Granite Care and Maintenance
Granite is a natural product and requires some special considerations, but simple care and maintenance will keep your Granite Countertops looking beautiful.
Here are instructions and recommendations for routine care and cleaning:
- Dust surfaces frequently
- Blot up spills immediately
- Use a clean cloth for best results
- Clean stone surfaces with a neutral cleaner, such as mild liquid dishwashing detergent and warm water. Too much cleaner or soap may leave a film and cause streaks.
- Rinse the surface thoroughly after washing with the soap solution and wipe until dry with a soft cloth.
- Re-seal Granite every 6 months or at least once a year.
- DO NOT use vinegar, lemon juice, ammonia or other cleaners containing acids. These products containing acids may etch the surface and reduce the sealer’s properties,
- DO NOT use scouring powders or creams; these products contain abrasives.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. How often do I have to seal my granite countertops?
A. Depending upon usage, your Granite countertops should be sealed twice a year. Cabinets and Countertops recommend sealing every 6 months because some household cleaners may cause your sealer’s bond to weaken. Granite countertops must be sealed once a year at the minimum.
Q. How do I know if my Granite countertops are still sealed?
A. A good way to test the sealant’s effectiveness on your Granite countertops is to spill water on a small area. If the water beads up, Granite countertops are still sealed. If the water starts to seep into the Granite, causing the Granite to appear darker, it is time to re-seal.
Q. What kind of sealer should I use?
A. There are many stone sealers on the market today. Cabinets and Countertops recommend a Stone Impregnator. This sealer penetrates the stone and works its way into the cracks and pores in the Granite to keep out all other foreign and potential stain forming materials.
Q. Is one sealer better or easier to use than another?
A. Yes. Cabinets and Countertops recommend solvent-based sealer rather than water based. A solvent-based sealer works better to protect your investment and is easier to use.
Q. How hard is it to seal Granite countertops?
A. With a solvent-based sealer, the entire process will only take about 10 minutes. Simply spray on the product and wipe it onto your Granite countertops. Let it dry to a haze (This is very important. In order to get a good bond, you need to allow the sealer to penetrate or impregnate your Granite). After 5 to 10 minutes, use a clean terry cloth or paper towel to wipe off the haze. You have now SEALED you Granite countertops. With a water-based sealer, the process can take several hours with many coats and some buffing required. See the backside of sealer for specific instructions.
Q. Why does it appear that my Granite has pits in it?
A. “Pitting” is a characteristic of all Granite. It is more noticeable in some colors. Pitting is described as tiny, sometimes slightly rough indentions or pock marks. Rest assured that this does not decrease durability of the stone.
Q. Why does it appear that my Granite has cracks in it?
A. These “surface cracks” are know in the industry as fissures. These are common with many colors of Granite that have a linear type of pattern. They do not penetrate the Granite and do not in any way affect the integrity of your Granite countertops.
Q. What should I use to clean my Granite?
A. Warm, soapy water is an easy way to effectively clean you Granite countertops and keep them looking beautiful for a long time. Simply use a soapy sponge or cloth to wash the Granite countertops and be sure to completely dry with a clean cloth to avoid streaking.
Q. How do I disinfect my Granite?
A. Cabinets and Countertops suggest using anti-bacterial Windex or bleach diluted in warm water. Simply dilute the bleach with warm water and wipe onto the surface of your Granite countertops. It may cause some streaking or hazing. You may need to use a damp cloth to remove the haze. Dry completely with a dry cloth.
Q. Why does my Granite feel gritty?
A. Your installation may have involved a cook top cut out or perhaps an over mount sink cut out. Granite dust is very fine and may linger in the air for days. As it settles onto your countertops, it will leave u gritty texture. Simply clean your Granite with soapy water as discussed above and your gritty problem should be solved.
Q. Why do my Granite countertops look hazy?
A. This is usually caused by cleaning the surfaces of your Granite countertops but not completely drying it. It may also be caused by using too much soap when cleaning your Granite countertops. We recommend using a damp towel followed by a dry towel to remove the haze. Sealing with a water-based sealer can also leave Granite countertops looking cloudy.
Bonus: An important fact to remember: Darker surfaces show finger prints, smudges and dirt making it a little harder to maintain than the lighter colors. But with the above information, you should be able to take care of your countertops like a pro.