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How to Protect High-End Granite Countertops

Everyone knows that high-end granite countertops are absolutely gorgeous. The exotic variations and patterns offer a truly one-of-a-kind look, and whether brushed or polished, granite counters can make for a stunning kitchen.

The eye-catching beauty granite possess isn’t in doubt – however, many homeowners do have questions about how keep natural stone surfaces looking their best. Fortunately, caring for high-end granite countertops isn’t difficult. To maintain yours and make sure they never lose their magnificence, simply adopt the following habits.

Do custom granite countertops require sealing?

Place Trivets Under Hot Pans

Granite is highly resistant to heat, but using trivets is a good idea. Put one under every hot pan, and you will never have to worry about burns and scorch marks on your countertops.

Always Use Coasters

Like all types of natural stone, granite can stain if not properly sealed. Get into the routine of reaching for a coaster before setting a drink on the countertop, and you’ll be protected if any drips.

Use Placements when Dining

Similarly, if you use your countertops as a spot to have a meal, be sure to set a placemat down first. That way, if you happen to spill or drop any food, the surface won’t end up with a stain.

Wipe Up Spills Immediately

Any time you spill anything on your countertops, wipe the mess up at once. The longer spills sit on the surface, the bigger the risk of staining and permanent damage – even if the natural stone is sealed.

Clean the Surface Often

To preserve the glorious beauty of your high-end granite countertops and make them gleam, frequently wipe the surface down. A solution of warm water and mild dishwashing liquid is all you need, and cleaning takes just a few minutes.  

Avoid Abrasive Cleansers

Harsh disinfectants, like ammonia and bleach, are not appropriate for cleaning granite, and neither are vinegar, baking soda, and alkaline cleansers. If you want to use a store-bought product, make sure the label says it’s safe for use on natural stone.

Regularly Seal the Countertops

Sealing your granite countertops on a regular basis makes the natural stone more resistant to staining and damage. To make sure your counters are properly sealed with a safe, non-toxic sealant, leave the task to a professional.

Call a Professional for Repairs

High-end granite countertops rarely require repairs, but if you spot a scratch, nick or other damage, contact a professional fabricator or restoration specialist. Having an expert handle the problem is the best way to ensure optimal results.

Is it time to seal your granite countertops? Or do you need repairs? If you live in Utah, Idaho or Wyoming, contact the professional team at Creative Granite.

An Intermountain West industry leader for over 17 years, Creative Granite has a reputation for masterful workmanship, outstanding customer service and fair, competitive pricing. Our award-winning professional fabricators provide custom countertop installation, counter sealing and repair services.

For more information, or to schedule a consultation to discuss installing or caring for high-end granite countertops, contact Creative Granite in Salt Lake City today.

Cleaning Tips for Custom Granite Countertops

Custom granite countertops are a stunning addition to any kitchen or bathroom. And aside from spectacular beauty, granite offers exceptional durability. The natural stone is stain-resistant and heat-resistant, and it stands up well to regular wear and tear.

But as great as granite countertops are, they can get dirty. And when they do, following the proper cleaning practices is important.

So, how do you clean custom granite countertops? What is the best cleaner to use? Don’t worry – keeping them in tip-top shape is pretty easy. Here’s what you need to do.

How to clean granite countertops

Clean Spills Immediately

When you spill food, drinks or anything else on your countertops, wipe up the mess as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the more difficult it may be to clean. And certain types of spills – like red wine, mustard, coffee and citrus juice – can soak into the stone and leave stubborn stains or even damage the surface.

Choose a Gentle Cleaner

Granite-safe cleaners are widely available, and you can use one if you like. Or, you can make your own, mixing distilled water with rubbing alcohol and a few drops of dishwashing liquid. Avoid harsh chemical cleaners, and don’t reach for the bleach or vinegar – neither is safe for use on granite.

Use a Soft Cloth

Scrubbing granite countertops with an abrasive sponge leaves it more vulnerable to stains and damage, as vigorous cleaning strips away the sealant. Take a gentler approach and reach for a soft cloth or microfiber towel instead.

Deal with Surface Damage

If your granite countertops have any damage – which, as we mentioned, can happen if a stain goes unnoticed for too long – the natural stone will likely need to be buffed, polished and resealed. You can find instructions online, but for optimal results, these tasks are best left to an experienced countertop fabricator.

