Do I need to seal flamed granite tile flooring before I grout it?
Sealing granite floor tile prior to grouting is not generally necessary, unless the granite is really porous.
Although, with one of the more porous granites it could be beneficial depending on the color of the granite and the color of the grout.
If the granite is light colored and the grout dark, then it may be possible (testing will tell you) that the granite tile edges could absorb the color of the grout changing the granite tile color at the edges. Not a big concern, but possible.
Same if a dark granite (although dark granites are typically much less absorbent) and a light grout.
First though, you should run the test for sealing granite to see if your stone even needs or can absorb a granite sealer.
Despite what you read/hear that "all granite must be sealed" ... it is not true. There are 2000+ stones sold as granite with a wide variety of characteristics including porosity.
Many granites are naturally non-absorbent, do not need a sealer nor is sealing even possible.
Chances are with a flamed surface (non-polished surfaces are more porous) it will take a sealer, but test first.
If testing shows the granite to be very absorbent, sealing granite floor tile may be a good idea prior to grouting.
We were told to use a 0000 steal wool to clean off the water marks and then seal them.
We purchased a granite named "Gallo Napolean." The colors are a mixture of blacks, greys, plum and beige.
Will the steal wool damage the granite? We really haven't tried to clean them yet, is there a product that is better to use?
Also, we are unsure of what sealer to use.
Preparing for sealing granite countertops is easy. You want all grime and goo from the install removed. Usually the installers will do this using acetone (a solvent that won't hurt stone at all). If not, then you do it.
The steel wool won't hurt the granite (granite is much harder than steel wool), so there is nothing wrong with the suggestion, but I don't see any reason to use it.
Steel wool can be helpful for removing the crust of hard water deposits before cleaning granite or for minor repairs on marble and travertine....
Installer says to use it to remove the "water marks"...
What water marks?
If you have some unusual marks or stains at this point, then I'd be looking to the installers for the remedy because you shouldn't have any such marks or stains.
Unless, of course you have very hard water. It would be pretty tough to get a build-up so quickly after a new install, but if you have white crusty mineral deposits, then the steel wool can help remove the bulk of them.
However, if you have dull and/or light-colored spots, then there is something weird going on with your granite countertops.
If you'd like in-depth information about sealing granite countertops, how to apply granite sealers, etc. then check out the All About Sealing ebook.
Can I wipe marble floors before putting on sealer?
Yes, of course you should sweep, damp mop and dry several times prior to sealing marble floors to be sure and remove as much dirt and dust as possible.
Also, if this is a new installation, you need to wait 2-3 weeks before applying the marble sealer to allow all moisture to evaporate from the stone.... otherwise you'll trap it and that is very bad for the stone!
For more information about marble sealers and sealing marble, granite and any stone properly check out the "All About Sealing" e-book mentioned above.
Should We Seal Underside Of Granite After Installation
by B L
We have just received tropic brown granite countertops in our newly remodeled kitchen.
It has yet to be attached, but will hit that stage in about a day or so.
Should we be worried about the exposed underside of the granite both above where our drawers are open, and in a section where there are no cabinets below and the underside is exposed in a little breakfast bar-type area?
I have heard of people applying a lacquer or other material, but am unsure as to whether I should do this.
I'm trying to minimize any exposure to the 'rough' granite side for both mine and my pets' health. But I don't know if I'm being over-paranoid or not after reading a "radon" article about our choice of stone.
Apparently Tropic Brown is the second highest emitter of radon in a study I read, of the sample pull of popular granite colors.
I realize that we can't add a sealer to the underside before final installation because it won't adhere to other surfaces properly.
I was only concerned with potentially manually "painting on" whatever applicant necessary to accomplish this task. Any advice?
No, you should not seal the underside. Stone needs to breath... or it will degrade.
And yes... you are being paranoid. Several scientific investigations have looked at granite and radon and found allegations that granite is dangerous to be without merit.. almost ridiculous.
Essentially, granite is a very low emitter of radon and many other materials in your home emit far more than granite countertops do.
Even if you wanted to reduce any radon emissions you would likely have to put a topical sealer (forms a coating on the surface) vs. an impregnating sealer (works just below surface) to stop any emission. A topical would be even worse for the granite and may not even stop the radon.
But note... You may not have to apply a granite sealer at all.
Tropic brown is typically dense enough to make sealing unnecessary. Often it cannot be sealed.
But still, you should perform the "water test" (links above and below).
Waiting To Apply Granite Sealer After Installation
How long do I wait before sealing a granite countertop after it has been installed?
You don't have to wait at all when sealing granite after installation.
But FYI... for stone floor tile or wall installations (or any installation where the stone is laid directly onto another surface...) you need to wait a good 2-3 weeks to allow all moisture to evaporate from the stone and any grout before applying a granite sealer.
Stone needs to breath. A typical countertop can be sealed right away because the underside is exposed to air inside the cabinets and any remaining moisture will still evaporate even after sealing.
But if you sealed a floor right away, you could end up trapping moisture which could lead to degradation of the stone and other issues.
Which is also the main reason why sealing stone in a wet environment like a shower is usually not a good idea.
To prepare for sealing granite you simply have to clean the countertops first removing all glue, goo and gunk left from the install or other remodeling and construction. Acetone works best followed by a good granite cleaner. But once that is done, you can go ahead with sealing granite countertops.
However, you don't have to do it right away either.
Don't fall for the myth that "all granite must be sealed every year" that you may commonly read online or even hear from some professionals... totally false.
Some granites are very porous and will stain easy. These types (Kashmir is the most popular) should be avoided since they are so porous they can be problematic even after sealer application.
But many granites are so dense that you can't "seal" them even when you try. These are naturally non-absorbent, won't absorb the granite sealer and are nearly impossible to stain.
And then the majority of granite countertops could benefit from a stone sealer.
I want to seal my granite myself but don't know what kind of applicator to use to get the smoothest application that won't bubble or streak. Sponge? Microfiber cloth? Regular weave fabric? Absorbent cloth or not?
The type of applicator you use will not affect nor cause bubbling and streaking, which develop from an improper application.
You need to saturate the stone so it's important to get enough sealer on the surface to create a thin continuous liquid film, so you don't want to use something too absorbent like a sponge.
A thin cloth can work, a paint brush or paint pad is good too, but you don't want to "paint" on the sealer. The stone won't get enough of the sealer to be effective.
You pour the sealer onto the area to be sealed and spread it around with paint brush, cloth or sponge to form the film. Once the stone has absorbed as much as possible, you need to completely wipe all residue from the surface or you'll get the streaks.
So, you'll want an absorbent cloth for the final wipe, but it can be a regular cotton cloth. Just have enough to do the job.