How to Clean Granite Countertops

How to Clean Granite Countertops

Prized for their natural beauty, granite countertops are popular among homeowners and interior designers. Their extreme durability makes them suitable for use in high-traffic areas as well. As traffic increases, the wear and tear increases, leading to discolorations or dull looks. Since granite is a high-end material for countertops, keeping them looking good and pristine is a good idea.

This article will look closely into how to clean granite countertops

What You’ll Need

Cleaning granite countertops are relatively simple yet essential. Using the right materials and techniques is vital to avoid potential damage. You’ll need some basic cleaning products for cleaning your granite countertops.

  • Mild dish soap or a pH-balanced stone cleaner.
  • Warm water
  • A soft cloth such as cotton or microfiber cloth.
  • Rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide for disinfecting.

Cleaning Your Granite Countertops

Granite countertops are a fantastic choice for your rooms due to their natural beauty and extreme durability. To keep them protected, they are sealed during installation. Applying a sealant regularly is a great way to protect your granite countertops. Cleaning your granite countertops is just as important as sealing them. Here are some simple steps on how to clean your granite countertops

  1. Clear Your Countertops: Start by removing everything on your countertops. This way, cleaning and reaching every spot on your countertops will be easier.
  2. Wipe: Continue by wiping your granite countertops with a damp cloth to remove any surface dirt or crumbs. Use a microfiber cloth so the dust or dirt particles can’t scratch your countertops.
  3. Clean with dish soap: You can now make a cleaning solution with water and mild dish soap. Just a few drops will be enough. You can use a spray bottle or simply soak your cleaning cloth in the mixture. You can use special stone cleaners instead of dish soap as well. After that, gently wipe the surface of your granite countertops. Make smooth and circular motions while wiping. Remember to avoid applying excessive pressure. 
  4. Rinse: After washing the surface with the soap solution, rinse the surface with water and dry it with another soft cloth. This way, you will remove any residues and eliminate water spots or streaking.
  5. Disinfect the Surface: To disinfect the surface of your granite countertops, you are going to need a 50/50 mixture of rubbing alcohol and water. Spray the entire surface with this mixture and wait for five minutes. After five minutes, wipe the surface of your granite countertops with a clean cloth. 

How to Remove Stains

Granite countertops are sealed to have some stain resistance. However, stains can still pop up, especially in kitchens where spills are unavoidable. It is always a great idea to wipe up spills as they happen. Remember to blot them instead of wiping them to prevent them from spreading. After that, simply clean the area with water and dish soap. Then rinse with clean water several times to keep your granite countertops looking beautiful.

Using a poultice as a stain remover can help you remove tough stains. For oil-based stains, mix baking soda and water; for water-based stains, mix baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. Mix the baking soda and the liquid into a paste, then apply it to the stain. After that, gently scrub the surface with a soft cloth and rinse. The stain should be gone.

If the previous method doesn’t work, apply another layer of the poultice and cover the area with plastic wrap. Let it sit for a few hours, and then remove the plastic wrap to rinse and scrub the area.

How to Protect Granite Countertops?

Granite countertops can be considered permanent investments in any home. When maintained properly, they will last for a long time. Here are some tips to keep your granite countertops looking as beautiful as the day they are installed.

  • Always clean spills immediately. This way, they won’t have the chance to seep into the stone, leading to permanent stains or bacterial growth.
  • Use coasters under glasses or cups. Acidic liquids like lemon, vinegar, or orange juice can eat through the sealant.
  • Use hot pads or trivets when placing hot pots or pans. The granite itself is resistant to heat. However, the heat can damage the sealant.
  • Use cutting boards. Sharp objects like kitchen knives can end up scratching the surface.
  • Avoid using acidic or abrasive cleaners. Such materials can damage the sealant, lowering the defense of your granite countertops. 
  • Reseal your granite countertops regularly. The resealing periods depend on the traffic your countertops get. You can do a simple water drop test to see if your countertops need resealing. Simply place a few drops of water on the surface of your granite countertops. If the water beads up, the protective layer of sealant is still there. If the granite absorbs the water, it’s time to reseal. 

What Else to Know?

What is the best cleaner to use on granite countertops?

While specialized stone cleaners are available, warm water and dish soap are generally enough to clean your granite countertops. Remember to rinse after cleaning to remove any soap residue.

What should you not clean granite countertops with?

You should always avoid all-purpose commercial cleaners, ammonia or ammonia-based cleaners, bleach, and acidic household items such as vinegar, lemon, or lime. Also, remember to stay away from scrubby sponges, steel wool, or disinfecting wipes as well. These cleaning products can end up etching and dulling your granite countertops.

Are Clorox wipes safe for granite countertops?

Clorox wipes can be handy; however, they aren’t when it comes to granite countertops. Since they can contain bleach or citric acid, they are dangerous to the sealant of your countertops. 

Is it safe to use Windex on granite countertops?

No, using Windex can strip the sealant off, leaving your granite countertops susceptible to stains and etching. You should only use stone cleaners or dish soap and water to clean your countertops to keep them looking pristine. 

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