Granite countertops are very popular in kitchens and although they are quite beautiful, you want to take care of them as well, in order to ensure that they stay that way for longer. Here is everything you shouldn’t do with granite countertops.
Don’t Clean Countertops With Harsh Cleaners
Cleaning granite countertops is nothing less than a nightmare. There are special cleaners that are great for cleaning these countertops, which don’t damage them and leave them looking squeaky clean. What you don’t want to do when cleaning these countertops is use cleaners that are harsh.
There are a lot of extensive and very harsh cleaners available, which claim to clean any type of countertop, but you don’t want to use those cleaners on granite, because that’s like waiting for a disaster to happen.
Using Acidic Chemicals Is A Big No
Another thing that you want to avoid cleaning granite countertops with is anything with acid or vigorous substances.
Acid reacts very violently with granite and because it’s a stone, any harsh acid or even bleach, will eat away the material and it will ruin the countertops altogether. When buying cleaners, you want to select something which has a neutral pH and doesn’t react with natural stones.
Letting Spills Sit For Too Long
Spills are the main culprit for stains and you definitely don’t want your granite countertops to get permanently stained. Stains can happen anywhere and anytime and if you’re not maintaining your countertops, then those stains can become permanent and they can’t be removed until you have the countertops professionally repaired.
If you spill something like fruit juice, beverages, or even let the juices from cutting fruit sit for too long, then these spills might get absorbed by the stone and it can lead to very ugly stains forming on your countertops.
You want to clean the spills right away before the stone has a chance to absorb the moisture. You will be doing yourself a huge favor by protecting these countertops.
Cooking Oil Leaks
Cooking oil might seem pretty harmless, but the stains produced from oil spills are very nasty and they can actually make the countertops feel very greasy and grimy. Oil spills are very normal to occur. They can spill from the container, which has oil, or you can drop a few splatters of oil while cooking.
What you don’t want to do is leave the spill as is. You want to clean it up right away and use a foaming soap to help get rid of the slippery feel of the oil on the countertops. If your countertops are sealed, then cleaning spills should be very easy and it won’t be a huge problem.
Using Harsh Pads And Tools For Scraping
Something you want to avoid using on granite countertops is a metal scraper. There are many times when there is dried food on top of the counter and you want to scrape it off. It can be very tempting to use something sharp like a needle, knife, or even metal scraper to scrape away the dried food, but you’re only asking for more damage on the countertops.
You don’t want to use abrasive cleaning pads on the countertop either because granite can be very delicate and if the countertops are not sealed, then the top surface can be buffed off and scratched by these sharp tools.
Whenever you want to get rid of dried food crumbs on the countertop, use a soft toothbrush and go over the crumbs in a wiping motion to help loosen the food from the surface. Once that’s done, you can take a wet washcloth and wipe the remnants away.
Scratches With Knives
It’s very common to use knives directly on the surface of countertops. While that is alright with most hard materials, you don’t want to do the same on granite countertops. Granite countertops, especially if the seal is getting thin or worn, can get scratched by sharp knives, especially if there’s not a cutting board in between the knife and the countertop to help protect the natural stone from getting chipped.
You always want to make sure that you’re using knives on top of a cutting board, otherwise, you’re damaging the countertops by yourself.
Impact Of Weight
Countertops are not the place to test strength. You don’t want to put your entire weight on the countertops, by either standing on top of it or sitting on it. This is not recommended at all, because too much force and impact on one spot of the countertop can lead to huge cracks forming.
There might be no signs of cracks or fractures in the beginning, but as time goes on, granite countertops can ultimately break if you’re not too careful. So, try to keep weight off the countertops and only use it for things around the kitchen. Even though thick and durable granite countertops can hold an evenly distributed weight of 1000 pounds, the number decreases drastically if the item is small and covers less area, but is heavy.
Placing Hot Things On Countertops
While granite is a durable material and its reasonably heat resistant, that still doesn’t mean that you can test its limit. You should avoid putting hot pots and pans on the surface of granite countertops because it’s going to lead to the formation of heat stains on granite counters. While the material, itself, might not get damaged, these stains are enough to ruin the look of the countertop completely.
If you really want to use your countertop as a working station for hot food, then try to use trivets or coasters to help protect the material from getting shocked by heat. These black stains don’t only look ugly, but they’re almost impossible to remove.
Cleaning With Soap And Water
Soap and water sounds like a pretty harmless combination to clean your countertops with, but for granite, this homemade cleaning solution can actually do more bad than good. Soap or detergent tends to linger on the surface of granite and it can make the countertops look murky and dirty.
There are special cleaners available for cleaning granite countertops, which contain rubbing alcohol and mild cleaning agents, which not only get rid of dirt and debris, but they will also get rid of any bacteria and living organisms present on the surface.
Working With Raw Things
Last but not least, you don’t want to cut raw meat directly on the surface of granite countertops. Not only will it scratch the surface of the countertops, but the meat juices will also penetrate into the deep slashes of the countertop and settle there. This is not sanitary at all and it can lead to an infestation of bacteria and viruses on the surface of granite countertops.
You don’t want to cut fresh vegetables and fruits directly on the surface either because it will make the surface dirty and sticky. The best way is to use cutting boards for everything.
Granite countertops are great and all, but they can be extremely fragile to certain things which could lead to severe damage in the long run. Now that you know what things you should avoid with granite countertops, maintaining and taking care of them can be easy. However, when your granite countertops reach their end of life, find granite countertop contractors Potomac for a replacing your old granite counters.