Saving Your Kitchen Counter

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You've just had a state of the art kitchen built: new cabinets, gleaming stainless steel appliances, a new sink and faucet, and a magnificent stone countertop. So how do you make sure your investment looks as good as new for years to come?

For stainless steel appliances and products you are assured of durability; however, they do need simple daily maintenance and shine to make sure finger marks and grease don't hide their gleam.

Countertops are more complex. Food, cooking oils, red wine, and sauces can stain surfaces, seeping deep into the stone and forever changing its appearance. Then of course there are the abrasions from knives, chopping, and cutting.

To protect your countertop, the first thing you can do is ensure that any abrasive work be done on chopping boards. FinestFixtures has an excellent selection of fitted wood and stainless steel chopping boards, and strainers- just the tool you need to make sure food and knives stay clear of the counter.

To protect from staining due to knocks and spills, make sure to apply a protective sealant. Your kitchen and bath company should suggest the best ones for your particular countertop. What is important to know is that sealants act to block the porosity of stone by filling in the natural pores in the rock surface, and in doing so, protecting the surface for years to come. Once your kitchen countertop is sealed you can step away from harsh cleaners and replace them with mild environmentally friendly products and natural cleaners.

Beware though, sealants will not protect your countertop from acid spills. Orange juice, coffee, wine, tomato juice, tooth paste, mouth wash, and pop are highly acidic and will easily etch into marble kitchen or bathroom countertops, leaving stains and marks. To avoid these problems make sure to use chopping boards, coasters, and mats, as well as to clean up as soon as you are done.

Should you notice etching or staining, you can apply acid and oil stain removers. These products should be available from your kitchen and bathroom store, or can be purchased online from your countertop manufacturer.