If you've recently bought a home with granite countertops, you may not have any idea when they were sealed last. You may also have questions about how to care for granite if this is the first time you've had stone countertops. Here are a few things to know about sealing and caring for granite.
Do The Water Test
One way to tell if your counters need to be sealed is to do the water test. Drop a small puddle of water on the countertop in an inconspicuous place. Then monitor the puddle to see how quickly it stains. Water stains aren't permanent, so if the puddle makes a stain, it will dry out and disappear in a few days. If the water seeps into the stone right away, you definitely need to apply a sealer as soon as you can. If the water sits for several minutes before it stains, or if it never stains at all, then you don't need to apply a sealer yet, but you should continue to do the water test every few months or so.
It's possible a high-quality sealant was applied when the slabs were cut. If so, it may be several years before the granite needs to be sealed again, especially if it is the type of granite that is least absorbent. When you do the water test, if a stain develops in a few minutes but not right away, that means you may need to seal the granite. However, you don't want to apply the sealant if you don't have to because that can make the surface look hazy. Instead, you may want to monitor your countertops over the coming weeks for dark spots around the sink and other wet areas. Another thing to watch for is dark spots under wet pans and glasses that sit on the counter. If you suddenly start seeing spots, then let them all dry out and apply granite sealer.
Apply Granite Sealer
If your granite needs to be sealed, you can buy the sealer from a home improvement store and do it yourself. It's a lot like using furniture polish. Just make sure the counters are clean and dry first. There are different types of sealers, so you want to follow the instructions for application that come on the label. Generally, you apply the sealer with a soft cloth and let it dry for a day, and then apply a second coat. How often you'll have to do this depends on the type of sealer you use, the type of granite you have, and how much wear and tear your counters get. You may have to apply new sealer every couple of years.
Try To Keep The Granite Dry
Even when your granite is sealed, you may get water stains if you leave something wet on the counter for a long time. Different types of granite have different degrees of absorbency. If you have stone that is very porous, it will be more prone to staining even when it is sealed. The solution is to keep the counters as dry as possible. You can wash them to keep them sanitary, but dry them afterwards. Use coasters under glasses and clean up spills as soon as you can. Avoid using abrasive cleaners or scrub pads on granite because you can wear down the sealer, which causes water to stain more easily.
Maintaining your granite countertops isn't hard to do. Keeping them dry will quickly become second nature. It's a small price to pay for upscale, beautiful countertops that give your kitchen a gourmet touch. Contact a company like GranBrazil Inc to learn more.Share
1 December 2016
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