Brown granite countertop and wood cabinets with sink and wine

6 Secrets to Maintaining Granite Countertops

Inspirational Pinterest boards and an ambitious imagination are valuable assets when designing a dream kitchen. Sometimes though, we overlook functionality to follow our daydreams and forget to consider things like kitchen lighting design and what material to use for the countertop. Even once the material is selected, you’ve got to consider things like how to clean the surface. 

If you’ve chosen granite as your countertop material of choice, rest assured that maintaining granite countertops is pretty simple! Whether your practical side has you wondering how to clean granite countertops before they’re installed, or you’re looking back in hindsight wishing it had, these cleaning tips make kitchen cleanup a breeze. 

6 Tips for Maintaining Granite Countertops

Follow these steps in your kitchen cleanup routine and your granite’s sure to keep its dream-kitchen glow for years to come!

1. Use a Soft Cloth and Cleanser with a Neutral pH Balance

Acidic cleaners and rough sponges will wear down the sealant on your granite countertop. As the sealant deteriorates, it becomes susceptible to bacteria growth and scratching. That means no Windex, vinegar, or cleaners that contain ammonia. Instead, use a cleaner intended for granite or even basic dish soap. 

When it comes to maintaining granite countertops, a quick wipe down is all they should ever really need. Unless, of course, life happens…

2. Clean Spills Right Away

You probably clean spills immediately anyway, but when maintaining granite countertops, you’ll want to blot spilled liquids with a soft cloth or paper towel ASAP. Blotting prevents liquids from spreading and doing so right away ensures less wear on your counter. 

After you’ve blotted up the majority of the liquid, be sure to wipe the area with a dry dishcloth. This collects any residual moisture so it doesn’t seep into the pores of the granite. 

3. Be Careful About Putting Hot Pans on Your Granite Countertop 

While hot pots and pans (up to 500°!) won’t damage the surface of your granite countertop, extreme or constant changes in temperature can harm the stone. (I.e. if the room is cold, you don’t want to put a hot pan on the counter!). To be on the safe side, always ask your countertop supplier any specific questions you have about countertops and temperature.   

4. Clean Oil Marks With Baking Soda and Water

Maybe an oil mark snuck up on you. Or perhaps you didn’t get to a spill right away. Either way, don’t fret. If an oil-based liquid has stained your granite countertop, cover it with a paste made of baking soda and water. Let it sit for several hours (hint: overnight). Then, wipe it off with a soft cloth and enjoy your sparkly fresh countertop!

5. Clean Water-Based Stains With Baking Soda and Hydrogen Peroxide

Liquids like coffee, juice, and wine may leave spots if not blotted up right away. To freshen up your granite countertop, add a tiny bit of hydrogen peroxide (just enough to make a paste) to baking soda. Slather it on the water-based marks and let sit overnight!

6. Don’t Worry About Disinfecting

Granite repels bacteria all on its own! If you feel the need to disinfect your granite countertop with something more than soap and water, mix water and a 91% isopropyl alcohol in a 50/50 ratio. Spray it on the countertop, let sit for three to five minutes, and rinse with water. Then, dry with a soft dishcloth to prevent extra moisture from being soaked up.

Granite is a versatile countertop material that can achieve the elegant ambiance of your dream-kitchen Pins while remaining functional in everyday use. So long as you’re diligent about maintaining your granite countertops, their character will shine through many home renovation projects to come. 
Ready to incorporate functionality with aesthetics? Our home renovation experts are standing by!