Stain Protection Without Granite Sealer
by Jean P.
Just reading about the sealing fiasco of blue pearl granite and I am wondering....How is a granite countertop protected from stains without a sealer??
I just ordered miles of it for my kitchen. Will it be an ongoing maintenance problem not being able to apply a sealer or 'seal' it?
Quick.. I just ordered it yesterday... thanks.
Jean, this granite will serve you well. It most likely won't need sealing, but as with any stone you should test for sealing granite countertops
to determine if it should be sealed or not. How it is protected from stains without a sealer?Despite all the nonsense
you read online about "all" stone "must" be sealed and often... well, the truth is that some stones (quite a number really) have a naturally high resistance to staining. They are very dense and simply do not absorb anything and do not stain. If a stone is non-absorbent
then it doesn't need a sealer, in fact, cannot be sealed and won't stain either. All a sealer does is decrease the rate of absorption of a liquid. It does not absolutely prevent staining with some impervious shell. Good granite & marble sealers
do an excellent job of this and essentially eliminate stain worries, but they do not make granite "stain-proof."
I know the term "seal" seems to imply this would be the case, but no. Such a coating or shell around the stone would be detrimental to the stone. Now, all stones vary
in their rate of absorption. Some granites are like a sponge and even when
sealed can have a problem with stains. These should never be installed in a kitchen. Testing will help you avoid these. Many stones
will absorb and stain without sealing, but become very stain resistant with sealing. On the flip side
, as stated above... some granites (or stones sold as granite) are so dense with rates of absorption so low that they effectively do not absorb anything..... And therefore, do not stain except in an extreme, very rare circumstance like you left a big puddle of oil on the granite for a day or two. Most spills
on super-dense granite will be wiped up or evaporate before they come close to absorbing and/or staining. These granite varieties are already as stain resistant as some other stone that has been sealed.
Applying a granite sealer will not provide any added protection and in many instances will just cause an unnecessary problem. If a granite sealer is not applied correctly
then you get the hazy-streaky mess and you learn the hard way that it shouldn't have been applied in the first place. Will it be an ongoing maintenance problem not being able to 'seal' it?
I imagine you guessed it by now, but quite the opposite. The answer is NO...
A super-dense stone that does not and/or cannot be sealed is exactly the type of stone you want
to install in your kitchen because it is so easy to maintain with the fewest problems of any surface on the market.
Install with confidence. Test it. Seal if testing definitively
shows you should (probably won't) and enjoy your granite.