Do you really know? When was the last time your granite was sealed? It may be shining, but what is making it shine? Are you willing to prepare a sandwich on your countertop for your children not knowing what that shiny liquid is?
If your fabricator tells you to seal your tops every six months or year, have some fun and test the fabricator. Say you only visit this home once a year. Do you really have to schedule a granite sealer every year you visit Florida? At this point, the fabricator will now start back peddling words realizing that it is a lame statement. Just demand a premium penetrating sealer, tested for 10-15 years. The sealer actually ‘Penetrates” the open cracks and grains in the granite. You may also want to ask if this sealer protects from all stains or just certain types of stains. Stains may happen, let’s talk about stains.
I will share with you some quick tips that may remove most stone stains. NEVER try to wipe out a stain that you know is already in the stone. Wiping it may just push this unwanted visitor deeper into your stone. We need a poultice which is a thick powder mix. Let’s try to figure out the cause. Is the stain near a coffee maker or near the stove? Were you putting on makeup while making breakfast for the kids? Get some talc powder, or even ground your kids chalk into a powder. For an oil based stain, mix the powder with baking soda and water, apply to stain and wait until it dries for 24 hours. What we’re doing is absorbing the stain. If the stain is organic like coffee or wine, mix in peroxide. For ink, use bleach for lighter stones, and Acetone for darker stones in the powder mix.
Is it ok to put Hot pots on granite? Let’s define OK. This statement is how many fabricators are able to close the Deal. If your fabricator says you can, will they warranty a stain underneath the hot pot area? Here are some points to think about. Our Florida homes are cool; our tops tend to match the room temperature. We then lay a pot of boiling water on the top, imagine one drop of soy sauce under that pot, you just created a hot stain machine. The pot’s diameter is now a concentrated heat circle, breaking down the last strands of the sealers integrity. Ok, now that we literally burned off the sealer in that area, what about milk and oil spills in that area? You may even prepare meats there; do you wonder where all those liquids and chicken juices are going? Maybe just maybe they are going into your top? Remember wiping an unsealed top only compounds the stains. Moisture in that exposed area with another hot pot also may boil the moisture in the stone forcing to expand the grains of the granite, which can result in cracks. Ask questions and remember health before beauty. We all deserve Healthy Countertops in Tampa Bay.
Gene McDonald, aka “The Counter Top Rock Star” is the President of Refresh Interiors Design.com. To schedule an appointment or Visit his showroom, visit www.ReFreshInteriorsDesign.com or Call 727.527.0206.