Giving your kitchen an update!
When you look at your kitchen, one of the first things that capture the eye is the countertops as they are likely to be designed to match the aesthetic of the rest of your space. But when it comes to design and practicality, no other countertop can match the granite type. This is due to the remarkable ability to withstand heat, so when you’re cooking and place a hot pan on the countertop, the granite won’t melt or have any surface damage.
They are also scratch-resistant, stain-resistant, and chemical resistant. Granite is the perfect choice for a countertop type when you are looking to remodel your kitchen. However, many are unaware of how to clean granite countertops if it is their first time owning this type of countertop.
Some homeowners just stick to their general knowledge of cleaning not knowing that some countertop cleaners can damage the surface of the granite and not all cleaners are made equal. Although granite is fairly tough against stains, there are still ways that it can occur, for you will need to follow specific strategies that will help in the removal process.
Kitchen cleaning isn’t only about appearances, but it is a matter of your health and wellbeing as well. Maintaining your granite countertops will help avoid infestation of pests or critters and also make for an eye-catching look in your kitchen that even guests or family members will notice.
Before getting started we advise getting some of these products so that you’re able to clean your granite properly and follow our tips:
- Dish soap
- Spray bottle
- Clean microfiber cloth
- Baking soda
Home cleaning doesn’t have to be that hard, especially when you rely on these helpful tips that will guide you through cleaning granite countertops:
Remove items and clean off counters
Why is it important to remove items and cleaning off countertop items?
The first tip is to make sure that no item is left on the countertop, as it will be problematic to clean around and you will miss some areas of your granite countertop. In the meantime, you can put these items on the dining table, stovetop, or other surfaces that won’t need cleaning.
We also recommend cleaning off any loose crumbs or debris from your countertops as it can smear when using any cleaning solution. Use a dry brush or sponge to wipe away any of these objects to make the cleaning process easier. Some things to keep in mind before beginning the process is:
- Don’t use any overly strong chemicals or acidic cleaners as they can damage the surface of the granite. Stick with mild cleaners or DIY solutions.
- Always use warm water for cleaning as it can kill bacteria, but make sure that it is not overly hot as it can damage the surface of the granite.
Following these golden rules can help you not only clean your countertop but maintain them daily.
Scrub the surface
What are some cleaners or solutions you CAN use for granite?
As we said previously, when it comes to maintaining your granite countertop we suggest staying away from harsh cleaners. Acidic cleaners can damage the sealant that granite tops usually have which makes them shiny and stain-resistant.
It is important to heed our warnings when it comes to keeping the sealant intact and relatively damage-free as this is one of the stand-out properties of granite countertops that make it practical and stylish.
Vinegar, Windex, and bleach are popular go-to cleaners for many areas of the home. However, these cleaners will eventually cause your granite countertop to lose its famous shine and turn into a dulled out less-than-appealing kitchen surface.
Swap these cleaners for more mild cleaning options like dish soap and water. Though it may seem simple and less than effective, a little goes a long way.
Next is the sponge
You may look to purchase a strong abrasive brush to remove any stains or dirt. We’re here to stop you before you think about destroying your granite countertop, these sponges could lead to scratches, and before you know it it’s too late.
When it comes to scrubbing your counter, we recommend a soft sponge. A good method of scrubbing is doing it from the back to the front. If you have trouble finding a good technique for scrubbing, you can do an “s” pattern and then do the corners to get the whole area.
Granite countertops that have had some liquid spillage will need just a little more scrubbing as these stains are all around trickier and more stubborn to remove. We recommend wiping up spills as soon as they happen so that the spillage won’t be absorbed by the granite.
Removing persistent stains
What is a good way to remove stains on granite countertops?
We’ve all been there. You’re having a drink with some friends on the kitchen countertop and either you or a klutzy friend ends up spilling their drink all over your new granite surface. Of course, at the moment you decide to leave it for later, as entertaining your guests is a priority over your home.
What you don’t know at the moment is that that simple spill will be absorbed by your granite countertop leading to your countertop accumulating damage over time. So, what can be done? Well instead of sulking in regret we advise you to take action and get yourself a razor blade.
For any homeowner who is currently thinking how dangerous using a razor blade can be for a countertop, don’t fret! There is a safe way to gently scrape the gunk or build up so you don’t damage the surface.
We recommend laying the edge of your razor blade down so that it is resting on the counter. You will then scrape against the gunk until it has successfully been removed. Once you have scraped all you can with the razor blade, you can go ahead and use a sponge to wipe away any residue.
