Sealing Blue Pearl Granite Countertops

by BARB
(MN)

QUESTION:

Our installer put in our blue pearl granite 3 days ago and said he would be back in a week to put the sealer on.


There is a film over the granite and two small hairline cracks about two inches each near the sink.
#1. Why is there a film on it?
#2. Should we worry about these cracks?
#3. Is it normal to wait to put the sealer on?
#4. He indicated we could use it until then.

We are worried it will stain before it is sealed. Should we stay completely away from it?

ANSWER:

I've addressed your specific questions below, but first of all, Blue Pearl granite rarely needs or can even take a granite sealer.

I know you may have read that "all" granite countertops "must" be sealed, but that is false. Many types of stone and colors of granite are natually stain-resistant and don't need sealing.

This stone is very dense with such a low absorbency rate that it is virtually stain-proof. Thus, it's an excellent choice for a kitchen countertop.

Since it is so dense it essentially cannot be sealed even if you tried... and you should not try or you'll likely end up with a dull haze of dried sealer on your countertop that must be stripped off.

You'll find complete information about sealers, how to apply and how to strip granite sealers in the All About Sealing e-book.

A granite sealer must absorb to work. If it can't absorb then it can't work and the fact it cannot absorb is the indicator that it is not needed.

Although no need to use a sealer to test if/when needed...

Simply performing the water test for sealing granite countertops will quickly tell you if and/or when any stone needs or can take a sealer.

The only reason to apply a granite sealer is to retard absorption to give more time to clean up a spill and minimize the chance of staining.

When needed I'd suggest using one of these recommended marble & granite sealers with SenGuard Sealer being the very best currently available.

If a stone is naturally stain-resistant, then a granite sealer provides no benefit.

Now... your questions:

#1. Why is there a film on it?

Without a more detailed description I have no clue, but the most likely cause is a granite sealer inappropriately applied.

You indicated that the installer was coming back to seal it implying that it had not been sealed, but that is the most common cause of a film over an entire countertop surface.

Use some acetone to clean the surface of any gunk or grime. Acetone will not damage at all.

#2. Should we worry about these cracks?

Possibly. Granite is very rigid and vulnerable around cut outs even when handling with great care sometime these cracks develop.

A single hairline crack that does not have a lip won't likely get worse or be a problem if well supported.

However, two cracks could be an issue, but doesn't have to be. Again, if barely perceptible with no real lip and well-supported, then they may not get worse.

But two cracks in the same area makes that strip around the sink very weak and it gets a bunch of abuse.

Options are to replace or to add support and possibly adhesive underneath to strengthen and secure the area.

#3. Is it normal to wait to put the sealer on?

Yes. There is never a real rush to apply a granite sealer. Stains are rarely permanent in stone and can be rather easily removed, however, it can be a chore if it occurs a lot. So, applying a sealer makes sense to minimize or in most cases, eliminate this chore.

It is usually most convenient to apply an impregnating sealer as part of or right after installation, but it isn't imperative at all.

#4. He indicated we could use it until then.

Well, I'll bet dollars to doughnuts that your Blue Pearl doesn't need a sealer anyway (just test it), so yeah.... go ahead and use it all you want. But even if it did need sealing, you could use the surface before applying a granite sealer.

Of course, you want to be diligent about cleaning spills and don't store any liquids or oils directly on the surface, but your risk of staining the granite in the week or two you might wait to apply a sealer is very low.

There is a bit of hysteria about stains in stone. For some reason many people think a stain will ruin their stone forever.

But as noted, stains are rarely permament. Only very old and deep stains are a problem.

So, even if you did stain it you can remove the stain and then seal the granite countertop.

Comments for Sealing Blue Pearl Granite Countertops

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Problem with granite
by: Barb

Our Granite installer came out and said the cracks were his fault, and that he would replace the granite.
He did that, and put the seam half way between the sink and the L shape. (leaving the old granite to the right of the new seam)
It now looks like really dark granite one one side of the seam and really light granite on the other side, with an etched seam. To put it mildly it is awful. He left and said different slab, different look. After we complained, now he is saying it was the same slab and that is the way granite is. He will do nothing and has our money.
Do we have any recourse? HELP!! What would you do?
BARB

===ANSWER:

If the color is different, then he used different slab. You can have color variation on one slab, but the underlying "tone" will be essentially even. So, it really noticeable, then he probably did use a different slab.

If he won't cooperate, the not much you can do but sue him. Or you might be able to use a color enhancer on the lighter side to better match the darker side, but since blue pearl is dense the enhancer may not absorb well and there is not telling exactly how the color will turn out.

Tough situation. I'm sure you've learned the lesson that you always leave at least 25% balance owing to any contractor unpaid until the job is completed to your satisfaction. That's the only power you have.

Good Luck,
Ryan

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Smearing after sealant application
by: Sue

I had put sealer on a smallish section of my black granite countertop and then saw there was lots of smearing after wiping off.

So on the web I found this site and realized that I didn't have to seal at all because my countertop was essentially non-absorbent.

Decided to use the product to get off the excess smearing, re-applied and quickly wiped off and it worked perfectly to get rid of the smearing. Great website - 10 stars for some truthful non-marketing information!

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