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FAQ

Natural Stone

Why should I use natural stone in my home?

Natural stone is more distinctive, beautiful, practical and durable than many artificial products. Rather than investing money in an inferior look-alike, choosing the real deal looks better, lasts longer and enhances your home’s resale value.

What are the different kinds of natural stone?

Natural stones include Granite, Quartzite, Soapstone, Marble, Limestone, Travertine, Slate, Sandstone and Onyx.

How often should I seal natural stone?

It varies. Sealing can be advised every six months for high traffic areas on marble floors – or every couple of years for granite countertops. Some sealers promise protection from a single application every ten years. Follow the sealer instructions and feel free to consult with Coldspring on your care plan.

Marble

Does Marble need to be sealed?

Marble is a porous material, so yes it should be sealed. How often depends on the stone and sealing process.

What is etching?

Etching is a corrosive chemical reaction that occurs when an acids interact with the stone. Specifically, marble’s calcium carbonate reacts, and is eaten away. This is not just a discoloration, but actual physical damage to the stone. Etching appears as dull spots on marble surfaces. Theses dull spots sometimes look like small stains, or water rings, but they go much deeper and are more difficult to repair. Unsealed areas could etch if lemon juice or other acidic foods penetrate the stone and remain long enough for this chemical reaction to occur. This is why etching is frequently a round shape, because it’s often the result of a splash or the bottom of a container.

Can you put hot pots and pans on Marble countertops?

Marble has a high heat tolerance, but you should not put extremely hot items directly on the stone. A pot or pan right off the cooktop for example, could cause a thermal shock that will crack the marble. Extreme heat can also cause a noticeable color change or minor burn mark on the stone.

How do you clean Marble?

Use a non-abrasive dish soap and warm water. You’ll want a pH neutral soap, as acidic cleaners can harm marble. Apply a thorough covering of the soapy water and scrub gently. Don’t use rough scrubbing cloths, just a soft towel. Then use a fresh damp cloth to wipe away the soap. Repeat this step until all of the soap residue is gone.

Can you cut directly on Marble countertops?

Marble can be scratched. Even sealed marble should not be cut on as any damage to the sealer can allow liquids and food to reach the stone’s surface and pores. This can cause discoloration, etching and damage to the stone. Always use a cutting board with marble countertops.

What is the best use for marble?

Marble is ideal for foyers, bathrooms, floors, hearths, wall coverings, table tops, bathroom walls, vanity tops, tub decks, showers and windowsills. Marble should be cared for as you would a fine wood finish. However, do not use oils to clean Marble. Cleaning up spills as soon as possible will preserve marble’s natural beauty.

Why is marble preferred for bathrooms and fireplaces?

Because bathroom countertops are more likely to be exposed to alkaline products (versus acidic kitchen conditions), marble is perfect for the bathroom.

How do I remove ring marks from marble?

If your marble or stone countertops have a stain, consult a restoration professional. Poultice kits for stain removal are available at most hardware stores.

Granite

Why should I use natural stone in my home?

Natural stone is more distinctive, beautiful, practical and durable than many artificial products. Rather than investing money in an inferior look-alike, choosing the real deal looks better, lasts longer and enhances your home’s resale value.

What is the best use for granite?

Granite is an excellent choice for kitchen countertops, floors, tabletops, and other heavily-used surfaces. While some synthetic surfaces scratch easily and melt under hot cookware, granite resists heat. Granite is also one of the most bacteria-resistant kitchen surfaces, and it is not affected by citric acid, coffee, tea, alcohol or wine.

What daily care does granite require?

Granite countertops are virtually maintenance-free and can be cleaned with ease. If a spill occurs, blot the area with a paper towel. On the rare occasion that a stain is left, flush the area with plain water and mild soap several times and dry thoroughly with a soft cloth. To keep the countertops looking new for years to come, wipe them down with mild soap and water mix or an ammonia-free window cleaner.

Does granite need to be sealed?

Granite must be properly sealed to protect against staining. Without proper and regular sealing, granite and other porous stones can absorb spilled substances and leave unsightly stains and marks.

Why is granite preferred for kitchen countertops?

Knives, dishes, pots and other implements may cause scratching of lesser materials. Granite is the hardest and densest of all natural stones, to withstand use. The feldspar content keeps it water resistant, and the silicates it contains won’t react with acid. These properties help granite resist staining and retain its fine luster over a longer period of time than ceramic tiles or other stones.

Does granite chip or scratch?

Second only to diamonds, granite is one of the Earth’s hardest stones. With that, few materials have the ability to scratch or chip your granite. Unless you are heavily abusing your countertop with a hammer or excessive force, granite is unlikely to chip. In the event that it does, you should save the chips and bring them to your fabricator. They will be able to use the chips to repair your countertop.

