Seal Porous Granite Surfaces Properly to Provide Protection
Sealing granite surfaces is vital to helping them maintain their beauty. A granite counter top that is properly sealed and protected can be reasonably expected to outlast the home it is installed in.
Not All Granite Counter Tops Require Sealing
Different colors and types of granite have varying densities. Although granite is porous, the extent to which that can cause staining varies by the type of granite that is purchased. Typically darker colors have a higher density and thus may not all require sealing.
A quick way to test if a granite counter top needs to be sealed is to conduct what is known as the “water test”. Place several drops of water on the counter top and wait 20 minutes. If that water soaks into the granite, the stone should be sealed. If, however, the water beads up and remains beaded, the density of the stone is sufficient enough to resist stains on its own and does not require sealing.
Choose the Right Sealant for Granite Surfaces
Tim Carter, of AsktheBuilder.com, recommends that all individuals take the time to properly choose their granite sealer. He compares the different types of granite sealers consumers have to choose from to used cars on a car lot and recommends that anyone preparing to seal his or her granite counter tops be prepared to pay for a high-quality sealant that will provide a good level of protection for something as expensive and beautiful as granite. Skimping on price may just mean skimping on protection.
How to Seal Granite Counter Tops
The process of sealing granite requires proper preparation. Tim Carter warns that consumers planning on sealing their counter tops should make the proper preparations prior to sealing the granite. Preparations that need to be made include:
Be prepared to seal granite before the old sealer wears off
Make sure the granite is completely free of dust
Allow the granite to dry for 24 hours or leave a fan blowing on the surface for 8 hours.
The actual sealing process that follows is simple and most homeowners should be able to tackle it on their own without the aid of a professional.
Wipe the granite sealer onto the surface with a clean, dry cloth.
Allow the sealer to soak into the surface
When the sealer is almost dry, apply a second coat of sealant.
Allow the second coat of granite sealer to dry completely
Buff the counter top with a cloth. Tim Carter recommends terrycloth but warns against consumers using electric buffers to buff a granite surface after sealing.
Homeowners who opt for granite counter tops should remember that standard granite sealer will need to be replaced every year. Although “permanent” granite sealant can be purchased, the product name can be somewhat misleading as permanent sealant will need to be replaced approximately every 10 years.