Cleaning and Caring for your Granite Countertops

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Granite Countertops: Care and Maintenance

For years, Granite has long been the “go-to” stone for Countertop Projects.  Granite is a great stone to use for countertop projects because it’s very durable, easy to install, and has a lot of design variations for every home.  At least 60% of homes in North America are fixed with Granite countertops.  Whether you are installing brand new granite countertops in your home, resurfacing old ones, or just moved into a house with granite, this post is for you.  Caring and cleaning for your granite the proper way will ensure that your stone keeps its shine, durability, and integrity for life.

Prevention

Preventing a stain is a much more attainable feat to accomplish, than trying to take a stain out of the stone.  The best way to prevent staining is to seal your countertops.  Before sealing your countertops, make sure to clean up crumbs, oils, spills or debris.  Your countertops must be clean, to ensure that nothing gets sealed onto the stone.  Sealing is crucial for granite, due to the natural holes and pitting in the stone’s surface.  A sealant is applied to the entire surface of the stone and prevents crumbs and germs from going into these pits, as well as creating a stain proof layer over your stone.  It is important to keep up with sealant every two to three years, to keep your granite in tip top shape.  In addition, make sure to clean up spills immediately.  At International Granite and Stone, we use DryTreat.

Cleaning

When it comes to cleaning your granite countertops, it’s important to remember that certain products can wear down the sealant on your counters, making them more susceptible to staining. 

The following products should NOT be used to clean granite countertops, as their acidity can corrode the sealant:

  • Vinegar
  • Windex
  • Bleach
  • Abrasive Sponge
  • Gritty Cleaners
  • Wax
  • Polish

You CAN use mild soap and water, as well as specialized granite cleaners.

Q: “My Granite Countertops got stained, what can I do?”

A: Make a paste of baking soda and water and gently scrub the stain in a circular motion until it’s gone. Rinse off the paste afterward, and repeat as necessary.  May need to be repeated a couple of times for a tough stain.  For even TOUGHER stains, try leaving the paste on the stain, with plastic wrap sealing it to the countertop.  Let it sit until it is completely dry (can be a couple of days), and wipe away with a soft cloth.

Pro Tip:  To add a little bit of shine to your countertops, apply a small amount of cooking oil onto the granite and buff away!