Our suggestion is to use a dry sponge to wipe up any leftover suds from the sponge as excess moisture can lead to granite damage. If you need to, we advise rinsing your sponge multiple times. Double-check to make sure there are no large puddles of water or residue from the sponge.
When dealing with sharp objects like a razor blade, you must stay safe so we advise using gloves for protection.
Baking Soda and Water
Although using a razor blade is effective, at times there may still be stains that linger even after giving it the best scraping you can. The best way to clean granite countertops that uses less strength can use the magical combination of baking soda and water.
Professional and regular home cleaning experts are more than aware of the use of baking soda when it comes to maintaining your home. It is no secret that baking soda has been used for decades as a more natural cleaning solution as opposed to chemical cleaners.
Although chemical cleaners have the reputation for being effective against stains, in this case, it can worsen your granite countertop’s sealant with each use. So, we recommend using baking soda and water as a natural alternative, just follow these steps:
- Make a paste – Mix baking soda and water to make a paste, the amount will depend on how big the area is. One half a cup of baking soda and one cup of water should be enough for a medium-sized stain, add more if larger.
- Scrub – Remember to scrub the area gently with a non-abrasive sponge or soft cloth.
- Rinse – After you have scrubbed, we recommend rinsing the area thoroughly.
- Repeat – If the stain is still there, you may need to repeat all these steps as much as you can that it is completely removed.
- Plastic wrap – for those stains that are giving you a lot of trouble, we advise you to spot treat the stain and put paste directly on the affected area. Then you’re going to cover the plastic wrap and tape down the edges.
- Dry – Wait for the paste to dry completely. If you have the time, we suggest waiting a couple of days before wiping it away with a soft cloth.
- Rinse – rinse away the paste with warm water, make sure the water is not too hot.
When it comes to a water-based stain, you can go ahead and mix baking soda with hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide has an active oxidizing agent that works to remove the stain.
These methods can work to help remove even the most stubborn stains without needing to use any bleaching chemicals which can lead to allergic reactions, burning sensation in your eyes, and all-around danger for your pets or kids.
For disinfecting and sanitizing
What is the best method to sanitize a granite countertop?
When it comes to cleaning granite countertops or just giving them general maintenance, it is important to sanitize them daily. Every day when you use the kitchen to cook, you seldom realize just how much bacteria, grime, and grease the surrounding areas can accumulate.
Although the surface may look clean due to the shiny sealant that granite countertops have, it is hardly noticeable just how unsanitary it can get. We have a trick you can use that won’t take too much time and will assist in the aftermath of cooking so you can effectively sanitize your space.
First, you will need to get a spray bottle to distribute the solution evenly. Fill the spray bottle with 50 percent isopropyl alcohol and 50 percent water. Start with one cup of each, then you will mix the solution gently. Once it is mixed, you can spray the entire counter with the solution.
We recommend waiting five minutes so that the solution can seep into the surface. Then you’ll wipe off the moisture from the counters, making sure you wipe from back to front.
As for the wiping technique, you can use the same “S” motion you used earlier. Use a clean dish towel for this process. After it has dried and you’ve completed the cleaning process, you’ll find that your granite countertops are shining more brilliantly than before.
How to maintain the granite countertop shine?
Granite countertops are considered an update from your normal countertop due to their natural shine due to the sealant. But if you’ve struggled with maintaining your countertop clean it could suffer from a dulled-out exterior. Not to worry, you can also help maintain the shine with these simple tips.
For this, you’ll need to take out your cooking oil. We know, we know, it may seem a little obscure but stick with us. Pour some cooking oil onto a soft cleaning cloth, you’ll then wipe it across the countertop. Polish it gently, this helps your countertop remain stain-resistant as well as gives it a brilliant shine.
More tips for taking care of granite countertops
If you’ve installed the granite countertop yourself, you may have forgotten to seal it or if you have, your sealant will start wearing off as time goes by without you realizing it. The sealant is important is it helps counteract stains, water, and other damage.
We recommend resealing the granite stone every two to four years. This will not only keep your countertops clean but it’ll keep your granite from dulling and becoming less than appealing over time.
A good key to finding out if your sealant has been damaged or is wearing off is when it becomes harder to clean spillage from water or any other liquid.
Your kitchen is an important place not just for cooking but for family gatherings. It is important to keep your kitchen in sanitary conditions whether you have guests over or not. A happy and clean home can have positive mental health benefits as well as establish a clean atmosphere free of disease or decay.