Granites are composed of quartz, feldspars and micas and traces of a wide variety of other minerals. Granite is formed by hardening of these molten components when they cool in the earth’s crust. The color and texture of the various granites are influenced by the presence of trace minerals present in the stone. The crystal size evident in the granite is partially determined by cooling rate. A slow cooling process results in larger crystal size and faster cooling produces finer grained granites.
Granite can be obtained with polished, honed, or flamed surfaces. Polished granite has a shiny, mirror-like surface. Honed granite has a matte or satin finish. Flamed granite is produced by applying very high heat to the surface. The heat fractures some of the crystals and creates a deeply textured surface. Due to its coarser surface, flamed granite is useful outdoors and can also be as an accent material in a polished granite floor.
A huge selection of patterns and colors makes granite one of the most versatile, durable, and low maintenance of all stones. Granite is one of the hardest and densest substances on earth, making it ideal for kitchen countertops.
Like any other countertop material, if cleaned regularly and properly, granite poses no health or sanitation problems. In fact, some studies have shown Granite is second only to stainless steel in lowest bacteria counts when used as a countertop material. All other resin and concrete based countertops scored very poorly in terms of sanitation.
Granite is a very dense material and under normal usage is extremely chip and scratch resistant. As granite is one of the hardest materials on earth, scratches are very unlikely. Granite is unaffected by temperature ranges typically found in a kitchen. Hot pots and pans can be placed directly on it without damage.
Granite slabs are limited in size by practicality. Quarrying, shipping, and handling issues place finite limits on the workable size of a slab. Often the raw slabs may not be large enough for the entire run of the countertop. Additionally, transportation and installation issues at the jobsite may limit finished piece size. As a result seams in the material are necessary. However, seams are very tight and filled with a clear or colored epoxy and are designed in a manner that minimizes (but may not eliminate) their visibility. While your granite countertop may have a seam, the beauty of the stone, and the functionality of your new countertop will far outweigh the appearance of any seams. We work with putting all seams in the sink so that a very small part might only be visable.