Care And Maintenance For Your New Countertops
The easiest way to keep your stone looking great is to avoid bad habits that may damage it. Granite, marble, travertine, limestone, soapstone, quartz and solid surface are similar in many ways, but their differences require varying degrees of maintenance. However . . .
If you utilize the granite countertop care and cleaning procedures that follow for all your countertops.
Blot up spills immediately!
Acidic substances like wine, coffee, fruit juices, tomato sauce and sodas will not etch granite like they do marble, but they could potentially stain the surface. Cooking oils may also leave a stain if not wiped up.
Clean surfaces using a sponge or soft cloth. With a mild soap and water solution.
Dish soap won’t permanently damage your granite, but repeated use of soap will cause build-up (yes, even if you rinse) and dull your granite countertops shine. So, using dish soap for regular granite countertop care is not recommended.
Use coasters under all glasses, bottles and cans.
Again, granite countertops won’t etch and using coasters on dense and/or properly sealed granite is not an absolute necessity like with marble, but using coasters is just a good practice to protect all surfaces.
Use trivets and hot pads under pots & pans.
Yes, you can take a hot pot off the stove and put it right on granite countertops without any problems. It is possible for granite countertops (or any stone or quartz) to suffer “thermal shock” and crack, but rare. You don’t really want to put hot pans on any other surface like soapstone. It is good practice just to err on the side of caution.
But you must consider other issues as well…
Any grit between the pot and the granite countertop surface may scratch the surface–even granite countertops. Granite is very hard and can take tons of abuse without any significant damage, but it can develop light surface scratches or pitting in high-use areas around the sink and cooktop.
It is not common, but it is possible. And ALL other surfaces are softer that granite. Better safe than sorry.
If it does happen, don’t fret too much. Most chips and scratches can be repaired, but it’s best to avoid them by following the granite counter top care tips.
Also, once you remove the hot pan from the countertop the surface will be very hot and may burn.
Use cutting boards!
Again, avoid the possibility of scratching the surface of your granite countertops and protect your knives. Cutting on stone will dull and damage your knives’ edges quickly.
Don’t: use generic cleaning products such as bleach, glass cleaners, de-greasers or other common household cleaners.
These products that you buy at your local store contain acids, alkalis and other chemicals that will degrade the granite sealer (and will etch marble) leaving the stone more vulnerable to staining.
Trying to save money by using these chemicals only ensures that you’ll spend a lot more time and money on you granite counter top care in the long-run.
Don’t: use vinegar, ammonia, lemon or orange as cleaners. Again, most common and name-brand household products are not good for cleaning granite countertops (and definitely cannot be used for marble, travertine or most other stones)
Don’t: use bathroom, tub & tile or grout cleaners.
The powders and even the “soft” creams contain abrasives that will scratch and dull surfaces.
Don’t: sit or stand on your countertops.
Unlike laminate countertops, granite, marble and quartz countertops are very hard, but not flexible and they DO NOT have a plywood backing so too much weight in one spot could cause a crack.
Don’t: store toiletry products directly on your countertop surface.
Hair products, perfumes, colognes, nail products, creams, lotions and potions have a tendency to spill or leak and go overlooked.
Even when sealed, a substance that remains on the surface for an extended period may stain granite countertops (and etch marble and other stones).
If you have a Quartz product please refer to the manufacturers guide as they may require special care to maintain your warranty with them.