Let’s take a minute to talk about kitchen counters. They’re the star of the house, the focal point of the most popular gathering place in your home. They’re a versatile, utilitarian space whose contents and layout hold the power to tell a family’s entire story – from what coffee you prefer to your favorite colors to the design elements that speak to you.
Kitchen countertops are there for us to write on, lean on, sit on. They hold grocery bags and handbags, briefcases and backpacks, all while playing host to dozens of last-minute birthday present wrappings and school art projects.
They are the workhorses of the family home. They see the bulk of the daily grind, the chopping and slicing, the coffee cups and wine glasses, the hot pans and steaming bowls of soup.
It goes without saying: when it comes to kitchen appliances, our countertops see the most use and, by default, the most wear and tear of them all.
So why is it we tend to ignore them once they’re installed? It’s time to show your kitchen countertops some appreciation, and attention!
Know Your Material And Keep Them Looking New
Do you know that 80 percent of the shoppers on Realtor.com agree that “kitchens sell homes”?”
Your kitchen countertops, whether installed before you bought your home or chosen with great care during a remodel, are an investment –– and one that you should protect on a regular basis.
Whether your countertops are granite, quartz, marble, or butcher block, you want them to look just as beautiful today as the day they were installed. Cleaning your countertops takes a little know-how, but once you know what your material requires, the processes are simple.
- Granite and quartz: Gentle, low-chemical cleansers formulated specifically for granite or quartz or mild dish soap and warm water is all you’ll need for regular cleaning.
- Laminates: Mild dish soap and warm water with the occasional degreasing formula of 50/50 white vinegar and warm water solution will easily do the cleaning trick.
- Butcher block: These counters require a bit extra attention. In order to keep your butcher block functioning, they will need regular oiling with food-safe oils or conditioning with commercially available butcher block conditioners in order to decrease the chances of having to have the surfaces re-sanded and re-sealed.
Want to know more about materials such as quartz or granite? Check out our handy Material Guide for more information on these versatile and durable countertop options.
Maintaining Your Countertops
Some materials are higher maintenance than others. For example, granite countertops will need to be sealed regularly –– either by a professional or by using do-it-yourself products available at home supply stores.
The same can be said for butcher block countertops that need regular oiling and conditioning. Some quartz countertops might require sealing, but the majority of these materials require nothing more than a quick clean and polish.
Quartz countertops are incredibly durable, but they can crack if not properly maintained. Avoid sudden or prolonged drastic changes in temperature (such as leaving ice bags on the counter for an extended period, or placing hot pans directly on the countertop) variations as these could cause cracking or discoloration.
If cracks do appear in your countertops, don’t fret. Contact a reputable countertop repair service and quickly get your counters back into tip-top shape.
Are you thinking about replacing your countertops and want to ensure you get the most value for the minimal upkeep? Take a look at our Countertop Buying Guide for a more in-depth look at countertop features.
Stubborn Stains Happen
One of the best ways to keep your kitchen countertops free from staining is to wipe up any spilled liquid as quickly as possible. But sometimes it might take a little more elbow grease to get the job done.
If you happen to get a stain on your granite countertops, watch this video to find out a quick tip on how to remove it.
First and foremost, stay away from harsh and abrasive chemicals and scrubbers. There is no quicker way to break down your countertop’s sealant than to attack it with acidic cleansers.
Contact a stone professional for ideas and an evaluation if a stubborn stain persists despite your best efforts. Solutions are available, but using an incorrect technique or product can do more damage than what already exists.
When Should You Replace Your Countertops?
Just like kids, spouses, pets, and houseplants, our countertops require love and attention in order to thrive. And by knowing how to show that love and attention, you’re going to go a long way in maintaining the look, shine, beauty, and durability that you’ve come to depend on in your kitchen countertops, day after day.
But what happens when your countertops start showing their age, or that shine just doesn’t last as long as it used to? It may be time to consider replacing them. And with all the options and considerations you have, you might feel a little overwhelmed. But there’s no need to navigate the process alone!
If you’re thinking of remodeling of your kitchen, or replacing worn, outdated countertops with material that is beautiful, stylish and easy to maintain, contact the professionals at Crowley’s today to get a detailed quote.
We follow a unique process that ensures you get stunning countertops and the stress-free experience you deserve. Plus, we can install your counters just six days after templating! To learn more, contact us today to get a free quote.