Granite is for more than Kitchen Countertops

When most people think about granite they automatically think about kitchen countertops or bathroom vanities. However, granite has been one of the most popular building materials for thousands of years. It has many more uses than countertops including indoor and outdoor applications such as paving stones, bridges and monuments. Don’t forget one of the largest monuments made of granite, Mt. Rushmore in the Black Hills of South Dakota.

There are many rocks sold under the name of granite and are quarried from many areas around the world. It is available in a wide range of colors such as black, white, green, blue, grey, red, pink and brown. Due to the stone’s interlocking crystal composition it can be polished to a high-gloss shine and is resilient to scratches and surface damage.

The most popular use of granite in the United States is kitchen countertops and many retailers and home improvement suppliers offer a large number of granite products. Installation however, requires certain specialized tools and is best left to professionals with the experience in working with this stone. In addition to large slabs used for countertops, it is available in the form of tiles that can be used as backsplashes on counters and can be used to create specially designed work stations throughout the home.

Flooring and wall tiles made of granite offer a high-luster finish and on the floor wear well and offer a more elegant appearance. Although geologists would call the stones used for this application gabbro, the stone trade simply refers to it as granite.

Another obvious use of granite is in the memorial industry in which headstones are made of the material. It is durable and when polished provides for a lasting impression. Granite is often considered a permanent material, and the word is often used to describe many items and personality traits unrelated to stone, but the reference makes it an ideal material for items that are expected to last a long time.

Unfinished granite stones are often used in construction for walls in the form of blocks. They are often finished only on one side, leaving the stone’s natural appearance to show on the outside. Granite that is used adjacent to windows and doors however, are usually finished on all sides to provide smooth interlocking joints.

Another exterior use of granite is as paving stone. With the variety of available colors it can make an interesting driveway or walkway and will provide a lasting presence. Proper craftsmanship is required to ensure the foundation for granite paving stone will not shift and damage the overall appearance of the stone. While granite spent a lot of time at the top of the list of paving materials, blacktop and concrete, due to their lower costs, have replace it as the number one paving material.

In addition to building construction granite has been used as piers for bridges providing long-lasting strong support for roadways. The structural use of granite has been around for hundreds of years and is still in use today. However, many times an exposed section of a granite stone is hidden by an exterior veneer to improve the appearance of the visible portion of the structure.

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Comments 3 comments

engr Peter Igweneme 4 years ago

Which is stronger granite or marble

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Better Yourself 4 years ago from North Carolina Author

Peter - Granite it harder and stronger than Marble. Granite is volcanic rock and marble is sedimentary rock.

Utlwanang 3 years ago

Love this kitchen-and your site- Provided lots of good info! I am lokiong for something that looks like Calacutta Gold Marble, but without the maintenance. Can you make any suggestions?Thanks!

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