Stone countertops, especially marble, are highly-coveted due to their luxuriousness and aesthetic value. Granite, in particular, is also famed for its ability to increase a home’s worth. But aside from those two specific types, more options are available, such as quartz, concrete, solid surface, slate, limestone, onyx, and soapstone.
Despite a stone countertop’s price tag, though, they tend to be a sensitive material. You have to treat them with care and gentleness because even water can leave stains on them. Some types even suffer fissures just from a heavy object that is placed on top of them.
That said, if you’re looking into stone countertops for your home remodeling, you’ll do better to know which stains can ruin its flawlessness quick:
1. Acidic Foods
Wine, vinegar, citrus juices, and salad dressings are enemies of most stone countertops. If you routinely have wine nights, try to stay away from your kitchen island, and you might as well store your wine bottles somewhere away from it, too. A wine fridge underneath the counter will be nice. But when you’re uncorking champagne, don’t forget to do it far away from the counter.
If you have kids, they must be fond of packed citrus juices. Instruct them not to drink those at the counters, especially if they’re still too young to hold the product steadily.
Lastly, keep your salad dressings in the fridge, and have a placemat when you’re making a salad. The air inside the bottle may hurl the first drops of the dressing out of place, possibly on your countertop.
2. Artificially and Naturally Dyed Foods
Some salad dressings are artificially dyed, so consider swapping them for homemade ones. Cereals, meanwhile, are almost all dyed, so use a placemat when feeding your kids with it. Your pancake breakfasts should be made with care, too, because a couple of store-bought ones are dyed as well. Swap them for a Grade-A syrup to avoid risks.
Other artificially dyed foods include soda, sports drinks, juice cocktails, ice cream, popsicles, and certain flavored yogurts.
For naturally dyed foods, beet is the best example, being notorious for staining clothes, carpets, and upholstery as well. Handle them carefully on your counters.
Tips For Choosing a Stone Countertop
Choose a stone countertop with practicality in mind. If you’d go for marble, be sure that you’re always gentle with your kitchen duties because the material is a softer stone and thus very sensitive. It’s quite high-maintenance, requiring a seal to be more stain-resistant. If it suffers a stain, you need to act quickly and blot the affected area, not wipe it; wiping the liquid spreads the stain.
Another stone countertop that requires sealing is concrete. It’s beautiful in industrial-style homes, but it’s highly porous surface makes it vulnerable to stubborn stains. Acid is its biggest enemy, so when you spill wine or vinegar on it, press a cotton ball soaked in household bleach on the stain and let it sit for five to ten minutes.
If you’d rather not deal with those tricky stain removal methods, your best option would be quartz. A quartz countertop costs lower than granite, but the best quality ones are priced higher. It’s all worth it, though, because it’s non-porous and is scratch-and-stain-resistant. Wiping it with a warm washcloth and mild soap is all the cleaning it needs.
But no matter which stone countertop you end up with, treat it with care and don’t take its durability for granted. It may have a significant effect on your home’s value, so be diligent in maintaining it.