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​​Granite

The advantages of installing granite countertops go beyond how good they look. Granite is durable and comes in a multitude of natural color combinations. Since no two slabs of granite are exactly the same, you can rest assured that your kitchen or bathroom will never look exactly like someone else's.
Other advantages of granite incude:
Granite does not depreciate, it will add lasting value to your home.
Daily maintenance of granite countertops is as easy as cleaning with soap and water and a nonabrasive cloth.
Unlike tile countertops where bacteria can build up in grouting, granite does not act as a breeding ground for bacterial contamination.
Since granite is naturally formed through the constant pressure of rock formation and heat, it is resistant to the heat of hot pots and pans.

Facts about Granite
 What you need to know about Granite
Granite is an igneous rock formed by volcanic action and consists mainly of quartz, silica, mica, obsidian and feldspar with a blend of other natural minerals. The composition varies from quarry to quarry. Granite is the only natural stone suitable for kitchen counter tops. This relates to its hardness, resistance to scratches and its minimal absorption. It can also be used for fireplace surrounds and vanity tops. Below are some general physical characteristics, which also vary by stone type.

Hardness
Based on the MOH (Measure of Hardness) scale of one to ten with diamonds being ten, most granites fall in the range of seven or eight. It is extremely scratch resistant.

Natural Fissures
Granite contains natural fissures, which appear as cracks. These visible hairline cracks are formed during the solidification process. Earthquakes or land movement can also cause fissures. Fissures are random and will vary from one type of granite to the next. These fissures contribute to the brittleness of granite.

Surface Pits
Granite is polished to remove all scratches from the surface. Due to the methods currently used for finishing – abrasives and pressure in a circular motion – some small crystals will be removed leaving small voids in the surface finish. The size and frequency of this varies from stone to stone.

Color Variation
Samples represent the general color and pattern of a color of granite only. Exact duplication cannot and will not be guaranteed. Granite, being a natural product, will have variation in color and shading. This is a unique characteristic of a natural stone and is to be expected.

Seams
Unlike Corian, granite will have seams. Seams may also be made in top-mounted sink and cook top cut outs. These seams will be established based on slab size, esthetic considerations, practicality of handling and installation. Slab sizes are random making it impossible to locate seams for any given plan. The horizontal stone-to-stone seams are filled with an epoxy, which will be color coordinated.  

Edges
2cm granite tops have edges which are laminated to be ½’’ thick. This lamination will be visible in the middle of the edge and show as a lighter and darker line compared with the counter color. Many times this seam may also be felt.
3cm granite does not have a laminated edge so the edge is approximately 1 ¼’’ thick and without a seam line. 3cm granite can vary in thickness from slab to slab and sometimes within a slab. When this occurs between slabs, the edges will be feathered to match at the seam.

Undermount Sinks
A minimum of 3’’ is required in front and behind the cut out. The standard edge at this cut out location is a simple square polish edge that is flush with the wall of the bowl, +/- 1/8’’. In this process the sink gets installed but no plumbing or cabinet work gets done by the installers.

Blemishes and Repairs
The Marble Institute of America deems it appropriate to repair any surface blemishes during the fabrication and installation process. It is also standard practice to imbed rods on the back side of the granite to strengthen any weak areas such as fissures or cut out areas. The marble institute of America approves these procedures as well. If a crack or fissure occurs or opens after installation, it is, sometimes, possible to repair it. 

Sub Decking
Granite has very little flexural or bending ability. 2cm granite will be solid decked on all counter tops and overhangs. 3cm granite will have no sub decking and will rest directly on the cabinets or support walls. All overhang or cantilever areas should be properly braced from below. The bracing should allow loading of 250 pounds per square foot by any flexing on the counter top.  Any overhangs over 12’’ will need legs or columns, extending to the floor, to support the granite, these are the responsibility of the builder or homeowner.


Granite, countertops