Granite is an igneous rock made of minerals such as Quartz, Mica, and Feldspar as well as other minerals. It is formed through the process of slow crystallisation of magma below the earth’s surface that traps these minerals in its structure.
The formation of this material under high heat temperatures generates its hardness and durability. The variety and abundance in the minerals allow distinctive patterns, textures, and crystals to form. The colour choice is vast from off whites, reds, blues, pinks, and greens. Some are simple with subtle veining or patterns, whilst others offer striking arrangements that look like artistic paintings. Within the spectrum of Granites, there is a range from hard to soft which will affect the care and maintenance of each stone.
One of the most popular choices for worktops, a Granite surface is beautiful and varied as well as durable and functional. Cullifords have a range of the most sought-after Granites from, Brazil, Italy, Africa, India, and China to name just a few sources, bringing you the highest quality materials available in the market. We have many contacts and suppliers across the globe, so if you have particular Granite in mind that is not in our current range we are always happy to endeavour to source this for you.
The beauty of Granites as a natural stone is the colours and variance you get.
What to expect?
- When Cullifords source a block of Granite from a quarry, that block is cut into slabs. Though each slab will usually be similar in colour, pattern, and texture, it will not be identical; it may vary slightly through the block
- Your fabricator will aim to cut the slabs to maximise the pattern flow and make sure all-important sections of the slab are used efficiently for your project, ensure you have discussed your personal preferences and requirements with your fabricator before cutting starts.
- A well-sealed Granite surface, that is cared for appropriately, should be relatively difficult to stain, we will discuss the sealing process in the “How to Care?” section.
- Being a natural material Granite can have pits or little holes in the surface where the crystals are very small and do not adhere to the surface, this would be evident during the selection process and would not affect the performance of the surface. In many cases these little pits will be filled by a film of resin, it depends on the stone type. Sometimes these holes are so small they do not take the resin, we aim to source blocks which have less of these features, but from time to time they can occur and they should not be considered an imperfection.
- We divide our Granites into soft and hard Granites, most Granites rarely scratch but we would always recommend using a chopping board, chopping directly onto your granite will result in knives becoming blunt. Soft Granite may scratch.
- Though Granites have been formed through high heat temperatures and can withstand a moderate amount of heat, it is still advisable to use trivets as your surface can receive a thermal shock and crack. Only Lundhs Granites have been officially tested to be deemed safe to accept a hot pan directly onto the surface.
- Granite is undoubtedly a strong stone, but as a worktop, it is only supported at the edges by the kitchen carcass, joins and cut-outs can be weaker points and the surface is not designed to support the weight of a person. Do not stand or sit on your surface or place very heavy objects on weaker points.
- Dropping a heavy or sharp object onto a Granite surface may cause it to chip or crack.
- Overtime and with use a build-up of oils and greases will gradually darken the appearance of your Granite surface. This can be revitalised with a deep clean with an appropriate product such as Lithofin Wexa or DryTreat Rejuvinata.
How to care?
- Natural stone is porous and therefore would absorb substances if untreated; it depends on the type of stone how porous it is. Hard Granite is only very slightly porous, whereas soft Granites will need more sealant. Sealants can either impregnate the surface of the stone filling the capillaries and reducing their absorbency or create a covering film on the surface. A good sealant will stop the ingress of water, oils and other liquids on all-natural stone and this protective layer will only enhance the durability of your surface. Discuss with your fabricator the options of sealant, which is the most suitable to the type of Granite you have chosen and their effect on the appearance of the surface. We would recommend DryTreat and Lithofin as they run training and accreditation on their products and offer advice about ensuring the right sealant for the right stone.
- For daily care of your surface wipe with a clean moist, soft cloth with either a dilute, mild soapy solution (such as liquid dish soap) or a daily Granite and Marble cleaner such as Method, DryTreat Rejuvinata Countertop Cleaner, or Lithofin Easy-Clean. Rinse the cloth and wring out then wipe over the surface again to clear any traces of soap. Then buff with a clean, dry microfiber cloth. Always ensure your cloth is clean. Never use an abrasive cloth or scouring pads. Do not use bleach or harsh cleaners. The darker and/or plainer Granite’s can be susceptible to visual oil build-up from liquid dish soap so a more specialist cleaner as listed above would be recommended.
- It is always advisable to remove a spill as soon as you possibly can, by blotting away with a kitchen towel and then wiping the surface as advised above. The longer the spill sits on the surface the increased risk of it penetrating the surface. This is particularly important for acid-based products, e.g. vinegars, citrus, fizzy drinks, wine etc., oil based substances e.g. butter, cooking oils and strongly coloured foods and liquids e.g. beetroot, red/dark fruits, turmeric, saffron, red wine.
- From time to time, we would advise a deeper clean with a product such as Lithofin Wexa or DryTreat Rejuvinata. It is important to use the product that is best suited to the sealant you have used.
- There are further maintenance and care advice on the Lithofin www.lithofin.com/en-gb and DryTreat www.drytreat.com websites.