Kitchen Countertop Frequently Asked Questions (NC)
What is a Hard Surface Counter top?
There are many different types of hard surface counter tops, such as Granite, Marble, Soapstone, Onyx, and Limestone. These are natural materials and mined in quarries all over the world.
What is a Solid Surface Counter top?
This is a man-made material that does not stain, does not require sealing and will not promote bacteria growth. This material has the ability to be bonded together, allowing a “seamless” appearance. The seams are meant to be inconspicuous, but not invisible. These materials generally come with a 10 year manufacturer warranty.
What is a Quartz or Engineered Stone countertop?
This material has the look and feel of natural stone, but is actually stronger due to its engineered make-up. This is a man-made material that does not stain, does not require sealing and will not promote bacteria growth.
How should I clean and care for my countertops?
Each product requires different care and maintenance. For solid surface countertops, avoid abrasive cleaners. Warm soapy water, and most common, household cleaners should be fine.
For natural stone products, warm soapy water should be sufficient. To avoid water streaks, wipe counters dry after cleaning. Avoid cleaners with citrus / acidic additives. Any cleaners that contain dye should not be left on the stone counters for any length of time.
Can I stain my countertops?
Almost anything can be stained, but sealed natural stone will resist most common stains. Most stains can be removed by applying a poultice paste, which will absorb the spill. After the paste is thoroughly dry, it is wiped off and the stain would be completely removed. You can actually make this paste at home with a mix of baking soda and club soda.
How often do I need to seal my natural stone countertops?
The ‘Marble Institute of America’ recommends sealing once every 6 to 12 months. Using highly acidic or harsh chemicals may deteriorate the original seal, therefore requiring sealing more often. If water is no longer beading up on the counter, it’s time to reseal. Over sealing can lead to a hazy look. Engineered Stone / Quartz, solid surface do not require sealing.
I left a cold drink on my granite kitchen countertop and there is a dark ring. What do I do?
Nothing, just as the cold liquid inside the glass pulled water from the air to create sweat on the outside of the glass, the cold has condensed water ( under the sealer ) within the stone. Simply remove the glass; wipe up the excess water, the condensed water within the stone will dissipate after a few hours.
Do I have to have a seam in my granite?
Kitchen configuration and raw material “slab size” dictate whether a kitchen will require a seam. Granite slabs lengths range between 100” to 125”. Quartz / Engineered Stone slabs average sizes are 52” x 118; larger slab sizes are slowly becoming available.
What will my seams look like?
For stone counters, the standard seam allowance can range from 1/16” to 1/8” wide. A color matched stone adhesive is used to join the two pieces of counter top. Once cured, in about 3 hours, the adhesive is food safe. Seams, at times are necessary, and not invisible. We will do our best to provide a clean seam, and color match the basic color tone of your granite.
For Solid Surface, seams will be inconspicuous, not necessarily invisible.