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Granite is a popular countertop material due to its durability, natural variety of colors and and low maintenance features.
But what sets leathered granite apart is its unique texture, a result of the leathering process.
Leathered granite countertops add a unique touch of sophistication to any space, but they need appropriate care to maintain their stunning look.
In this article, I will discuss how to clean leathered granite countertops and all the necessary steps needed to maintain them.
All the related Frequently asked questions at the end.
Lets get started…
This post is about How to Clean leathered granite countertops
What is Leathered Granite ?
Leathered granite has a matte finish.
It’s a type of granite that undergoes a special texturing process which results in a surface mimicking the look and feel of leather.
This process involves applying a lot of pressure to the granite surface, causing it to tear and take on a rough, yet stylishly textured finish.
This unique feature helps in enhancing the visual appeal of the granite surfaces.
This finish also hides fingerprints and watermarks. This makes the leather granite a perfect choice for kitchen countertops.
I strongly believe that the type of countertop you choose can drastically alter the aesthetic and practicality of your kitchen.
Leathered granite has become a popular choice due to its unique texture with natural color.
Why Regular Cleaning is Essential for Leathered Granite Countertops ?
Though leathered granite is robust and more resistant to visible wear and tear as compared to polished granite, it still demands regular cleaning.
The textured surface of granite slabs, can trap small particles of dust and debris in its little nooks and crannies.
Over time, this accumulated debris could dull the countertop’s look and may even lead to staining, particularly if the debris has moisture.
The Process of Leathering Granite
To get the beautiful natural stone a leathered look, it starts with a slab of granite that has been honed to remove the high-gloss polished finish typically seen on granite countertops.
Once honed, the stone’s surface is brushed with a series of diamond-tipped brush strokes.
This process gets rid of the softer particles on the surface, while the harder particles remain intact.
The process creates a slightly bumpy, but still relatively smooth surface that resembles the texture of leather.
What is honed finish granite ?
A honed finish refers to a matte or non-reflective finish. It’s created by stopping the polishing process before the granite becomes shiny, giving it a more natural look.
What is a Polished Finished Granite ?
A polished finish is created by keep grinding and buffing the granite until a shiny surface is achieved. This finish gives the stone a glossy and reflective appearance.
What You Need to Clean Leathered Granite Countertops ?
Cleaning Supplies :
- Clean Microfiber cloth
- Spray Bottle
- Warm water
- Gentle stone-safe cleaner or Mild soap (dish Soap)
- Soft bristle brush
- Stone sealer
Step-by-Step Guide to Cleaning Leathered Granite
Step 1: Wipe Down the Surface
First, wipe down the granite surface with a soft cloth.
This will remove loose dirt and dust, which could otherwise scratch the stone during the cleaning process.
Step 2: Scrub the Surface
Next, gently scrub the surface with a soft bristle brush.
This will help remove any remaining debris from the textured finish.
Make sure to work the brush in a circular motion and to avoid pressing too hard, which could damage the stone.
Step 3: Apply a Stone-safe Cleaner
After removing the loose debris, apply a stone-safe cleaner.
Always make sure that the cleaner is pH-neutral to prevent discoloration or damage to the stone.
Apply the cleaner as per the manufacturer’s instructions.
Usually you need to spray it evenly across the surface.
You can also use a mild dish soap that is ph-neutral.
Step 4: Rinse with Warm Water
Once you’ve let the cleaner sit for a few minutes, rinse the surface with warm water.
Using a fresh, soft cloth, wipe down the granite to ensure that all the cleaner is removed.
Avoid using too much water, which could seep into the stone and cause damage.
Step 5: Dry the Surface
Lastly, thoroughly dry the granite surface with a soft cloth.
This will prevent water stains and keep your countertop looking clean and fresh.
Additionally, it will prepare the surface for the application of a sealer.
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Protecting Leathered Granite with Sealer
So Does leathered granite need to be sealed ?
While cleaning is an important part of maintaining leathered granite, protecting it with a sealer is equally important.
Yes, Leathered granite needs to be sealed.
Sealers create a protective barrier on the surface of the stone, preventing stains and damage from water or other substances.
