If you have recently had granite countertops installed in your kitchen, you may think that their durable properties mean you do not have to do anything special to them. However, if you want them to maintain their pristine appearance, avoid the following mistakes while caring for your new granite countertops.
Forgetting to Reseal the Countertops
Since granite is naturally porous, the stone is sealed before it is installed in your kitchen to help protect the surface from dirt and chemicals that can penetrate into the stone and stain it. However, this sealant eventually wears down when exposed to oils, harsh cleaners, and even citric acid such as that found in lemons.
As part of your countertops' care, you need to remember to reapply a sealant at least every couple of years. If your counters get higher than average usage, you may need to do so once a year. If you forget to reseal the surfaces, tiny scratches and stains could eventually wear down and dull the finish.
Neglecting to Wipe Up Spills Right Away
If you spill something while you are preparing food or cooking, you may leave it until you are finished with your task. However, the longer the spill remains on granite, the greater the chance that it will stain the surface.
Especially if you spill something acidic, such as tomato sauce, the food will penetrate the holes of the porous granite quickly. If allowed to soak deep into the granite, the food will remain and start to build up. Eventually, you will have stains pop up on your countertops.
Using Solvent-Based Cleaners
Since you know you need to keep your countertops clean, you may reach for the nearest cleaners, such as an all-purpose solution, cleanser, or window cleaner. However, any of these solvent-based cleaners will damage the granite in two ways.
First, the solvents in the cleaners will strip away the layer of sealant on the countertops. This will leave the granite unprotected, eventually leaving the surface stained and dull. Second, harsh cleaners can start to break down the surface of the granite, leaving small areas of damage that will make the surface more likely to crack.
Instead of using solvent-based cleaners, use dish detergent and soap. Or, for better results, use a cleaner that is specifically designed for granite.
Avoiding the aforementioned mistakes can help keep your countertops beautiful and free from damage. If you have any questions about taking care of your granite countertops or need product recommendations, contact the company from which you purchased them.