Understanding How Granite Slabs Are Made

If you are shopping for a new kitchen countertop , you may want to check out the fabulous benefits that granite has to offer you. A granite countertop will bring the beauty of nature into your home, while also providing you with an incredibly tough and wear resistant surface for preparing, serving, and enjoying meals. Your granite countertop in Baltimore will be mined directly from the earth. Since no 2 granite slabs are the same, your new countertop will provide your home with unique appeal. Here’s an overview of the process of making granite slabs. granite - slabs

Granite Is Mined from a Quarry

The first step of making a granite slab is to mine the raw granite materials out of the earth. Granite slabs are obtained from special sites that are known as quarries. Some of the most prolific quarries in the world are in far flung locations, such as Italy and Brazil. Using powerful machines, a mining company mines and blasts raw granite out of the quarry.

Milling Machines Cut the Slabs

After granite has first been mined out of the earth, it will be in a very rough form. After the mining process is complete, the granite will be sent to a workshop to be transformed into slabs. A technician will use milling machines to cut and polish the granite. Once milling has been completed, the slab will be between 7 and 9 feet long. When you visit a granite showroom, these slabs are typically what you will be shown.

The Slabs Are Transformed Into Countertops

After you have selected a slab that offers the color variations and patterns that are appealing to you, you will be ready to create your custom countertops. Your countertop fabrication specialist will take measurements of your kitchen in order to cut the granite to the correct shape. A template will then be used to cut the granite to size and the edges of the granite will be shaped and finished. Finally, the slabs will be carefully installed in your kitchen.

How to Care for Your Granite Kitchen Countertops

A granite countertop will elevate the style and quality of your kitchen or bathroom space. One of the main reasons that homeowners choose granite countertops is that granite is an amazingly sturdy natural material that is very resistant to staining, chips, and cracks. When a team of natural stone experts installs a new granite countertop in your home in Baltimore, your new surface will exceed your every expectation for beauty and durability. In preparation for your new countertop installation, you will want to learn the basics about how to care for granite slabs. Let’s explore some general maintenance tips for granite. granite - countertops

Dust the Surface

After you make the switch to granite countertops, you will be amazed at how easy your counters are to clean. Each day, you can restore the shine and beauty of your granite by dusting the surface with a dry microfiber cloth. The microfiber material will pick up any dust or crumbs, without leaving streaks on the stone.

Wipe With Stone Cleaner

As the owner of new granite countertops, you will want to invest in a cleaner that is designed specifically for use on natural stone. Natural stone cleaners are pH balanced so that they do not react with the molecules in the granite. Each week, you will want to thoroughly wipe down your granite countertops with your natural stone cleaner.

Remove Stains Immediately

Leaving a stain to sit on the surface of your granite countertop can leave a permanent mark. Some substances that can potentially stain granite include red wine, cooking oil, and soda. A mixture of baking soda and dish soap can be applied to the stain. This combination of materials will gently lift the stain out of the stone.

Seal Once a Year

Your granite countertops will have a protective seal when they are installed. The protective seal ensures that the porous parts of the granite do not pick up water or stains. To preserve the appearance and quality of your granite, you will want to reseal your granite countertops once every year.

Creating a Countertop Installation Checklist

When you are gearing up for a granite countertop installation, you may want to take the time to create a checklist for inspecting your installation. When you watch this video, you will receive important tips for inspecting your new granite countertops. After your granite countertop installation has been finished, you will want to carefully check to see if there are any visible seams in the slabs. A company that offers granite kitchen countertops in Baltimore will provide you with flawless installation services.

By updating your kitchen or bathroom with a countertop installation, you will dramatically increase the value of your home. A properly installed granite countertop will last for decades or longer without showing visible signs of wear. Your kitchen countertop specialist will be able to answer any questions that you may have about the installation process.

What You Need to Know about Choosing a Kitchen Countertop

Whether you are completely renovating your kitchen or simply updating your kitchen countertops in Baltimore , there are some important factors to keep in mind. Choosing a kitchen countertop can be one of the most difficult decisions during a renovation. When deciding on your next kitchen countertop, keep these considerations in mind. kitchen - countertops

It should fit your lifestyle.

Take a look at what your life is like and think about how it will look in the near future. If cooking is one of your passions, be sure to look for a kitchen countertop that will not stain and that will hold up to a lot of wear and tear. If you rarely spend time in your kitchen, then you may desire a countertop material that needs very little maintenance. There are many kitchen countertop materials available, so look at what each kind can offer you before choosing a new one.

It should match your décor.

Your kitchen countertops are going to be a dominant feature of your kitchen, so they should match or complement your kitchen’s décor. A white or black granite countertop will almost always match any color or décor theme you have in your kitchen. Both granite and quartz come in a variety of colors. If you are interested in granite, consider its unique veining. Granite veining tends to look different throughout each slab. Be sure you are happy with the varying colors and veins that run through your granite. If you prefer a more uniform look, then you may desire quartz because of its engineered quality.

It should stand the test of time.

No matter what material you choose for your kitchen countertops, they are likely to be in your kitchen for several years. Make sure that you choose a countertop material that will stand up to daily wear and tear. Your countertop should also be of a color and quality that can match your kitchen décor should you decide to change it in the future.

Comparing Granite Qualities

When choosing your granite slabs near Baltimore , you may come across the words “commercial” and “premium.” These are both a grade or quality of granite that can affect the look, feel, and price of your granite countertop.

Check out this video to hear from an expert on granite slabs and granite quality. Premium grade is the desired quality for a granite countertop. It will have consistent color and veining throughout the entire slab. Premium will also have few cracks, fissures, or flaws of any kind, making it easier for a fabricator to use the entire slab.

