There are few countertop options that are better than natural stone such as granite, marble, and soapstone. Each of these stone types has a natural beauty with unique colors and patterns to match any décor but they are also vulnerable to chips and scratches that could diminish their appearance. Granite is a much harder stone than marble or soapstone which makes it more difficult to scratch, but this also means that scratches in granite are harder to remove. The following is important information regarding granite countertop repair as well as how to repair granite and natural stone countertops.
How Natural Stone Countertops Become Scratched
In order for a natural stone surface to become scratched, something harder than the stone itself would have to do it. Soapstone is the softest of these natural stone types so it can be scratched by a piece of marble or granite but it cannot scratch either one. Here are some of the most common ways natural stone surfaces can become scratched:
- Foot traffic can scratch natural stone floors because dirt, sand, and other debris is abrasive under your shoes. Putting rugs or mats near doorways can help reduce this.
- Soft natural stone may become scratched by sanded grouts.
- Lift all furniture because dragging it can scratch stone flooring.
- Countertops made from soft natural stones such as marble or soapstone can become scratched from toys, keys, kitchen utensils, or cutting on the counter.
Granite countertops are much harder than marble or soapstone which makes them much more resistant to scratching. However, they can still become scratched or chipped by another piece of granite or a harder stone such as a diamond.
How to Repair Chipped Granite and Scratches in Natural Stone
Your natural stone surfaces can become chipped or scratched and the proper repair process depends on the type of stone and severity of the scratch. Soapstone surfaces are the most likely to get scratched because they are soft, but they are also the easiest to repair. The following actions can help remove scratches from soapstone:
- Light Scratches: Apply medium pressure to the scratch using a paper towel wet with mineral oil. You can also sand it out with 300 grit sandpaper but make sure to apply mineral oil after sanding.
- Deep Scratches: Sand it out with 100 grit sandpaper and apply mineral oil after.
Granite and marble surfaces are much harder to scratch than soapstone but they are also much more difficult to repair. It is usually best to hire a stone care professional to repair scratches in granite and marble and repair granite chips. Stone care professionals use electric sanding machines with diamond pads, buffer pads, and chemical polishers to sand out the scratch. If the scratch is especially deep or severe, the stone slab may have to be sent away for resurfacing.
How to Repair Granite and Natural Stone Countertops Yourself
For most cases, it is best to hire a stone care professional to repair granite and natural stone countertops because you can cause irreversible damage by using improper methods. However, you can use these quick fixes to repair light, minor scratches on your countertop:
- Buff out light scratches with #0000 steel wool.
- On dark granite, a black permanent marker or paint marker can cover up small scratches. Color the scratch with the marker and then use denatured alcohol to wipe off extra color from the area.
- Some scratches can be camouflaged with a quality stone color enhancer.
Granite and natural stone countertops are chosen for their natural beauty and unique colors and patterns but they can become scratched or chipped which requires repair. Natural stone and granite countertop repair is usually best handled by professionals but there are a few DIY methods that are effective for removing minor scratches. If you do not feel comfortable repairing your own natural stone countertops, contact a stone care professional for assistance.
If your countertop is damaged beyond repair, countertop resurfacing may be your best option. Having your countertop resurfaced will give your counters a brand new appearance without the trouble and cost of a full replacement. If you would like to learn more about the benefits of countertop resurfacing, visit napcoltd.com.