HOW TO CARE FOR YOUR KITCHEN WORKTOPS.

The kitchen is the heart and soul of most households. It is the place where families gather, memories are made, holiday dinner is burnt, and morning cups of coffee are consumed by the thousands. For that reason, most homeowners would say that the decor, and ambience of a kitchen matters more than almost any other room in the house. No one wants to cook or socialize in a kitchen that feels unwelcoming, outdated, or worn out. 

For these reasons, properly maintaining your kitchen worktops can be crucial to keeping your kitchen feeling cosy and inviting for years to come. The kitchen worktops are an integral part of the kitchen, and are also often a massive investment for homeowners; especially homeowners who have recently had their kitchen space renovated. 

It’s often not enough to simply clean the worktops down, and call it a day; sometimes you need to have a bit of a deeper understanding on how to maintain the material, to keep it well cared for. Depending on what material your worktops are made of, maintenance on them will look a bit different. Here is how you can keep ahead of the curve, and care for your worktops no matter what material they are.

Granite Worktops

Granite is one of the most popular materials used for worktops due to how gorgeous it is as a material naturally. For decades, granite has been the king of the kitchen when it comes to preferred worktop material in homeowners. However, that does not mean that granite does not come without some careful care instructions that owners should observe.  

Granite is a porous material, just like wood. This means that to keep stains or bacteria from building up on the surface, the worktop has to be sealed fairly regularly. On average, a granite worktop should be sealed with a wax–or other types of sealant–every five years. This can lead to extra costs that many homeowners don’t consider when they have their granite worktops installed. It also means that any spills, or mess should be cleaned as fast as possible to avoid it soaking into the surface.  

Also, granite is very easy to chip or crack if not treated carefully. It is a very brittle stone, as far as stone goes, and should be handled gently when possible. Try to avoid dropping or slamming any objects onto the surface, especially on the edges or overhang; this is where it is easiest for chipping or cracking to occur. Although it is very resistant to scratches, and heat.

Quartz Worktops

Works worktops are known as a ‘made stone’ worktop material. This means that, while it is primarily made of quartz mineral, it is still bound together with a resin that helps seal and keep everything together. The lucky part about this is that it means that the surface of a quartz worktop is non-porous; you won’t have to worry about any stains, bacteria, oils, or mold seeping into the worktop.  

In addition to being highly resistant to stains, and other unsavoury issues absorbing into them; quartz worktops are amazingly strong. Quartz being one of the hardest minerals on earth, it makes quartz worktops highly resistant to scratches, scrapes, and heat damage. It should be 

noted that quartz is not indestructible though, and shouldn’t be abused beyond normal kitchen use.  

Quartz is considered by many to be one of the most low-maintenance worktop materials due to all of these factors, if not the most low-maintenance. In most cases, all you will need to keep your quartz worktop looking nice is some mild cleaner, water, and a washing rag. There isn’t much beyond that that you need to do to keep your quartz worktops looking nice.

Marble Worktops

Marble worktops are considered by many to be the most beautiful and are highly sought after by those in the culinary industry because they remain cool and can be ideal for pastry making. While marble is a very hard and durable stone material, it is not without its weaknesses. Marble is a porous stone, like most stone, and thus needs to be sealed to prevent any stain build up or bacteria and mold from seeping in. However, unlike granite, marble needs to be sealed far more regularly–ideally every 3-6 months.  

Another side effect of how porous marble is is the fact that acidic foods or cleaners will etch the surface rapidly. This means that if you are cooking highly acidic foods, such as marinara sauce, it can easily stain or damage the surface if you aren’t cleaning it quickly. Marble may be pretty, but it requires a lot of careful attention to keeping it that way.  

Aside from frequent sealing, marble should be wiped with non-abrasive sponges or rags to prevent any scratching from occurring. Marble can scratch rather easily if roughed up too often. In general, marble worktops might be the most high-maintenance of all the popular stone worktop materials. However, many still consider it worth it because of how beautiful they are.

Final Thoughts.

Maintenance and care should never be forgotten when you are choosing your worktop material. It is one of the most important factors to how long your worktops will remain beautiful, and fresh over time. Improperly cared for worktops can rapidly deteriorate, and become unpleasant to look at and use. It is important to know the proper care techniques of whatever material you choose for your worktops, to protect them and your investment for years to come. It is a good idea to always ask your contractor or expert craftsman about any maintenance or care needs you should know before choosing a worktop material. It will help out in the long run.

Quartz vs Granite Worktops

When you are trying to create a new look or setting for your kitchen, selecting the perfect worktop can be difficult and time-consuming. The large selection of worktop materials can make it challenging to pick the right one for your lifestyle and space. Your ideal kitchen worktop should have a unique style, durability and require low maintenance. Considering these three key elements, let’s narrow your search down to two of the main worktop materials, quartz and granite, both of which provide a wonderful solution that meets these ideal qualifications.

When deciding on what material to use for your kitchen worktop, you cannot go wrong with picking quartz or granite. Not only will these materials bring liveliness to your home but each provide their own benefits. Quartz worktops will provide you with maintenance advantages that nature itself is not able to, while granite requires higher maintenance. Neither quartz nor granite will disappoint in terms of overall look and style.

Quartz Worktops

Quartz worktops are fabricated from natural quartz, one of the hardest minerals found in the Earth, and small amounts of glass or metallic flecks are added to create variety, resulting in beautiful worktops. Other advantage of quartz is that it is a non-porous material, its texture does not allow bacteria to grow and resists against stains, protecting your family and making kitchen clean-up easy. For this reason, quartz worktops never need to be sealed.

Aside from the durability that quartz provides, this material is beautiful and its wide variety of color options are sure to catch your eye. Your options are nearly endless as quartz ranges from natural colors such as whites, blacks and browns to other colors such as golds or blues. The design of a quartz worktop not only brings character to your kitchen but offers performance advantages that exceed other traditional materials.

Granite Worktops

Another one of the most commonly used materials for worktops is granite. Like quartz, this material is also very resilient. Granite is a natural rock that is cut in its natural state and is then polished for use in homes. Maintenance after each use is suggested to prevent staining with granite. To clean granite, use warm water and soap to help keep its shine.

Such a strong material is difficult to scratch and is able to resist temperature changes. Because it is natural stone, granite doesn’t provide as wide of a range of color options and each piece is different, therefore, often times kitchens need to be planned around the slab that is chosen. That being said, planning a kitchen around a granite worktop is not always a simple task.