clean, polished granite countertop

Tips for Keeping Your Granite Countertops Looking Great

Granite countertops have long been a symbol of luxury and elegance in kitchens, bathrooms, and even outdoor kitchens, too! Their natural beauty, durability, and resistance to heat and scratches make them a popular choice for homeowners. To ensure that your granite countertops maintain their timeless charm, it’s essential to provide them with proper care and upkeep. Let’s look at some tips and tricks to keep your granite countertops looking stunning for years to come.

How to Avoid Damaging Your Granite Countertops

Be Careful With Heat

Never set hot pots and pans on your granite countertops! The heat can damage the sealant used on the granite surface, and can cause small cracks in the granite. Always use trivets or hot pads under hot pans and pots.

If your bathroom has granite countertops, don’t set that hot hair straightener or curling iron directly on the surface! Most curling irons have a fold-out stand that keeps them off the countertop, and for hair straighteners you can buy a stand, mat or holder. Just because it’s granite doesn’t mean it’s not impervious to damage!

Use Cutting Boards

While granite is resistant to scratches, it’s not completely scratch-proof. To prevent any unwanted scratches, always use cutting boards for food preparation. This extra layer of protection will not only help maintain the integrity of your countertop’s surface, but also keep your knives sharp!

Clean Your Messes

To keep your granite countertops looking pristine, clean up any spills and messes as quickly as possible. This helps to avoid stains from things like coffee, red wine, and tomato sauce. In the bathroom, water is everywhere, but you don’t want it on your countertops! Wipe up water right away, otherwise it will leave unsightly water spots when it evaporates.

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Regular Cleaning

A consistent cleaning routine is key to preserving the beauty of your granite countertops. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Use a soft cloth or a sponge to wipe up spills promptly. Avoid abrasive scrubbers or scouring pads that can damage the surface.
  • A mixture of warm water and a few drops of mild dish soap works well for routine cleaning. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners as they can degrade the sealant and damage the stone.
  • Dry your countertop thoroughly with a clean, soft cloth or paper towel to prevent water spots.
  • Avoid Harsh Chemicals – When you’re cleaning your granite countertops, avoid using harsh or abrasive cleaners. Additionally, steer clear of acidic substances like vinegar, lemon juice, or ammonia-based cleaners. These can erode the sealant and potentially damage the surface of the granite.

How to Handle Stains Swiftly

If you notice a stain, especially from substances like red wine or oil, take these steps:

  • Create a paste of baking soda and water and apply it to the stain.
  • Cover the paste with plastic wrap and let it sit for a few hours or overnight.
  • Wipe away the paste and clean the area with warm water and a mild dish soap.

Seal Your Granite

Granite is a porous stone, which means it can absorb liquids and stains if not properly sealed. A high-quality granite sealer should be applied periodically, typically every one to two years. Sealant will not only help to prevent stains, but also provides a barrier against everyday wear and tear.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Start by cleaning the countertop thoroughly and allowing it to dry.
  • Apply the sealer in a thin, even layer, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Typically, you can use a clean cloth or sponge to spread the sealer across the surface.
  • Let the sealer sit for the recommended time (usually 15-30 minutes) to allow it to penetrate the stone.
  • Wipe off any excess sealer with a clean, dry cloth.

Regular Dust and Debris Removal

Like all home surfaces, your granite countertops are prone to accumulating dust, crumbs, and other debris, which can dull their shine over time. Make it a habit to wipe down the surface with a dry, soft cloth or a microfiber duster regularly.

Your Granite Countertops Will Look Great for Years

Granite countertops are an investment in both beauty and durability. With the right care and upkeep, they can grace your home for generations. Following these maintenance tips will ensure that your granite countertops remain a stunning part of your kitchen or bathroom, bringing an air of timeless elegance to your living space. Thinking about granite countertops? Contact Designer Stone today and let the experts help you select the right granite for your home.