How to Properly Clean Your Countertops

Stone countertops are a beautiful addition to any home. Their intricate designs and patterns bring a touch of nature indoors while their hard surface can stand strong against just about any task. However, over time, everyday wear and tear can take its toll on countertops. If you neglect to take care of them, they may lose their shine, become scratched, stained, and begin to cloud. And while they may still do the job that they are intended to do, you will have lost that beautiful touch of nature in your home’s design. Some stone requires more maintenance than others, but overall, cleaning and maintaining your stone countertop is a reasonably easy job, if you keep up with it.


Beginning with the lowest maintenance of the three countertops, Quartz requires very little routine-maintenance. Warm water and dish soap are all that are needed to clean daily spills and stains that your Quartz countertop will endure. Denatured/isopropyl alcohol is handy for those stubborn stains that you are unable to get out with just soap and water. If your countertop is looking a bit lackluster, a simple glass cleaner can be used to restore it to its original splendor.


Granite holds the maintenance middle ground between Quartz and Marble. The first step is ensuring your countertop has been properly sealed. If it was recently installed, it is likely that it has already been sealed, but if not, you should purchase a sealant for it. Most sealants last 10-15 years, so this is not a step you will have to repeat often.

Once your Granite is sealed, the maintenance is similar to Quartz. Washing it daily with warm water and soap is still recommended, but make sure you use a PH neutral soap. Any soap or cleaner with an acid-base will eat through the sealant over time, this means staying away from most glass cleaners as well. Baking soda and water will take care of any oil-based stains that you cannot get out with soap and water, and baking soda plus hydrogen peroxide will take care of any water-based ones. If your counter begins to lose its shine, it is recommended to buy a polish intended for Granite.


Marble may require the most care from these three stone options, but it is still by no means challenging to maintain. Like the Granite, Marble requires a sealant, but it needs to be sealed on a more regular basis, at least once a year is recommended. Marble is even more sensitive than Granite is to scratches and to acids, so be sure to use a nonabrasive sponge or towel and a neutral, mild soap to clean it daily. When faced with more difficult stains, you can use a stronger cleaning product and a more abrasive sponge; just make sure you have sealant ready because the cleaner will take the sealant along with the stain.

A well-maintained countertop can look exquisite and last a lifetime. Make sure you know how to care for your countertops to ensure they stay beautiful and resistant to your everyday wear and tear. Any additional care ideas that you may have can be posted below in the comment section. Thanks for reading!

Quartz: A Popular Choice Among Homeowners

Quartz-Everest-White-Bristol-Beige-Allegheny-Amber-Install3-464x464Quartz has become a favorite material among homeowners in kitchen and bathroom design, being used for countertops and backsplashes, as well as vanities and showers. It’s really no surprise that its popularity continues to grow, since it has the best qualities of laminate and stone, along with its own unique features.

Characteristics of Quartz

Quartz has several appealing characteristics that make it a truly wonderful material for many design projects. Here are five great features that make quartz a top choice.

Durable: Quartz is extremely durable, with more than 93% of counters being made of natural quartz crystals, one of the hardest minerals found in nature. The result is a stone with a scratch resistant surface that’s stronger than granite and marble.

Quartz isn’t as heat resistant as other materials, however, and can be damaged by excessive heat. Extra care should be taken by using trivets for hot pots and pans in the kitchen, and exercising caution when using equipment such as hair dryers in the bathroom.

Quartz-Alberta-Install-464x464Stain Resistant: Quartz resists staining much better than other materials such as granite, concrete and marble, standing up to even the toughest food stains including coffee, cooking oils, and wine. This is certainly a huge plus for most of us!

Sanitary: Due to its nonporous surface, quartz doesn’t harbor bacteria or viruses, enabling you to keep your surfaces completely clean, which is especially important for both kitchens and bathrooms.

Easy to Maintain: Whereas granite and marble countertops must be sealed regularly to prevent staining and the growth of bacteria, adding to the cost of these materials, quartz doesn’t require sealing or other routine maintenance to retain its lovely appearance or durability. And it’s very easy to clean, requiring only soap and water to keep it looking as good as new or a stone cleaner to give it that polished shine!

Environmentally Friendly: Quartz is a plentiful mineral that impacts nature less than granite, making it an eco-friendly choice.

Quartz-Cumberland-Flax-Install-464x464An Extremely Versatile Material: In addition to all these fantastic characteristics, the manufacturing process provides uniform color and appearance, with large slabs that allow for more coverage and fewer seams than with natural stone. And its rich, luxurious look, and wide array of gorgeous colors and patterns, makes it easy to match any kitchen or bathroom design scheme.

For a material with an upscale, beautiful look and minimal maintenance requirements that’s also virtually indestructible, quartz is tough to beat. For more information on quartz, or to see some of the many looks available, visit the Fulton Design Center on a browse night or stop by Arizona Tile. You’ll find the perfect quartz surfaces for your new Fulton Home.

Choosing your Countertops

Think of your countertops as serving two purposes. You want them to look good, but first they need to be functional. Do you want the rich sturdy characteristics of granite? While it may require sealing once a year or so, overall its strength and durability make it an ideal surface for someone who is more than a casual cook.

Perhaps you want something that is totally maintenance free? Quartz and other manmade solid surfaces mimic stone or provide other inviting looks with no sealing or special treatment. This choice is both practical and beautiful.

If granite is your preference, just take a look at a few of your options at the Fulton Homes Design Center. Would you prefer darker tones or lighter? Do you want a consistent design or one with lots of changes in color and personality? The samples in this room are large enough to give you a good sense of each variety and help you decide how you want your countertops to add drama and style to your kitchen.

At Fulton Homes, you have the opportunity to choose your own granite slab. Since every piece of natural stone is somewhat different, this gives you the chance to find one that suits you. Be sure to bring in a sample of the cabinets you chose along with your flooring. You may want to wait to choose a backsplash until after you select your countertop so that you can make sure everything works well together.

If combining all of these selections seems overwhelming, don’t worry. That’s why you have a designer assigned to work with you. This way you benefit from their years of experience and knowledge to ensure that you achieve the kitchen of your dreams.