Metallicus Granite Mica Flecks Coming Off

by Maureen Gabriel-Haddock
(Novi, MI)


I work for a granite countertop fabrication facility, and recently we installed a kitchen for a customer, using Metallicus for the Island.

The customer has noticed that every time she wipes down the counter with a wash rag or towel, she ends up with small glittery specs of Mica on her towel from the granite.

The question would be: Is it possible to eliminate this occurrence or is this just the nature of the stone?

Her concern is that she hesitates to roll out dough, or handle food on the surface for fear of getting the flecks in the food.

I have wiped and rewiped the granite slabs of Metallicus that we have in stock and she is correct...small particles of a glitter size, do cling to the towel. This would be a total nightmare of continuous granite counter top maintenance.

We seal the granite with a permeating sealer on all jobs before installation that obviously does not address this problem. Can you advise if there's anything else that can be done in this situation?

Your quick response would be greatly appreciated so that I can advise my customer accordingly.

Thanks so Much! Maureen Gabriel-Haddock


Yes, it's the nature of that stone, unfortunately Maureen. The problem with the metal in the granite is that it's softer so thin flakes and specks can be removed from the surface with mild friction.

A few other stones have a similar granite counter top maintenance problem with a fine grit constantly developing on the surface.

It order to stop the metallic flakes from coming off, you'll have to apply a topical coating that forms a physical barrier over the surface.

The typical impregnating sealer applied to guard against staining works below the surface and does not create an all encompassing shell, which is what you need.

Problem is that permanent topical coatings can be a pain. They can need regular upkeep and maintenance or they start to look shoddy and many look plastic to begin with.

Also, topical coatings make any repair much more difficult since usually you need to remove the coating. Now instead of granite countertop maintenance you need to care for the coating.

Topical coating technology is advancing though and a few products that form essentially transparent surface barriers by Aldon and KinlochUSA could be a good solution in this case.

I wouldn't recommend applying even the most advanced of these coatings for general application though.

In most cases they have the potential to create bigger problems than they are designed to solve, but they are the right product in some circumstances and you don't have much choice in this situation with the Metallicus.

You may get lucky with a temporary non-wax surface dressing/polish like Topical Polish/Shine Enhancer, which forms a thin film that can be buffed to enhance shine, but will also wear away and can be cleaned off with ease if desired.

No guarantee this product will do the trick, but certainly worth a try before resorting to more elaborate and expensive permanent coatings.

Be sure to comment back using the link at the bottom to update us on what you do and the results.

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Betularie Granite Flaking
by: Anonymous

Does anyone know if the granite Betularie has a history of flaking off the surface?

We just had this stone installed three days ago and it is flaking off even with the lightest of touch or our fingers and it's leaving indentations? Thank you

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

As with the Metallicus granite, this is likely a case of a stone with a lot of mica (the mineral that makes granite sparkle), which can be softer and flake off.

But not so soft to leave indentations!! You'll probably notice the flaking will diminish in time.

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