Granite is one of the hardest substances on Earth, but even if you are extremely careful and perform all the maintenance necessary to keep your granite looking beautiful, things can go wrong. These are some of the most common types of damage that can occur in granite countertops and tips for how to prevent them.
When you had your granite counters installed, you may have been told that they were stain-resistant. The fact is that stain “resistant” is not the same as stain “proof.” Granite can still stain if a liquid penetrates the surface. Oil, fruit juices, wine, coffee, and other acidic substances are the most common culprits in granite stains. In fact, your granite water damage is even possible if your water is mineral-rich. You can remove a stain that is oil-based by using a paste made of baking soda and acetone while stains made from organic materials, like wine or juice, can be removed by placing a paper towel soaked in bleach over the stain. Your granite is less likely to stain if you use a high-quality granite sealer which may be found at local fabricators. It is also important that you wipe up any spills as quickly as possible.
When granite is exposed to an acid like vinegar, soda, or ammonia, it can cause what is known as etching on the surface, a dulling that may look like a stain. Again, if your granite is properly sealed, there is less chance of a substance etching the surface. You also need to avoid using harsh cleaning products on granite as it could also cause etching. Instead, always use mild soap and water with a soft cloth when you clean your granite surface. If you have noticed etching on your counter, wipe the area clean with a wet rag and fill the etching with an epoxy designed for granite repair. Let the epoxy dry based on the manufacturer’s recommendations and then apply granite sealant. In many cases, it is better to work with a professional, like Marble Concepts, to repair etched granite countertops. They can recommend the best products and either repair the counter for you or guide you through the steps you need to take.
Granite Water Damage
It may seem odd, but it is possible for your countertops to suffer water damage, leading you to ask an expert how to remove water stains from granite. Although granite water damage is less likely if your counter is sealed properly, there may still be tiny holes that will absorb water. If you let water stand on your counter for a significant amount of time, it can cause dark spots in the stone. If your water is rich in minerals, the stain may appear as a white, filmy residue. Use a baking soda and water poultice, spreading a thick layer over the spot, and let it dry for at least 24 hours. Rub off the dried material with your hand and then use a soft cloth with warm water to clean the area. Continue until the spot is gone completely.
Damage from Impacts
Accidents happen and it is possible someone could drop a heavy pot on your granite causing damage. This is more likely on the edge or around your sink, but a crack could develop in the center of the counter as well. In some cases, the chips may not be visible, but they may be able to be felt if you run your hand along the edge. Chips and cracks need professional repair which means it is recommended you contact a granite fabricator like Marble Concepts.
If you have noticed the surface of your granite countertop seems hazy, it is more than likely not damaged but that you are using the wrong cleaning product. What you are using may be abrasive or acidic and it is damaging the surface of your counter. You may also be using too much product and not getting the residue completely off when you clean. Always use mild soap and water to clean your counters or purchase a cleaner designed specifically for granite. Wipe the surface dry after cleaning with a soft cloth to prevent streaking and remove any residual residue.
Cracks and Scratches
It is actually fairly difficult to crack granite countertops, although it can happen if an extremely heavy pot is dropped into the center or someone stands on the counters to reach an item in a high cabinet. Often, cracks are due to improper installation and correction will require a professional. Scratches are less common in granite as it takes something harder to cause a scratch, like diamonds, rubies, or emeralds. That means a ring slid across the counter could cause a scratch, but other items are not likely to do so. It is still recommended that you use a cutting board on granite counters, not to protect the counter but to keep from dulling your knives.
Granite flooring is becoming more popular, and the same maintenance used for granite countertops is recommended for granite floors. Sweep the floor often to keep dirt from sticking to feet and causing scratches. Only clean your granite floor with recommended cleaners, avoiding any that may be too harsh for the floor. Place throw rugs at entrances from outside to catch any dirt that may travel in on shoes or feet.
If you have noticed problems with your granite counters or floors, you need to reach out to a professional to see what needs to be done to bring them back to their original glory. Marble Concepts can explain how to remove water stains from granite, fix cracks, etching, or chips or help you address scratches, stains, and more. You can arrange a no-obligation consultation by filling out the easy online form or giving us a call today. Our friendly customer service representatives will guide you through the process and help you get the repairs you need as quickly as possible.