You probably already know that granite is a natural stone that is attractive, durable, and has a long-lasting value to any home, but what you may not know are the more interesting and somewhat obscure facts behind this natural stone. Here are 7 facts about granite that are rarely mentioned. You’ll see what makes granite as popular as it is.
1. Latin Derivative Name
The word granite comes from the Latin word granum. It means a coarse grain. They conferred the name upon the stone because of its structure, which is rough and uneven in its texture. Part of those coarse grains is the mineral Feldspar, which makes up half of the crust of the earth. Granite is also an igneous and plutonic rock. The cooling of molten natural material (magma) and the hardening of the magma formed igneous rocks. Plutonic rocks are common rocks from the earth and granite is part of the family.
2. Granite is One Hard and Dense Substance
Granite is considered one of the hardest, oldest, and densest substances found on the earth. It’s been around for millions of years. As far as hardness is concerned, even precious diamonds can scratch granite. On the Mohs scale, granite comes in at an 8 in hardness. The scale measures hardness and grades minerals on a 1-10 scale. One is the softest while 10 is the hardest. Granite is one hard stone and visiting granite companies nearby and speaking with any representative there will assure you that granite is one of the hardest substances known to man. Besides being a hard substance, granite happens to be very dense. It weighs approximately 162 pounds per cubic foot. It weighs twice that much in volume when submerged in water.
3. Granite Inspired a Commercial Railroad
Granite inspired a first with a commercial railroad in the United States. With granite being a material that’s in high demand, it paved the way for the country’s initial commercial railroad systems. The first railroad, the Granite Railway, linked the town of Quincy, Massachusetts, with a loading dock. From this particular docking area, granite was put on boats and conveyed to the town of Charlestown.
4. Granite is Damaging to Knives
With the hardness factor with granite, you can really damage kitchen knives if you happen to use a knife on its surface. You can cut on a granite countertop, but it’s advisable to use a cutting board.
5. Granite’s Use in Famous Structures
Granite is more than gorgeous countertop material. It’s been used to construct famous structures such as the base of the Statue of Liberty, the sculpted presidential faces of Mount Rushmore and the world’s largest granite building, the Palacio De San Lorenzo de El Escorial in Spain. Other granite structures include the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain in London, England, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., the Signers Monument obelisk (50 feet high) in Augusta, Georgia, the Colossal Red Granite Statue of Amenhotep III, king of Thebes, which is housed in the British Museum in London, England and the Avukana Buddha Statue in the island country of Sri Lanka.
6. Granite Requires Limited Maintenance
Some people believe that granite requires all kinds of special treatment and a constant routine of cleaning, but that isn’t the case. Granite is an easy-care for stone. The only real maintenance is simplified cleaning and resealing. You can either clean with a small amount of a PH balanced soap, water, and a cotton cloth, though you can use water on its own with a lint-free cloth. You can also accomplish cleaning through cleaning products deemed suitable for granite or other natural stone materials.
Resealing is another aspect of maintaining it. Again, consult with Marble Concepts about resealing your countertops or other areas where you have used granite in your home, but you should only have to re-seal any areas about once a year. With granite being naturally porous, you will definitely need to re-seal it. If you don’t, any liquid or stains from acidic food or other substances can pass through the surface and get into the base of the stone. Over time, countertops will experience permanent stains or further damage. That’s why you should re-seal your countertops at least once a year.
7. Granite has Resistance to Heat and is Available in Different Colors/Styles and Increases Home Value
Besides being able to cut and prepare food on granite, you can put hot cookware and pans on granite countertops, but you should probably use potholders, cutting boards, and trivets to avoid any problems.
When you think of the colors, styles, and patterns of granite, you imagine white, black, or beige, but there are other choices in pink, blue, green, and beyond that. The styles run from solid looks and colors to slabs with speckles and veining.
With granite being a popular and desirable stone, once you install it in your kitchen or other areas of your home, you automatically increase the value of your home. If you plan on selling your home in the future, granite countertops in your kitchen or bathroom would definitely increase your home’s value.
Now that you know some interesting facts about granite, you’ll probably want to learn a little more about what granite does for your home once it’s installed and how it increases the value of your home. Should you have questions or concerns, contact Marble Concepts at 215-396-7393. We will be happy to provide you with more information about granite and its benefits to you and your home.