Your countertops are officially installed and now you’re probably wondering (with a slight concern), “How do I care for these gorgeous, granite countertops”?
This question is usually top of mind when purchasing granite; especially when it comes to maintaining an investment that is meant to last the lifetime of your home.
Thankfully – once installed – granite countertops are low maintenance if you follow some basic tips and tricks to keep your surface looking brand new.
How to Care for Granite Countertops
Because granite is known for its hard-as-rock material and resistance to heat, dents and scratches there’s a misconception that this natural stone doesn’t require regular maintenance…not true.
It does require low, daily maintenance.
And it all begins with sealing.
Sealing Granite Countertops
Think of sealing as an extra layer of protection between you and your granite countertops.
Because granite is naturally porous, sealing them can add that buffer between everyday life wear and tear, spills, bacteria and any potential stains.
Not to mention, sealing your countertops will help maintain their beautiful appearance over their lifetime.
Some granite countertops are pre-sealed, but if that isn’t the case for you, sealing them can be just as easy with the proper sealant and direction from your local showroom and/or stone yard.
We all love a clean kitchen but know that can be difficult to maintain due to everyday life happening in a place where we cook and share meals.
One of granite’s best qualities is its ability to keep bacteria at bay, but it still requires cleaning and disinfecting; just not the harsh kind some of us are used to (we’re looking at you bleach!).
Do NOT Use:
• Vinegar (Don’t think we can’t hear your sigh on this one!)
• Acidic Cleansers
By using these harsh cleaners your counter can become etched and dull over time. A look we’re pretty sure you’re not going for, right?
So, what CAN you use on granite?
Simple soap and water will do just the cleaning trick!
• Clean daily w/ damp cloth and dishwashing soap
• Rinse with clean water and dry with a soft cloth
Easy maintenance if you can remember to keep any bleach, vinegar and harsh chemicals far from your gorgeous granite.
So, what happens when you need a little bit more elbow-grease for your counter?
Use a granite-specific cleaner for any tough stains and deep cleaning needs you might have.
Although you won’t need a granite cleaner for daily use, it’s helpful to keep one on hand for any of those “uh-oh” spills or times when a deeper cleaning is necessary.
Heat and Granite
You’ve made your favorite dish and now it’s time to serve it.
Before you just plop that pan down on your countertop, remember that granite may be super solid, but it doesn’t love to feel the heat all the time.
Sure, you can place your hot dishes down from time to time; just don’t make it a habit and an even better solution would be to place a barrier between the heat and the counter (placemat, etc.).
One of the biggest shocks to the granite system is extreme temperatures (aka “thermal shock”).
Going from cold to hot and vice-versa can place stress on the countertops and over time can cause hairline cracks.
(You just shuttered envisioning a crack in your granite, didn’t you? We feel you!)
Keep your counter free from anything sizzlin’ or freezin’ and cracks should be the least of your granite worries!
Granite and Knives
Now that you have that hard-as-a-rock, highly durable granite — can you start to use your countertop as a cutting board?
As fun and convenient as that sounds, don’t throw your cutting boards out!
Granite is so robust – even more than the blade in your knife – that your knives most likely won’t last long.
If you enjoy the look of your countertops and don’t want to dull your knives, or possibly allow any moisture from foods being chopped, into the granite – keep your chopping board…your knives will thank you!
Granite countertops truly can be low maintenance if you remember to –
• Quickly clean any spills (to avoid stains setting in)
• Stick to soap and water for daily cleaning
• Deep clean with a granite-specific cleaner
• Extreme heat and/or cold is not granite’s best friend
• Keep countertops out of your meal preparation – let the cutting board take a chopping from your knives, not the granite.
All of these tips will help your granite countertops be the happiest natural stone on the block for years to come!
Call or stop by our Sol Granite showroom in Pueblo, Colorado where any of our knowledgeable team members are ready to assist you in making your dream home a reality!