Granite Countertop Dull Around Sink


I have a Emerald Pearl granite countertop in my kitchen that is 8 years old. It looks great with the exception of some dullness around the sink.

In particular, it's dull in the area where I keep my dish rack for hand washed dishes.

Because the rack isn't that large, I've definitely left wet pots/pans on the granite itself. I've used Granite Gold daily cleaner and polish and it hasn't taken care of the dullness.

Any suggestions? Also, I have a small water stain around the base of the faucet that I'd like to remove.

What is the best method to polish granite, remove the stain and cleaner? Thank you.


This could be a couple granite countertop maintenance issues.

Granite countertops will not etch easily under normal household use, however, some city water supplies can be slightly acidic.

And even though granite does not readily etch, constant exposure over time to any acidic substance could etch the surface resulting in the dull appearance. And eight years could be enough time.

But this is unlikely.

The fact that you are seeing the "water stain" and dullness around the faucet and under the dish rack where water will typically accumulate is the key clue here.

The second possibility is that you have hard water and/or soap scum build up which is common around the sink.

Dish soap or soap of any kind requires A LOT of water to truly rinse. Most often soapy residue still remains on rinsed surfaces (like pots, pans, plates) and could drip off onto your countertop.

Soapy build-up is why we recommend that you do NOT use soap for granite counter top maintenance or cleaning... you get a dull build up.

You should use only products safe for cleaning granite & marble.

If it is hard water / soap scum, you should be able to scratch it off a bit with a fingernail. If you can't seem to scratch any off, then it is likely etching. Soap scum is tenacious and a general granite cleaner usually will not take it off.

For removing hard water (and soap scum) use the Soap Scum / Hard Water Remover.

And Emerald Pearl is a tough granite (actually syenite) that would typically only etch under extreme circumstances or exposure to highly acidic substances, so dense it's nearly impossible to stain and rarely presents a granite counter top maintenance issue.

My bet is that it's hard water deposits and maybe some soap scum too.

Comments for Granite Countertop Dull Around Sink

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Dull Caledonia Granite by Sink
by: Melissa

We have had unsealed Caledonia granite countertops for two years and we are noticing a dull and scratchy appearance around the sinks where the soap bottles and sponges sit.

The soap pumps and sponges are on protective stands, so they do not sit directly on the granite.

We definitely have hard water but we are using a whole house water filter (GE).

We have tried cleaning the surface with our normal cleaners but the dull scratchiness won't go away.

Any suggestions?

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

What you describe sounds like soap scum from the sponge and bottles.

I get that they do not sit directly on the granite but soapy water certainly does get onto the granite, particularly around the soap bottle and sponge.

And your hard water may be contributing as well. A water "filter" may not be sufficient to deal with hard water. You need a water "softening" system.

Now, maybe that is exactly what you have. However, it must be set correctly or you could still get the effects of hard water like lime and calcium deposits around sinks and faucets.

Both soap scum and hard water deposits can look dull and chalky and may get scuffs or scratches in the film but it can be very hard to remove.

Regular countertop cleaners will not remove it. You need to use the Soap Film and Hard Water Remover mentioned in the article above.

This cleaner is specially formulated to clean and remove both types of films and it totally safe for use on granite countertops and all types of natural stone.

This is important, of course, because most limescale or hard water cleaners are very acidic and will damage stone countertops and tile.

If you are noticing the film only around the soap bottles and not around the faucet, then likely this is soap film only.

When hard water is the problem, then it is usually most apparent around the faucet. This is where hard water stains first form as this area is constantly exposed to water.

If you think hard water stains are partly the problem, then you can look at adjusting your filtration system to soften the water more.

After removing the films, use the above cleaner on a regular basis to keep the films from forming again.

Granite around sink coarse and lost gloss
by: Jim

Our Madura Gold Granite countertop around the stainless steel sink has rubbed out and become coarse across from the faucet. Presumably the cause is from holding pots/pans against that area for leverage while scrubbing it. Any fixes besides getting a pro to look at it? Once the gloss there has gone, is there risk of water seeping into the entire area? Thanks

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

Wow, that's a lot of scrubbing pans! Granite is very durable and I imagine this occurred over many years (unless it is a very small and focused area that receive heavy use).

If you are certain the granite was once perfectly shiny and now has become dull and more raw, then yes... it is likely due to the combination of lots of water around the sink and the physical abrasion from the pots and pans wearing down the surface finish.

You'll have to hire a stone restoration pro to repolish the area. Then devise a different method for washing your pans. Maybe just put a cutting board down and set the pots on that, or a folded towel.

Dullness around sink edge
by: Cory

I have bianco antico granite counters in my kitchen. It is recently new (4 months since installation).

I have an inset stainless steel sink, and the edge of the granite where it is cut for the sink is rather dull and almost looks discolored.

We have a water softener, and we have not yet sealed our granite (nor do we know if we should??).

We've done the water test and it seems our granite is less porous. However, not quite sure what to do with the discoloration/dulling around the sink edge. Hopefully it wasn't a problem with how the granite was cut.

===== Countertop Specialty:

White granite countertops will typically need sealing, but definitely go by what the water test shows.

Edge dullness can often result with a resined granite where the top surface looks a bit darker than the edges.

Soap film or hard water can be an issue with build-up making the surface look dull, but this would happen on the surface around the sink as well and not just on the sink edges.

Hard to say exactly without seeing it. Send us this question via our Contact Us Form and we'll follow up with you. Take some photos that you can send us after we respond to the "Contact" form.

Dull Black Granite over dishwasher
by: Anonymous

I have just had a Black Pearl granite countertop installed. I love it. But now I have run my dishwasher a few times. And the edges over it are dull on my counters. Is this poor or wrong sealer? Is this something I will have happen no matter what?


Well, steam can wear on stone and make a polished surface dull, however, this process usually takes some time and usually on softer stones like marble.

Black pearl granite is typically pretty dense and usually does not need sealing. Any stone that is naturally dense, does not need sealing and should not have a sealer applied.

Sealers applied to granite countertops that do not need sealing usually end up with a hazy dull residue covering the surface.

Possibly that did not happen in your case, but I'd bet it is the sealer that is being affected and not the granite countertop itself.

But have your installer come take a look and/or a stone restoration pro.

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