After choosing natural stone for your kitchen floors and countertops, it’s only natural that you’d consider extending this choice to your backsplash sections. The rationale behind backsplashes is more than aesthetic. You want to protect the walls from everything that can splash onto them during meal preparation, but you also don’t want to compromise the look of your kitchen with ceramic or laminate panels. The problem with natural-stone backsplash panels is that they’re often overlooked in terms of cleaning despite being equally exposed to the same elements that can affect horizontal surfaces. Even though they’re not directly exposed to spills, they can still accumulate grease, food residue, and dust particles. Neglecting natural-stone backsplashes for too long could result in damage that can be avoided with the following maintenance recommendations.
1. Choose the Right Finish
For the sake of a balanced interior décor, most homeowners will match their floors and counters with the same stone on the backsplash. This makes decorating sense, but additional thought should be given to the choice of finish. Whenever possible, the surface to be smooth and polished. If you choose a textured surface for the panels in the back of the stove, they may be more likely to require scrubbing rather than wiping.
Take a look at this video explaining how to avoid losing the luster on granite and other types of natural stone:
2. Include All Backsplashes in Your Cleaning Schedule
As previously mentioned, it’s easy to forget about the vertical stone panels or tiles in your kitchen, but this can be avoided by making it a point to clean them at the same time you wipe down your counters. In fact, you can start with the backsplash sections before moving on to the counters, and you may want to get into the habit of doing so right after cooking.
3. Keep a Fresh Seal on the Panels
The stone backsplashes of your kitchen should be sealed with granite sealer as often as the countertops, particularly if they’re tiles separated by grout lines. A strong seal will protect your stone panels from water, grease, and food residue. Moreover, it will also make it easier for you to clean.
4. Don’t Forget About the Grout
Most stone backsplash installations will involve grouted tiles, which means they could end up looking dirty more often than expected. Grout lines can be cleaned with a stone-safe grout cleaner and a soft-bristled scrub brush (which is included with Granite Gold Grout Cleaner®). If you have dark stone tiles, you may want to consider a staining treatment for the grouting so they don’t have to be scrubbed as often.
5. Clean Greasy Residue
Another situation that may require scrubbing is when the stone panels or tiles are located close to the back of the stove. If you find a stubborn greasy spot that doesn’t go away after wiping it down with granite cleaner, you can try scrubbing with a soft scouring pad. After doing away with these stains, the best course of action is to reapply sealant.
For more information on caring for natural-stone backsplashes as well as countertops, flooring, showers, and more, reach out to the Stone Care Experts at Granite Gold®. All of our products are safe to use on granite, slate, marble, limestone, and all other types of natural stone. Call us today at 1-800-475-STONE (7866), and like our Facebook page for additional tips and information on caring for the stone in your home.
Lenny Sciarrino (aka Lenny S) and Lenny Pellegrino (aka Lenny P) grew up in the family business and are co-founders of Granite Gold®.