to which a mild detergent can be added in case of stains and grease. Any aggressive cleaning products that could deteriorate the metallic finishes must be expressly avoided. For the same reason it is necessary to be diligent in closing the packaging of detergents or other chemical products placed inside the furniture that could cause oxidation over time due to evaporation. Likewise, attention must be paid to salt, continuous contact with oil and vinegar, water and limescale deposits and moisture in general. Water must always be dried to prevent limescale and oxidation. Painted metals require special attention when it comes to impacts and contact with blunt objects in order to prevent the paint layer from being damaged, scratched and chipped, thus affecting the appearance of the products.

  • Plastic
  • Modern plastic chairs are stylistically versatile enough to go perfectly even with classic tables in wood or marble, creating a pleasant contrast. Methacrylate (commonly known as Plexiglas) is more brilliant than glass due to its lightness and transparency. Unbreakable, resistant to shocks, acids and atmospheric agents, it is also hygienic and non-toxic. Thanks to the ease with which it can be worked it lends itself to various applications in the fields of furniture, industry, crafts, building, lighting and communication. Polypropylene, on the other hand, is a light, ecological, recyclable, waterproof, washable, non-toxic, anti-corrosive thermoplastic material. It stands out for its durability, high chemical resistance, ease of working, good resistance to high temperatures, impacts, water and ease of cleaning.

  • As a rule, plastics attract dust because they have an electrostatic charge, therefore it is advisable to treat them with an anti-static agent to be sprayed and spread with the aid of a soft cloth. The anti-dust effect will be preserved for a prolonged period of time. For ordinary cleaning, when there are no stubborn stains, both methacrylate and polycarbonate can be easily cleaned with a microfibre or 100% cotton cloth together with a mild detergent or dishwashing detergent. The use of woollen and paper cloths should be avoided as they are made with abrasive bonding agents. The removal of stubborn stains and especially fats from plastic can be done with specific products. We advise against the use of alcohol, common detergents or solvents like acetone and paint thinner. Polycarbonate stands up well to acids but not to esters and ketones (e.g. acetone), while plexiglass is resistant to alcohols, unlike polycarbonate which immediately turns opaque. Plexiglass has a lower resistance to chemicals like acids, but has a greater resistance to common detergents. Scratched plexiglass can be polished and brought back to an optimal condition, while polycarbonate cannot be restored. In both cases the use of solvents and rough/abrasive cleaning materials is extremely inadvisable.

  • Stones
  • The stone materials most used for the production of kitchen tops are marble and granite, both stones of natural origin characterised by hardness and low porosity. Granite has a magmatic origin and is mainly composed of quartz, which gives it strength and brilliance. Besides quartz there are also other minerals that influence the colour of this material, which is recognised for its grainy structure. Marble, on the other hand, is of sedimentary origin and is essentially made of calcium carbonate, which in its purest form is white, but when mixed with other minerals takes on different colours, streaks and special aesthetic effects. Stone is a particularly noble material for its natural origin, but also for the beauty and precious character that make these products unique pieces, each different from the other. For this reason each piece will have colour characteristics (shades, streaks, grains) and features that are different from the others (hard to perceived just by looking at a colour sample when making the order). Therefore none of these peculiarities can be considered as defects: they should rather be interpreted as signs of uniqueness.

