How much do stainless steel countertops cost?
How much do stainless steel countertops cost?
$80 – $200 cost per square foot installed
$2,400 – $8,000 average total cost installed (30 – 40 SF)
Stainless steel countertops cost
Stainless steel countertops cost $80 to $200 per square foot installed or $2,400 to $8,000 for an average-sized kitchen, including the material, fabrication, and installation. Prefabricated stainless steel countertops come in standard shapes and sizes costing $35 to $85 per square foot.
|Kitchen size||Countertop area||Average installed cost|
|Small kitchen (70 – 100 SF)||20 – 30 SF||$1,600 – $6,000|
|Average kitchen (100 – 200 SF)||30 – 40 SF||$2,400 – $8,000|
|Large kitchen (200 – 400+ SF)||40 – 60 SF||$3,200 – $12,000|
|Kitchen island, tabletop, or bar top||5 – 20 SF||$400 – $4,000|
Stainless steel countertop prices per square foot
Stainless steel countertop prices depend on the size, if the unit is prefabricated or custom-made, and whether it's designed for residential or commercial use.
|Level||Cost per square foot installed||Details|
|Prefab stainless-steel countertop||$35 – $85||Standard-sized unit with predetermined sink and backsplash integrations|
|Custom stainless-steel countertop||$80 – $200||Custom wood backing template wrapped in 16- or 18-gauge stainless steel|
|Commercial stainless-steel countertop||$100 – $250||14-gauge stainless steel to withstand the heavy use|
Prefab vs. custom steel countertops cost
Prefabricated stainless-steel countertops are available in standard shapes and sizes, with an integrated sink in a set location. More expensive custom countertops are designed to your kitchen dimensions, with custom cutouts for flexible sink and appliance placement.
|Size||Average unit cost*|
|Prefab metal counter, no sink||$150 – $2,500|
|Single-basin steel sink||$1,200 – $2,700|
|Double-basin steel sink||$2,200 – $3,700|
*Not including installation.
Metal countertops cost
Metal countertops are made of thin sheets of metal covering an MDF or hardwood backing. Contemporary residential kitchens tend to use sleek and shiny stainless steel, while more traditional kitchens may opt for the aged patina of zinc, copper, or pewter metals.
|Material||Cost per square foot installed||Details|
|Stainless-steel||$80 – $200||
|Zinc||$90 – $200||
|Copper||$100 – $200||
|Pewter||$400 – $500||
Stainless steel countertops installation costs
The base price for stainless fabrication typically includes the cut outs for sinks, faucets, and outlets as well as the hardwood base that holds the steel. Items not included in the basic quote may include:
|Item||Cost per square foot||Average cost (30 – 40 SF)|
|Metal materials & fabrication labor||$70 – $180||$2,100 – $7,200|
|Installation labor||$10 – $20||$300 – $800|
|Total cost to install||$80 – $200||$2,400 – $8,000|
Labor cost to fabricate stainless-steel countertops
Labor to fabricate stainless-steel countertops is typically lumped with the material costs in an estimate. Installation labor averages $10 to 20 per square foot, or between $30 to $100 per hour for a skilled professional. Other common installation costs include:
Kitchen demo – Removing the old countertops costs $50 to $400, while gutting the entire kitchen costs $500 to $2,500.
Backsplash – Adding a backsplash costs $10 to $50 per square foot, depending on the material.
Hiring a plumber costs $45 to 150 per hour to disconnect and reconnect the existing plumbing.
Installing new plumbing costs $1,700 to $4,000 for an entire new kitchen.
A new sink installation costs $330 to $1,300 installed.
A new kitchen faucet costs $120 to $300 installed.
Hiring an electrician costs $50 to $130 per hour.
Replacing an electrical switch costs $50 to $150.
Replacing a GFCI outlet costs $90 to $200 while installing a new outlet with new wiring costs $150 to $350. Outlets located near kitchen or bathroom countertops must be GFCI models.
Steel countertop prices by gauge
Stainless steel is available in a variety of gauges that describe the thickness of the metal. The lower the gauge, the thicker, stronger, and more expensive the steel.
|Gauge||Cost per square foot installed||Common usage|
|20 or higher||$30 – $60||Not recommended for long-term use|
|18||$50 – $175||Residential kitchens|
|16||$80 – $200||Residential and outdoor kitchens|
|14||$100 – $250||Commercial kitchens|
Replacing vs. repairing metal countertops cost
Repairing a damaged countertop costs $200 to $800+, depending on the material. Stainless steel surface blemishes are easily buffed out with an abrasive pad and a good scrubbing. Deep gouges and dents may require replacement of the stainless-steel covering.
Steel countertops cost vs. other materials
When comparing costs for other materials, stainless steel falls in the mid-high range for residential kitchen countertop prices.
|Countertop material||Average cost per square foot installed|
|Granite countertops cost||$80 – $150|
|Laminate countertops cost||$20 – $80|
|Marble countertops cost||$40 – $150|
|Quartz countertops cost||$50 – $200|
|Stainless steel countertops||$80 – $200|
|Stone countertops cost||$50 – $150|
|Wood countertops cost||$50 – $150|
Stainless steel countertop pros and cons
There is a good reason you'll find stainless steel countertops in almost every professional kitchen. Stainless steel looks great, is easy to clean, and stands up to heat, water, and stains. However, the cold, industrial look does not appeal to everyone.
Frequently asked questions
Why are stainless steel countertops expensive?
Stainless steel countertops are expensive because the soldering and metalwork requires expert skill.
How long do stainless steel countertops last?
Stainless steel countertops last 20 years or more. Installers recommend selecting a thick, low-gauge metal with a hardwood base to protect against dents.
How long does it take to install stainless steel countertops?
Stainless steel countertops take about a day to install and are cut on-site as needed.
Where to buy stainless steel countertops?
You can buy prefab stainless steel countertops from restaurant suppliers and custom counters from kitchen remodelers or directly from a metal fabricator.
Getting estimates from stainless steel countertop installers
When hiring a stainless-steel countertop installer near you, be sure to:
Look for installers who specialize in stainless steel countertops, as the material has different installation requirements than granite, quartz, laminate, or other types.
Compare at least 3 estimates with similar materials.
Look for licensed, bonded, and insured companies that have been in business for 5+ years.
Read their reviews on HomeGuide and Google.
Look at their portfolio of past steel countertop installations.
Request references with contact information.
Ask for a detailed contract and warranty in writing before the project starts.
Do not pay in full before the job is complete. Follow a payment plan instead.
Questions to ask
Consider asking contractors these questions when hiring a stainless countertop installer:
What experience do you have with stainless-steel countertop installation?
Are you licensed, bonded, and insured?
Does your estimate include measuring the space and building the wooden template?
Do you recommend stainless steel for the entire kitchen?
How long will the installation take?
Does this project require a permit, and do you handle the permitting process?
How much do you require up front as a deposit?
Do you offer a warranty on your labor?
What happens if you scratch or dent the countertop during installation?