Is granite food-safe?

According to a study performed by the Hospitality Institute of Technology and Management, granite is rated second only to stainless steel for safety against bacterial contamination. Further, the study proves that granite is found to prevent food-borne illness pathogens from remaining on your countertop after cleaning better than composition stone.

What are different types of stone finishes?

Here’s a list of stone finishes to consider:

  • Honed – Grinding and sanding produces a smooth, matte finish. This is best for low maintenance, high traffic applications.
  • Pacific- Using a combination of brushes and ceramic to achieve a matte orange peel feel with a glossy touch.
  • Antique- Matte suede feel, but not as deep as a leather finish.
  • Flamed – Achieved by heating the stone to a high temperature that burns away most of the carbon content for a subtle coloration.
  • Polished – Grinding, sanding, and buffing produces a high gloss, mirror-like surface.
  • Sandblasted – A rough finish achieved by blasting the stone with high-pressure sand.
  • Leather – Used on any stone with a deeper for a suede look and feel.
  • Tumbled – By tumbling stones in a mix of sand, water and mild acid, it creates a classic, weathered look.
  • Split Face – A raw, natural quarry texture with a flat back and uneven front surface.
  • Veneer Stone – Stone used as a non-load-bearing decorative facing material such as wall cladding.

Soapstone

Does Soapstone need to be sealed?

No, since soapstone is a very dense non-porous natural stone, it does not need to be sealed.

Why is it recommended to oil Soapstone?

We recommend oiling soapstone to help the stone darken evenly, and enhance the natural aging process the Soapstone goes through. The oil is not a protectant nor does the stone need to be protected.

What if you don’t oil Soapstone?

The stone will naturally darken unevenly, with time. Leaving Soapstone untreated, it will develop a rustic look which many clients prefer. The stone can always be oiled later on if the untreated results are not desirable.

How can you prevent the stone from darkening?

Darkening is a natural characteristic of Soapstone and cannot be prevented, what you can do is periodically clean the surface of the stone to lighten it back up.

Does Soapstone get scratched?

Yes they will, however most scratches can be hidden by applying mineral oil. Deep scratches, that are less likely to occur, can be sanded off with little effort and time.

Quartzite

What is Quartzite?

Quartziteis a beautiful natural stone that resembles marble, but offers minimal maintenance and has durability similar to Granite.

Does it need to be sealed?

Yes, while the hardness of the stone protects it from etching or scratching, it is still susceptible to staining. However, with a yearly sealing, your countertop should stay looking great.

How do you care for Quartzite?

To keep it clean, use a damp cloth with a mild soap or cleaner made for natural stone. Even though Quartzite does not scratch easily, to keep it looking brand new, it’s still a good idea to avoid any abrasive tools or cleaning products.

Is Quartzite heat resistant?

Most stone countertops can handle some heat, natural Quartzite is harder than Granite and withstands heat. While you can place hot items on it with no danger, it’s always a good idea to use a pad or trivet for safety.

Is Quartzite more durable than granite?

Granite is an igneous rock and Quartzite is metamorphic which means that each has unique features. Granite has been a favorite countertop material for many years and Quartzite is just starting to gain in popularity. Both offer excellent durability. While Granite is durable, Quartzite looks like marble and acts like Granite, so you get the best of both worlds!

Quartz

Is Quartz natural stone?

Quartz countertops are engineered. They are up to 90% natural ground quartz combined with polymers, resins and pigments. The resin binds the elements, creating a very strong, non-porous, and scratch resistant material.

Can you cut directly on Quartz countertops?

While quartz is highly scratch resistant, and will often withstand a cut from a knife, you should always use a cutting board.

Do you need to seal Quartz countertops?

Quartz is non-porous and doesn’t require sealing.

Should you put Quartz outside?

Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight and UV rays can case quartz to fade. This is particularly true for darker colored stones. Fading is not an issue for typical indoor use.

Where should you use Quartz?

Quartz is ideal for kitchen countertops, bathroom counters and vanity tops, fireplace surrounds, backsplashes, bar tops, desks and more. Quartz should not be used outdoors as extreme and long-term direct exposure to ultraviolet light can cause it to discolor with time.

Can you put a hot pan on Quartz?

Quartz is heat resistant, but not completely heat proof. Prolonged exposure to high heat can damage or discolor the resin. Typically a coffee mug or warm plate is fine, but a hot pot or pan directly from the cooktop or oven is not. It is best to user a trivet or hot pad for any hot items you place on the countertop.

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