Congratulations on your stone purchase. Following some simple precautions will protect your investment and give you many years of lasting beauty. Sealing of your natural stone countertop and using the correct cleaning methods and products will ensure the life of your stone.
Granite and Marble Countertops
Granite and Marble Countertops
Natural stone is porous and can absorb spills and stains if left untreated. To protect it’s natural beauty sealing your stone with a quality sealer will prevent spills and stains from damaging your counter. We recommend that you re-seal your stone every 5 years. Your countertop is already sealed prior to installation and is sealed once again after installation is completed. Urban Stone Surfaces will recommend the proper sealant product for future use. (Quartz surfaces do not require sealing – See Quartz Countertop – Maintenance and Care).
Cleaning Procedures and Cautions
Once your countertop has been sealed, it is protected against daily dirt and spills. To enhance the life of the sealer, proper cleaning will keep your stone protected longer. Keeping your stone free from dust and dry grit (soil) will minimize scratches and wear patters that can develop over time. Dusting your surfaces regularly will help. To clean your surface use fresh warm water, mild liquid soap and a clean soft cloth or purchase a 3-1 Cleaner from Urban Stone Surfaces to guarantee proper maintenance of your stone. Chose a non abrasive cloth or sponge. Do not use traditional kitchen cleaning products as these can contain abrasives and alkaline that will scratch or etch your surface. We can recommend an everyday cleaner for your stone.
Etch marks (dull spots) can appear if you do not wipe up liquid spills that are acidic. These spills can lead to damage ie. – fruit juices, wine, coffee, tea, water, vinegar, ketchup, bbq sauce, soft drinks, etc. all these types of substances will ‘etch’ (eat away) the surface of your stone. Your sealer does protect the surface but spills left for sometime will create a chemical reaction and leave a dull spot. Some alkaline cleaners will result in etch spots so avoid these cleaners. If you end up with and etch spot or area we can professionally refinish and restore your natural stone’s even finish. (Marble is more sensitive to liquids as compared to Granite – but both still do require care and precautions.)
Spills and Stains
Spills will occur. Many types of liquids and sauces can leave their mark including the above mentioned and also vegetable and olive oils, grease splatters, etc., it’s important to wipe up spills as they happen or a stain will be left. (Always test a small surface area first before any cleaner is applied.)
Liquid Spills / Food Spills – Blot liquid spills with a paper towel or clean white cloth. It is important to blot only; wiping a spill may spread it over a larger area, making a larger mess. Food spills – scoop up food with soon then blot with dry cloth. Any cloth you use should be white as sometimes cloths are not 100% colour fast. Last thing you would want is a colour leaking cloth. With a new clean white cloth – use only water and a stone soap or mild liquid soap to wipe surface.
Oily Spills/Stains – if you know the substance has an oil base (salad dressings, cooking oils, pastes, etc) you maybe able to remove it with our 3-1 Cleaner. Or consult a professional cleaner or natural stone restoration specialist.
Taking Care of Your Quartz Surface
Quartz surfaces blend modern sophistication and timeless luxury with unbeatable strength and durability. The ever-lasting finish requires only simple and routine care to maintain its good looks. To clean quartz, we recommend using warm water and a mild detergent or quality spray and wipe type cleaner in order to enjoy enduring beauty and unmatched performance for years to come.
Virtually maintenance-free, hard, non-porous surfaces require no sealing to renew its luster and are simple to clean. In most cases, soap and water or a mild detergent is enough to keep your quartz surfaces looking like new. If necessary, use a non-abrasive soft soap along with a non-scratch or delicate scrub pad. Afterwards, thoroughly rinse with clean water to remove residue.
Stubborn Stains or Dried Spills
If needed, apply a non-abrasive household cleaner (a non-abrasive cleaner will not dull the surface shine) and rinse to remove residue. To remove adhered material such as food, gum, nail polish or even dried paint, first scrape away excess material with a plastic putty knife and then use a damp cloth to remove any marks or residual dirt.
Quartz is more heat resistant than other stone surfaces including most granite, marble and limestone; and is not affected by temperatures lower than 150°C (300°F). However, like all stone material, quartz can be damaged by sudden and rapid temperature changes. Therefore, we suggest that hot pots and pans never be directly placed on the surface. We also recommend a hot pad or trivet be placed on the surface under cooking units such as electric frying pans, crock pots, or roaster ovens.
Quartz is a highly scratch resistant surface; however avoid abuse of the surface by refraining from using sharp objects such as sharp knives or screw drivers directly onto the surface.
Cleaning Agents to Avoid
It’s important to be aware that like any other surface, your surface can be permanently damaged if exposed to strong chemicals and solvents that can damage its physical properties. Never clean your stone surface with products that contain Trichlorethane or Methylene chloride, such as paint removers or strippers. Avoid the use of highly aggressive cleaning agents such as oven/grill cleaners and dishwasher polishing agents that have high alkaline/pH levels (pH 8.5 or higher). Products containing oils or powders may leave a residue and should be rinsed off thoroughly. Should your surface accidentally be exposed to any of these damaging products, rinse immediately with clean water to neutralize the effect.