Granite FAQ


Granite is a naturally occurring rock which is quarried all over the world. Granite is a plutonic igneous (formed from fire) rock having visibly crystalline texture; generally composed of feldspar, mica and quartz. An igneous stone was once a molten flowing mass much like lava. As it cooled it became very dense and hard. In fact, granite is second only to diamonds in hardness. While Granite is not indestructible, it can withstand a fair amount of impact. granite is non-reactive and is not susceptible to heat, scratch, or impact.

Granites are quarried in the form of huge blocks and then reduced into slabs. These slabs are then carefully crafted and fabricated by us into the final product. Granite stands up well to heavy traffic, which makes it ideal for commercial flooring. Because it is resistant to blistering, scratching, cracking and scorching, granite is the number one choice in natural stone for kitchen counter tops. Polished granite with its high gloss reflects light beautifully adding elegance to any room.


Durability

Q: Can I use my knives to cut vegetables etc. on the surface of the granite?
A: Absolutely. Not even sharp steel can cut through a granite surface. It should be mentioned, however, that the use of some knives on such a hard surface may dull the edge quicker than a wood or Teflon cutting-board. We also offer granite cutting-boards in place of cutting on the countertop directly

Q: Will oils or wines stain my granite/marble? If so, can they be removed?
A: MBK Granite uses the StoneTech Pro solvent based impregnator to protect your granite surface from stains. This 'sealer' completes the surface of the stone, rendering it impervious to such staining. If you see the surface start to absorb water again after time, please do not hesitate to contact us for a new application of the sealer. If your stone does end up with a stain we can very likely remove it. Regular maintenance with StoneTech Revitalizer will extend the sealer's protective life.

Q: Is my granite susceptible to impact or heat?
A: Granite is a very durable material. Dropping a pot or a salt shaker will likely damage the object before the surface. Granite is not indestructible, but it can withstand a fair amount of impact. Granite is not affected by any household sources of heat. The only thing worth mentioning is that when a hot object is placed on the surface the heat will remain localized to that specific area and will dissipate slowly.

Q: Does granite stain?
A: For the most part, granite does not stain. While it is true that granite is a porous material, of all the stones, granite is the least porous. We apply an impregnating sealer to the stone when it is installed to further protect it from this possibility. Water left on a granite counter top for a long period of time will show evidence of moisture. It will however evaporate and the 'dark spot' will disappear. Oil left on a granite surface will slowly be absorbed into the stone. It is recommended that any spills be wiped up when they occur. If the spill is not caught in time and a stain does occur, a poultice may be applied to draw the oil back out of the stone. Over time the oil will naturally redistribute itself in the stone until it becomes virtually undetectable.

Q: How scratch-resistant is granite?
A: With normal daily use, even cutting directly upon it, you will not mar the finish of your counter top. Unlike any other surface, granite will not lose its shine.

Q: How heat-resistant is granite?
A: Unlike 'man made' synthetic solid surface counter tops, granite can withstand a dish hot from the oven or stove right onto its surface.

Q: Will my granite counter top chip or crack?
A: Most flaws in granite are detected during transit of the slab. If it can withstand the fabrication process, it will never break under normal kitchen conditions. You would have to assault it with something like a hammer and even then, you’d have to work at it.


Beauty Marks


Some granite will contain inconsistencies (beauty marks) or tiny fissures (pick holes). These are typically caused by off-coloured deposits in the granite. While some clients find these deposits appealing, others may not. Viewing a slab prior to fabrication is beneficial to those who prefer uniformity in the granite.

Q: Why doesn’t my granite look exactly like the sample?
A: The samples we’ve selected for our showroom are generally indicative of the coloring and pattern (also known as veining) of each stone. As the granite is quarried, differences in the slab's shading and pattern will appear. Each slab is a piece of a unique stone formed millions of years ago. While we try to remain aware of the current tendencies of each stone, sometimes even we are caught by surprise. Since granite is a natural material and subject to such changes, we recommend that a customer view the slab prior to fabrication to ensure complete satisfaction.


Finishing The Surface


The surface of granite can be altered in many ways. Finishes other than a polish may be treated with enhancers to show the beauty of the stone through an altered texture.
Polish : A 2000 grit surface polish, reflective. Very smooth glass-like finish. (Typical)
Honed: A 400 grit finish, non reflective. Smooth surface, beautiful finish when enhanced.
Blasted: Rough textured and non reflective. Perfect non-slip on stone floors.
Flamed: Course surface. Used for outside applications of granite or fireplaces.

Q: Are there other finishes for granite besides the high polished surface?
A: There are other finishes you can have with granite. The highly polished surface is the most popular. There is also a process called “honing” that gives the stone a smooth feel but a more matte finish.


Sinks


Stainless steel sinks will be installed by building out the cabinets to support the sink and attaching them directly to the granite with silicone. Porcelain under-mounts are attached using both epoxy and silicone. This attachment is usually done prior to the installation of a vanity.

Q: What is the difference between an undermount sink and a drop-in sink?
A: A drop-in sink sits on top of the cutout and adds no additional cost to your project. Those that are cost conscious usually opt for this choice. An undermount sink sits beneath the polished rim of the cutout. The benefit to this option is that it provides a smooth surface from counter to sink. Because there is additional polishing involved, there is an up-charge per sink cutout.


Seams On Countertops


Seams on countertops will be done with epoxy. The epoxy can be coloured to match the granite better than is the case with silicone. Epoxy will not sag or become a dirt collector as will silicone. The colour of epoxy will not change with time as will silicone. At MBK Granite we will complete seams with silicone only at the request of the client. A silicone seam will not be warrantied for anything other than shift.


Maintenance


Cleaning of a granite countertop can be done with just soap and water. The use of abrasive cleaners will dull the natural polish of the granite over time. If anything adheres to the surface of the stone it may be removed with a razor blade. To maintain the natural polish of the granite we recommend the use of our maintenance products. At MBK Granite we recommend the use of StoneTech Revitalizer; this stone cleaner will not only keep your granite looking beautiful, but will also extend the sealers protective life. Any abrasive cleaners may scratch or eventually dull your granite over time. The consideration here is that only silicates, (such as sand and other granites), and diamonds can damage the polish of your granite.


Q: How do I care for my granite counter top?
A: A mild soap and water works just fine. We also stock a full line of spray cleaners with anantibacterial agent that you may wish to use. Never use any cleaners containing acid, citrusjuice, ammonia or bleach on your granite counter top. Granite is very low maintenance.


Pricing


Q: What is a 'high-movement' stone?
A: Different granites have different patterns or veining. Some stones rarely change in their tight Quartz-Iike appearance, while others have veins that swirl and change irregularly. Since samples cannot give a good overall picture of a high-movement stone, it is wise to see the slab prior to fabrication. For some, the unique pattern is intriguing and adds to the beauty of the stone. For others the effect can seem somewhat chaotic.

Q: Where is my stone from and how does that affect the price?
A: Granites come from all over the world: India, Egypt, Spain, Brazil, Norway and Africa to name but a few. Canada and the United States also have some very lovely granite as well. Where the stone originates has no impact on the cost of the stone. It is more a matter of supply and the demand placed upon the quarry. The red and blue granites tend to be priced a bit higher than other colors. We recommend that you simply pick a color range you like, and then find the stone that fits your budget from there.