Granite Countertops: An Overview

28-Jan-2014

Lately, according to home remodellers and builders, there is a boom in the demand for granite countertops. This has obvious reasons, as the granite's beauty and warmth makes it ideal for increasing the aesthetics in home design. Plus, its durability and easy care make granite countertops the favourite, especially for homeowners who think about the future. Granite retains its value better than other improvements and remains the first choice in upscale homes.

Like marble and other stone, granite is an extremely old material created by nature. It was used int he construction of temples and public buildings in the most powerful ancient societies, for pillars and other exterior finishes. But since 1851 the preference for polished granite has increased greatly, when a finished piece of granite was displayed at The Great Exhibition of the Industry of all Nations in London.

As a medium for countertops, granite is excellent and its durability surpasses all other stone, its only rival being diamond. And since granite countertops are so durable and versatile, they have become a favourite for professional and home chefs. These countertops can withstand a hot pot and make an excellent surface for kneading dough and making confectionery. In addition, the granite adds colour and warmth to any room and can compliment any wood or other material cabinetry.

Granite's great variety of colours and patterns is another factor which causes such high popularity with the public and designers. It can have variations of white through brown, black, green, blue and even red. Today, the most popular choices are the brown and beige tones because they work well with almost any kitchen colour scheme and it allows a great flexibility when it comes to redecorating.  The granite patterns can give us a sensation of movement or a natural made design. While large patterns are allowing the eye to move quickly from one side of the countertop to the other, the small patterns provide a more sedate appearance. But with such a great variety of colours and patterns, it is a very high possibility that no two countertops are exactly the same, creating a unique design in your home. 

Even though granite is highly durable, make no mistake, it can be damaged. Granite countertops need proper cleaning and the use of sealers in order to prevent staining. Plus, the granite may be chipped and a professional will be required to perform repairs, even the smallest ones. Some granite countertops can cost more than other materials but think that these costs include the quarry work, cutting, transportation, polishing and installation. This is not a good do-it-yourself project. The granite slab sheets must be accurately cut and are quite delicate when transported. Also, a small failure in the setting of the granite countertop can lead to breaking during regular use. 

If a homeowner is unable or unwilling to spend much for a granite countertop, discounted granite for countertops may be an option. These are mainly groupings or tiers of stone that are based on the popularity of a colour or pattern and lower tiered cuts of stone with the same consistent characteristics.

Nobody knows the future, but we are sure that granite will remain a favourite for architects, homeowners and designers. It's ageless beauty and durability makes granite a lifetime home improvement.


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