Seal the Countertops as Needed

Regular sealing protects your countertops, and many experts recommend applying sealant on an annual basis. To see if your granite is in need of resealing, try the water test. Simply place a few drops of water on the surface and wait a few minutes – if the water soaks into the granite instead of beading up, ask your countertop fabricator about sealing.

Do you have questions about cleaning granite? Or are you interested in adding custom granite countertops to your Utah, Idaho or Wyoming home? For expert answers and assistance, call on the award-winning professionals at Creative Granite.

A leading Intermountain West countertop fabricator for over 17 years, Creative Granite is known for quality craftsmanship and unparalleled customer service. Our Salt Lake City design center and showroom contains an impressive selection of natural stone slabs and engineered countertop options, and our friendly team is always happy to offer advice.

For more information about Creative Granite, or to schedule a free, no-pressure consultation to discuss custom granite countertops, contact us today.

Quartzite Countertops: 5 Facts You Need to Know

If you’re shopping for new kitchen or bathroom counters, you’ve no doubt noticed quartzite countertops are an option. And you certainly wouldn’t be the first person to wonder what quartzite is – many homeowners are completely unfamiliar with the countertop material.

To satisfy your curiosity, check out the following key facts about quartzite countertops.

Quartzite countertops Utah

No. 1: Quartzite is a Natural Stone

Quartzite is a naturally-occurring metamorphic rock formed when heat and pressure alter the compositional properties of quartz-rich sandstone. These conditions, found at convergent plate boundaries and where mountains form, create an interlocking crystalline structure of incredible strength.

No. 2: Quartz and Quartzite are Not the Same

Though their names are similar, quartz and quartzite are two different countertop materials. While quartzite is a natural stone, quarried from the earth, quartz is an engineered stone. In other words, quartz is a man-made material comprised of crushed rock, polymer resins and pigment.

No. 3: Quartzite is Naturally Beautiful

Quartzite slabs are rather stunning, with most slabs tending toward light, natural shades like white, gray and beige – and Mother Nature is in charge of the patterns and veining, so the color variations are extraordinary. Consequently, these natural stone countertops bring a unique, eye-catching touch to any kitchen or bathroom.

No. 4: Quartzite Countertops are Quite Durable

In terms of hardness, physical durability and chemical resistance, quartzite is one of the most impressive types of natural stone. Countertops made of this gorgeous rock can stand up to just about anything – even heat. Plus, like high-end granite countertops, they resist etching and are difficult to scratch.

No. 5: Quartzite Countertops Require Regular Care

Quartzite is extremely hard and durable, but it is not an indestructible countertop material. To protect the natural stone surface from staining, it must be sealed about once every year. Using a good sealer can also help enhance the rich veins and flecks of color – ask your countertop fabricator for a recommendation.

Are Quartzite Countertops the Right Choice for Your Home?

A number of countertop materials are available, each of which has its merits and drawbacks. To decide which type of natural stone or engineered surface is the best choice for your kitchen or bathroom, discuss the matter with an experienced countertop fabricator.

For expert assistance in Utah, Idaho or Wyoming, turn to the award-winning professionals at Creative Granite. A leading Intermountain West countertop fabricator for more than 17 years, we have a reputation for superior service, top-notch workmanship and exceptional fabrication.

The Creative Granite design center and showroom in Salt Lake City, Utah, offers a vast range of natural stone slabs from around the world along with engineered countertop materials from the most popular brands and manufacturers. For a free, no-pressure consultation to explore your options and determine if quartzite countertops are right for you, contact us today.

The Best Features of Solid Surface Countertops

Solid surface countertops have been around for decades, and their popularity isn’t likely to fade anytime soon. Many homeowners, after considering natural stone options like granite, quartzite and marble, choose to update their kitchens and bathrooms with solid surface counters instead.

Why is this? What makes this countertop option such a long-time favorite? Take a look at their impressive features, and you’ll understand.

Solid surface countertop benefits

Durable

Solid surface countertops are strong and impact-resistant, designed to last for a great many years. Granite, quartzite and quartz counters may be slightly more durable, but the composition of solid surfacing materials makes them incredibly tough and resilient.

