Now that you installed new countertops, learn how to best take care of them and make sure they look brand new over the years.
Granite countertops are naturally resistant to scratches, etchings, and stains because of their hardness, yet they are not indestructible. Granite countertops that have been used extensively can be vulnerable to knife scratches, hot pot and pan burns, and oil and acid stains.
For maximum cleaning results when dealing with your granite countertop, use a microfiber cloth and water to wipe clean your surface. Because granite is a nonporous natural stone, using abrasive products or generic chemicals to clean your granite countertop is not recommended. Instead, it is wise to invest in a cleaner specially designed for countertops.
When uncertain about the use of an individual product, test it on the corner of the countertop before applying it on visible areas.
Common Ways to Scratch and Stain Your Granite Countertops
Although granite countertops are not as porous as other natural stones, they can still stain. Common stain producers, including acidic products like lemon, vinegar, and wine, can cause stains because they strip away the protective sealant that covers a granite countertop. Another stain-producing substance is cooking oil. Oil seeps through the pores of granite and stains countertops from the inside out.
Granite countertops are usually scratch resistant because of their natural hardness. However, excessive chopping, cutting, or dragging heavy appliances can damage your granite countertop surface with numerous penetrating scratches.
Despite granite's capacity to withstand extreme temperatures, it is not entirely immune to high levels of heat and cold. When using hot pots and pans, place a trivet under each one before setting them down on your countertop.
How to Care for Your Granite Countertops
The following are some ways for you to care for your granite countertops and maintain their shiny polished appearance.
Here is a brief list of granite countertop dos and do not's:
Granite Countertops Sealing
Granite Countertops Sealing
Clean your countertops prior to sealing by applying soapy water and then let dry and apply acetone. Dampen a cotton cloth with acetone and wipe onto your countertop. Wipe off any liquid with a dry cotton cloth. Allow countertops to dry for 15 minutes. Do not use acetone on any other stone surface except granite.
Pour sealer into a spray bottle and spray lightly onto the surface of the countertop, making sure that you cover the entire surface. Allow sealer to set for 15 minutes and re-apply the sealer, allowing it to dry for 20 minutes. Using a dry lint free cloth evenly spread the sealer across the surface on the countertop, making sure that the sealer penetrates the entire top. Using a lint free cloth wipe up any excess sealer.
Marble countertops are naturally weak in resistance to scratches, etchings, and stains because of their softness. Therefore, if not maintained properly with routine sealing and daily cleans, marble countertops have an extremely high chance of receiving damage from knife scratches, hot pot and pan burns, and oil and acid stains.
For maximum cleaning results when dealing with your marble countertop, use a microfiber cloth and water to wipe clean your surface. Because marble is a porous natural stone, using abrasive products or generic chemicals to clean your marble countertop is not recommended. Instead, it is wise to invest in a cleaner specially designed for countertops.
When uncertain about the use of a certain product, test it on the corner of the countertop before applying it on visible areas.
Common Ways to Scratch and Stain Your Marble Countertops
Marble is a porous stone, so it is susceptible to staining. Common stain producers, including acidic products like lemon, vinegar, and wine, can cause stains because they strip away the protective sealant that covers a marble countertop. Another stain-producing substance is cooking oil. Oil seeps through the pores of marble and stains countertops from the inside.
Excessive chopping, cutting, or dragging heavy appliances can heavily damage your marble countertop surface with numerous penetrating scratches.
Despite marble's natural cold feel, it is not impervious to extreme temperatures. When using hot pots and pans, place a trivet under each one before setting them down on your countertop.
How to Care for Your Marble Countertops
The following are some ways for you to care for your marble countertops and maintain their brilliant polished appearance.
Marble countertops have already been pre-sealed by manufacturers, but it is important to reseal marble countertops periodically. Sealing is a process of closing the pores inside of marble to make it resistant to the absorption of chemicals, acids, and other stain-producing moistures. It also gives marble countertops their noticeable shiny appearance. It is recommend to have your marble countertops sealed once or twice a year, depending on how often you use them.
