Providing the Best Care for Natural Stone Countertops

Natural stone countertops are very popular in kitchens throughout the country. There are hundreds of options in the type and color of the stone. Stone countertops are durable, beautiful, water-resistant, and generally affordable. Once installed, the countertops add value and beauty to your home. With all of these benefits in mind, it makes sense that homeowners would be sure to treat their new stone counters appropriately.

Proper Care and Maintenance for Marble

Marble requires a bit more care than other stone surfaces. The calcium carbonate makeup of the stone is vulnerable to acidic foods and cleansers, so pitting, stains, and cracks are a possibility. It’s important to wipe the marble down immediately when acidic foods and drinks are splashed on the surface. Some chefs lay protective sheets on the marble to protect it from these hazards. Once a week, marble should be wiped clean with a soft cloth or a damp cloth with a pH-neutral cleaner. From time to time, the countertops should be re-sealed, and a marble polishing powder may be used to remove minor stains or etching.

Easy Granite Maintenance

Available in many colors and patterns, granite countertops require less care and maintenance than marble, but much be treated with the right type of care. As with marble, spills should be wiped up immediately to avoid stains. A soft cloth is usually enough to clean a granite surface. Be careful when using dish soap because over time, it will leave a film that dulls the counter’s natural shine.

Simple Care for Quartz

Quartz countertops resemble granite, have a beautiful natural gloss, and don’t need to be polished. It is important to avoid using abrasive cleansers and quick changes of temperature to protect this natural stone surface. A soft cloth and clean, warm water are suitable for wiping the surface daily. If substances are stuck to the surface of the counter, use a plastic scraper to remove it. A degreaser/disinfectant cleaner can be used as needed.

Common Mistakes To Avoid When Cleaning Natural Stone

There are some things that should be avoided no matter what type of stone countertops you have:

· Stone countertops can withstand the heat of pans straight from stovetop or oven, but it’s best to use a hot pad or trivet to protect the lasting beauty of the stone.

· Any acidic foods and liquids should be wiped up immediately. Some stones withstand these better than others, but all could experience some etching or stains if the acid is allowed to remain.

· Bleach should not be used to clean or disinfect stone surfaces. It quickly dulls the finish of the stone and may also stain or alter the natural coloring.

· Glass cleaners are designed to remove fingerprints, but they also dull the shine of natural stone surfaces.

· Any household cleaner with acids or alkalis are likely to remove bits of the stone at the surface, and they should be avoided. Otherwise, areas of etching will occur and repairing etched countertops requires grinding the surface and refinishing it.

Remember that most of the time, water and a soft cloth is sufficient for cleaning stone countertops.

A Bit of Extra Care for Lasting Beauty

There are many similarities in the various types of natural stone used in kitchens, and the proper cleaning of stone surfaces is much the same from one stone to the next. However, it’s important to know what type of stone you have. Manufacturer and installation professionals, such as those at Colonial Marble offer care guidelines that are specifically suited to the natural stone installed in your home.

Good quality stone products can provide beautiful durability for many years as long as you treat them appropriately. Once you learn the simple steps for daily care and long-term protection, you’ll be well on your way toward enjoying a beautiful kitchen for many years.

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