Seamless

Seams are an issue with natural stone countertops, as the slabs must be joined together for a perfect fit. With solid surface counters, however, the custom fabrication process results in a completely seamless look.

Sanitary

Solid surfacing materials are non-porous and have no grout lines or joints, so they’re incredibly hygienic. Food-borne bacteria and germs have no place to hide – and unlike natural stone countertops, they don’t need to be resealed to repel water and stains.

Easy Care

Keeping solid surface counters clean couldn’t be simpler – a quick wipe with a soapy sponge or mild household cleanser does the job. The non-porous nature of these materials prevents stains, so the countertops come with a lifetime of easy maintenance.

Restorable

With solid surfacing, any chips and scratches can be easily buffed away to restore a like-new appearance – which, in effect, gives them a longer lifespan. When natural stone countertops get nicked or scratched, the damage isn’t so easy to repair.

Customizable

The style possibilities are nearly endless with solid surfacing. Hundreds of colors and patterns are available, and custom fabricators offer a variety of edge profiles. The material can be shaped, engraved and backlit, so it has the flexibility to really deliver personalized design. With natural stone, countertops are limited to what can be found in nature.

Are solid surface countertops the right choice for your kitchen or bathroom? If you live in Utah, Idaho or Wyoming and want to explore your options, turn to the award-winning countertop fabricators at Creative Granite.

An Intermountain West industry leader for over 17 years, Creative Granite offers masterful fabrication, expert installation and unparalleled customer service. Our Salt Lake City design center contains a vast selection of gorgeous, high-quality countertop materials in all price ranges, and our friendly team can help you find a style that suits your home and your budget.

Contact Creative Granite today to learn more, or to schedule a free, no-pressure consultation to discuss our custom granite, quartz, marble, quartzite and solid surface countertops.

 

White Granite Countertops – An Alternative to Marble Countertops

Marble countertops are undoubtedly beautiful, prized for their delicate vein patterns and luxurious look. That said, some homeowners who love marble and plan to use it in their kitchens actually end up installing premium white granite countertops instead.

Why is this? Both high-end countertop materials are durable natural stones, and both instantly add value to your home. But, marble comes with a few concerns. White granite offers a similar aesthetic appeal and feel, and it can be an excellent alternative.

White granite vs marble countertops

Why You May Not Want to Install Marble Countertops

The Parthenon, an ancient Greek temple, is still standing today – and it’s made of marble. So, the natural stone is incredibly strong. But, that strength doesn’t necessarily make it the best choice for kitchen countertops.

Because of its mineral composition, marble countertops develop a patina over time. For some, this adds to the allure. Others, however, consider the effect to be a significant shortcoming.

Plus, marble is quite porous, which makes it more vulnerable to stains and discoloration. Spills can leave permanent marks that are nearly impossible to remove. Also, acidic substances, like lemon juice and wine, can etch scars into marble countertops. To prevent these potential problems, the surface needs to be resealed at least once per year.

How White Granite Countertops Compare to Marble Countertops

Granite is harder than marble, so it resists chips, scratches and etches better. That said, both countertop materials can handle the heat. And, like marble, granite is porous and requires regular resealing to stop spills from turning into permanent stains.

In addition, of the two types of natural stone, marble is rarer than white granite. Consequently, the price is higher – and cost is an important factor when you’re installing new countertops.

When to Choose Marble Countertops Over White Granite

Though white granite countertops can closely resemble marble, expecting an exact match is unrealistic. Marble is rather distinctive, one of the most stunning types of natural stone, and that’s reason enough for some homeowners to choose it for their kitchens.

If you have the time and resources to commit to regular sealing, marble countertops can remain in beautiful condition for many years to come. And, the upkeep won’t be any more difficult than it would be with granite countertops.

Ultimately, the decision comes down to personal preference. Both types of natural stone make for gorgeous and durable countertops, and either could be just the right choice for your kitchen. To explore your options, call on a local custom countertop fabricator – like the award-winning professionals at Creative Granite.

Based in Salt Lake City, Creative Granite serves homeowners throughout Utah, Idaho and Wyoming. We offer a range of natural stone and engineered countertop materials, and we’re happy to answer questions, offer expert advice and assist in the decision-making process.

