Granite countertops look luxurious when new and shiny! If the countertop looks dull and not very impressive, just polish it. Be sure to wash your countertop before polishing to remove dirt and stains. Then polish the surface with a baking soda paste or a commercially available granite cleaner to get a nice, sleek look. Take good care of your granite countertops by wiping off any dirt immediately and using heat-resistant rugs.
Method 1 of 2: Cleaning and Polishing Granite Countertops
Step 1. Mix warm water and a mild detergent to prepare a granite cleaner
Before you start polishing your granite countertop, it should be cleaned of dirt and stains. Fill a bucket or sink with warm water. Add a few drops of a mild detergent, such as dish detergent, and stir the water to form a foam.
- Warm water with dish detergent is very effective, although a special granite cleaner can be purchased for daily cleaning if desired. Another option is to mix 50:50 isopropyl alcohol with warm water.
- Never try to clean a granite surface with harsh products. Although granite is a durable material, it needs careful handling to look good. Avoid products containing lemon juice, vinegar, lime, ammonia or bleach, or glass cleaning solutions, as these can break the protective layer and damage the granite over time.
Step 2. Wash the countertop with water and detergent
Dip a microfiber cloth in warm water and squeeze out excess moisture. Wipe off any crumbs, splashes and stains from the countertop. It is necessary to completely clean the countertop before polishing.
Microfiber cloths are great for cleaning granite
Step 3. Dry the countertop with a microfiber cloth
Take a dry microfiber cloth and remove any soapy water from the surface. Wipe the entire countertop in a circular motion. You may need another dry cloth if the first gets very wet.
- It is necessary to completely dry the surface so that there are no streaks on it.
- You can use a terry towel instead of a microfiber cloth.
Step 4. Make your own simple baking soda polish
You will need a small bowl, baking soda, warm water, and a fork. Dilute 3 parts baking soda with 1 part water to form a smooth, thick paste. Try to keep lumps out of the paste.
Among other things, baking soda is good for removing stubborn stains from granite
Step 5. Purchase a granite polish for the best shine
You can find this remedy at a hardware or kitchen supply store. Be sure to read the label and make sure the product is suitable for granite countertops before purchasing.
Do not use general purpose polishes as they can damage the granite
Step 6. Apply the polish to the countertop
Cover the surface with a thin, even coat of baking soda paste or a commercially available granite polish. If using a baking soda paste, scoop it up in small portions and spread it over the counter with a spoon. If you have a commercial polish, simply spray it lightly on the countertop and let it sit for the specified time, which is usually 2-3 minutes.
If you use a commercial product, carefully read the instructions on the packaging and strictly follow them
Step 7. Rub the product over the surface in small circular motions
Take a clean, soft cloth and start polishing the granite. Start at the corner of the countertop and work your way up. Rub in the polish in small circular motions, and don't forget about the edges of the countertop.
When polishing granite, a very soft cloth should be used, as the harder material can scratch the surface
Step 8. Wipe off the polish with a damp cloth so that there are no streaks on the surface
Stains can easily spoil the look of perfectly polished granite! Take a soft rag, lightly dampen it with lukewarm water, and wipe down the counter to remove any excess paste from the baking soda or commercially available granite polish.
If after doing this you notice that water remains on the countertop, take another dry rag and wipe it off
Step 9. If there are deep scratches on the countertop, contact a specialist
Typically, granite countertops can be perfectly polished on your own using simple home remedies. However, the surface can be so badly scratched or damaged that home remedies won't help. In this case, contact a granite restoration specialist - they will be able to professionally polish the countertop, and it will look like new!
Specialists use special tools and methods for wet or dry polishing of granite. These methods are recommended to be used only by professionals, as they can cause irreversible damage if used incorrectly
Method 2 of 2: Protecting Granite Surfaces
Step 1. Wipe up spilled liquids immediately to avoid stains
If spilled liquid remains on the granite surface for too long, dark, shadow-like spots may form in its place. Light drinks can stain light granite countertops. Train yourself to wipe off fresh stains immediately with a soft cloth.
Step 2. Rub the granite with vegetable oil to give it a shine and protect it from dirt
Dampen a clean cloth with vegetable oil and wipe the countertop in a circular motion. While doing this, lightly press down on the rag to polish the surface. This will give the countertop a beautiful shine and temporarily reduce the risk of staining, as spilled liquid will be harder to absorb into the granite.
- Do this regularly every day or once a week, depending on your preference.
- Any vegetable oil you use in cooking will work. For example, you can wipe the countertop with sunflower oil, olive oil, or avocado oil.
Step 3. Use a cutting board to avoid scratching the granite
Although granite is very durable, it can be damaged if you regularly cut food right on the countertop. Be sure to use a cutting board when preparing food and try not to place sharp objects directly on the granite.
This will also help prevent damage to the knives and keep them sharp longer
Step 4. Use heat-resistant rugs when placing or placing anything hot on the table
Hot pots, pans, hair straighteners and curling irons can cause small scratches and micro cracks on the granite. Keep a heat-resistant silicone or other mat handy and place it under hot items.
- As a result of sharp temperature changes, small scratches and microcracks can form on granite.
- Hot objects can also cause the protective layer to break down more quickly.
Step 5. Do not put cosmetics on the countertop to avoid chemical damage
Makeup and nail polish contain chemicals that, with prolonged exposure, can stain and destroy the surface protective layer. Place these products on a tray or rug, or keep them in a closet.
Step 6. Check for individual drops of water on the countertop to see if the protective coating is intact
Granite countertops are covered with a sealant that protects the stone from wear and tear from everyday use. Splashing a few drops of water on the countertop and looking at their shape will allow you to determine if the protective coating is working properly. If water soaks into the stone, apply a granite sealant or ask a professional to re-coat the countertop with a protective layer.
- Check the integrity of the sealant before cleaning or polishing the granite. Otherwise, you may damage the protective layer.
- Typically, granite countertops need to be re-sealed every 5-10 years.
- Granite countertops that need to be re-sealed can also be cleaned and polished, but it is best to act quickly to avoid damaging the surface.