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Frequently Asked Questions

What is granite?

Technically speaking, granite is an Igneous stone that is primarily made of Quartz (35%), Feldspar (45%), and Potassium.  At one point in time granite was liquid magma which over time slowly cooled and solidified into what we see today.  It is a very beautiful and hard material which is ideal for countertops and flooring applications.

What about Radon in granite?

Radon is a naturally occurring gas in the environment and is a minor natural constituent of natural stone (along with many other building and landscaping products).  Due to the structure of granite, Radon in granite does not pose any significant health threats.  For more information, please refer to the radon findings from the Marble Institute of America.

Do I need to seal my granite?

Yes.  Although granite is a very dense material, it is still necessary to seal it in order to help prevent staining.

How often should I seal my granite?

There are many opinions out there about this.  Much has to do with the type of sealer that was used when initially sealing your product, and with the type of stone you are having installed.  You should always talk with your installer to find out their recommendations, but as a general rule of thumb, we recommend you reseal your granite every year or two depending on usage.

Can I seal it myself, or should I hire someone to do it?

Can you do it, yes.  Should you do it, not necessarily.  With the vast variety of stones and stone products on the market today, it is always best to consult your local stone care professional to see what is best for your particular situation.

If I seal it myself, what type of sealer should I use?

There are many brands of sealers out there, but the type of sealer can basically be broken down to solvent or water base sealers.  Both can be very effective, but traditionally the most commonly used type has been solvent based.  The main thing you want to avoid is initially sealing your granite with a solvent based sealer and then resealing with a water based sealer (or vice versa).  Again, with the vast variety of stone and stone products on the market today, it is always best to consult your local stone care professional to see what is best for your particular application.

What should I use to clean my granite?

In most cases simply using a neutral PH soap and water is sufficient.  The main thing that you want to avoid with traditional cleaners such as Windex, 409, and others is that the chemicals in the cleaners will break down your sealer and leave the granite more prone to staining.  If you are looking for something to simply spray on as a cleaner, you can buy specially formulated cleaners from your installer or local home improvement store.

Once I have sealed my granite is it stain proof?

No.  It is difficult to say that any sealer can make a stone stain proof.  It will make your stone more stain resistant, but the main purpose is to keep the stain from setting into your stone for long enough for you to clean it up.  If you let a staining product set on your stone for long enough period of time, or use cleaners that are not specifically made for natural stone, there is a possibility it will stain.

If my granite does get stained is it ruined?

No.  There are products you can purchase that can be applied to lift the stains out of your stone.  If you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself, or if doing it yourself is not working, you can always contact your installer, or a stone care company to have a professional come out and assess the situation and remove the stain.

Can I cut directly on my granite or will it scratch?

Yes and No.  There are only a select few minerals (such as diamonds) that are hard enough to scratch granite, so most normal kitchen wear and tear will not scratch your stone.  However, granite is not scratch proof.  If you take your knife and press hard enough you might be able to scratch it, but under normal circumstances cutting you your granite should not affect your stone.

Can I set hot objects directly on my granite?

Yes.  The heat of most cooking will not affect your granite in the least. You can bake something at 400 degrees, pull it out, and place it directly on your granite to cool without worry.

What is the difference between 2CM and 3CM granite, is one better than the other?

The difference is simply in the thickness of the stone.  The 2CM is 3/4″ thick and the 3CM is 1 1/4″ thick.  One is not better or worse than the other, they are both suitable for most all applications.  2CM is usually laminated on the edges giving it a 1 1/2″ edge detail and does need to have a plywood subdeck.  3CM is usually not laminated giving it it’s original 1 1/4″ edge detail and it does not require a subdeck.  Once installed one should not be any stronger or stain and scratch proof than the other.  Depending on the fabricator that you use, there may be cost savings with one or the other, so please check with them on which would be the best value for your particular situation.

Is it easy to chip or crack granite?

Is it easy, no.  Is is possible, yes.  There are too many possible scenarios to say that it will never happen, but under most kitchen circumstances your granite tops will not chip or crack.