Granite kitchen countertops have been all the rage over the last decade in new home construction and renovations as many consumers equate Granite kitchen countertops with luxury, opulence and style. In terms of popularity, if a natural stone were ever a rock star, Granite countertops would be Bono!
This extremely popular kitchen countertop choice is quarried from deep in the earth and mined in large slabs. Granite slabs are hard volcanic rock filled with quartz, mica, and feldspar crystals. Granite is a porous rock and is used worldwide in various large scale construction projects. Granite is very durable and is extremely versatile. There are several pros and cons of using granite in your home and hopefully we can shed some light on using this fabulous natural stone in your home
Granite Kitchen Countertop Costs
Granite kitchen countertops are quite expensive. Granite can easily be in excess of $135 sq ft. Many new home contractors use the high value of Granite countertops as a selling point in driving new home sales, and of course the addition of Granite countertops to a renovation will certainly increase the value of your home as well the price tag on the renovation
Granite Kitchen Countertop Durability
Granite countertops are extremely durable and this lends to its popularity in the kitchen. Granite is extremely scratch resistant due to its coloring through out the entire slab. Granite is also incredibly heat resistant and will not burn. One Caveat though, Granite is very porous and can therefore absorb moisture and of course stain. It needs to be used in conjunction with a granite sealer every six months.
Installing Granite Countertops
If you are going to install Granite countertops in your home, be sure to choose the type and color of stone that best suits your needs. Remember that most Granite countertops will show a seam somewhere so plan for these seams in areas that will not be highly visible.
We recommend professional installation to ensure that your granite countertops are properly installed. Usually your designer or contractor can steer you in the right direction when it comes to finding the right professional for the job.
Granite Kitchen Countertops Colors & Designs
As with many natural stones, granite’s color can be inconsistent. You may be able to find appropriate color palettes, but remember the veining in granite will vary from piece to piece making it very hard to find perfect matches for your kitchen. Granite colors change from quarry to quarry and by region.
There are 2 different kinds of Granite available for most kitchens, Consistent and Variegated.
Consistent Granite – Where a consistent pattern exists throughout the slab. This form of Granite has a very uniform appearance and is much easier to match at the seams. Well suited for longer countertop surfaces
Variegated Granite – This form of Granite usually has a swirling vein through out the slab varying in color. This can make it difficult to match slabs and creates some difficulty in pairing two pieces together. This is not always a draw back as Variegated Granite can lend a very unique look to your kitchen countertops.
Environmental & Health Impact of Granite Countertops
Granite is not a particularly green product as it is mined from deep within the earth and is seldom recycled. Energy costs associated with the transportation of this material also has a negative impact on the environment. If you are not fickle about color, you can find some Granite that has been salvaged, but be aware of differences in grain and of course wear and tear.
Cool to the touch, slick and sensual, Granite is probably the sexiest choice available for most discerning kitchen lovers out there. Choose your colors properly and you will have a stunning result!
The Martini Factor
Granite kitchen countertops will not be a friend to glassware anywhere. It is durable and if treated with sealer will repel stains. Do not use abrasives to clean stains and try and use coasters or cocktail napkins to prolong the life of your granite countertops.