  • The daily cleaning of stone should be done with a simple damp microfibre cloth and mild detergent, better if poured on the cloth, not directly on the surfaces. The treated areas must always be dried to leave no traces. Only specific products should be used: any inappropriate or too aggressive substance could create problems. While resistant to heat, marble and granite must be protected against direct heat sources: it is always advisable to use trivets or protections to prevent fractures, and cutting boards to prevent scratches and chipping. Keep in mind that these are delicate surfaces due to their porosity and chemical composition. Marble in particular is less hard than granite and more porous, therefore it requires particular attention when in direct contact with staining substances. Moreover, being more uniform and clear in colour it is easier to see stains and marks. In general, both granites and marbles need to be kept away from staining and colouring substances like wine, coffee, tea etc. and from acidic substances like lemon, vinegar, tomato, cola etc. All foods containing citric acid (fruit, citrus fruits, etc.) can be dangerous because they are corrosive. Attention also to fatty substances like oil that can leave indelible streaks if they penetrate into the materials. For this reason the stains must be cleaned promptly in order to avoid absorption that may not be recoverable. Even water should always be dried carefully because it can leave unpleasant limescale stains that are difficult to manage. In fact, with marble and granites it is absolutely impossible to use anti-limescale detergents as they could cause corrosion or unsightly stains. A good waterproofing treatment on the entire surface slows down the absorption time and allows intervening before the liquid enters the stone. However, it does not offer any protection against the corrosive effects of acidic substances. In order to preserve the stone over time, it is essential to repeat the waterproofing treatment regularly using the appropriate products.

  • Polymeric
  • Polymer-coated sheets are plastic materials of various kinds that are directly glued to the surfaces of panels to make doors or cabinets. They are frequently combined with fibre panels since their greater surface compactness allows the application of very thin leaves without altering their flatness, especially for high gloss finishes. They are therefore coating materials like impregnated papers and laminates (Franco Bulian, deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina).

    Polymer-coated doors are composed of a panel of medium-density wood fibres (MDF) whose surface is coated with a synthetic material or PVC of variable thickness that gives the panel a pleasant appearance, making it resistant to infiltration of liquids and shocks. Polymer-coated sheets are available in plain or decorated versions (e.g. wood effect) allowing the front side of the door and the four edges to be covered continuously (the door is post-formed on the four sides with variable radius). The back of the door can be of a different colour than the other sides. In general, kitchens with polymer-coated sheeting have the advantage of being shock resistant, impermeable and easily cleaned.

    The alternative to PVC is PET (polyethylene terephthalate), particularly suitable for 3D coatings. The innovation lies in applying a material normally used in the food sector to the furniture sector (in fact, PET is used to build containers for food, bottles of mineral water or soft drinks). The result is an eco-friendly product, totally recyclable, free from chlorine and toxic emissions into the environment, thus ensuring respect for the health of the end user. Choosing a door in PET means using a sterilisable and hygienic material to your kitchen (in fact, PET is used not only at home, but also in the medical-sanitary field where hygiene and respect for the environment are fundamental). The kitchens made with this type of doors are distinguished by the brightness of their surfaces but also for their practicality of use and maintenance, thanks to the high resistance to scratches, stains, light and heat.

  • To clean this type of door it is advisable to use only a soft, slightly dampened microfibre cloth, adding a mild detergent free of solvents or aggressive substances in case of stains and grease. Dry immediately with a soft, dry cloth, especially along the door joints. In case of more resistant dirt, it is possible to use soft sponges with liquid detergents, e.g. detergents for glass or specific for plastic surfaces. Avoid the use of rough sponges, metal scouring pads, abrasive creams or powdered cleaning products. For limescale use detergents containing acetic acid (10-15% formulation), citric acid or, for lighter stains, warm water and baking soda. Do not use alcohol, acetone or detergents containing chlorine, bleach or ammonia. Cleaning with steam jets is absolutely forbidden because the plastic materials could deform. Pay particular attention to the care of the edges, which must not be subjected to excess heat, water or humidity.

  • Resins
  • Resin sinks are made from a compound of resins and mineral fillers polymerised in a mould. They are resistant to chemical agents and stains, but over time they can lose elasticity and break due to the thermal shocks they have undergone (for example, dilatation and shrinkage attributable to contact with cold and hot water). Cleaning is very simple, but it can become complicated over time if micro-scratches form on the surfaces where dirt can build up. Although not subject to limescale stains like classic metal sinks, incrustations and stains of various kinds can still develop. To prevent this type of situation, cleaning must be done on a daily and regular basis, essential for the maintenance of this material over time. To do it correctly you can simply use dish soap and baking soda, gently cleaning the entire surface with a medium-abrasive sponge, after which you just have to rinse. Another very effective method is to fill the sink with hot water and add dishwasher detergent, allowing it to act. Then rinse thoroughly and wipe with a medium-abrasive sponge. It is important not to use products like hydrochloric acid, ammonia, caustic soda or in general alkaline and/or very aggressive detergents. From this it follows that it is necessary to pay close attention when using products for unclogging drains and pipes. However, it is advisable to follow the instructions provided by the various manufacturers for a more thorough and precise cleaning.

