Your granite countertops are as natural as they come. Formed from magma, granite is one of the hardest rocks known to man. This coveted building material has been forged from slabs that came straight from the earth itself. Natural care products are the obvious choice for a raw, awe-inspiring building material like granite. These tips will help you care for your granite naturally, without harsh commercial cleaners.
Wipe Up Spills With a Soft, Damp Cloth
Although extremely hard, granite is also slightly porous and will absorb spills. In addition, acidic liquids like orange juice and red wine can etch your granite, causing damage that must be later restored. For this reason, the first rule of care for any granite countertop is to soak up liquid spills quickly, before they're able to soak in. You don't need any special care products to do this. A soft cotton or microfiber cloth will be enough.
Use products like pot holders and trivets to prevent pots and glasses from scratching your natural countertops. Scratches can remove the seal, causing granite to more easily absorb spills and become stained.
Use a Poultice to Absorb Stains
A poultice is a thick, peanut butter-like substance that is used to absorb stains from natural stone and tile. There are many commercial poultices available at stone and tile stores, but you can make your own from products found in your kitchen. Mix baking soda with water in a dish until it forms a thick paste. Then, spread the poultice over the stain and cover it with plastic wrap. Allow the poultice to dry overnight, and remove the plastic wrap the following day. Wash away the poultice, and reapply for a second coat if some hint of the stain is still visible.
Avoid Acidic Cleaners--Even Natural Ones
Never use ammonia, lemon juice or vinegar on your countertops. Acidic cleaners, even homemade ones, can etch your countertops, dulling the surface and making it more susceptible to stains.
Polish Your Granite Regularly
Buffing your granite to a high shine will help your countertops look their best. To polish your granite, vigorously rub down the countertop with a chamois cloth. For a greater shine, mix rubbing alcohol, a drop of pH-neutral natural dish soap and water in a bucket, and dip the chamois cloth in the mixture. Use the cloth to wipe down the countertops until they shine.
Your granite countertops are an investment that add value to your kitchen. With proper care, you should be able to enjoy your granite countertops for many years to come. For more information, contact your countertop supplier (such as Kitsap Kitchen & Bath Co.).