Q. What is the difference between granite and marble? …Granite is one of the hardest materials on earth. Granite is composed primarily of quartz, feldspar and mica. Other minerals may be present in the stone creating its unique colors, textures and patterns. Used as a countertop material, it is resistant to scratches, acids, stains and heat. It is long-lasting, durable and available in a wide variety of colours, textures and unique crystal patterns that create a warm and inviting environment for you kitchen or bath.
Marble works beautifully especially in the bath where the veining patterns and colors that appear can be used to create exquisite designs. Marbles are made up of mostly of calcite. Marble is sensitive to acidic foods such as vinegar, lemon, tomatoes, wine, as well as some tile cleaners, mildew removers and other materials commonly found in the kitchen or bathroom and will dull a polished finish.
Q. Should I use granite or marble for my countertops? …Granite is the most versatile stone to work with. Granite can be used anywhere indoors or outdoors. Marble can be used almost anywhere, but it has limitations. Marble weathers outdoors and it is more susceptible to dulling, scratching and staining.
Q. What is honed granite? Strictly speaking, granite is called “honed” when the polishing process is halted just before a reflective shiny surface is achieved. This gives a softer, matte appearance to the stone.
Q. What special care does stone require? …Marbles should be sealed once or twice a year. Granites should be sealed once a year.Note,using a sealer does not make the stone un-stainable. It simply fills the pores in the stone and make the staining process slower, thus giving you more time to clean a spill before a stain sets in. Otherwise, the usual clean regularly, don’t use acidic or abrasive cleaners that will dull the finish over time.
Q. Can I cut on my granite countertop? …Only if you want to ruin your good knives. Granite is harder than your knife blades and will dull them very quickly, if you use the countertop as a cutting surface. Always cut and chop on a wooden or plastic cutting board.
Q. Can you give me a quotation over the telephone? …Possibly but we will be more accurate if you send us a drawing/plan
Q. Will you provide stone samples for me to take away? …Yes
Q. Do you have any finished (cut & polished) tops I can look at? …Yes, in our Showroom which is open from 9am-4:30pm, Monday to Friday. We also have a large client base through out the UK who are willing to show our workmanship standards.
Q. Will you visit us to make templates? …Yes. In order for us to come and measure, we need the following: Lower cabinets installed,and confirmation that the customer is happy with our price.
Q. Do you supply a sub-top to the cabinets to support the stone counter tops? …No, please ask your contractor to do this before templating, if you wish to have these.
Q. How much unsupported overhang can my countertops have? …Overhangs should not exceed 6″ beyond the supported area. An unsupported span of 24″ and up to a maximum of 36″ is acceptable as long as the stone is supported on bottom.
Q. Can backsplash tiling take place before fiting of the tops? … No, please wait until the stone tops are installed.
Q. Do I need to be present during your templating operation? …Yes please, to help with any questions that we may have.
Q. What are seams and why do you need them? …Seams are the joints where two pieces of stone meet. We do everything we can to avoid or reduce the number of seams in a job. Then, we do everything we can to make the seams less noticeable.
Q. Will you plumb-in my sink/basin? …Sorry, over to your plumber for this one
Q. Should I be present when the tops are installed? …Yes please, or at least at the end of the job to make sure your satisfied with the work.
Q. Can stone countertops be repaired? …Reasonable damage can be repaired: small cracks or chips. If the stone is chipped, always try to save the piece that chipped off.
Q. Could I add to my work tops later? …Yes although precise colour matching could be a problem