Pros and Cons of Wood Countertops: A Comprehensive Guide

By Artem Kropovinsky, Interior Designer and Founder of Arsight |
December 29, 2023

Interior designers are creating irresistible aesthetic designs that entice homeowners who love beautiful spaces. While marble, granite, and other natural stones can transform the look of any space, why do we underestimate the beauty and durability of wood? It can be used for similar purposes and will be a valuable addition to traditional and modern spaces.


Which Are the Most Readily Used Wood Countertops?

If you like the touch of wood in your interiors, you may find many prized wooden countertop varieties in the market. Some of the best ones include:

Oak Wood

Oak is one of the hardest and most affordable wood varieties available in a range of beautiful colors.

Birch Wood

Birch, a multi-purpose and long-lasting wood type features hardwood with a splash of wood grains.

Walnu Wood

Walnut is one of the most cherished wood varieties for kitchen counters. It would be the best pick if you want to add an intense golden or black touch to your interiors.

Wenge Wood

It is an African hardwood that people love for its strength and deep color.

Maple Wood

Maple is a preferred material for wooden countertops due to its incredible properties at a cost-effective price.

Teak Wood

Teak wood sourced from Mexico features rich colors and extra oil content that help it withstand moisture in the surroundings.

Cherry Wood

Sourced from North America, it is known for its rich color and grained texture.

Hickory Wood

One of the hardest woods in the US, hickory can easily withstand pressure, scratches, and staining. You would love it because of its light to medium color tone.

Andrew Meredith

What is the Cost of Wooden Countertops?

If you plan to install wooden countertops in your interior spaces, you must consider a few important things such as the wood type, strength, width, finishing, and installation service. Here you can get an idea that will help you calculate an estimate of wood counters.

Material Cost

The material cost varies from 30 to 70 USD per sq. foot. However, you can determine according to the wood type you choose. Some expensive varieties like bamboo and walnut might range from 125 to 300 USD per sq.foot.

Labor Cost

The labor cost of installing wooden counters is almost 20 to 80 USD per sq. foot. Arsight can help you connect to the best expert in your area who will be responsible for creating the design, installation process, and after-service protocols. 

Some extra costs may include cuts and designs, old counter removal, and wood sealing. So, on average the wooden counters will cost you something between 50 to 150 USD per sq. foot, and that will include material and labor. A room of up to 40 sq. feet may cost you almost 1500 to 6000 USD. Also, you should opt for finished wood material as it guarantees durability and easy maintenance. On the contrary, unfinished wood has a lower cost.

How to Maintain Wooden Counters?

Wooden counters may require special care and regular maintenance. 

  • Try to keep the surface dry to prevent it from rotting. 
  • Immediately clean the surfaces using good-quality cleaning solutions and a soft sponge. 
  • You should purchase specialized wooden cleaning liquids and avoid any harsh chemicals for long-lasting use. 
  • As wooden counters are easily stained and damaged by heat. So, you should use surface protectors when placing hot utensils to protect them from damage. 
  • Performing cutting and chopping activities directly on wood may also cause permanent scratches. So, it is best to use a chopping board for this purpose.

What are the Pros and Cons of Wood Countertops?

While wood is a good choice for countertops, it’s always better to have an insight into the pros and cons of wooden countertops before making the final decision for your interior remodeling project.

Pros of Wooden Countertops


Some wood varieties such as oak and butcher block promise high durability. However, other varieties can also last for decades with proper care and maintenance. While the home interior is all about aesthetics, it is best to oil the counter surfaces every few months to preserve the wood and maintain its fresh look. You can also tone down any scratches or burn marks using sandpaper.


Wooden countertops feature timeless beauty and can be a perfect addition to your home. Moreover, wood material can be tailored according to size. Experts can easily shape it to fit it around appliances, corners, and other kitchen items.


Wooden interiors can positively impact your health by reducing stress levels, lowering blood pressure, and saving you from many heart diseases.


Everyone loves peaceful and quiet environments as it helps them relax and unwind after a hectic day. The best thing about wood is that it absorbs sounds and vibrations, hence, offering peace of mind.

Easy Maintenance

One misapprehension about wooden counters is that they require a great amount of care and maintenance. However, this is not true. Wooden counters are quite easy to maintain. You just have to follow a regular cleaning routine, use good quality products, and oil the surfaces after a few months.

Cons of Wooden Countertops

Prone to Heat Damage

Wooden counters if installed in kitchens may get damaged when it comes in contact with hot pans or utensils.

Easily Scratched

You will have to be careful when preparing food on wooden counters as it may scratch if used roughly or for chopping activities.


It is a known fact that wood is combustible and must be kept safe from fire.

Water Damage

Usually, wooden counters are sealed with oil and sealants to protect them from water damage, rotting, and discoloration. However, if the sealant is of poor quality or removed, then water damage is very likely.


Wooden counters are a good option for countertops and may offer value for money. However, you must act sensibly when choosing the material. Determine your needs before you finalize the specifics. You must opt for very strong wooden varieties if you want to install them in hard-wearing areas. Some people have a limited budget, then they can opt for wooden planks. Live edge countertops are gaining popularity, though these vary in size, so it's best for people living on islands

Artem Kropovinsky is an author, interior designer and the founder of Arsight, a globally award-winning design firm based in New York. With over decade of experience, Arsight specializes in complex projects, including new constructions, complete residential renovations, restaurants, and retail stores.