Commercial-grade granite slabs are still beautiful and strong like premium. However, commercial granite will have more flaws, structural weaknesses, and inconsistencies in color. This type of granite is usually used in commercial applications where the color and veining is not as important as in someone’s home.

Modern Ideas for Your Kitchen Countertops

If you’re looking for new kitchen countertops near Baltimore, you’ll find that there is no shortage of choices available. Formica, quartz, and granite kitchen countertops are just a few examples of the many possibilities. The material that you choose for your kitchen countertops should provide long-lasting function, but can also improve the appearance and value of your home.

Watch this video for tips on choosing a modern kitchen countertop. Choosing granite or quartz for your kitchen countertop is a timeless way to add elegance and beauty to your home. Today, there are a variety of other materials on the market as well, such as paper stone, butcher block, and bamboo.

Spotlight on Quartz Countertops

Are you looking for new kitchen or bathroom countertops in Baltimore? If so, you’ll have a variety of materials from which to choose. If you’re having trouble making a decision, you should know that quartz countertops offer exceptional beauty, versatility, and are ideal alternatives to natural stone.

Whether you’re redesigning a bathroom or replacing your kitchen countertops, quartz is an excellent choice. Because quartz countertops are made from processed quartz stone, an abundant material, they are an eco-friendly option. Additionally, quartz is extremely durable, meaning it can serve your home functionally and aesthetically for decades without any need for replacement.

Quartz tends to be about the same cost as granite or marble countertops and they can provide your space with pure, vibrant color. The pigments used in quartz countertops will not fade over time, as with some dyed materials, ensuring that they will maintain their hue throughout their lifetime. While natural stone countertops have unique patterns and colors, quartz can be manufactured to have a clean, consistent design that makes it an ideal choice for modern kitchens and bathrooms.

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A Look at the Process of Countertop Installation

Homeowners who are considering new vanity tops or kitchen countertops near Baltimore may be curious about the installation process. When you choose to work with a professional contractor, you’ll find that there are several essential steps involved in the installation of new kitchen countertops.

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Consultation

After speaking to a contractor, a countertop installation expert will perform an in-home consultation. This process involves measuring your current countertops and cabinets to gain some baseline dimensions. At this time, it’s ideal to ask any questions that you have about the countertop fabrication and installation process. Once you have hashed out an initial plan with your contractor, he will prepare a price estimate that covers the entire process and accounts for your choice of kitchen or bathroom countertop material.

Selection

When you are ready to move forward with the countertop installation after agreeing on a project estimate, the next step will be countertop selection. This involves narrowing down your choice of simply quartz, granite, or another material to a specific color, pattern, or slab. Some countertop companies will have their own showroom for you to peruse, and others may direct you to a wholesaler. If opting for granite, you’ll have a wide variety of types and colors from which to select. If you decide to go with quartz, you’ll choose from a range of solid colors or patterns that can replicate natural stone.

Fabrication

Once you have decided on a material, the fabrication process can begin. At this stage, your contractor will re-measure your bathroom or kitchen countertop to gain specific measurements and create templates. Next, the templates will be used to fabricate the individual countertop pieces, or cut them from your stone slab of choice.

Installation

In most cases, your installation team will spend about half a day at your home to complete your countertop installation. Your old counters will be carefully disassembled and removed, and your new countertops will be put in their place. Because the installation’s timeframe will depend on the complexity your project, ask your contractor for an estimate regarding the final stage of your new countertop installation.

Granite Maintenance 101

A granite countertop can go a long way in making your kitchen or bathroom look stunning, but your granite countertops near Baltimore need to be maintained. To keep your granite looking beautiful and stunning as the first day you bought it, here are a few tips. kitchen - countertops

Make Sure It’s Sealed

Whether you have a bathroom or kitchen countertop, make sure your granite has been, and continues to be, properly sealed. Applying a granite sealant, about once or twice a year, will go a long way toward preserving your granite. The sealant will prevent stains and etching from damaging the granite. To check if you have sealant, or need more of it, put a few drops of water on the granite. When properly sealed, the water will bead up and won’t penetrate the countertop. If the water is absorbed, you should apply a granite sealant. The sealant should easily spray or wipe onto the granite. Always be sure to follow the label’s instructions clearly.

Keep it Clean

For your granite kitchen countertops or flooring, it’s best to maintain a regular cleaning schedule. As soon as a spill occurs, clean it up to avoid staining the granite. Be careful with what cleaning product you use, as certain kinds might be too abrasive and can scratch the granite. Use a soft cloth or sponge with warm water when cleaning your countertop. Use a dry mop or a vacuum cleaner for your floors. If something spills on the floor, use the same method you would with your countertops.

Take Care of Stains Immediately

Your granite countertops may get stained occasionally, especially if you don’t have a proper seal on them. Granite is a porous material and will absorb liquids easily and probably stain. If the stain is oil-based, make a paste of hydrogen peroxide, water, and flour. Spread the paste over the stain, put some plastic wrap on it, and let it sit overnight. In the morning, use a sponge and warm water to remove the paste. If the stain is water-based, douse the stain in hot water, place layers of paper towels over it, and remove it the next morning.

Visiting a Granite Yard

The time has come to select your new kitchen countertop, and you have the opportunity to visit a granite yard. Enjoy this exciting time selecting your custom countertops in Baltimore, and watch the video for some tips.

When you visit a granite yard, be sure to wear comfortable shoes, and be prepared to spend an hour or more selecting your granite slabs. If you can, visit your granite shop’s website to see a sample of colors you’d like to inspect. This can save you some time searching. Also, whether this granite is for a bathroom or kitchen countertop, bring a sample of the room’s cabinets or color scheme. This will help you to keep an open-mind about which color or design will look right in your home.