Clean your marble countertops regularly by wiping them clean after each use. Doing so eliminates any leftover particles that can scratch or stain the marble. The best home cleaner that you can use is a simple mixture of soap and water, but it is wise to invest in a special countertop cleaning solution. Apply the solution on your marble countertop with a soft sponge and gently blot. Remember to rinse the sponge with water to remove excess soap. It is critical to note never use detergents, abrasive products, acidic chemicals, or generic household cleaners to clean your marble countertops because they can cause unexpected heavy damages.
Use a cutting board or other alternative surface during food preparation to protect the sealant on your marble countertop from scratching. Avoid dragging heavy appliances over the marble countertop because they too can damage the countertop. Using pads and coasters under kitchen appliances and drinks not only helps to protect your marble countertop from deep scratches.
Burn marks from pots and pans are only superficial blemishes that can be removed easily. Most countertop manufacturers offer proprietary creams and solutions you can use to polish your marble countertop and remove unwanted marks and stains.
Here is a list of marble dos and don'ts:
LG Viatera®, composed of 93% natural quartz, helps to make your countertop a low-maintenance surface that is resistant to scratches and stains. LG Viatera® is also heat-resistant, making it capable of enduring heat from a hot pan for short durations. However, to avoid possible damage, a trivet or hot pad is recommended. With proper care and maintenance, LG Viatera® will remain beautiful and durable for many years.
Routine cleaning of LG Viatera® requires only a damp cloth and mild household detergent. A list of acceptable cleaning products is located at the end of this document. For best results, clean spills as soon as possible. LG Viatera® is resistant to most stains including wine, lemon juice, tea, and fruits and vegetables without permanently staining or damaging the counters.
Cleaning Stains and Dried Spills
For tougher stains, mild non-abrasive cleansers are a good solution to keeping the surface looking new. Recommended cleaners include Formula 409 Glass & Surface Cleaner, Bar Keeper’s Friend, Lysol, and Greased Lightning. For dried spills, a non-abrasive scrub pad can be used. Rinse thoroughly and wipe with a damp cloth to remove all residue. While LG Viatera® can able to withstand most household chemicals, avoid using harsh chemicals or products that contain bleach. For tough spots from items such as gum, grease, paint, food, etc., scrape off the residue with a razor blade or putty knife prior to cleaning. The scraping may leave a gray metal mark on the countertop and can be cleaned off by using a recommended cleaner and a soft non-abrasive scrub pad. Buff with a damp cloth. For stubborn spots or stains, soak a pad of paper towels in water and any of the recommended cleansers and apply the towel to the stain and let soak for a few minutes. Deeply clean with a non-abrasive scrub pad and cleanser, rinse thoroughly, and buff with a damp cloth.
Waxes and Sealing
One of the many benefits of LG Viatera® is that it requires no sealants or waxes to be applied during its lifetime. Because it is non-porous, a sealer will not absorb into the material and would be ineffective. With normal cleaning procedures, your countertop will always retain its luster.
Honed finishes require more frequent cleaning to maintain their appearance. Metal marks, finger prints, and other signs of daily living will be more apparent. However, visible marks such as these can be removed by using a non-abrasive pad and any of the recommended cleaning products.
LG Viatera® is NOT Indestructible!!
DuPont™ Corian® was created for a lifetime of easy care. Just follow the simple guidelines listed here to help you keep your Corian® surfaces looking fresh. Your Welcome Kit will provide you with the tips to help you maintain your new Corian® installation for years to come.
There are three types of Corian® countertop finishes: matte/satin, semi-gloss and high-gloss*. Most countertops are finished with a matte/satin finish. All Corian® sinks have a matte/satin finish.
Soapy water, ammonia based cleaners (not window cleaners as they can leave a waxy build up that may dull the surface) or commercially available solid surface cleaners will remove most dirt and residue from all types of finishes. The stubborn residue will require a little stronger cleaner.
Follow the recommendations below to clean properly your countertop and sink.
Experience has shown that a film builds up on the surface if water is left to dry on the countertop. This film will dull the look of the countertop making the finish appear blotchy and uneven. To prevent the build-up of the film, it is imperative to wipe the countertop thoroughly dry after spills and cleaning.
