Top Ten Tips in Maintaining Your Granite Countertops
Aside from its striking appearance, the main reason for granite’s rise to the luxury countertop of choice has to be its durability. Those who look forward to enjoying their granite countertop for years can keep it looking brand new by keeping a few simple maintenance tips in mind. While granite is famously low-maintenance, this shouldn’t be confused with “no maintenance.”
1. Don't Push It
While granite is well-known for its resilience, it isn’t invincible. It is strong, and it is known for being more heat-resistant than a lot of other countertop options. However, extended exposure to extreme heat and very heavy weights should be avoided. For example, standing or walking on the countertops is not recommended.
2. Keep Daily Cleaning Simple
You don’t need to use specialized cleaners for daily cleanup. Most experts recommend a soft cloth, such as a microfiber, to be used with water and very mild dish soap. This combination should be sufficient for regular cleaning.
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3. Avoid Known Dangers
Spills don’t need to cause a panic, but some substances are more likely to damage the countertop than others. Acidic foods or drinks, such as coffee, soda, and citrus, should be wiped up immediately and completely, and acidic cleaners, such as ammonias or vinegar, should not be used on granite.
4. Keep Spills from becoming Stains
Spills become stains when they are allowed time to soak into the granite, and they are spread when they are rubbed and scrubbed. This means that spills should be attended to quickly, and that instead of scrubbing at the stains, they should initially be blotted. Blotting, in combination with the soap and water combination mentioned above, is the best approach to initial spill treatment.
5. Pick the Perfect Cleaner
As mentioned before, harsh chemical cleaners could damage granite countertops. Instead, cleaners with a neutral Ph are recommended. Many cleaners are designed specifically for granite countertops. The place of purchase or installer may be able to recommend a good cleaner. If for some reason you’re unsure of a cleaner’s effects, test it on a less visible area and allow significant time to pass.
6. Know your Stain
Dealing with a hard-to-remove spot can be made easier if the source of the spot is known. Oil spots, for example, should be treated differently from water-based stains. Recalling recent spills, mentally reviewing your kitchen activities, or scanning the area for the likely source can help define the best treatment.
7. Apply a Poultice
Experts recommend a mixture called a poultice to deal with stains. This mixture could be homemade, a combination of either flour or baking soda along with either water, dish soap or hydrogen peroxide. A poultice could also be purchased at a home improvement store. This mixture is then spread over the area and left overnight before being rinsed away thoroughly.
8. Keep the Seal Strong
Granite generally needs to be sealed to achieve maximum life and durability. Buyers can often find out from the place of purchase or installer whether their granite will already be sealed, whether it needs to be sealed, or whether a seal is unnecessary. If your granite countertop is protected by a seal, that seal should be periodically tested. Water sprinkled on the counter top should bead up rather than sink into the surface. Otherwise, the seal may need to be re-applied.
9. Inspect Regularly
As owners get used to their new countertop, they tend to grow less careful and observant. To catch any stains, potential cracks, or scratching patterns, establishing an informal inspection at least annually can be a good idea. Perhaps it could become part of a spring cleaning routine. Problems in the making can be spotted and addressed before they become larger issues
10. Consult a Pro
With granite countertops as popular as they are, experts are not hard to find. Establishments that sell granite countertops, professional cleaning services, and home improvement experts could all be potential sources for information and even repair, upkeep, or cleaning services. When it comes to a valuable investment like granite, don’t guess. Contact a professional.
With these tips in mind, anyone can keep their granite countertop in great condition for years.
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