Q: Countertop Maintenance
Once granite is originally sealed, it is quite easy to maintain. The first sealing of granite is one of the most important because granite is naturally porous and will stain very easily without it. After you seal your countertop, your granite is protected and is now ready for use. Remember that it is imperative that you reseal your granite counters at minimum once per year. This can be done either on your own or can be done by a professional. Either way it will help to ensure that your granite countertops remain stain free. If there is a spill, make sure to clean it up before the stain gets a chance to seep into the surface. Because of its porous nature, granite is somewhat absorbent and even when sealed can still absorb stains if spills are left untouched for any extended period of time.
Generally, you are able to clean your granite countertop using just a soft clean cloth alongside a neutral cleaner. You should definitely consider the use of a disinfectant type cleaner that is specially designed for granite. The use of regular cleaning products on your countertop should absolutely be avoided at all costs. These chemicals will take the seal right off and leave behind it the vulnerable and porous surface of the natural granite stone unprotected and exposed. We encourage you to call your stone dealer with any questions or about countertop maintenance, care or even cleaning.
Q: Will the seams be visible in my countertops?
- * Solid Surface: Yes, but seams are very inconspicuous.
- * Quartz: Yes, all seams are visible and typically 1/16" to 1/8"
- * Granite: Yes, all seams are visible and typically 1/16" to 1/8"
Planning, design, and site preparation: What to do before getting your countertop Planning:
Q: What do I need to have ready before templating the countertop area?
A: There are several things you can do to prepare for digital templating:
1. All cabinets must be permanently fixed in place.
2. Remove everything from the countertop space.
3. Have all sinks on-site.
4. Have all faucets and any other fixtures to be used on-site.
5. Have all cooking appliances on-site, including downdraft if applicable (preferably NOT in place).
6. Have any grommets on-site (e.g. a grommet would be used to finish holes cut for wires and cables in computer desks).
Q: Will you be taking the sink, faucet, cooktop, or downdraft?
A: Sometimes we need to take fixtures back to the shop to verify proper fit at the time of manufacture. The measuring technician will make this determination at the time of measure.
Q: How do I choose the right sink?
A: The most important thing to consider when selecting a new sink is whether or not it will fit the sink cabinet. Many sink manufacturers will indicate the recommended minimum cabinet size for their sinks. Below are some general guidelines for selecting a sink, however, fit and placement will be confirmed by Denver Granite after your countertop area has been measured.
- Undermount sink: The entire sink must be able to fit inside the cabinet, including the flange that runs around the outside edge.
Some oversized sinks require deeper than normal cabinets to allow room for the faucet and fixtures.
- Drop-in sink: The bowl(s) must fit inside the cabinet (left to right); the finished flange will sit on top of the countertop.
- Vessel: Typical installation requires vessel sinks to fit the area of the countertop. However, since vessels are often custom fit it is recommended
that you consult a designer or representative at Denver granite to verify fit.
- Apron: Apron sinks must fit inside the cabinet (left to right). All apron sinks MUST be installed prior to digital templating.
Q: How is the sink mounted?
A: Epoxy resins, silicone, and/or under mounting brackets may be used. Some projects require different methods or additional substructures.
Q: Who hooks up the faucets and sink drains?
A: The hookup of all drains, faucets, sink fixtures, cooking appliances, garborators, grommets, etc. are the responsibility of the client. Our installers will dry-fit items such as faucets and cooking appliances to ensure proper fit.
Q: When can I hook up the sinks and faucets?
A: You should wait 24 hours for the silicone to cure. Feel free to hook up drains and faucets 24 hours after the installation has been completed.
Q: How do I know if my cabinets are strong enough to hold stone? A: Most cabinets are more than capable of supporting the weight of stone countertops. The measuring technician will gladly discuss support requirements while visiting your home.
Q: How much support do I need for free overhang areas?
A: Generally, you are allowed up to eight inches of overhang without support. Individual brackets should be positioned with no more than 24 inches between supports. As support requirements may vary from project to project, some exceptions may apply. Please consult your designer or representative of Denver Granite and Remodeling for details on your specific situation.
Q: Do I need joints/seams and will they be noticeable?
A: The location of countertop and/or backsplash joints is dependent on various factors including slab size, material type, access into job site, and job lay-out. The epoxy used to glue joints together is similar to the color of your countertop; however, seams are still noticeable by touch and sight.
Q: Can certain areas on my slab be included/excluded?
A: While selecting the material, you may fall in love with a particular feature of the stone on your slab. Feel free to mention this to the salesperson at selection time and they will map the stone to include/exclude the desired area. Although every effort will be made to include/exclude the noted area, it may be necessary to cut contrary to your wishes depending on a number of factors that are determined after you have selected your material and the order has been processed.
Q: How much overhang should I have? (doors, panels, eating bars, high bars)
A: As Denver Granite is a completely custom countertop fabrication factory, norms and set standards for overhangs are flexible and decided on a case-by-case basis. It has been our experience, however, that our clients will often decide on overhangs that fall into the following ranges:
- Doors: 1 1/2" to 2" overhang from base cabinet
- False Doors: 1 1/2" to 2" overhang from base cabinet
- Flat Panels: 1" to 1 1/2" overhang from base cabinet
- Peninsula Eating Bars: 8" to 12" overhang from base cabinet
- Island Eating Bars: 8" to 12" overhang from base cabinet
- High Bars: 8" to 12" overhang from base cabinet (min. finished width 15")
Please note, the above information is useful as a planning guide only. We recommend following the advice of a designer or a staff member of Denver Granite and Remodeling as they will be able to evaluate your specific design requirements.
Q: What is the difference between a drop-in and an undermount sink?
A: A drop-in sink is self-rimming and is typically used with laminate countertops. Undermount sinks are rimmed by the polished stone countertop and are mounted to the bottom of the countertop.
Q: Will the corners be sharp or round?
A: All outside corners are rounded. The minimum radius that can be applied to an outside 90 degree corner varies depending on the edge profile. Larger radii are available depending on the overhang from the base cabinet. The minimum radius that can be applied to an inside 90 degree corner is 68mm because of the tools we use.
Q: Is there an extra charge for the edge profile?
A: Of the ten edge profiles available for you to choose from, only the chiseled, full bullnose and ogee edges cost more. Sample edge profiles are available in our showroom.
Q: How thick is the backsplash?
A: Backsplashes are typically 1 1/4".
Q: Do I need a backsplash? A: No, backsplashes are optional with stone countertops. Although design requirements will vary from project to project, many contemporary designers exclude traditional 3 1/2" to 4" splashes in favour of painted drywall or tile.
Q: I'm renovating and I have an existing tile backsplash as well as a 3 1/2" laminate backsplash. What will I do with the space between my countertop and tile when I replace my laminate top with a stone countertop?
A: There are several options available to you:
- Remove all existing tile and install new tile
- Install runner or accent tile (matching or new)
- Remove all existing tile, finish, and paint the wall
- Install a matching stone backsplash between the countertop and tile