Some colors of Corian® may require more frequent cleaning to maintain a uniform finish. Darker colors tend to require more attention than lighter colors. Over time, even with proper care, your countertop will acquire a patina, changing the appearance of the finish. You may restore the look of the original finish by following the refurbishing guidelines below.
A KEY TO KEEPING YOUR COUNTERTOPS LOOKING GOOD IS TO RINSE THOROUGHLY AND WIPE COMPLETELY DRY AFTER CLEANING.
Typically, three types of countertop finishes are used: matte/satin, semi-gloss and high-gloss*. Most countertops are finished with a matte/satin finish. All sinks have a matte finish. However, routine cleaning may raise the gloss level of the countertop over time. Soapy water, ammonia-based cleaners (Not window cleaners) or commercially available solid surface cleaners will remove most dirt and residue from all types of finishes. The stubborn residue will require a little stronger cleaner. Follow the recommendations below to clean properly your countertop and sink.
With over 100 colors and varying hues, some colors may appear to require more frequent cleaning to maintain their beauty. Darker colors tend to show fine scratches more easily and will require more attention than lighter colors. Over time through care and use your countertop will acquire a patina, changing the appearance of the finish. You may restore the look of the original finish by following the refurbishing guidelines.
Countertops: Cleaning All Finishes
Sinks & Lavatories
Avoid getting the bleach solution in your eyes or bare skin. Always follow the bleach manufacturer's safety instructions when working with bleach.
To enhance the gloss level on semi-gloss and high-gloss finishes, use a countertop polish such as Countertop Magic®, Hope's Countertop Polish® or Enhance Countertop Polish®.
Wilsonart® Solid Surface was created to provide convenience with an elegant appearance when cared for properly. We’ve developed these simple guidelines to address the basic maintenance principles that apply to all types of surfaces. They will assist you to preserve the distinctive look and feel of your Wilsonart® Solid Surface.
There are four types of finishes that can be supplied on your Wilsonart® Solid Surface by your fabricator/installer. The following simple definitions should assist with key items to consider when choosing a finish and necessary maintenance.
Matte – Recommended standard finish especially in high traffic areas with low or no sheen and normally requires the least maintenance.
Satin – Slightly higher gloss that may require more attention depending on traffic and use
Semi-gloss – Higher sheen with some reflection requires special consumer instructions, not suggested for high traffic or high use areas, may require a certified fabricator to maintain, a service charge may apply.
Gloss – Recommended for vertical surface only, requires certified fabricator to maintain the finish, a service charge may apply.
Darker patterns may need more frequent attention to maintain a uniform finish.
Over time with use and general cleaning the surface finish will appear to change. We recommend to cleaning the entire surface periodically following the guidelines for removing stubborn residue to restore or maintain the original finish.
For day to day cleaning, warm soapy water or non-abrasive household cleaners such as glass custodian, Fantastik®, Formula 409® or commercially available solid surface cleaners will remove most residues. Then rinse and towel dry the surface to prevent spotting especially in areas with hard water. For a final touch, you may apply Protect All Shine Plus™ to your countertop for a clean, dry professional appearance.
The stubborn residue that will not come out with day to day cleaning methods requires a slightly stronger cleaner. The following suggestions will assist you to remove stubborn residue and refurbish the finish.
Removing Stubborn Residue
Apply an abrasive cleaner like Bon-ami®, Comet® or Ajax® and a damp sponge, buff in a circular motion. Then rinse and towel dry.
Apply a mild abrasive cleaner such as Soft Scrub® and a damp sponge, rub in a circular motion. Then rinse and towel dry. If additional blending is necessary, lightly buff with a gray (7448) Scotch-Brite™ pad then rinse and towel dry.
Apply soapy water and with a white Scotch-Brite™ pad rub in a circular motion. Then rinse and towel dry.
This finish is limited to mild detergents or nonabrasive cleaners with a soft cloth.
Removing Minor Cuts & Scratches
Wilsonart® Solid Surface is completely renewable since the color goes all the way through. The following guideline will assist with removing minor cuts and scratches.
