How Often Do You Need To Seal Granite Countertops

Granite countertops are the top choice among people who look for the durability and beauty of their kitchen. Granite is a natural stone that needs proper care periodically to maintain its lustre and smoothness. The rough surface of granite can attract bacteria and promote fungal growth. It is essential to clean granite countertops and seal them with a suitable seal to prevent this from happening.

granite worktop and fruits on background

To keep your granite counters in optimal condition, you need to reseal the surface from time to time. But the question is, how often do you need to seal granite countertops? Well, it depends on a few factors that we will discuss below. So keep on reading to know everything about your countertops and sealant maintenance.

How often do you need sealing?

Though stones are very hard to break into, even they can be damaged with consistent usage. Granite is a naturally occurring rock that’s often used as a countertop. Hence, it’s one of the most used surfaces in any kitchen and bathroom, where many water-based activities occur. Proper sealing is required to eliminate any bacterial build-up caused by water that can leave permanent marks on your countertop. In addition, a good sealant will repel the water from the surface of the granite.

Since there is no hard and fast rule or a timeline about how often the granite countertops need resealing, some experts say it’s best to redo the seal every 10-12 months. Depending on the usage and material of your countertop, a good quality seal can last for a maximum of 3 years. An easy absorbency test can be done at home to comprehend whether your stone countertop requires urgent care. A few drops of water over the countertop will do the trick; if it absorbs water within less than 3 minutes and the area becomes dark, then it’s time for the granite to be resealed.

The porosity of granite stone allows it to absorb water quickly that can take away the lustrous beauty of your countertop. Unkempt granite will have a rough and uneven surface. Therefore, it must be prevented from every kind of extreme weather condition, especially if you have an outdoor countertop. Under extreme heat or in winters, try keeping it covered, as that can cause damage to the granite. You might need to seal it more often than the standard recommended time in harsh weather conditions. You can easily seal your countertops at home or hire a professional to do it for you. 

Myths and facts

Granite kitchen countertops are popular because of various reasons. However, there are a few myths surrounding this stone and the sealant used for its protection. Here are a few myths that need to be busted and a few facts to support the truth.

samples of granite countertops

Myths:

1. Granite is not kitchen-safe: 

It is common that granite can be toxic if used for a more extended period. However, this is a completely false claim. Granite is one of the safest naturally occurring rocks that can be trusted around your food. As far as the concern of the stone being porous arises, a good quality seal can fix that problem instantly. 

2. Granite countertops are expensive: 

When it comes to natural stone countertops, granite is not extremely pricier. It is much cheaper than agate and enamelled lava stone in terms of cost per square foot. Granite lasts for a long time and is easy to maintain, making it worth each penny. 

3. Granite requires constant resealing

It is not true. Granite does not require constant resealing. The recommended time is every 12 months to ensure no tears in the seal. You can also do the sealing process at home with easy-to-use sealers

4. Sealant makes granite unbreakable: 

Even though granite is quite heavy duty and durable, it can break due to direct impact. A sealing solution can’t increase the strength of a stone. However, a good sealer can make your countertop scratch and water-resistant while upgrading it with a glossy shine. 

5. Stains are impossible to remove from granite: 

It is not impossible to remove stains from granite surface, especially if it is sealed. With a few simple products like baking soda, you can deep clean a granite slab. Avoid using toxic and abrasive cleaners to protect the surface, and you can enjoy your granite kitchen top for years to come. 

Facts:

1. Granite has fissures: 

The veins that look like a crack in your granite countertop are not cracks. Instead, these are natural marks on granite stones called fissures. Each granite slab has a different pattern because it is not man-made.

A dark granite countertop in a spacious kitchen

2. Impregnating seals are better than surface coatings:

Most stone seals are mere coatings that sit on top of the surface. These seals can be removed or scratched off the surface with sharp and heavy objects. An impregnator gets absorbed in the granite pores that treat specific minerals in the stone. It doesn’t only protect the stone but also conditions the minerals. 

3. Granite can be easy to maintain: 

Unless you use sharp knives, drag heavyweights, or pour boiling water on your granite countertop every day, it is impossible to mess it up. Although it requires yearly sealing, your granite top will be a fuss-free addition to your kitchen. 

4. Dark granite is Better than light granite: 

Another common misconception is that darker granite types of stones are stronger than lighter granite. On the contrary, quartz is the main mineral in the granite responsible for its strength which naturally exists in a lighter colour

5. Granite kitchen worktops can increase the value of your home: 

This is a piece of good news for most homeowners who intend to sell their house anytime soon. When you install granite countertops in your kitchen, it increases the real estate value of your house. High-quality granite counters are nothing but an investment. 

How to go about sealing granite countertops?

DIY: 

You can seal your granite worktop at home. All you’ll need is a few supplies and a lot of precision to get done with the sealing process.

Modern and Stylish Kitchen with Black Granite Stone Worktop

Material required:

  1. Pair of rubber gloves
  2. Isopropyl alcohol 
  3. Clean cloth
  4. Dishwashing soap
  5. Spray bottle 
  6. Granite sealant 

How to seal your granite countertop:

  1. Start by cleaning your countertop a night before to make sure there is no moisture on the surface. Mix two tablespoons of dish detergent with warm water and clean the stone surface with the help of a sponge. Wipe the residues with rubbing alcohol and let them dry for 12 hours
  2. Apply the sealer on the stone’s surface according to the directions mentioned on the label. Each product is applied differently and has a unique curing time. With the help of a clean lint-free cloth, spread the sealer in an even coat. It seems like a simple process, but it might take a lot of time and precision
  3. Avoid using any silicone-based sealer, which does more harm than good to your worktop. Once the first coat is cured, move on to the second coat of product. Two coats are essential for maximum coverage. 
  4. Leave the sealed countertop untouched for 24 hours to ensure the sealer is thoroughly dried. Check for spaces that need re-application and apply it using a small brush if necessary. 
  5. Once your granite worktop is fully dried, it is ready to use. Maintain your worktop as per the manufacturer’s guidelines and watch your sealer last for years. 

PRO:

It is always better to let a professional do this job if budget is not a problem. They are trained to take care of different materials or countertops and have a variety of stone sealers. With such vast experience and product range, they can efficiently seal your kitchen countertops without any error. Hiring a professional will save you a lot of effort and money in the long run. 

How to test if your granite countertop is sealed correctly? 

The easiest way to check if your countertop is made of pure granite stone is by dropping a few drops of lemon juice. If the lemon juice oxidises, it means your granite is not natural. Granite is acid-resistant and doesn’t react to lemon juice quickly. To test the quality of your granite sealer, do a small water test. Drop a tiny amount of water on your countertop and see if it absorbs. If the water takes 3 to 4 minutes to absorb, the granite sealer is probably weak. Apply another coat of sealant if necessary to fully protect the surface.

flowers and a mobile on a granite kitchen countertop

Most of the time, oversealing or using the wrong product can damage your stone countertops. Always opt for a high-quality granite sealing solution designed specifically for the type of granite you are dealing with. With the abundance of easy-to-use, sealing products available in a spray bottle, sealing the countertops have become much more manageable. So, if your granite countertops need some attention, grab a bottle of sealant and get working! After cleaning your granite countertop, you may also consider painting.

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