When you’re scrambling to put dinner on the table, it’s easy to forget precisely where you’re putting your hot pans. Maybe you’ve misplaced a trivet, or you don’t have time to throw an extra pot warmer down on the counter.
Plus, your granite can take it. Granite is one of the most durable natural materials out there — as the Natural Stone Institute puts it, the” inherent strength, abrasion resistance and superior weathering durability” of granite make it a great choice for curbs, buildings and other structural or environmental areas.
When you think of it that way: Is there anything you shouldn’t put on a granite countertop?
Yes. For the longevity and beauty of your fine granite countertops, there is a line as to what is healthy, acceptable and safe.
Don’t Put These Items On Your Granite Countertop
Direct sources of heat. The Natural Stone Institute mentions that granite can withstand temperatures up to approximately 480 degrees Fahrenheit, but that doesn’t mean it can take a hot pan or even a slow cooker with ease. A dramatic thermal gradient — e.g., hot surface directly on cool granite — can lead to cracks in your stone surfaces. It’s best to use cutting boards, trivets or potholders as a barrier of protection for your stone.
Raw meat. While raw meat directly on your granite won’t necessarily harm your stone, it’s a bad practice for your safety. If you place raw meat on your countertop, you risk a spread of bacteria that could lead to illness for yourself or your loved ones.
Knives. If granite can take force as a curb, it can take a sharp edge, right? Unfortunately, this isn’t a great idea, either. Doing this can also dull your knives, which makes them less safe for your use.
Spills. Whether it’s water, juice or wine, pools of standing liquid aren’t going to do your granite countertops any favors. Why? If your countertops aren’t sealed correctly (or it’s been a long time), water can seep down into your granite and discolor or stain it. More harsh liquids, such as acidic wine and bright cranberry juice, can leave harder-to-remove stains or etches. Always quickly clean up all spills.
Acids. On a similar note, any liquid that contains a lot of acids needs to be far away from your granite. More than just leaving a stain, some of the more concentrated acids such as perfumes, vinegars, sodas and nail polishes can even damage your granite’s seal or etch your countertops. If you have granite countertops in a bathroom, make sure your personal care products are corralled safely in a container or cabinet. Like above, always quickly clean up spills.
Harsh impacts. Even if a heavy pot or pan is cool to the touch, don’t drop it on your countertops. While granite is very durable and tough, it can chip or crack. Depending on the pigmentation of your granite, this can be very visible. Chipping tends to happen more around the sink and edges of granite countertops. Another common source of chipping happens during dishwashing by hand or placing items in and out of the dishwasher. Take a little extra care with these activities; otherwise, you’re likely to see chips on your counter’s edges.
Oils. Oils can easily leak down the bottles they’re kept in — or be hard to see on pigmented, polished surfaces if they’ve spilled. These viscous liquids can leave particularly insidious stains, so it’s important to keep oils, oily foods (e.g., cooked meat) and oily sauces in the refrigerator or cupboards. Also, it’s always wise to clean up right after all food preparation.
A large amount of weight. While granite can take a lot, there’s no reason to test its limits. No matter how your kitchen or bathroom is constructed, it’s recommended to avoid standing on your countertops, for example — at the very least, for your own safety! If you’re preparing a hefty summer barbecue, try to distribute the weight evenly and use the center of your countertops instead of the edges. If you need to paint the trim around your ceiling, use a ladder and avoid the temptation to stand on your countertops.
Soap. Yes! Normal soap is not formulated for natural granite or any other natural stone, or even quartz. Regular soap is prone to leaving a filmy build-up and streaks, and it’s not even cleaning the stone. It’s a better idea to use a soap specifically formulated for granite care, other natural stone and even quartz.
Common household cleaners. Those so-called multi- and all-purpose cleaners certainly seem handy to cover all the household cleaning needs. Not so fast. They’re not formulated for granite or other natural stone nor quartz. They’ll dull the professional finish and put the surface at risk of stains and etches, leading to costly repair or replacement.
Need Help Caring For Your Granite Countertops? Reach Out Today!
Whether you need a stone protection plan at the time of purchase, or want to pick our brains about the best way to care for your granite yourself, our Stone Care Experts with three generations of stone-care expertise are here to help.
Call our friendly team today at 1-800-475-7866 to learn more about how we can help you.