To schedule a free consultation with the Creative Granite team, or to view samples of our marble countertops and white granite countertops in person, contact us today.

 

How to Coordinate Granite Countertops & Kitchen Cabinets

Granite countertops are incredibly durable, easy to clean and absolutely gorgeous – and those are probably just a few of the reasons you’ve decided granite is the right choice for your new kitchen counters.

But how do make sure your granite countertops match your kitchen cabinets?

Coordinating the two biggest components of your kitchen design can be a challenge, yet the counters and cabinetry need to be in harmony for your home upgrade to provide a great return on investment. Here are a few tips for getting granite countertops and kitchen cabinets that go together.

How to match granite countertops to your cabinets

Choose Your Granite First

If you’re planning to update both your countertops and your kitchen cabinets, start by selecting your ideal granite slab. An array of colors, vein patterns and designs are available, and you want a counter surface you love. If you choose your cabinets first, matching them to a slab will be a bit more difficult.

Look for Wood Tones in the Granite

If your kitchen upgrade includes natural wood cabinets, keep that in mind as you check out the slabs at the countertop showroom. Choose granite that contains wood color tones, then take a sample to a cabinetry company to find a wood surface that coordinates well with the counters.

Bring a Cabinet Door to the Showroom

Perhaps you’ve already installed new kitchen cabinets, or you want to keep your current cabinetry. In either case, it’s a good idea to remove one of the doors and bring it along to the granite countertop showroom. That way, you can hold up the cabinet to each sample slab and find the best match.

Go for Contrasting or Complementary Coloring

Regardless of whether you’re replacing your kitchen cabinets or not, you have two options for pairing them with granite countertops – go for contrast, or select complementary colors. Some people prefer the dramatic look of contrasting colors, while others find similar shades or a monochromatic style to be more appealing. Before you head to the countertop showroom, decide which approach you’d like to take.

Are you ready to choose your granite countertops? If you live in Utah, Idaho or Wyoming, turn to the award-winning professionals at Creative Granite.

Our Salt Lake City design center offers an extensive variety of exceptional granite slabs from around the world, and our friendly team can offer expert advice on how to achieve a well-designed kitchen with coordinating counters and cabinetry.

An Intermountain West industry leader for over 17 years, Creative Granite is known for high-quality countertop materials, masterful fabrication and stellar customer service. For a free, no-pressure consultation to explore your options for custom granite countertops, contact us today.

Comparing Quartz Countertops and Quartzite Countertops

In a showdown between quartz countertops and quartzite countertops, which one comes out on top?

In our eyes, quartz and quartzite are both exceptional materials for kitchen and bathroom counters. So, choosing which is right for your home improvement project ultimately comes down to personal preference.

Talking to an experienced custom fabricator and viewing quartz and quartzite slabs in person will ensure you make the right decision, Here’s how these two durable and visually striking materials stack up.

Quartz versus quartzite countertops

Source

The quartz used in kitchen and bath counters is an engineered stone, a synthetic material comprised of crushed natural quartz, polymer resins and pigments.

Quartzite, on the other hand, is a naturally-occurring metamorphic rock formed when quartz-rich sandstone is subjected to high pressure and temperature.

Appearance

Quartz countertops come in a vast range of colors and gorgeous patterns, some of which mimic the look of marble, granite, quartzite or other natural stone surfaces.

As quartzite is a natural stone, your color choice is somewhat more limited. And, Mother Nature decides the patterning. That said, every slab is unique and quartzite countertops are always strikingly beautiful.

Durability

Quartz countertops are quite durable, and the flexibility of the material makes them more resistant to denting and chipping than quartzite countertops.

Quartzite is harder than quartz and less prone to scratching, similar to high-end granite in terms of durability. And, food acids are unlikely to cause etching on quartzite counters.

Heat Resistance

The polymer resins used in quartz countertops can melt at around 300 degrees. Setting a hot baking dish or pan directly on the surface could leave a permanent mark.

In contrast, quartzite counters can take the heat. With this natural stone material, you typically don’t have to reach for a trivet before putting down a hot pot or pan.

Maintenance

Caring for quartz countertops is incredibly simple – just wipe the surface with a damp cloth or sponge.

