Do's and Dont"s

DO's & DONT's

The easiest way to keep your stone looking great is to avoid bad habits that may damage it.

Do: Blot up spills immediately.
Acidic substances like wine, coffee, fruit juices, tomato sauce and sodas will not etch granite like they do marble, but they could potentially stain the surface. Cooking oils may also leave a stain if not wiped up.
 
Do: Clean surfaces using a sponge or soft cloth.
Using a specially formulated stone cleaner like Stone PLUS is recommended to keep your tops in the best condition and protect the sealer, but hot water will do for quick clean-ups. Dish soap won't permanently damage your granite, but repeated use of soap will cause build-up (yes, even if you rinse) and dull your countertop's shine. So, using dish soap for regular granite counter top care is not recommended.
 
Do: Use coasters under all glasses, bottles and cans.
Again, granite won't etch and using coasters on dense and/or properly sealed granite is not an absolute necessity like with marble, but using coasters is just a good practice to protect all surfaces.
 
Do: Use trivets and hot pads under pots & pans.
Yes, you can take a hot pot off the stove and put it right on granite countertops without any problems. It is possible for granite (or any stone or quartz) to suffer "thermal shock" and crack, but rare.
 
Do: Use cutting boards.
Again, avoid the possibility of scratching the surface and protect your knives. Cutting on stone will dull and damage your knives' edges quickly.
 
Do: Dust mop your natural stone floors regularly.
Use a clean, dry, non-treated dust-mop. Some people choose to use a vacuum cleaner. But be real careful. Worn parts or grit jammed by the wheels may scratch the surface.
 
Don't: use generic cleaning products such as bleach, glass cleaners, de-greasers or other common household cleaners.
These products that you buy at your local store contain acids, alkalis and other chemicals that will degrade the granite sealer (and will etch marble) leaving the stone more vulnerable to staining.
Trying to save money by using these chemicals only ensures that you'll spend a lot more time and money on you granite counter top care in the long-run.
 
Don't: use vinegar, ammonia, lemon or orange as cleaners.
Again, most common and name-brand household products are not good for cleaning granite countertops (and definitely cannot be used for marble, travertine or most other stones)
 
Don't: use bathroom, tub & tile or grout cleaners.
The powders and even the "soft" creams contain abrasives that will scratch and dull surfaces.
 
Don't: sit or stand on your countertops.
Unlike laminate countertops, granite, marble and quartz countertops are very hard, but not flexible and they DO NOT have a plywood backing so too much weight in one spot could cause a crack.
 
Don't: store toiletry products directly on your countertop surface.
Hair products, perfumes, colognes, nail products, creams, lotions and potions have a tendency to spill or leak and go overlooked.
 

Myths and Truths

GRANITE IS EXPENSIVE   

Most homeowners think of granite as a beautiful countertop option, but also a very costly one. In fact, the price of granite has dropped significantly in recent years. Today it’s often priced lower than some synthetics, such as SileStone and other brands of engineered stone. According to research conducted by The Freedonia Group, the average cost of granite per square foot has decreased since 1992 from $95 per square foot to under $60 per foot in 2002. Considering its durability and natural beauty, granite is perhaps today’s best value among countertop choices.
 
GRANITE WILL STAIN 
  
This is perhaps one of the more enduring myths surrounding granite. Granite is exceptionally stain resistant, more so than many synthetic materials, including laminates and solid surface plastics such as Corian. For years architects have used granite as an external cladding surface in commercial buildings because of its ability to withstand nature’s elements and retain its original beauty.
 
GRANITE MUST BE RE-SEALED REGLARLY    
  
Another common misconception about granite countertops is that they must be re-sealed on a regular basis (some even suggest annual applications) to prevent them from staining. While it is possible to stain granite, it is extremely difficult to do so. The likelihood of staining granite through normal kitchen use is so low that it hardly deserves a second thought. For those who think otherwise, Solid Design Fabricators recommends asking granite homeowners about their experience.
 
GRANITE WILL LOOSE ITS SHINE  
 
This is a true statement for marble, but not for granite. Granite is an extremely dense substance. Diamond is one of the few materials harder than granite, which is why diamond pads are used to polish it. Normal household activities simply do not introduce sufficient abrasion to the surface of granite to dull it. Rest assured that your granite countertop will maintain it’s brand new shine for decades to come.
 