Apply an abrasive cleaner like Bon-ami®, Comet® or Ajax® and a damp green Scotch-Brite™ pad, rub in a circular motion. Rinse and begin blending in a circular motion in progress steps until achieving uniform finish.
With damp sponge and the same abrasive cleaner, buff in a circular motion. Rinse and towel dry.
Apply a mild abrasive cleaner such as Soft Scrub® and a damp sponge, buff in a circular motion. Then rinse and towel dry. If additional blending is necessary lightly buff with a gray (7448) Scotch-Brite™ pad then rinse and towel dry.
Apply a mild abrasive cleaner such as Soft Scrub® and a damp sponge, buff in a circular motion. Rinse and lightly buff with a gray (7448) Scotch-Brite™ pad. Rinse again then follow with a white Scotch-Brite™ lightly buff in a circular motion. Rinse and towel dry.
Specialized tooling is frequently required to achieve and maintain a gloss finish. Please contact your fabricator for assistance. A service charge may apply.
Should there be a variation in the surface finish, proceed with the blending step over the entire surface.
Although Wilsonart Solid Surface can be renewed or repaired if necessary by a professional fabricator, it is best to try and avoid severe damage by following these few simple guidelines.
Preventing Heat Damage
Although Wilsonart Solid Surface is heat resistant, common sense should be applied concerning exposure to direct heat. As with all types of countertops use solid trivets with rubber tip feet or flame resistant heat mats when placing hot objects, heat producing appliances such as electric skillets, crock pots, etc. on the countertop.
Protecting the Surface
From renegade paring knives to busy lifestyles — LG Surfaces is made to withstand life. In fact, no special cleaning products are needed to keep your countertop looking great day in, day out. However, like all fine materials, damage may occur if your countertop is mistreated. To help prevent this from happening, we’ve outlined a few simple ways to be sure your countertop maintains its original elegance and beauty for years to come. Standard cleaning only requires a damp cloth and a mild cleanser. If you’ve chosen a matte finish, you can use an abrasive cleaner like Ajax or Comet. If you do use an abrasive cleaner, we recommend periodically cleaning the entire surface in a circular motion to maintain uniformity. Avoid using strong acidic cleaners (like those designed for drains, toilets or ovens). Some of them can cause whitening, which can be difficult to remove.
A few common sense precautions include not placing pans directly from the burner or oven on your countertops. Although LG HI-MACS can withstand temperatures of up to 225 degrees, prolonged or extreme heat can cause yellowing.
Troublesome spills and stains, like food dye, tea and fruit drinks can be removed with full strength bleach followed by a general cleaner flushed with water. Be sure and not let the bleach remain on the surface for more than five minutes. If a lit cigarette should come in contact with your countertop, a nicotine stain or a scorch mark can occur. Just use an abrasive cleaner or buff in a circular motion with a Scotch-Brite® pad to remove.
Staron® and Tempest® is a durable and repairable product that will last for many years with simple care. Follow these instructions to preserve your Staron® and Tempest® solid surface products.
1. Everyday Care
General cleaning of your Staron® and Tempest® solid surfaces can be done by wiping the surface with a damp cloth or sponge, then dry with soft cloth or paper towels to prevent spotting; especially in areas with hard water.
2. Basic Stains
Clean with an ammonia-based product such as household glass cleaner or commercially available non-abrasive spray-on cleaners for solid surface products. Wipe dry with a soft cloth or paper towels to prevent spotting.
3. Stubborn Stains and Minor Scratches
There are over 70 colors available in Staron® and Tempest® products and each color can be supplied with a different type of finish by a Staron certified fabricator/installer. Dark colors in countertop surfaces and particularly dark colors that have been finished to a gloss, like anything else, will potentially show signs of use, such as scratches and soap residue, more readily than light colored solid surface materials. Therefore, a gloss finish requires additional maintenance and care to retain its original luster. Different cleaning techniques are required to remove stubborn stains and minor scratches depending on the type of finish and color as detailed in the following instructions (Note: please contact your certified fabricator/installer if you are uncertain which type of finish is applied to your Staron solid surfaces). DO NOT attempt to repair deep scratches, chips or burns, contact a certified Staron fabricator/installer.
