Granite countertops are a top choice when designing kitchens and bathrooms. Not only do they offer a stunning one-of-a-kind design component to your space, but granite countertops are also strong, resistant to stains, and somewhat easy to care for. However, there are some essential things to consider.
To keep your granite looking beautiful and extend its life, you should take the time to learn how to care for it, including cleaning protocols, hazards, and precautions. Following recommended guidelines, you can be confident that your countertops will remain beautiful for many years to come.
What is Granite?
Granite is a type of stone formed with percentages of quartz, feldspar, and other materials. Granite is tough, stain-resistant, heat resistant, comes in multiple colors, can be designed seamless and, is relatively easy to clean. Nonetheless, with all their beauty and durability, granite countertops are not indestructible and do have a few vulnerabilities that you want to be aware of.
Using knives on granite countertops is more of an issue for the knife than the countertop. Granite is strong and can withstand most everyday wear and tear. While a knife can cause some minor scratches or chips on your countertop, the repeated force against the granite will cause your knives to dull, resulting in the need to be sharpened more often or replaced sooner when you use your countertop as a cutting board. Designing your perfect kitchen has taken time and money; protect your investment in both your counter surface and kitchen knives by using a cutting board.
While working with raw meat or seafood on your countertop won’t damage it, it can cause more serious issues. Preparing raw meat or seafood on your countertop can transfer a bacterial infection to your countertop, causing health issues for you and your family. While a properly sealed granite should keep bacteria from making its way in the tiny spaces within your countertop, are you willing to take that chance? Furthermore, you may be more apt to use harsher chemicals to clean the area you worked with the raw meat and seafood, which could cause damage or dullness to your counter’s sealant. Our suggestion would be to use a raw meat plastic nonporous cutting board that can be thrown in the dishwasher.
Although granite tends to be less reactive to acids, similar to those found in citrus fruits, vinegar, and sodas, these substances can etch the surface of your countertop, damaging the sealant. Damaging the seal can make your countertop more susceptible to staining. Household items such as vinegar, lemons, limes, soda, perfume, lotions, nail polish, and soaps are ones to watch out for, as they can cause some damage. You want to also refrain from using any soaps that contain ammonia. Again, we recommend using a cutting board or coaster on your kitchen granite countertop and baskets, and trays for your bathroom countertop.
The kitchen tends to be a gathering place in most homes. Late-night conversations, family gatherings, entertaining, and homework tend to occur in one of the most used areas of the home. Your granite countertop is formidable and can take much weight, but only when that weight is concentrated in the middle of the countertop. Sitting or standing on the edge of the countertop can cause stress fractures and breaks, leading to you having to replace the entire countertop. Replacing a countertop can be cost-prohibitive for some.
Spills are unavoidable, especially in the kitchen. The spills are not an issue for your granite. It is what you do after a spill occurs that affects your countertop. Leaving a spill can etch your countertop, damage your sealant, and cause a stain. You may also find yourself placing containers like perfumes and hair products on your bathroom countertop. Leaks or drip residue can end up reaching the countertop before you realize it. Be sure to use warm soapy water or cleaners formulated for granite countertops (non-abrasive) whenever you spill or notice a spill—leaving your countertop looking beautiful.
Although granite can tolerate high heat, it is not recommended that you place hot pots and pans directly on your granite countertop. Granite is a natural product and can withstand a brief encounter with a hot surface; however, excessive exposure to heat can weaken the sealant. To prevent heat damage, always have a trivet, heat pad, or potholder when cooking in the kitchen or placing a hot hair tool directly on your countertop.
Granite is a beautiful choice for any area of your home. Using the proper care techniques will undoubtedly extend the life of your countertop. Making sure it remains a key element in the design of your home.
Continental Granite offers the highest quality granite, so your countertops will stand the test of time. In addition, we offer the products to keep them clean and looking their best.
Continental Granite & Cabinets offers our clients a wide variety of custom fabrication needs, such as countertops, fireplaces, stairs, wall cladding, flooring, bars, furniture pieces, custom trim and much more. We also offer a wide range of products to make such creations such as Granite, Marble, Onyx, Travertine, Silestone, Cambria, Caesarstone, Corian Quartz, etc. Continental Granite & Cabinets is proud to be a family-owned and operated business and treats its customers as if they were one of their own. We’re located in Bunnell, Florida, just 6 miles Northwest of Destination-Daytona in Ormond Beach, Florida, serving all of Central Florida and beyond. We believe our relationship with our customers lasts much longer than the current project we are working with them. To learn more, call us today at 386.586.7059 or fill out our contact form here.