Depending on the usage and the specific type of granite, it’s typically recommended to apply a sealer once or twice a year.
Cleaning Do’s & Don’ts
Although leathered granite finish needs little maintenance, its important to clean up spills immediately.
Avoid using abrasive cleaners for cleaning the surface of granite.
How Often Should You Clean Leathered Granite Countertops?
Regular cleaning is key to keeping your countertops looking their best.
It is also essential for preserving the leathered finish, including wiping the surface with clean water and a mild detergent.
Wipe your countertops down daily with a soft cloth and warm water.
Once a week, use a mild soap solution or a granite cleaner for a more thorough cleaning.
Once a month, check your countertop for any signs of staining or etching and treat as necessary.
If proper care is taken in cleaning, it will go a long way.
Maintaining the surface of the granite of new countertops:
Part of maintaining also includes to make sure, in everyday use, acidic liquids like lemon juice are not left on the counter for long time.
At the end of the day, if you clean spills immediately, then not too many extra steps will be needed to maintain the leathery texture.
So Does leathered granite need to be sealed ?
sealing is a very simple process.
There are industry standard granite sealer easily available at home depot or Lowes.
All you need to do is after the cleaning process, spray the sealer and wipe it down.
There are sealers that are used as color enhancers. Make sure you use a good sealant.
Here is a video o “How to properly seal Granite ” By Stone Care International
When to Hire Professionals
If your countertop has deep stains, scratches, tougher stains or etching, it’s time to call the professionals.
Types of Granite :
These are popular darker colors of leathered granite that are used by designers to create unique designs.
I really like the intensity of the texture in leathered granite as compared to honed granite countertops or synthetic surfaces, which tend to be smoother.
Absolute Black granite :
As the name suggests, this granite is pitch black in color. When given a leathered finish, the natural textures and details of the granite stand out beautifully, creating a countertop that’s both elegant and durable.
Black pearl granite :
Black pearl granite is a dark grey to black granite with specks of gold, silver, brown, green, and gray. A leathered finish enhances these variations and gives the surface a softly unique appearance.
IF YOU ARE INTERESTED TO LEARN MORE – HERE IS MY ARTICLE ON DIFFERENT FINISHES – TYPES OF STONE COUNTERTOP FINISHES.
Pros of Leathered Granite Countertops
Unique Texture and Aesthetics:
The primary appeal of leathered granite lies in its unique look that its gets because of the texture. The leather finish adds a visual depth, giving your countertops a natural, organic feel.
Reduced Visibility of Stains and Smudges:
Because of its texture, leathered granite does not show stains, smudges, and fingerprints as easily as a polished surface might.
This also makes it popular choice for commercial spaces.
Durability: Leathered granite is just as durable as its polished counterpart, capable of resisting scratches, chips, and heat.
Low Maintenance: Because it doesn’t show stains and scratches easily, leathered granite tends to require less daily maintenance than polished granite.
Cons of Leathered Granite Countertops:
Cleaning: The textured surface of leathered granite can make it slightly more difficult to clean. It has more nooks and crannies where dust, crumbs, and liquids can hide.
Cost: Leathered granite can be slightly more expensive than traditional polished granite due to the additional processing it undergoes.
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Can I use vinegar to clean my leathered granite countertops?
No, vinegar is acidic and can etch the surface, causing dull spots. Stick to pH-neutral cleaners.
Does leathered granite need to be sealed ?
Yes, it needs to be sealed.
How often should I seal my leathered granite countertops?
The frequency can depend on the specific type of granite and usage, but generally, once a year is a good rule of thumb.
Can I use a regular household cleaner on my leathered granite?
No, many household cleaners can be harsh cleaners that can damage granite. Use a cleaner specifically designed for granite that does not have harsh chemicals.
What should I use to clean up everyday spills and messes?
A soft clean cloth and warm water are usually the best way for cleaning up daily spills and messes on your leathered granite countertops.
This post was about How to clean leathered Granite countertops
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If you are up to more learning,
The Natural Stone Institute provides comprehensive resources about caring for natural stone.