MATTE FINISH is the standard finish delivered by your certified fabricator/installer. It is a low or no-sheen finish and is recommended in all high-use areas
Scrub in a small circular motion with a wet sponge and an abrasive cleanser such as Soft Scrub®. Darker colors tend to require more attention than lighter colors..
SATIN FINISH has a slightly higher sheen than Matte and requires more attention depending on the frequency of use and area of application.
Lightly scrub surface in a small circular motion with a wet sponge and an abrasive cleanser such as Soft Scrub® over stain or scratch.
Darker Color - Darker colors tend to require more attention than lighter colors. Scrubbing too aggressively may reduce the gloss level.
GLOSS FINISH is a higher and reflective sheen that requires additional care and maintenance. It is important to note that a Gloss finish, especially on a dark color, will require more attention than a Matte/Satin Finish. Therefore, be sure not to apply the same method or process recommended for a Matte/Satin finish when caring for a Gloss finish. Repeat the procedure shown below – If stain persists, contact your certified fabricator/installer for assistance.
DO NOT USE ABRASIVE CLEANSERS AND PADS OF ANY TYPE ON A GLOSS FINISH; PLEASE CONTACT YOUR STARON® RETAILER/DEALER FOR MORE INFORMATION.
Spray a non-abrasive product such as Formula 409® over the stain and wait for a couple of minutes. Then, scrub in a small circular motion with a wet sponge.
Darker Color - Darker colors tend to require more attention than lighter colors.
Scrubbing too aggressively may reduce the gloss level.
Do not use abrasive cleansers, pads or steel wool…
After completing the above procedure, rinse with clear water and wipe dry with a soft cloth or paper towels to prevent spotting. To enhance the visual color clarity and hide minor scuffs, apply Countertop Magic® cleaner (available at any hardware store or supermarket) and wipe away excess with a soft cloth.
4. Preventing Damage
Minor damage that may accidentally occur is most often repairable by a Staron certificated fabricator/installer or repair expert. However, be sure to follow these guidelines to prevent damage to your Staron® and Tempest® surface:
HEAT: Staron® and Tempest® Solid Surfaces have excellent heat resistant properties compared to other countertop materials. However, placing hot pans, as well as some heat-generating appliances such as electric grills or deep-fryers, can damage the surface. Always use a hot pad or a trivet with rubber feet to protect Staron® and Tempest®. Avoid subjecting Staron® and Tempest® Solid Surfaces to extremely hot temperatures.
CHEMICALS: Avoid exposing Staron® and Tempest® Solid Surfaces to active chemicals such as paint removers, acetone, and oven cleaners. Surfaces exposed to these chemicals should be promptly flushed with water; contact may cause spots that may require extensive repairs. Remove nail polish with a non-acetone-based nail polish remover and rinse with water.
SCRATCHES: Never cut or chop directly on a Staron® and Tempest® Solid Surfaces surface, always use a cutting/chopping board.
FRACTURES: Avoid standing on countertops or dropping heavy objects on the surface.
NOTE: Gloss reduction, scratching, and staining on solid surfaces incurred over time due to use is NOT a manufacturing defect but is considered normal wear and tear – The foregoing is NOT covered under the Staron® Limited Warranty. However, the countertop can be re-sanded and refinished periodically if you so choose -- You will be charged the standard hourly service rate. If your Staron® and Tempest® product is accidentally nicked or deeply scratched, please contact your retailer/dealer or Staron certified fabricator/installer for advice about the most efficient method of repair – most repairs are relatively quick and simple when performed by an experienced professional (service charge may apply).
CLEANING SINKS & BOWLS
Staron® sinks and bowls are highly resistant to staining by common household foods, liquids, and cosmetics. However, leaving food residue and chemicals on the surface to air dry can result in a stubborn stain unless rinsed immediately with water.
1. Everyday Care and Basic Stains
Clean regularly with Soft Scrub® or a mild detergent such as those used for hand dishwashing.