Quartzite countertops are equally easy to clean. However, unlike quartz, quartzite needs to be sealed to guard against stains.

Cost

When it comes to price, quartz countertops and quartzite countertops aren’t all that different. However, for complex kitchen and bath projects, quartz tends to cost a little less.

The reason? Quartz slabs cost less to produce, as they’re fabricated using molds. Quartzite countertops must be cut to size, an exacting process that takes time and requires skill.

Quartz or Quartzite – Which Is Right for You?

After reading through this comparison, you might have an idea of whether quartz countertops or quartzite countertops are better for your home improvement project. Before you make your final decision, however, you’ll want to view the slabs.

If you live in Utah, Idaho or Wyoming, visit the Creative Granite showroom in Salt Lake City for an extensive selection of beautiful, high-quality natural stone and engineered counter materials.

The award-winning professionals at Creative Granite, a leading Intermountain West custom countertop fabricator for over 17 years, can answer your questions and offer expert advice on your kitchen or bathroom upgrade. Contact us today – we’d love to help you explore the pros and cons of quartz countertops and quartzite countertops in person.

Tips for Choosing the Perfect Custom Granite Countertop Slabs

Are you planning for custom granite countertops in your kitchen or bathroom? Visiting a local showroom is an essential part of the process. Every granite slab is unique, and viewing your options in person is the best way to ensure you get exactly what you want.

That said, choosing the perfect granite slabs can feel like a daunting task. For many people, the vast variations in color, pattern and veining make the decision agonizing. Before you get too stressed out about this process, we have some pro tips to offer, to help keep the stress of selecting your slabs at a minimum.

Picking your custom granite countertops slabs

Think Before You Shop

Narrowing down your options before you head to the showroom can make the slab selection process much easier. Think about your style preferences, and decide which natural stone shades and vein patterns are most pleasing to you. When you visit the design center, you can choose to view only the granite slabs that suit your tastes.

Bring Color Samples

If you bring samples of your kitchen or bathroom cabinets, backsplash tiles and other crucial design components with you, you can make sure the slab you select coordinates well with your overall design scheme. The showroom will likely have examples of popular cabinetry, but referring to an exact replica is the optimal way to select the perfect granite countertops.

Take Notes & Photos as You Browse

You may be looking at a number of granite slabs, and remembering their features and differences can be a challenge. Take photos of the slabs you like, and jot down any significant details for reference purposes. That way, you’ll be able to compare your options and choose the perfect slab with much less stress.

Put Your Favorites on Hold

As you browse the showroom, if you spot a slab you really like, put it on hold. Skip this step, and you could return to make a purchase – only to discover that your prized granite is no longer available. Putting your favorites on hold ensures that you can have your top choice for granite countertops.

Don’t Rush Through the Slab Selection Process

With a little easy maintenance, granite countertops can last for decades. For that reason, you shouldn’t settle for the first slab you see. Take your time and look at an assortment of slabs before making a decision. Your fabricator wants you to end up with granite you’ll be proud to show off to your friends and family.

Are you ready to install granite countertops? If you live in Utah, Idaho or Wyoming, the award-winning professionals at Creative Granite can help you make the most of your investment.

Our Salt Lake City showroom contains a wide range of high-quality natural stone slabs from around the world, all of which are rich in beauty and character. Whichever one you choose, our commitment to exceptional customer service and masterful fabrication ensure that your granite countertops will be installed with expert care.

To schedule a free consultation with the Creative Granite team, or to browse our design center showroom and find the perfect slab for your granite countertops, contact us today.

Are Marble Countertops Right for You?

Let’s cut to the chase – marble countertops are an excellent investment. And, many homeowners prefer them to kitchen and bathroom counters made of granite, quartz and other high-end materials.

Marble truly delivers on several different levels, but as with other countertop materials, it does have a few caveats to keep in mind. To determine whether marble is the right choice for you, you’ll have to weigh the pros and cons of this material.
Pros and cons of marble countertops

Elegant Beauty

Marble countertops are in high demand mainly because of their timeless beauty. The natural stone comes in a wide spectrum of colors and patterns, and every slab has a uniquely gorgeous look. Whether the surface is honed, polished, tumbled or leathered, this type of counter is an elegant, eye-catching choice.