GRANITE IS DIFFICULT TO MAINTAIN  
 
Maintenance for granite is virtually non-existent. Routine cleaning with mild soap and water, as you would do with any countertop surface, is all that’s needed.
 
 
HEAT WILL CRACK GRANITE   
 
Granite is able to withstand exceptionally high levels of heat, allowing you to move dishes straight from your oven to the countertop without a problem. The heat from pots and pans won’t cause any damage to a granite countertop. Meals cooked at over 400°f will scorch synthetic solid surfaces (like Corian), which offer heat resistance only up to that temperature. Granite, on the other hand, has no constituent materials capable of burning at under several thousand degrees. In fact, it will not scorch even when exposed to direct flame.
 
GRANITE CONTAINS HARMFUL RADON GASES   
 
Granite is rock. No one has ever come forward with scientific evidence to suggest granite or any other rocks are harmful to your health. This rather preposterous myth emerged just about the time Dupont introduced Corian about 33 years ago. In actuality, radon gas emissions are more harmful from surfaces such as concrete, cement and gypsum which surround us on a daily basis. The Marble Institute of America reports that "radon is a naturally occurring gas generated by the decay of trace amounts of uranium found in the earth’s crust throughout the world. It is an unstable gas that quickly breaks down and dissipates in the air.” No one today takes credit for starting the rumor, and certainly no one supports it. (By the way, granite contains crystals that some people believe have healing properties.) Most experts would agree, however, that granite isn’t going to cure you or kill you. It’s just a pretty rock that makes a great countertop.
 
GRANITE HARBORS BACTERIA  
 
Another frequently repeated myth is that granite harbors harmful bacteria; that somehow germs retreat into nooks and crannies in granite, lying in wait to make us sick. Records maintained by The Center for Disease Control confirm that there is absolutely no evidence of granite harboring bacteria or of anyone getting sick from bacteria in granite. Additionally, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, as well as the Hospitality Industry, give granite a clean bill of health. Granite is no more or less sanitary than any other surface.
 
GRANITE CANNOT BE REPAIRED   
 
Granite can indeed be repaired, it just doesn’t break very easily or very often, so no one’s making a living fixing it. If granite chips or cracks (which can happen if it is struck with a heavy object), it can be refinished or repaired with colored epoxies
 

About Us

Vitoria International provides a large selection of natural stone for use as kitchen and bath countertops. Vitoria imports the finest stone from Brazil, India, Spain, Italy, and Turkey. The selection includes classic granite, exotic granite, marble and travertine in various colors, patterns, and textures.

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All About Stone

All About Stone

TOP REASONS WHY NATURAL STONE IS THE RIGHT CHOICE

 

NATURAL STONE ADDS VALUE 
 
NATURAL STONE IS ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY


  • When choosing decor for your home, keep in mind that many natural materials are easy on the environment.
  • Natural stone products don’t incorporate pollutants such as solvents, resigns, CVC’s and other harsh toxins that can harm the environment.
  • The benefits of using such materials are threefold:
  • They are environmentally friendly, they are complimentary to other natural materials, and are customized to your lifestyle.


NATURAL STONE IS DECORATIVE



  • When natural materials are incorporated into a space, they have a characteristic that is unique to themselves.
  • Because they all come from the earth, they just naturally flow together well. Natural doesn’t necessarily mean rustic.
  • Natural can be very contemporary, elegant and always timeless.


NATURAL STONE IS ONE OF A KIND

  • Natural materials are rich, classic and sensual products. If you want to add custom touches to your home, office or garden, natural materials are the way to go.
  • Even if your neighbor has a granite bench, yours is guaranteed to look different.
  • Every piece has its own identity and character because it isn’t mass-produced.
  • People understand when they choose natural products that it truly is a unique piece of art that they are installing.


NATUAL STONE IS TIMELESS AND DURABLE

  • As people are investing more and more in their living spaces, they want products that stand the test of time.
  • Natural materials last for decades and add character to your environment.


NATURAL STONE HAS ITS OWN SINCE OF PERMANENCE

  • Unlike synthetic products, natural stone is heavy and solid; once installed natural stone is difficult to be removed or stolen without purpose.
 
 
 

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