Tag Archives: granite care

6 Ways To Ensure Your Kitchen Countertops Last Long

When you install kitchen countertops, you want them to last for as long as possible. This calls for you to take good care of them. The cool thing is that there are plenty of ways of going about it:

Ensure proper installation

Everything begins here. There is no way your countertops will last for a long time if they aren’t properly installed.

Many people try to cut costs, by going for the cheapest contractor they can afford. Don’t do this.

While you will save a few coins here and there, you will end up spending too much money on repairs as cheap contractors often don’t have the right skills to install the countertops properly.

In some cases, they improperly install the countertops such that you have to remove all the countertops and install new ones. This is extremely expensive!

To avoid this, don’t be cheap. Hire an experienced contractor. While the professional will be a little bit expensive, the extra cost will be worth it as he/she will install countertops that will last for decades.

To protect yourself in the event of an accident during countertop installation, work with an insured contractor. Take a closer look at the insurance certificate and confirm that it even covers countertop damage.

Stone countertops

The most popular stone countertops are granite and quartz. Regardless of the type of countertop you have, you should take good care of it for it to last for long.

The first thing you should do is to seal the countertops. During installation, ensure the contractor seals the surfaces with a high-quality sealing agent. The frequency of sealing depends on the quality, color, and use of the countertops.

When it comes to lighter colors, seal them every 1-3 years. Seal darker colors 3-5 years.

In addition to sealing the countertops, you also should avoid sitting or standing on them. This is to prevent the countertops from cracking after placing too much weight on them.

Slate countertops

Slate countertops are known for their brittleness. They also stain from cooking oil spills and are easily damaged by abrasive cleaners. To prevent them from cracking, avoid placing too much weight on them. You also should always protect the surfaces when cooking to prevent stains.

When cleaning the surfaces, use a pH-neutral stone cleaner when necessary.

Laminate countertops

These are susceptible to water damage. To keep them in top shape, be cautious that you don’t let water seep into the seam. This is because they tend to swell up and buckle.

When it comes to cleaning, use mild dish detergent and microfiber cloths. Only use baking soda for tough stains.

Solid surface

Stay away from abrasive cleaners, especially if you have a shiny finish instead of matte. For the tough spots, use mild soap, baking soda, and microfiber cloths. After removing the stains, rinse the surfaces with a clean cloth.

All countertop materials

Regardless of the countertop material you have in your kitchen, there are some basic practices you should do to keep the material in top shape. Some of the things you should do include:

Protect the surfaces from scratching or etching by cleaning the countertops using damp microfiber cleaning cloths and mild dish detergent. To lift tough stains, use baking soda paste.

Since countertops are susceptible to damage from acidic juices, oil spills, and harsh abrasive cleansers, clean the spills as soon as they happen to prevent the damage and stains.

Protect the surfaces from heat damage by ensuring that you don’t place hot pans directly on the countertop surfaces. The hot surfaces tend to disfigure the countertops and even crack others.

To allow air-flow underneath the countertops, set pans and even low cookers on trivets.

You also should protect the surfaces from knife damage. This calls for you to avoid slicing or chopping the food directly on the countertops. When cutting, always use cutting boards.

Use common sense when handling your countertops. Don’t do anything that would damage the surfaces. For example, don’t use abrasive cleaning materials on granite countertops as they will lose their shine.

If you aren’t sure about how to keep the surfaces in top shape, ask granite companies Durham or any other professionals to help you out.

Kitchen Countertops: 6 Kitchen Renovation Tips To Remember

If your kitchen is old or you want a different look, you need to consider these tips for the project to be a success:

Begin with the countertops

Kitchen countertops have the most significant impact on the design of the kitchen. They also cost a lot, especially if the kitchen is large. For you to avoid wasting money and create a look you love, begin your project by thinking about the type of countertops you will install.

Visit the local stores and find out what is in stock. For you to be content with your project, you need to be happy with the countertops first; therefore, ensure that you choose the right ones. Countertops vary in material, quality, size, among many other things. Choose the ones that fit your project.

Aim for quality

Kitchen renovations are costly, and you can’t be doing them after every few months. To do them once and properly, go for the best quality materials possible. In addition to the high-quality cabinets and appliances lasting for longer, they also have a high resale value.

You don’t have to buy new materials. If you don’t have deep pockets, consider going for used materials. They might be used, but still in good condition and of high quality. Some of the best materials are those bought from a business selling reused building materials.

If you are unlucky in these stores, try your luck online. Find individual sellers selling high-end items at affordable prices.

Pay attention to the layout of the kitchen

The kitchen needs to be practical and functional. How you lay it out depends on your priorities and needs. Think about the look you want to create and the people that will be using it. If it’s more than one person, incorporate more than one workstation.

If you have a large kitchen, add a kitchen island or get a wheeled cart that you can move around and put away when you aren’t using it.

If you aren’t sure of what will work with your household, make use of the classic work triangle; arrange the sink, stove, and refrigerator in a triangular pattern.

Have a realistic budget

Most large renovation projects end up taking more time and money than you anticipated; therefore, it’s wise to have extra cash on the side in the event the project goes over. A good rule of thumb is to have 10-20% more money for unplanned expenses.

The last thing you want is going to the bank to get another loan in the mid of the project. Even worse is ending up with a half-finished kitchen because you ran out of cash.

When coming up with a budget, remember to factor in the hidden costs. These include labor, materials, taxes, shipping, and delivery costs. These add up fast; therefore, it’s paramount that you put them into consideration when coming up with an approximation of the amount of money you need for the project.

Make use of all areas

You don’t want to spend a lot of money giving your kitchen a makeover and be left with unutilized areas. Make use of all areas in the kitchen. Use the toe-kick storage beneath the cabinet doors to store items that you don’t use daily. These include linens, serveware, and step ladder.

Using all the spaces gives you the satisfaction that you spent your money wisely. At the same time, it keeps your kitchen counters clutter-free.

Work with the right contractor

Not every countertop contractor you come across is right for your project. You can buy premium materials then end up with ugly countertops after hiring the wrong contractor. Many people end up with the wrong contractor as they are in a hurry to hire

To find the right professional, take your time. Approach several granite contractors Durham and ask for their current license and insurance. Also, ask about their past customers. Don’t just get the names of the customers. Call them and ask about their experience with the contractor.

If the professional checks out in every area, go ahead and draft a contract detailing the starting date, completion date, and any other details of the project.