Granite Counter Tops
We Install Granite Countertops and Vanities
Why People Love Granite Countertops
People throughout the world love granite countertops because they are richly colored, make a strong design statement, and give interiors an elegant, upscale look.
Granite countertops possess other qualities that appeal to consumers:
What Is Granite?
Granite is a natural material quarried from the earth. Granite is formed from magma and slow crystallization under the earth surface. The rate at which it hardens determines the size of its crystals. Slowly-cooling magma results in larger crystals; faster-cooling magma results in smaller crystals. The rich crystal patterning in granite is one of its loved hallmarks.
Granite colors come from the minerals present in the rock at formation. Different minerals yield different colors. Gray, white, pink, salmon, black, brown, green, and yellow come from feldspar, quartz, mica, biotite, amphibole, and muscovite.
Stonework companies sometimes use the granite designation for other stones as well. Diorite, basalt, granulite, anorthosite, and syenite are often sold as granite.
How Granite Countertops Are Made
From Mining to Slicing
Division Nine granite countertops begin their lives inside huge blocks of stone, 30-50 feet wide and up to 10 feet tall, mined from quarries. Gray, pink, and white granite often come from quarries in the United States. Other colors of granite may come from India, Brazil, Norway, and other countries.
The block is blasted into smaller chunks with explosives or mortar, and the chunks are cut into 9×6-foot slabs using a gang saw. The gang saw contains parallel blades that cut the chunk like a loaf of bread in a process that may take 40 hours or more. Each slice becomes a slab from the chunk and gets polished, bundled up with its chunk-mates, and shipped to a distributor.
The Slab Becomes a Countertop
Some customers like to pick out slabs of granite in the stone yard personally. Others let Division Nine designers do the selecting for them, with agreed-upon specifications.
Once the slab is chosen, it is taken to Division Nine’s fabrication area for cutting. Computer-controlled blades or water jets cut the slab, following a template or guided by programmed measurements, to fit the customer’s base cabinets or vanity. A router shapes the edge according to the profile that the customer has chosen. Sink and faucet holes get cut at the same time, although sometimes they are cut on the job site.
About Sealing Granite Countertops
Granite is a porous rock. Formed from cooled magma, it contains tiny gaps between its crystals. The gaps, or pores, absorb liquid. For this reason, granite countertops need to be sealed so that they don’t absorb the foods and liquids on kitchen countertops or bathroom vanity tops.
Countertops should be sealed before use and then every year after that. Ask us about our annual maintenance plan. Some areas may require more frequent sealing, such as food preparation areas. If acidic cleaners are used (like vinegar), the countertop should be checked periodically and resealed if necessary.
How to Tell if a Countertop Needs Resealing
A countertop does not need to be resealed if water beads up on its surface. If the droplets soak in and disappear, the granite needs resealing. Test the surface by putting one to two tablespoons of water on it in a few different places. The water should still be beaded on the surface after a few minutes. If it has soaked in, reseal the countertop.
About Cleaning Granite Countertops
Cleaning granite is easy. Use warm water, mild dish-washing detergent, and a clean wet cloth. Wipe the counter, rinse the cloth in fresh water, and wipe the surface again. That’s all it needs. Commercial granite cleaners and polishes are also available.
Division Nine Fabricates and Installs Granite Countertops
Ready for a new countertop in your kitchen? Or a new vanity top in your bathroom? Call Division Nine today. Our design specialists will help you with the selection process and our professional installers will transport and install your new countertop.