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Granite is an increasingly popular choice for counter tops. Many homeowners are choosing the timeless beauty and classic style of granite when they remodel their kitchens and install new counter tops. Those building their own homes often choose granite as well – for its good looks, its superior durability and its ability to raise the resale value of the property.
It is true that granite is one of the hardest and most durable materials available to the average homeowner, but this special material needs the right care to keep it looking its best. Whether you are moving into a home that already has granite counter tops or upgrading your own kitchen, you need to know how to clean and maintain them the right way.
Preparation is the Key
One of the biggest benefits of choosing granite for counter tops is that it tends to hide dirt and look great for a long time. That strength can also be a weakness, however, since it can be difficult to tell when those granite counter tops need a good cleaning.
The best strategy is to keep dust and dirt from accumulating on the granite surface. Dusting those granite countertops with a soft microfiber cloth once or twice a day can prevent the buildup of dust and dirt and reduce the need for a deep cleansing.
Never use paper towels to clean your granite countertops. The rough fibers in paper towels can scratch the delicate granite surface and leave permanent marks. A microfiber cloth will clean the granite without scratching.
Keep the Right Balance
Maintaining the proper pH balance is critical when deep cleaning your granite countertops. Most traditional cleaners, including bleach, all-purpose cleansers and glass cleaner, are not properly pH balanced and can damage the sealant on your granite countertops.
That is why it is so important to choose a pH-balanced cleanser for your granite countertops. You can purchase specialized cleaners designed for granite countertops, or you can make your own by mixing a pH-balanced dishwashing liquid with water. Just pour the mixture in a spray bottle and use it to clean your countertops whenever they need it.
You can clean and disinfect your granite countertops at the same time by adding ¼ cup of isopropyl alcohol to the above mixture. The alcohol will help to kill germs on the granite surface while leaving the countertops looking shiny and new.
It is easy to check for dirt and grease spots you may have missed after the cleaning process is complete. Just run your hand over the granite surface and feel for dirt. Use spot cleansing to remove any debris you find.