For the best outcome when installing granite countertops, you need to consider a number of tips. These tips include:
Go with high-quality granite
The first thing you need to do is decide what kind of granite you want. If this is your first time, the granite shop you visit will have a lot of samples and slabs so you can get a good look at all the different colors and grain patterns.
You’llYou’ll also see the different edges to choose from, like square, bevel, bullnose, miter, ogee, and many more.
Besides the main surface of the countertop, you’ll need to choose the length of the overhang and the type and size of the backsplash, if you decide to have one.
To increase the chances of buying high-quality granite, avoid buying it from big box stores. Instead, buy your granite from small stores. Besides these small shops stocking high-quality countertops, they also tend to be cheaper.
These stores even have experts who help you with the installation at no extra charge.
Be ultra cautious when transporting the countertops
After your countertops have been cut to size, it can be hard to get them home safely. You will have to pick up the countertops from the fabricator unless they are being sent to you.
Don’tDon’t forget that granite is heavy—a 6-foot countertop can weigh more than 400 pounds—so get some help to move and transport the countertops safely.
To avoid cracking or breaking the stone, carry it vertically instead of flat. One excellent way to do this is to carry the slabs on edge in an A-frame rack, the same way glass is carried.
You can use 2x4s to make a simple rack if you need to. Cover the edges with wide painter’spainter’s tape to keep them safe.
Take the right cabinet measurements.
Once you’ve picked out the granite and taken it off the old countertops, measure your base cabinets accurately to give to the fabricator. To get an accurate measurement of the top of the base cabinets, measure the distance from the wall to the fronts along the wall.
If you aren’taren’t a dab hand at DIY projects, you should avoid taking the measurements yourself. Instead, have an experienced contractor come with you. Besides taking accurate measurements, they will also see if there are any bumps in the walls or exposed pipes that might affect the installation of the countertops.
Make a template out of cardboard.
You can give your fabricator even more accurate measurements by making a template out of cardboard, lauan plywood, or even Mylar plastic.
Use a scribing tool to make the template fit tightly against the wall along the whole row of cabinets. Then, trace the front edge of the cabinets onto the template.
Sinks, cooktops, faucets, and soap dispensers must be cut out of your template in the right places.
When doing it, be careful not to let more than 2 feet of space between cabinets, like over a dishwasher, and don’t let more than 6 inches of unsupported overhang with 2 cm stone or 9 inches with 3 cm stone.
If you want an undermount kitchen sink, write that on the template so that the fabricator can cut the sinkhole to hold the sink clips.
Also, ensure your fabricator “rods” the cutouts with steel or fiberglass reinforcements to strengthen the narrow areas around the cutouts.
Set a date to pick up or have your finished countertops delivered once you have clearly stated your needs and given your measurements.
Ensure that the base cabinets are level.
Make sure that your base cabinets are level along their length. If not, take the base units apart and use shims under the baseboard to level them.
Ensure the countertops fit.
There are two ways to make the countertop fit better if it doesn’tdoesn’t sit flush against the wall as it should. You can make changes to either the wall or the granite.
If the wall is made of drywall, the easiest and safest way to make the countertop fit is to mark the spot where it hits and then cut away the drywall with a utility knife or jab saw.
If the wall is made of something harder, like tile or brick, you may need to change the granite. To do this, mark the part where the granite kitchen countertops Raleigh hit the cabinets, then carefully remove the granite.
You should then carefully shave the edge to the level you want using a dry-cut diamond blade on an electric grinder.