You thoughtfully selected the type of counters you wanted in your kitchen and bathrooms, so once you move in, you should take care to keep them clean. The good news is it isn’t hard to clean any type of material. Whether you’ve selected granite, quartz, or laminate for your counters, we’ll help you learn how to make them last for many years to come.
Granite is one of the most popular choices because it has such a luxurious look. The material is hard and durable, but it’s porous, which means it’s more likely to stain. However, most granite counters come with a sealing that will protect them. You can test whether your counter is properly sealed by putting a few drops of water on it. If they ball up, the counter is sealed. If the drops soak in, you’ll need a new sealant. You should have received information letting you know how often you need to reseal your granite counters when you moved into the home.
To clean your granite counters, simply wet a cloth with warm water and add a bit of dish soap. This should take care of everyday messes. If you’d prefer, you can use a store-bought cleaner, but be sure to read the label to check if it’s okay to use on granite countertops. To sanitize, spray with a 50/50 mixture of water and rubbing alcohol.
Most importantly, you want to avoid anything abrasive, including powdered cleaners and sponges designed for scrubbing. These things can scratch the finish, making your counters more susceptible to staining. You should also avoid any strong cleaners, including natural ones like vinegar.
Quartz offers the same luxurious look like granite, but it’s a non-porous material, so you don’t have to worry about regularly sealing the counters. One thing to keep in mind, though, is it will stain if you leave a spill for a long time, so wipe that coffee mug rings up quickly.
Like granite, the best way to regularly clean your quartz countertops is with warm water and a mild detergent. Dish soap works well because it cleans and acts as a de-greaser. If you see a stain, you can usually get it out with a Magic Eraser or some rubbing alcohol. Occasionally, clean your quartz counters with a glass cleaner to give them an extra shine.
If you have quartz counters, you’ll also want to avoid cleaning with abrasive or strong cleaners.
Laminate counters are usually the most affordable option, but they don’t have to look cheap. One of the biggest advantages is they come in a wide variety of looks.
A simple scrub with a towel and mild soap will keep laminate counters looking great as well. The major difference is you aren’t likely to damage them with abrasive supplies or stronger chemicals, so you can use a scrubbing brush or sponge when you want to get a stain out. Go lightly, though. Applying too much pressure can scratch the surface.
Ideally, you don’t want to use a lot of water near the edges and seams of the counter when you clean. At these spots, water is more likely to seep in, and this can cause damage to the wood underneath. There might be warping, and this could ultimately mean you’ll have to replace the countertops. Fortunately, this isn’t something that’s likely to happen with everyday cleaning.
General Counter Cleaning Tips
As you’ve surely noticed, the process for cleaning different types of countertops is largely the same. Soap and water do the trick in most cases. However, you always want to follow your manufacturer’s suggestions. Cleaning with the wrong type of product could void the warranty.
You also should always clean drips and spills immediately. The longer they sit on the counters, the more time they have to soak in and stain the surface. Once that happens, you have a bigger problem on your hands. Each stain is different, so it’s smart to look up specific instructions for removing a particular stain on your countertop material.
Sterling Homes offers a range of options for countertops in the homes we build. We want your home to have the look you want without having to worry too much about the cleaning. After careful consideration, you can make countertop choices to complement your style.