How to Care for Onyx Countertops

Written by Planet Granite, Inc. on . Posted in Counter Tops

Countertops, onyx countertops, stone countertops

Every type of natural stone countertop is unique. This helps to create a different appearance among different types of stone, and also means that you need to care for each type of stone differently. If you are considering having onyx countertops installed, you may be wondering what type of care they require. Here are the care instructions for an onyx countertop.

Sealing

Onyx countertops should be sealed when they are initially installed. Sealing helps to fill in the pores in the stone that absorb liquids. This helps to decrease the chances of your onyx countertop becoming stained. While you can seal onyx yourself, having a professional complete this process is recommended. In addition to sealing the stone when it is first installed, it should be sealed every one to three years thereafter.

Routine Cleaning

Onyx is a soft stone. As such, it will react negatively to acidic cleaners. Most traditional household cleaners, including window or glass cleaners, vinegar, bleach, and regular kitchen cleaners are too harsh for onyx. As such, you should look for a stone cleaner specifically designed for cleaning onyx. Additionally, you can wipe away dust or small spills with a water-dampened microfiber cloth as needed.

Polishing

As an onyx countertop is used, it can develop stains, imperfections or small scratches. Utilizing a cutting board, cleaning up spills immediately, and sealing an onyx countertop can decrease the odds of this happening. If damage is done that cannot be cleaned, polishing can be done by a professional. Polishing buffs out imperfections, leaving you with a smooth, fresh onyx surface.

Are you looking to install onyx countertops in Colorado Springs? Planet Granite can assist you. Whether you are looking to learn more about natural stone countertops and which type of stone may be ideal for you, or if you are ready to get an estimate for a new stone countertop, we can help. Call us now to get started.

Selecting the Best Granite Sealer for Your Countertops

Written by Planet Granite, Inc. on . Posted in Counter Tops, Granite

Selecting the Best Granite Sealer for Your Countertops

If you see dark spots on your countertops when you spill something or wash them up, then it is likely time to apply a sealer to the surface. In completing your kitchen renovation in Colorado Springs, you have many different sealer options to consider. To help you make the best choice, you can use this guide to explore the different types of sealers and when to use them.

Water Based

Water-based sealers penetrate deep into the pores in the granite to repel water and other liquids from the inside-out. This keeps liquids from penetrating the stone materials and causing deep stains to set in. You may also find these water-based formulas labeled as impregnating sealers. It is possible to find these sealers with a solvent base, but their noxious fumes make them a poor choice for use in your living area.

Color Enhancing

If you want to enhance the finish while protecting it, you can use a color-enhancing sealer to complete the job. This sealer starts with an oil-based impregnating sealer and then adds color enhancers that deepen the hues in the granite. Your countertops will have rich tones and a beautiful shine that lasts after applying this sealer to the surface.

Topical

Unlike the other two options, a topical sealer does not penetrate the surface of the granite. Instead, it creates a thick layer on top that protects the stone from stains, scratches, and etching. This type of sealer requires a bit more maintenance than the others since it picks up the damage instead. You will need to lightly buff the sealer to keep the surface looking glossy and free of imperfections.

How to Choose the Sealer for Your Granite Countertops

To determine which sealer to choose, you must reflect on your vision of your Colorado Springs home remodeling project. For assistance in making this important decision, reach out to our team at Planet Granite with a call to 719-522-0748.

 

Quartz Vs. Granite: What Are the Differences?

Written by Planet Granite, Inc. on . Posted in Counter Tops, Home, Interior Design

Bathroom Vanity Countertops

Some homeowners feel torn when it comes to deciding between granite and quartz for their Colorado Springs kitchen or bathroom countertops. While both are attractive options, let’s take a look at how the two differ from one another, to see which one makes more sense for your taste and lifestyle.

Appearance and Character

If you are the type of person who appreciates variations in color and slight imperfections, the appearance of granite may appeal to you more than quartz. Quartz countertops are very consistent in their pattern and color. This is because they are manufactured, as opposed to being naturally mined straight from the earth, such as granite is.

Quartz is available in a much wider array of colors. So if you have a specific, consistent color you would like to have, quartz may suit your taste better. Granite has natural variations in color, as opposed to having a uniform appearance. Those who enjoy the look of granite appreciate its potential flaws and see granite as having true character.