2. Stubborn Stains and Minor Scratches
Apply a mild abrasives cleanser such as Bon-ami®, Comet® or Soft Scrub® on the area and buff in a circular motion with a green Scotch-Brite® pad. Buff over the entire sink to blend the finish and then rinse – solid color of Staron® product is evident all the way through the same.
To keep sinks bright and clean, occasionally apply liquid bleach and water using the following steps.
- Fill sink 1/4 full with water and add 1 to 2 cups of bleach.
- Carefully (without splashing) scrub the entire surface with a green Scotch-Brite® pad and sponge.
- Allow to stand for 15 minutes. Then, drain and rinse.
4. Preventing Damage
Staron® sinks and bowls are highly durable. However, be sure to follow these guidelines:
Allow heated cookware to cool before placing in sink
Always run cold water when pouring boiled water or hot liquids into sink
Do not expose the surface to harsh chemicals, such as paint remover, turpentine, nail polish remover (acetone) or drain, stove and toilet cleaning products. If the chemicals come in contact with the surface, immediately wash them off with water, using appropriate safety measures to avoid injury.
Avoid dropping heavy objects on the surface.
DuPont Zodiaq® quartz surfaces are very easy to maintain. The quartz used in Zodiaq® - coupled with high-performance, stain-resistant polymers - results in a durable, nonporous, chemical-resistant surface. Zodiaq® is also heat- and scratch-resistant, but not heat- and scratch-proof. Therefore, the use of trivets or hot pads are recommended with hot pots and a cutting board is recommended when using a knife. Of course, Zodiaq® keeps its lustrous gloss and ultra-smooth surface without polishing. Because it is nonporous, Zodiaq® does not require sealants or waxes. Zodiaq® also gives you peace of mind. In the unlikely event that you do experience any problems due to a manufacturer's defect, you can rest assured that DuPont backs Zodiaq® with a 10-year limited warranty.
With simple care, Zodiaq® will retain its radiant, lustrous appearance for many years. For regular cleaning, use a damp cloth or paper towel and, if necessary, a small amount of non-bleach, nonabrasive cleanser. Even though Zodiaq® resists permanent staining when exposed to liquids (such as wine, vinegar, tea, lemon juice and soda) or fruits and vegetables, wipe up food and liquid spills as soon as possible. For stubborn or dried spills, use a nonabrasive cleaning pad such as a white 3M Scotch-Brite®* scrub pad coupled with Formula 409® Glass & Surface Cleaner** or a comparable cleaning product. Avoid using cleansers that contain bleach. Always follow the cleaner manufacturer's use instructions and exercise proper care when handling and storing any cleaning products. * Scotch-Brite® is a registered trademark of the 3M Company. **Formula 409® Glass & Surface Cleaner is a registered trademark of the Clorox Company.
Preventing Heat and Other Damage
Zodiaq® can withstand exposure to normal cooking temperatures from pots, pans and dishes without being damaged. To maintain the beauty of Zodiaq®, do not place hot skillets or roasting pans directly onto the surface. DuPont recommends the use of trivets and hot pads.
Removing Difficult Spills
Sometimes spills occur and dry on the countertop. For materials that harden as they dry (such as gum, food, grease, nail polish or paint), remove by gently scraping away the excess with a plastic putty knife. Permanent markers and inks may adhere to the surface and should be avoided. Should these agents come into contact with the surface, clean first as outlined in Routine Care. If the stain persists, moisten a cloth with Goo Gone®**, or a comparable product and rub it into the stain. Rinse thoroughly with warm water to remove any cleaner residue. When grease from cooking is an issue, use Greased Lightning™** or a comparable degreasing product to help loosen and remove the fat from the surface. Use the manufacturer's instructions for applying and removing the cleaner. Avoid exposing Zodiaq® quartz surfaces to strong chemicals and solvents, especially paint removers or furniture strippers containing trichloroethane or methylene chloride. Keep nail polish remover, bleach, bluing, permanent markers or inks, and oil soaps away from Zodiaq®. While casual exposure to alkaline materials will not damage Zodiaq®, highly alkaline (high-pH) cleansers are not recommended when cleaning Zodiaq®. If any of the substances listed above come into Zodiaq®, rinse the exposed surface immediately and thoroughly with water.