  • Coatings and padding
  • Considering the delicate nature of leather, faux leather, regenerated leather and fabrics, it is advisable to clean them only with specific products. Daily cleaning can be done with a wet microfibre cloth, following up with a dry cloth. For fabrics there are commercially available detergents for upholstery, as well as for leather and related products. The only recommendation is to clean gently, avoiding rubbing energetically to avoid scratches and tears.

  • Glass
  • Glass is a highly hygienic material with a high aesthetic impact that can be used to produce many kitchen components: doors, tops, backs, shelves, appliances/hobs and tables.

    Glass doors are composed of an extruded profiled aluminium frame with a matte or polished, brushed/oxidised or powder-coated finish for a door thickness that can vary between 20 and 24 mm. In some cases the door can also have the particular structure of being hollowed in the back with a PP (polypropylene) panel ensuring greater stability but also a greater aesthetic impact. A glossy or satin glass in bronze, transparent, stop-sol or painted versions with a thickness of about 4 mm is applied to the structure of the aluminium frame. The glass is always tempered, meaning that it is particularly resistant to impact. This process consists in heating the glass to high temperatures (650°C) and then cooling it rapidly with air jets. This makes the tempered glass up to five times safer and more resistant than traditional glass, and if it does break the fragments are tiny, non-cutting pieces. The main feature of glass doors is the combination of a strong aesthetic impact with superior hygiene deriving from the non-porosity of the surface and its impermeability. All this makes glass a material that is resistant to deterioration and aesthetic decay over time if properly used and maintained, not to mention easy and quick to clean. Glass doors are highly resistant to stains and limescale, especially if the glass is polished. It does not absorb liquids, therefore it has an excellent level of protection against oil, coffee and other products used every day. Furthermore, it does not undergo any noticeable dimensional change due to temperature or humidity. "However, be careful of large liquid spills on these surfaces because – while they do not directly affect them – they can still penetrate into the furniture structure through cracks and joints, creating bulges in any wood materials or corroding metallic elements" (Franco Bulian deputy director Catas - Ambiente Cucina). Attention also to the infiltration of liquids and dust in the rear part of the door between the glass and the frame where the HDF panel is not present. This area should be cleaned regularly and then dried thoroughly.

    These technical and aesthetic notes also apply to glass worktops. The main characteristic is that of combining a strong aesthetic impact with hygiene thanks to the non-porosity of the surface, resistance to bending and impact and, last but not least, high resistance to deterioration and aesthetic decay over time. The materials used in the construction of these surfaces are as follows:

    1) Glass, 12 mm thick
    2) Support in water-repellent class E1 V100 laminated chipboard, 28 mm thick
    3) Aluminium or glass edge
    4) Lacquering performed with lead-free paints
    5) Special glues

  • For cleaning glass doors and worktops it is possible to use a soft microfibre cloth and a normal glass-cleaning detergent. Avoid metal scouring pads, abrasive sponges and generally rough cleaning materials that could cause unpleasant scratches. For the same reason, do not use abrasive substances and detergents in powder form. Moreover, avoid all particularly aggressive products (for example, hydrofluoric acid can cause irreparable damage). Beware of shocks and direct contact with very hot or cold objects. More specifically, do not place materials on the surface that are hot, overheated or that have been in direct contact with a flame like pots, coffee makers, plates, griddles, grills, irons, etc. (in these cases always protect the surfaces with a trivet). Do not hit the glass with blunt objects (tools, bottles, pots, etc.) as they may cause chipping. In case of limescale stains, acid detergents or vinegar are acceptable (acetic acid at 10-15% max and diluted citric acid). In the specific case of doors, avoid contact between the inside of painted doors and substances that stain or inappropriate cleaning products.

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