Laminate: A set on backsplash, while providing easier, cheaper installations, is the worst type for long term water resistance and maintenance. If this technique is used in sink or other water resident uses, make sure that a silicone, or other water resistant adhesive is used to seal the joint between the splash and the top. A device called a smart clip has recently been introduced to blend the ease of a set on splash with the rigidity of an attached splash top. It is an improvement over the standard set on splash, but not by much.
Solid Surface: Set on backsplashes in solid surface applications have a much lower risk factor than their laminate counterparts. Owing to the water resistant nature of the material itself, there is no threat of material damage.
Description: Splash is placed on top of countertop, usually after installation. Splash is usually fabricated in lengths and cut to size as needed. The main advantage of this technique is to provide fast on site installations. It is preferred by contractors under deadline It is, however, the lowest quality laminate, and average quality solid surface splash application.
Variations: Set on end splashes can be combined with attached or coved backsplashes when a compromise of lower cost installation with better quality backsplash is preferable to a lower quality top that has all set on splashes. On solid surface tops, the top of the splash can be shaped into radii, or bevels, OGees, etc.
Applications: Ideally, light to medium duty countertops and workstations with little or no threat of water damage. Set on splashes are desired for their quick installation and lower cost of fabrication.