Durability

When it comes to a comparison of durability, there are a few areas to consider. The first thing to examine would be is how colorfast both of them are. When it comes to granite, its color may fade, or become blotchy over time if the granite has been dyed. On the other hand, quartz countertops will not lose their color.

Cleanliness Factor

Granite is a porous material that has many capillaries. Let’s say you spill red wine on a light granite countertop. Because it is so porous, it might absorb the color. Quartz is non-porous, so this won’t happen with it.

Because quartz is non-porous, it doesn’t collect germs and bacteria the way that granite can. This means that when it comes to the cleanliness factor, quartz wins out.

Conclusion

Granite is natural and beautiful in its own right. Quartz is more uniform, and it can be kept cleaner. Selecting granite or quartz countertops in Colorado Springs has never been easier. Check out our extensive selection of beautiful styles and colors that are available today.

Questions to Ask Before Picking a Specific Edge Cut Style for Your Granite Countertops

Written by Planet Granite, Inc. on . Posted in Counter Tops, Granite, Home, Interior Design

Granite Countertop Edge Style

You’ve settled on granite for your countertop material, and you’re down to making those final little choices about the color and style. When you work with a Colorado Springs granite countertop provider, they will ask you what kind of edge cut you prefer. There are several choices to pick from, each with its own character and flair.

What to Know Before Picking Your Granite Countertop Edge Style

Straight edge, eased edge, ogee edge, waterfall edge—there are quite a few different edge styles when it comes to countertops. Get to know the different countertop edge cuts, and then ask yourself these questions to help you decide.

What would you say is the primary style of your kitchen?

Your first thing to consider is the overall style of your kitchen. What edge style would really tie together the design or fall right in place without looking odd? For example, contemporary kitchen design with a lot of sleek surfaces and clean lines will be best served by straight edges on your granite countertops.

Do you have small children in the house?

If you have little ones around or if you have occasional youngsters who stay over for a visit, you may want countertop edges that are a bit more softened. For example, a rounded edge or an eased edge that has contoured edges and corners would be a good idea.

What kind of cabinetry do you have in your kitchen?

Do you have cabinetry that is more traditional or distinguished, such as deep-toned wooden cabinetry? If so, a demure-style beveled edge can be a fantastic choice. Is your cabinetry freeform and contemporary? You may want a more simplistic granite countertop edge.

Picking the proper edge style will help ensure that your granite countertops stand out as that gorgeous new kitchen implement but fits right in as well. Schedule an appointment with us to upgrade your kitchen counters with granite countertops.

4 Surprising Uses For Granite Countertops

Written by Planet Granite, Inc. on . Posted in Counter Tops, Granite, Interior Design

A wet bar with granite countertops

Granite is a natural hard surface that’s become popular for its use as a Colorado Springs kitchen countertop material. It’s beautiful, easy to care for, durable and comes in a huge variety of patterns and finishes. Because of all this, granite has practically become the epitome of premium kitchen countertop surfaces.

Despite this, granite is vastly underused as a surface for areas in the home outside the kitchen. When you’re ready to commence your Colorado Springs home remodeling project, consider one or more of these surprising uses for granite countertops.

1. Wet Bar

Wet bars are increasing in popularity in the home. Wet bars inherently see their share of spills and granite is uniquely suited to bear the brunt of that kind of wear and tear. Consider topping a drink cart with a custom cut slab of granite, or topping your wet bar sink countertop with granite instead of another material.

2. Wide Window Sills

Window sills are perfect for plants and cats, but they’re rarely wide enough. Consider replacing the standard window sills in your home with beautiful granite slabs. Even if you don’t have a green thumb, your cat will thank you!

3. Outdoor Kitchen

Outdoor kitchens have become a status symbol in fine homes. It’s easy to create a beautiful outdoor kitchen with a simple kitchen cabinet covered in an attractive solid slab of granite stone. If you want, your granite supplier can even cut the granite around your choice of an outdoor kitchen sink.

4. Desk

Do you have a home office? If so, you know how difficult it can be to find a desk with the right configuration and size to fit your home office space. Solve this problem by ordering a custom granite desktop. You can have it turn, curve or fit any configuration you want, with a shaped edge that suits your personal preference.

Finally, consider matching the granite in your kitchen with the other granite uses mentioned above. Granite is a functional material that fits the purpose of so many areas in the home! Please contact us to learn more.

