How To Clean Granite Countertops For The First Time
My wife and I just installed granite tiles. What exactly is the process for cleaning granite countertops for the first time.
Do we just clean with a sponge and water and then seal? Or do we need to use a special granite cleaner and then seal? Thank you.
Acetone is commonly used for cleaning granite countertops after installation.
Acetone is neutral, won't damage the stone at all and will remove any glues or other gunk that may be on the surface. After cleaning with acetone
, use a good stone cleaner like the Granite Countertop & Marble Cleaning spray
After thoroughly cleaning the granite countertops you are ready to apply a granite sealer. However, before sealing granite countertops
or any stone you should always perform the water test for sealing granite countertops
to determine if your stone even needs sealing. Many stones are naturally stain-resistant
, very dense and never need sealing despite what you may read that "all" granite or "all" stone must be sealed... not true.
Applying a sealer to a surface that doesn't need it and cannot absorb it only creates a dull hazy film that must be stripped off... no fun. I'd suggest using
one of these recommended marble & granite sealers
Applying a granite sealer is a simple process that doesn't require any particular skill except the ability to follow simple directions.You'll find comprehensive information
about granite sealers and "how to" properly apply a granite sealer in the All About Sealing e-book
Best Product for Cleaning Granite Countertops
(Grand Rapids, MI)
What is the best product for cleaning granite countertops?
I want something easy that does not streak or leave an oily residue when done. The granite is sealed. I can use spray, wipes or both.
First, if you didn't know countertop "cleanability" studies
have shown that stainless steel and granite are very similar in their cleanliness and are by far the cleanest surfaces available.
But what's interesting is that you get much better results when cleaning granite countertops than stainless steel. Meaning that the "cleanability" of granite countertops is better than stainless steel.... far better in fact.
Simple washing and rinsing reduce bacteria 9 times better than stainless steel. So, granite does not harbor bacteria.We recommend this Granite Countertop & Marble Cleaning spray
, which contains optical brighteners to really make the shine pop
It won't leave any coating and does dry streak-free. In fact, you can use it on mirrors too. And regular use will keep your tops very sterile.
We've used many cleaners and this one is the top performer... most effective and cheaper too.
You'll get the same results with the Stone Plus WIPES
P.S. Get all the facts and simple step-by-step solutions to any problem with our Granite & Marble Maintenance Manuals.
Find the recommended best product brands for cleaning marble, sealing, cleaning granite countertops, quartz and all natural stone.
How To Clean Granite Countertops
Can you direct me to step by step directions to clean granite countertops and then seal them?
We have an oatmeal colored granite, not sure of the name, which is approaching 5 years old.
It was installed in our new construction home, and I assume it was sealed upon completion of the installation.
Cleaned it weekly with water and dish washing detergent, using a tile grout sponge with mesh backing.
The shine had faded, with what appears to be water spots. This is the first time it has been chemically cleaned and sealed to my knowledge.
In preparation I used a 6" stainless steel blade scraper lightly to remove all food deposits, then I used AQUA MIX brand stone cleaner, allowed it to dry 24 hours.
I then used MIRACLE brand 511 Impregnator. Both of these chemicals were recommended to me by the local tile fabrication shop.
After completing the above steps, the granite countertop looks no better than before I started the process. When viewed from a low angle to natural light from an adjacent door, the spotting is very noticeable. When viewed straight down with lighting from above the countertop, it is not as noticeable.
The first thing you should understand is that the polish on granite countertops or any other stone is not the result of a chemical application or cleaning. Polishing
is done at the factory by big machines that employ intense grinding and friction to create a shiny surface.
The polish does not just go dull. It must either be chemically or physically damaged or covered up. Using dish soap
for cleaning granite countertops could cause a build-up of soap residue that would mask the shine, but the Aqua Mix should have removed that.
Dish soap is OK for occasional cleaning.... it won't damage any surface, but it's not the best for regular cleaning because of the build-up.You should use
a good stone product like this Granite & Marble Cleaning spray
for cleaning granite countertops or any natural stone. "Water spots"
are very common with marble and other calcite-based stones, but not granite.
Water spots are not actually caused by water, but by a reaction of an acidic substance (vinegar, coffee, soda, alcohol, juice, etc.) with the calcium carbonate in marble, travertine, limestone.
But it's a rare granite slab that will react to acids in this way and "etch" or dull the surface. Some granite countertops are porous, but most are not reactive to acids.Sealing
has NOTHING to do with dullness or water spots. The ONLY thing sealing does is retard staining by dramatically decreasing the time it takes for a substance to be absorbed into the stone.
Water spots and dullness are not stains... they are most commonly the result of chemical damage. Some stones are so dense they don't need sealing. Others are so porous they need sealing every couple years as sealants can break down some over time.
It's fine that you cleaned and sealed your countertops and if you followed the directions on each bottle you probably did it properly, but cleaning and sealing was not the solution to your dullness and water spots. I recommend
that you contact a professional to restore the polish (via grinding and buffing). If your whole granite countertop is dull with numerous water spots, it is far beyond a do-it-yourself project.
But first you must test
your "granite" to see how porous it is and if it is reactive to acids. This information will guide you
in future granite cleaning and maintenance. Perform the water and lemon test. It's always best to do this test on a sample or hidden spot, but since your countertop is already in rough shape it's not too big a deal if the test creates anther dull spot. But you'll need to do the test on a shiny spot. If the lemon test is positive
, then your "granite" is reactive to acids and that is just something you'll have to learn to work around because nothing can prevent etching except not allowing contact with acidic substances.
It doesn't really matter at this point, (except for creating an issue with the people who sold it to you) but your granite countertop may not actually be granite. It's already there, so you just want to know what you are dealing with and the tests will tell you.
Then call a pro to remove the water spots and restore the shine. After that don't use dish soap anymore.... use the recommended product above for cleaning your granite countertops.
Hope this helps,