Maintaining granite is generally pretty easy to do; one of the most effective ways to upkeep your granite countertops is to regularly reseal the surface (generally every 1-2 years), which will keep the granite surface protected and in-tact. Most specialised sealants are quite affordable, and the effects of some can even last up to 3 years, making sealing a far more cost-effective method than having to regularly replace or repair your worktops. Using a chopping board and taking care when preparing food will also stop sharp knives from ruining the surface.
Avoid Heavy-Chemical Cleaning Products
There are a number of strong, heavy-chemical cleaning products that can harm, discolour or even permanently damage your granite worktops, with some even causing the top, sealant layer to become damaged or start peeling. Most common cleaning products that contain bleach, ammonia, citrus or vinegars are not advised for cleaning your granite countertops; more gentle, natural cleaners (such as warm water with a gentle dish soap) will softly and effectively remove all dirt and bacteria from the surface without any harsh effects.
Clean Spills Immediately
It is possible for heavily-acidic food and drink substances, such as wine, fruit juices and coffee, to stain and wear granite surfaces over time. If you spill something on your worktop, it is important that you wipe up the spillage relatively quickly (not letting it dry) so that your granite does not have time to become discoloured or harshly effected. It may sound obvious, but using coasters under your mugs and glasses is good practice to avoid this.
Avoid Heavy Objects
General everyday use is unlikely to result in chips, cracks or scratches, but if very heavy items such as large appliances are placed regularly on top of the granite surface then this pressure can, over time, increase the risk of dents and cracks – particularly around the edges or cupboard overhang. Sitting on, or leaning over, the overhang can also create pressure that is likely to wear the granite over time, potentially requiring replacement sooner. Place heavy items on the countertop carefully where possible.
Take Care With Heat
Although granite is an incredibly hard-wearing material that won’t easily burn, you should try to avoid placing very hot pots and pans directly onto the surface, as this can cause thermal shock to your worktops. Though it is rare, high heat is more than capable of cracking your granite surfaces. Where possible, you should use trivets and heat pads to put down any hot objects after cooking, until they are completely cooled.