Can You Install Granite Counters on Your Existing Cabinets?

Written by Planet Granite, Inc. on . Posted in Counter Tops, Granite, Interior Design

Granite Kitchen Countertops

Are you about ready to upgrade your old kitchen counters to attractive, modern granite countertops in Colorado Springs? It depends. You can absolutely get the counters that you want, even under the budget you want, but the extensiveness of the operation is going to depend on the existing installation. Here are a few things to consider when upgrading your counters to a heavier material.

Leveling the Counter and Appliances

The first step toward installing a granite counter is to level the existing cabinets. Before the granite is installed, the existing counter will be removed and the cabinets and appliances will be thoroughly leveled. Leveling is of critical importance to make sure that the counter stays in place and that it doesn’t crack over time.

At the same time, the cabinet boxes can be inspected to determine whether they can easily support the granite. Most cabinet boxes are designed to take on a significant amount of weight, but the weight may need to be distributed more evenly across the surface. This isn’t a major concern with laminate!

There’s also another alternative: granite veneers are occasionally installed directly over other counter materials. This is lighter and often doesn’t require a more involved installation, but there are downsides as well: It doesn’t add as much value as a whole counter, and it’s more likely to crack and need repair.

Adding a Base and Supports

Granite counters are much heavier than laminate, tile, wood or other popular counter materials. Some cabinets may already be largely prepped for this weight, especially if the cabinets were made of a strong, solid hardwood. If the cabinets aren’t reinforced, more material may need to be added to the base for support.

An additional structure will also usually be laid over the cabinets to support the piece of granite evenly, which is usually installed in a single piece. The true logistical weight of the granite will depend on its thickness. Granite can be cut with a lip or overhang to add the illusion of being thicker than it actually is.

Ultimately it’s all about the weight of the new material, and it is important to take the appropriate precautions. It’s best to invest in improving the stability of your existing cabinetry rather than experiencing expensive issues later on. Contact Planet Granite for more information about whether granite can easily fit into your home.

Will a Granite Countertop Boost Your Home’s Market Value?

Written by Planet Granite, Inc. on . Posted in Counter Tops

Kitchen Granite With Chairs

Are you considering new granite countertops for your Colorado Springs home? If so, you might wonder about the potential return on the work you’ll invest in your kitchen.

Whether—or how much—your new kitchen countertops boost the market value of your home, we know this: Countertops matter to buyers.

Kitchen countertops aren’t simply functional, as in decades past. Today, a granite, dolomite, or quartz countertop is expected in a desirable home or condo.

That said, let’s talk briefly about statistics.

A Full Kitchen Makeover is Costly

These days, the cost of a substantial, midrange kitchen renovation averages about $64,000.

The National Association of Realtors reports that more than half of real estate agents are urging home sellers to fully upgrade their kitchens.

Yet on average, less than 60% of the price of the complete overhaul comes back to the owner in a home sale.

A Countertop Upgrade Could be Your Perfect Alternative

You might not need to go on a renovation spree to sell your home. A seller’s confidence and ultimate success should be guided by the general state of most other homes in the same neighborhood.

If other homes for sale around yours have granite, marble or onyx, then you have a sensible reason to install a similar style of countertop in your own kitchen. Home buyers will see it the second they open the online gallery of photos your realtor displays.

Adding granite countertops, islands and service stations can bring extra shelf and storage space as well. These extras can certainly increase the appeal of your kitchen to buyers.

We Look Forward to Adding Value and Joy to Your Home

Custom stone countertops in Colorado Springs can be wise investments. But most of all, they bring joy and beauty to your kitchen.

Let Planet Granite work with your budget and your vision. Explore our kitchen visualizer for inspiration, and feel free to request a quote.

What Are the Differences Between Granite and Marble Countertops?

Written by Planet Granite, Inc. on . Posted in Counter Tops

Planet Granite Kitchen

They’re both made of natural stone and serve similar purposes, but marble and granite are different in terms of durability and how much maintenance they require. When deciding which material to use in your kitchen or bath, here are some points to consider.

Heat Resistance

You can place hot baking dishes on a granite counter without damaging it. Marble is somewhat heat-resistant too, but placing a hot pan directly on the surface may leave an etching or discoloration that can’t be restored.

