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Should granite, quartz or marble be used for kitchen countertops?

Granite and quartz are both heat, scratch and stain resistant making either of them the perfect choice when choosing the material for your new kitchen countertops whereas marble was incur scratches and stains and is more often used for bathroom surfaces. 

Can I cut on granite countertops or put hot pots on the surface?

Because granite is one of the hardest stone substances it will not be affected by knives when cutting directly on the surface or typical kitchen heat. However, just because you can does not mean that you should. Setting hot pots directly on granite may cause the granite to absorb the heat leaving an unsightly mark on your granite countertops that can not be removed; therefore, we do not recommend you put hot pots on the surface. 

Can granite countertops be damaged?

Granite is a durable substance that is much harder than marble and can withstand most elements like heat and cold. However, this does not mean that it will withstand every element it comes in contact with. High impact blows can harm granite causing it to chip due to its crystallized structure. If not properly sealed, granite can absorb substances, such as oil, which can cause discoloration or unsighlty spots to form.

Can granite be repaired if damaged?

It is extremely difficult to damage granite, but if it does happen then there are certain ways to fix it. A crack or etch can be professionally sealed making the damage appear less noticeable. 

Does granite stain?

Yes, granite can stain. It is even more possible for it to stain if left unsealed. Occasionally, if liquid is left on the granite surface for an extended period of time, it may develop a dark spot. This will fade as the granite dries, but if granite is properly sealed before installation, stains should not be a problem.

Does granite harbor bacteria?

Granite is continuously chosen to be used in the food industry as well as the medical field due to its sanitary qualities. With regular cleaning and care, there are practically zero chances that granite countertops in the kitchen will harbor bacteria and cause an illness. In fact, granite is far more sanitary than butcher block countertops and laminated materials.

How to clean granite countertops?

Sealed granite countertops are fairly easy to keep clean. You can use dish soap, powdered soap or over the counter all-purpose cleaners that are approved for use with natural stone on granite countertops without causing any damage to the surface of the granite countertops.

Will granite countertops raise the value of a home?

Granite countertops can raise the value of a home. This is due to the durability and long-lasting quality of the stone surface. Granite countertops are practically impenetrable and compliment any decorative style which makes them an ultimate investment for years to come.

What do I need to do in order to care for and maintain my new countertops?

Using coasters under glasses and placing hot items on trivets or pot holders will help to keep your natural stone looking like it did the day it was installed. Many food items and drinks may contain acids that could etch or dull your stone. Countertops should be cleaned with a mild liquid dishwashing detergent and warm water. Do not use any household cleaning products, as this may break down the sealer on granite and may actually damage the surface of marble, limestone, or travertine.

What is a sealer and how do I know when it is time to apply one to my countertops?

A sealer is like a coat of armor for your countertop. Natural stone can be dense or porous, and is absorbent to some degree. Stones that have more swirls or veins tend to be more porous and absorbent. Sealer will decrease the opportunity for something to stain or harm your surface. A protected stone will be easier to clean, resist staining, and provide a safer and healthier environment. By sealing your stone, you will more easily retain the natural beauty of the surface.

To test your countertop’s sealant, apply a drop of water at least ½-inch in diameter to the stone and let stand for at least 15 minutes. Cover with a glass to reduce evaporation. If the stone does not darken then it is probably sealed against water-based stains. To ensure the beauty and longevity of your stone, we recommend sealing your stone yearly.

What is the difference between marble and granite?

Most of the time, marble and granite can be identified by visible particles at the surface of the stone. Marble has veining, and granite has a flecked or granular appearance. Natural stone is categorized into two general categories according to its composition: Siliceous stone is composed mainly of silica- or quartz-like particles and tends to be very durable and easy to clean. Included in this category are granite, slate, and sandstone. Calcareous stone is composed mainly of calcium carbonate. It is sensitive to acidic cleaning products and frequently requires different cleaning procedures than siliceous stone. These types of stones include marble, travertine, limestone, & onyx.

What is the difference between Quartzites and Granites?

Granite is an igneous rock found more abundantly than quartzite, deep in the earth’s crust, providing the base for the many continents’ sedimentary rock. Quartzite consists of a larger volume of quartz than granite—under heat and pressure combined, quartzite is formed from sandstone and quartz, and depending on the amount of pressure to which it is subjected, empty grains of sandstone are stuffed with quartz. This means quartzite is actually harder than granites—on the Mohs scale of hardness from 1 to 10, with 10 being the hardest, granite measures in at around 6-6.5, and quartzite measures in at approximately 7. 

Are marble countertops heat resistant?

Yes, marble countertops are heat resistant. They can withstand heat without melting or cracking. 

Can you put a hot pan on a marble countertop?

We do not recommend you placing hot pans or other high heat items on the marble countertops as they may cause the surface to discolor.

Do marble countertops stain?

Yes, marble countertops can stain. If a staining liquid is allowed to seep deeply into the stone, the resulting stain can be very hard to remove. We recommend that you seal the marble surface to help prevent stains.

How do you care for marble countertops?

It’s recommended that your marble countertop is sealed once a year to help prevent staining. Spills should be wiped up immediately so they don’t have a chance to seep deeper into the surface. For everyday cleaning, you can use simple water and dish soap on a washcloth to wipe your marble counters. Over time, marble is not the easiest to maintain surface but it still appeals to many homeowners because of its beauty.

How thick are marble countertops?

The standard thickness for marble countertops is two centimeter-thick slabs (3/4 of an inch) or three centimeter-thick slabs (about 1 1/4 of an inch). The two-centimeter slab was the industry standard but recently the 3-centimeter slab has become more popular. The standard thickness for marble countertops is the same as granite.