Granite countertops are beautiful pieces of construction material that can be very resilient and durable but are also be prone to a variety of potential problems. If you have an existing granite countertop installation or just plan on installing new countertops in your kitchen or bathroom, there are several common but easy-to-correct mistakes that you should be aware of as a homeowner.
Some homeowners tend to overlook proper maintenance of their countertops that later result in problems resulting in costly repairs or even the replacement of entire countertops.
Care Tip #1 Sealant Application
One of the most common care tips for granite surfaces is the use of sealant. A sealant will help you to not only protect the stone but also make cleaning a much easier process. However, not all granite countertops need this process, but you can know on your own when you need one.
Granite is porous, meaning it has tiny air pockets and pores where water can seep in. So, to see if your granite needs sealing, do the water or oil test. by using cotton soaked in water or oil, dab a small portion of the soaked cotton on the granite counter for 5 minutes and see if it will leave a dark area. If it does, then you might want to call for expert help to apply sealant on your countertop.
Care Tip #2 Granite Cleaners, Sponge, and Soft Cloth
In times when you need to clean up a granite countertop, remember to use granite cleansers that are non-acidic or pH neutral and sponges or soft cloth in wiping spills, grease, or other kitchen related mess to avoid leaving scratches or discoloration on the countertop.
Care Tip #3 Use Coasters and Trivets to Protect the Surface
The next thing homeowners should watch out for is the cracks and chips in the granite countertop. If the marble or other porous surface like granite is subject to constant temperature fluctuations, you may sometimes see some cracking or chipping as the stone’s internal structure wears down throughout the years.
To avoid such events from happening, do not put pans or other hot materials directly on your countertop. Use trivets under hot pots and pans to avoid thermal shock and help prevent cracking. The use of coasters to place your drinks on is one way of protecting your countertop from possible spills that could penetrate its surface.
However, if you already have a stained or chipped granite countertop that seems irreparable, you may need to strip away the old stain or finish by opting to replace it with a new countertop.
Again, for a gorgeous, natural look, it is often recommended that the granite be cleaned with a commercial product designed specifically for stone. These products are available at most home improvement centers and major retailers. To keep the stone smooth and shiny, use a soft cloth to clean the surfaces regularly, and avoid pans and pots directly on the surface.
Granite has a natural beauty that can be enhanced when it is maintained in this fashion. By doing so, you will enjoy the beauty of your beautiful granite countertops for many years to come.
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