Staining, Scratching and Chipping

Granite is such a hard stone that it doesn’t absorb spills. Marble, however, is porous and prone to staining. Oily substances and liquids, such as vinegar, alcohol and citrus juices, can be especially damaging.

You can cut directly on granite countertops without scratching them (but you will dull your knife blade quickly). Because marble is considerably softer, it should not be used as a cutting board.

Granite is generally not prone to cracking or chipping during the course of normal everyday use. Because it is less durable, marble is more susceptible to chipping when subjected to regular use.

Styles and Upkeep

Both granite and marble give your home a look of sophistication and luxury. Because granite is so durable, it requires little maintenance. You may want to apply a sealant for maximum protection, but your counters can still hold up well without it. Manufacturers of marble countertops, however, strongly recommend that you seal the surface because it is so vulnerable to staining. A high-quality sealant should last 10‒15 years.

Both surfaces are relatively easy to clean. Just use a damp cloth, adding a bit of soapy water if needed to get rid of food residue. Avoid ammonia, bleach or other harsh cleaners. Dry off marble counters thoroughly after cleaning.

Thinking about upgrading your Colorado Springs kitchen or bath with granite countertops? Contact us to schedule a free in-home consultation.

Should You Upgrade Your Kitchen Before You Put Your House on the Market?

Written by Planet Granite, Inc. on . Posted in Counter Tops

kitchen counters

One of the most difficult things you’ll have to decide when you are selling your home is what work, if any, you will have done to your home. The kitchen is one room of the home that you may think deserves the update or full upgrade treatment. It makes sense—this is one of the most “in-your-face” parts of the home. But does it make sense to upgrade? Would an investment in granite countertops in your Colorado Springs home pay off? We will discuss the pros and cons of making these upgrades.

Why You Should Consider Pre-Sale Upgrading Kitchen Countertops in Colorado Springs

Upgrading your kitchen countertops and kitchen, in general, will add value to your home. Chances are, you’ll be able to ask a higher price, and get a higher price. In addition, having an upgraded kitchen is one of the top things many home shoppers look for, so you will stand out from the crowd, perhaps even bringing in more lookers. You may even get buyers to overlook some of the undesirable features of your home if the kitchen is especially appealing.

One thing to remember is that many home buyers will have specific ideas about what they are looking for in a kitchen, so going for a straightforward upgrade instead of something dramatic or way different may be a better option. Think about appealing to a broad spectrum of buyers rather than a niche market for the best results when the time comes to sell.

Whether or not you decide that a full-scale kitchen renovation before you move is a good idea, you may want to contact our Colorado Springs home remodeling company and talk about making a few repairs or upgrades. Doing this could make a big difference in the ease of the sale and your final sale price.

 

Using Design to Minimize the Look of Seams in Your Granite Countertop

Written by Planet Granite, Inc. on . Posted in Counter Tops

Planet Granite Kitchen

One of the most challenging things about natural stone countertops is making sure that the seams are well-hidden. Obvious seams not only mar the flawless look of granite and other stone counter materials, but these seams can collect food particles and even promote chipping and wear on the counter. It would be wonderful if you could order your counter in one seamless piece. However, this is rarely possible, except for the smallest counters. The granite or other stone vein may not be that big, and even if it were, it would be so heavy that your installers would not be able to get it in place safely. Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to hide those seams with design so that they are less apparent and/or virtually invisible.

Ways to Use Design to Minimize the Look of Your Colorado Springs Kitchen Countertop Seams

1. Opt for a darker color stone. The darker the color of the stone, the less apparent your seams are going to be. With black, the seams are almost invisible. In addition, the less pattern in the stone, the more difficult it will be to see where the seams lie.

2. Work with smaller counter sizes. Stone cutting saws can only handle sizes of up to around nine feet in length. Avoid seams altogether by positioning your sink and appliances so that you have no section longer than this.

3. Ask about book matching. This technique makes sure that all pieces of your counter are cut from the same stone vein, so there is minimal difference in the shade of the stone, making the seams much less visible.

Don’t let those pesky seams mar the appearance of your kitchen countertops. To learn more about hiding the seams on your Colorado Springs granite countertops, contact us today to schedule an appointment.

Planet Granite

3020 N Stone Ave. Colorado Springs, CO 80907
Phone: 719 522-0748 | Fax: 719 522-0754

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