If you’re considering upgrading your countertops during your kitchen remodel, granite should be one of the top material choices on your list. After all, with proper maintenance granite is a durable stone that will stay in great condition for many years. Here are some easy steps to help protect and clean this gorgeous countertop stone.
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1. Seal Your Counters
After you’ve found the best granite countertop special and had your new counters installed, they will likely be coated with a penetrating sealant that will help make them impervious to staining. Confirm with your contractor that this was done, and if it wasn’t you can apply a sealant yourself. Purchase a high-quality product and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the best results. Granite countertops typically need to be resealed every one to five years for the best protection.
2. Protect Surfaces
Take care never to set hot pots and pans or utensils directly on your granite countertops. While granite can stand up to high temperatures, prolonged exposure may still damage the stone or seal. If you are placing a container of liquid on your counter, set a coaster or pad beneath it to avoid moisture absorption. Even when spills aren’t likely, condensation from cool liquids can still cause problems. Also be wary of setting acidic items like citrus or soft drinks directly on your countertops, as the acids can eat away at the protective sealant.
3. Clean Daily
It’s a good practice to wipe down your granite counters daily to keep them free of dirt and grime. Just a few swipes with a microfiber cloth will leave the surface free from dust. For even more cleanliness, go over your counters with a damp cloth and a bit of dish soap, then rinse and dry with a soft rag. Abrasive cloths can cause scratching and aren’t necessary for getting a deep clean.
When prepping food on granite, be sure to blot up any spills as soon as possible to avoid staining. Be especially careful with dark liquids like red wine or juice. Avoid using cleaners that are acidic or ammonia-based, as they can damage the sealant. Being careful and engaging in gentle, routine cleaning is the most effective way to keep your counters sparkling.
4. Deep-Clean Occasionally
When it’s time to give your counters a deep scrubbing and disinfecting, natural products make the best choices. A simple slurry of baking soda and water can help remove any built-up marks from fat or oil, while baking soda and hydrogen peroxide are effective for releasing water stains. Finally, although granite naturally repels bacteria, it’s a good idea to disinfect it from time to time. A solution of equal parts of water and isopropyl alcohol that is sprayed on the surface then rinsed off should do the trick.
With some simple care, granite countertops will maintain their good looks and smooth surfaces for years to come. If you opt for granite, keeping your counters sealed and cleaned will go a long way toward making your remodeled kitchen age well.