Granite worktops bring a number of benefits to your home. These include durability, low maintenance, an elegant look plus strong resistance to chipping, scratches and heat. What’s more, this beautiful natural stone is also an eco-friendly material.
With so many advantages to them, you’ll be keen to look after your granite countertops well. And, sometimes, what you don’t do is as important as what you do. One thing that may be tempting to use is bleach, especially for cleaning surfaces after using raw fish, poultry or other meat. But, here, we explain why you should steer clear, both of pure bleach and of any other products which may contain it. (We also take a quick look at the use of lemon juice on worktops made from granite.)
Why give bleach a swerve?
Bleach is a great disinfectant, and pretty effective, so it’s unsurprising that your first instinct may be to reach for a bottle of the stuff. The problem is that is can dull the finish of your granite. And, in some cases, it can even alter the colour of your stone.
Not only is bleach potentially toxic to humans, pets and the environment, it’s also highly alkaline. This can damage your worktop by removing the weaker particles at the surface of the stone. When this occurs, a dull spot results where these particles once were. (Especially if you’ve gone for a glossy or polished finish.)
And the only way you can fix a countertop that is damaged or etched in this way is to refinish it. This can be expensive. But you can avoid it from happening by sealing your countertop, and sticking to pH-neutral cleaning products.
What should you use instead?
As an alternative, you can use 3% hydrogen peroxide as an effective disinfectant once you have cleaned your granite. This will help to get rid of germs. Natural ingredients including baking soda and vinegar can work, but if you use them together, they tend to cancel each other out.
What about lemon juice?
Lemon juice is a natural product and it may seem like a cheap ingredient to use in a cleaning regime. But it’s also so acidic that, again, it will simply damage your granite counter, just as bleach can.
Call the experts
At Royal Stone Care, we’re the London-based experts in granite care for business and domestic clients. Our customers trust us with looking after their worktops and granite cleaning and restoration in London. Whether you want a deep clean or have had problems with etching, talk to us before you talk to anyone else.