Naturally Cool

Marble is cool to the touch, as the natural stone has a considerably high thermal conductivity rate. For anyone who enjoys baking, this is a definite plus – the cold surface is ideal for working with and rolling out pastry dough.

Heat Resistant

As cool as marble is, the countertop material can also handle the heat. In the kitchen, the surface stands up to hot pots and pans, even those straight from the oven or stovetop. In the bathroom, curling irons and hair styling tools won’t damage the natural stone.

Long Lifespan

How long do marble countertops last? To get an idea of the longevity, simply look to the numerous world monuments made of this natural stone. The Parthenon, the Pantheon, the Taj Mahal – these and many other masterpieces have been standing strong since ancient times! Since it passes the test of time outside with constant exposure to the elements, you can count on marble surviving the conditions inside your kitchen or bathroom.

Concerns About Marble Countertops

When homeowners decide against installing marble counters, the choice is usually due to one of two primary concerns:

Porosity

Because marble is a soft, porous stone, counters made of this material are prone to staining, scratching and impact damage.

Maintenance

Marble countertops require regular sealing, at least once per year. For counters that see heavy use, more frequent applications are necessary.

The bottom line is that marble counters can be an ideal choice for some homeowners, while others prefer alternatives like custom granite and quartz. To explore your options with a local custom countertop fabricator, turn to the professionals at Creative Granite.

An Intermountain West industry leader for decades, Creative Granite is the go-to source for custom countertops in Utah, Idaho and Wyoming. We offer many different natural stone and engineered countertop materials, and our friendly team is happy to help homeowners make a decision on which to install. And we guarantee you’ll be thrilled with our high-quality fabrication, masterful craftsmanship and exceptional customer service.

To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss marble countertops, contact us or stop by the Creative Granite design center in Salt Lake City, Utah, today.

How to Care for Quartz Countertops

Quartz countertops are non-porous, which makes them incredibly resistant to staining. They’re also quite durable, and engineered stone rivals high-end granite in terms of beauty. No wonder quartz has become a preferred choice for kitchen and bathroom counters!

Of course, every type of countertop material needs some attention to stay at its best. Fortunately, the upkeep for quartz is easy. Here’s what to do – and not to do – to maintain your quartz countertops.

 

Routine Care

Quartz countertops don’t require much maintenance – they never need sealing like natural stone. That said, keep these routine care tips in mind:

 

Wipe spills immediately
Stains never have a chance to set in when you wipe the mess when it’s still wet.

 

Scrape away dried crud
A hard plastic scraper makes it easy to eliminate a dried mess.

 

Choose a bleach-free degreaser
Go with glass cleaner or cleanser made for quartz to remove cooking grease.

 

If your countertop has a tougher stain, such as permanent marker or ink, use an adhesive cleaner, such as Goo Gone. If that fails, try isopropyl rubbing alcohol, or simply contact a local custom countertop fabricator for expert assistance.

 

What Not to Do

 

Caring for quartz countertops is easy, but if you want to preserve the integrity and aesthetic appeal of your engineered stone counters, you’ll need to steer clear of damaging habits. Here’s how to protect your quartz:

 

  • Never use scouring pads or abrasive cleansers

  • Don’t place hot pans directly on the surface

  • Avoid slicing and dicing without a cutting board

  • Take care not to drop heavy objects on the countertop

 

How Long Do Quartz Countertops Last?

 

Manufacturers typically offer warranties in the 10 to 15 year range, but if you give your quartz countertop the care it needs, the surface will remain beautiful for much longer – maybe even for as long as you own your home.

 

And, in the unlikely event your quartz counter chips or develops a crack at some point down the road, the issue is easy to fix. Do-it-yourself kits are widely available, or you can turn to a local custom countertop fabricator for a more seamless repair with a flawless finish.

 

If you have questions about quartz countertops, the award-winning professionals at Creative Granite can provide expert answers and advice on options for your Utah, Idaho or Wyoming home.

 

Creative Granite, an industry leader in the Intermountain West for more than 17 years, carries a vast range of high-quality natural stone and engineered countertop materials. Our skilled team offers exceptional fabrication, masterful installation and unparalleled customer service.

For a free, no-pressure consultation and a look at samples of our quartz countertops, contact us in Salt Lake City today.