Your new countertops are a long-term investment. Most solid surfaces, if cared for correctly, will last for decades. It’s crucial that you take care of your surfaces, both in your bathroom and kitchen.
You’ll want to keep your surfaces sanitary to protect from cross-contamination in the kitchen; however, some antibacterial cleaners are too harsh for your solid surface. Read on for our complete guide to cleaning your countertops — from the bathroom to the kitchen.
Cleaning the countertops in your bathroom is essential — they’re exposed to a high level of bacteria and can be damaged by beauty products that aren’t quickly cleaned up. Regardless of your surface material, you should make an effort to wipe down the countertop (and the sink) daily, removing any lotions, make-up, toothpaste, etc. It doesn’t need to be immaculate, simply clean enough to prevent any damage to the finish of your surface.
We recommend using a decorative tray for any lotions or beauty products stored on your countertop — they’re attractive and they’ll protect your surface should any bottles or tubes leak. Common chemicals in face washes (like salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide) are harsh and can erode the finish of your countertop if they’re not cleaned up.
It’s important to remember that while sanitation is important in the kitchen, regular soap will kill unhealthy bacteria — bleach isn’t necessarily. In the kitchen, your countertops are exposed to heat and also knife scratches. Both of these issues can be easily prevented — use a pot holder or trivet to prevent heat transfer from hot pots and pans and a chopping board to protect the surface from knives.
People often over estimate the strength of their countertops — our surfaces are expertly installed and are strong; however, it’s never a good idea to let people sit on your countertops. In the kitchen, it’s important make sure spills are cleaned up quickly to prevent staining. Dark berries (like blueberries), beets, coffee (and more) can stain if left on the surface.
Read on to learn how to clean and care for your specific surface, keeping it beautiful for years to come.
Granite is an igneous rock, available in a wide variety of colors and patterns. It’s a versatile material, making it a popular choice. It’s resistant to heat and scratching, making it relatively low maintenance. At Preferred Surfaces, we seal our granite for 15 years, meaning you don’t have to worry about selecting and applying a sealant.
To clean granite on a daily basis, simply us a conservative amount of dish soap with warm water and a soft sponge or cloth. Avoid using vinegar, bleach or cleaners such as Windex — when used repeatedly, these cleaners will break down the sealant and dull the finish of the granite. Try to avoid abrasive cleaners like Soft Scrub and abrasive sponges — they’re not necessary and will scratch the surface of the granite over time.
To shine your granite, you can use coconut or flax oil. Remember, a little goes a long way and you need to ensure the oil is used evenly across the surface and completely buffed out.
Marble is a metamorphic rock composed most commonly of calcite or dolomite. It is most commonly white; however, it can be found in black, pink, grey and green. It’s more porous than other surfaces such as granite, meaning it will quickly stain from liquids (even water) and food.
Because marble is a carbonate, it reacts with any acid causing an effect called etching (dull spots). But don’t let that deter you — it’s strikingly beautiful and if cared for — will be beautiful for years.
It goes without saying — cleaning up spills immediately, using cutting boards, trivets and coasters is vital to maintaining the beauty of your marble.
You’ll want to make sure you keep acids away from your marble — lemon juice, vinegar, etc. And it goes without saying — bleach and abrasive cleaners should always be avoided. A gentle cloth, warm water and soap will clean your marble well. After you wipe down your marble, it’s important to dry it thoroughly.
Quartz is crafted from ground quartz with polyester resins to bind it and pigments for color. It is available in a variety of colors with varying patterns. Quartz is non-porous, making it highly stain resistant.
It’s easy to maintain and can be cleaned with most non-abrasive household cleaners, excluding bleach and other harsh chemicals. Quartz is less resistant to heat than other solid stone surfaces, but it is incredibly hard, making it resistant to scratches and chips.
Simply clean spills with a soft cleaning cloth and avoid acids/alkali chemicals along with ammonia, lemon and orange cleaners and vinegar. As long as you prevent issues from occurring by using coasters, trivets and cutting boards — your quartz won’t give you any problems.
Solid surfaces are made from a blend of acrylic and polyester. It’s man-made and available in numerous colors — both solid and with patterning that mimics natural stone.
It’s non-porous and virtually stain proof, but can be damaged by high head. Because solid surface is non-porous, almost any cleaner can be used to maintain the surface, although we recommend avoiding abrasive cleaners.
To prevent damage, always use a trivet to protect from heat and a cutting board to prevent knife nicks. Your solid surface countertops are easy to care for, as long as everybody in your family does their part to prevent damage.
Preferred Surfaces| Custom Kitchen Countertops| Morgantown, WV, and Surrounding Areas
Cleaning your countertops should be routine — this will prevent any residue build up or etching due to exposure to chemicals etc. Keep the routine simple and stick to it — your countertops will thank you and stay beautiful for years.
If you can’t decide which surface is best for your home and your family, download our Countertop Shopping Guide. This comprehensive guide details the pros and cons of each surface and will help you make your decision.