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The Secret To Keeping Your Stone Countertops Looking Brand New

September 11, 2018

Granite Countertops
Nicole Crowley

Published by Nicole Crowley

If you’ve recently replaced, or are thinking of replacing, your kitchen counters with granite or quartz, two of the features that most likely aided in your choice is their beauty and versatility.

Granite-Kitchen

Granite and quartz countertops are classic, visually beautiful countertop options that have stood the test of time and provide sound returns on investment.

As with any investment, you’re going to want to get the most out of them. The first thing you’ll need is a solid understanding of the differences in durability and maintenance between granite and quartz. Our Free Material Guide quickly explains those differences.

Download Free Granite & Quartz Material Guide

The second thing you’ll need to know is how to properly clean and maintain your new counters.

When it comes to cleaning and maintaining your granite or quartz counters, it’s imperative to remember that one method does not fit all. Understanding the dos and don’ts of how to care for your new countertops will keep them in top condition and looking brand new.

Dos And Don’ts When Caring For Granite

Granite is a beautiful, naturally occurring stone that is popular for kitchen countertops. Granite comes in many natural shades, colors, and patterns. It is a hard stone, which makes it naturally durable.

Cleaning and caring for granite countertops is really quite simple.

Do clean your granite countertops regularly. For cleaning your granite countertop, you’ll need:

  • A gentle cleaning formula specifically made for granite or quartz, like these.
  • If you don’t have a specific stone cleaner, warm water mixed with mild dish soap will do.
  • You’ll also need microfiber cloths for polishing.

That’s all it takes. But clean doesn’t always translate to “looking brand new.”

Do seal your granite counters regularly. Granite surfaces do need to be resealed regularly to help protect them from stains. Sealing can be done professionally or by the homeowner. The process is no more difficult than waxing your car, and can easily be done by the homeowner.

Don’t let stains set in on your granite countertops. Despite its durability, granite can stain – especially if you’ve lapsed on keeping your granite counter sealed, or spills have seeped into the stone. Wipe up liquid spills as they occur to avoid the problem.

Don’t use abrasive cleaners, towels, or sponges. Avoid abrasive cleaners and tools, as well as acidic cleaners when cleaning your granite countertops. Abrasive and acidic cleaners can rapidly break down the sealant on your granite countertops and expose it to etching, causing a dulled, worn look.

If your counters have a stain, try to get to it right away. If it’s already set, tackle it with a paste of baking soda and water (for oil-based stains) or baking soda and hydrogen peroxide (for water-based stains – like wine).

Spot test an area of your counter before using this stain removal method to ensure the color of your stone is not affected. Cover the paste with plastic wrap, tape down, and let it sit for a couple of days before rinsing. Repeat the process as needed until the stain is removed.

Dos and Don’ts When Caring For Quartz

Because quartz is a resin-bound, engineered stone that mimics the visual appeal of its natural counterpart, granite, it does not require the same level of maintenance as granite.

So, if you think cleaning and maintaining a granite countertop is simple, you’re going to be pleased to know that a quartz countertop can be easier!

Do clean your quartz countertops regularly. For cleaning your quartz countertop, you’ll need the same as above:

  • A gentle cleaning formula specifically made for granite or quartz, like these.
  • If you don’t have a specific stone cleaner, warm water mixed with mild dish soap will do.
  • You’ll also need microfiber cloths for polishing.

Just like granite, regular cleaning with warm, mild dish soap every day, followed by a dry-down buff, will keep your quartz counters clean and shining.

Quartz counters don’t need sealing. Another benefit of engineered stone is that the resin used to hold the quartz crystals in place is all the sealant you need.

Don’t use abrasive cleaners, towels, or sponges. Though quartz is largely stain-resistant, sometimes marks can show up and be resistant to regular warm water and mild dish soap. When this happens, use:

  • Nonabrasive cleaners
  • Nonabrasive sponges

Don’t place hot pans directly on quartz countertops. While there may be no immediate damage visible to your countertop, hot pans, slow cookers, griddles, and any other heat-producing appliance can discolor or warp quartz. Use trivets and potholders when placing hot pans or using appliances on countertops.

Quartz countertops are highly durable and scratch-resistant but keeping that showroom shine will require you shelve the abrasive cleaners when cleaning and maintaining your counters.

Maintenance Made Easy

Whether you’re wondering how to keep your granite or quartz countertops looking brand new or weighing the amount of time and effort necessary for maintenance before you make your final choice on a granite or quartz countertop, we’re here to help!

If you’re looking to replace your kitchen countertops with something that’s beautiful, stylish, and won’t demand hours of weekly attention to clean and maintain, you really can’t go wrong with either quartz or granite. Contact the professionals at Crowley’s today to get a detailed quote.

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You can also download our FREE Countertop Buying Guide for information about edging, color choices, sinks, backsplashes, and more.

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Tags: Granite Countertops, Material Selection, Quartz Countertops, Countertop Care