Take Proper Care of Your Granite Countertops
The beloved American poet, Robert Frost, certainly was on to something when he penned his famous poem “Nothing Gold Can Stay” about the fleeting nature of all things. When it comes to home improvements, some present a more lasting impression than others. If you are considering upgrading to granite countertops for your kitchen, wet-bar, or bathroom, you will be delighted in the durability of your investment. Granite is beautiful, extremely durable, heat-resistant, adds elegance to any space, and will delight the cooks in your kitchen for years to come.
Granite countertops can be easily maintained by cleaning them daily with a damp cloth or a granite cleaner. A damp cloth can remove any dust, crumbs, or powders that may accumulate during the course of your day. Depending on the color and make-up of your granite, dust, crumbs, and powders may blend in well enough so that unless you are looking for these tiny specks of debris, you won’t even notice them.
If your granite surface is to be used for food preparation, such as in a kitchen, a daily disinfecting may be needed. As granite naturally forms in the earth, minuscule pores and crevices form. These tiny spaces are usually invisible to the naked eye, and cannot be felt. Your granite countertops appear to be an extremely smooth surface. However, bacteria and germs can make themselves at home in these tiny fissures. If the thought of these tiny microbes lurking in the surface of your countertops bothers you, fear not! To disinfect kitchen countertops, simply clean with hot soapy water. Again, depending on the color and make-up of your particular granite, you may notice a residual film left behind by the soap, which is easily wiped up with a clean, damp cloth.
Granite countertops in the bathroom can be cleaned in the same way. Residual smudges, streaks, fingerprints, grime, stray hairs, soap build-up and toothpaste smears can be wiped away with hot, soapy water. Acidic cleaners can potentially bleach or stain granite, so we recommend using a soap with a neutral ph, such as a mild dish soap.
Quarterly to Annual Care
Although granite is generally stain resistant, it is not totally impermeable to liquid. Water spilled on granite may soak into its surface if not cleaned up promptly. This water “stain” will disappear as the water dries. If an oil based liquid is spilled on the granite, it may leave a temporary stain which can be removed using a special paste that will draw the oil out of the stone. To prevent spilled liquids of all types from marring beautiful granite surfaces, we recommend properly sealing your stone. The amount of time between sealing will depend on the color, nature, and use of your counter tops. If you cook in your kitchen on a daily basis, regularly entertain at your wet bar, or if traffic in your bathroom is especially heavy, more frequent sealing is recommended. Sealer kits can be purchased at most home improvement stores and are easily applied. Most over-the-counter sealers will need to be given time to cure for proper performance.
Some homeowners seek professional assistance from a licensed contractor who has access to higher grade commercial sealing products. These commercial sealers often come with warranties of up to 15 years.
Those who decide to upgrade to granite countertops will want to protect their investment by keeping their new surfaces looking timeless. Is your home ready for an upgrade that will endure? Robert Frost is essentially correct in his assessment in the fleeting nature of all things around us, which is why it is important to invest in things that have longevity and will contribute to the beauty of the space in which you dwell. For more information on the proper care of granite countertops, or if you have other questions regarding updating your living space, contact us.
Infographic from: http://www.visualistan.com