Tuesday, April 15, 2014

How to Keep Your Counters Clean

The kitchen is a messy place. With hot pots, sharp knives, and spilled liquids, it may seem impossible to keep your countertops looking brand new. But, with a little attention on a regular basis you can keep those counters sparkling no matter what material they are.

Keeping Up with the Spills

No matter what surface your countertops are, there are a few rules you should always follow:

  • Clean up spills as soon as possible
  • Give your counters a light cleaning (at least) on a regular basis
This will help keep stains from forming on your counters and prevent the major cleanings that will eventually be needed when your counters are neglected. As for cleaning tips for specific counter surfaces, consider the following:


Quartz is a dense, non-porous stone that is very resistant to scratches and stains. It doesn’t require sealing to stand up to abuse over the life of the counter. To clean quartz you’ll want to wash the counter surface with a soft cotton cloth using a mixture of warm water and mild dish soap. Do not use bleach or abrasive cleaners as they can damage the surface of the quartz.


It’s well known that marble is a porous stone and is therefore very susceptible to spills and stains. If you happen to spill something onto your elegant marble counters you should immediately blot up the spill with a soft cloth. Once you have blotted up the majority of the spill use water to wipe away any residue, and then follow up with a dry cloth to wipe away any excess moisture. It’s not a good idea to let marble counters air dry.


To clean granite countertops, it is best to use a special pH-neutral stone cleaner and a damp cloth. You’ll want to avoid soaps, abrasive cleaners, and citrus cleaners, as they can cause damage; and though it’s often mention as DIY cleaner, a vinegar-water mixture is also not the best idea because it can cause etching. Consumers offers granite countertops that come pre-treated with sealants that will cause liquid spills to bead on the surface, saving you from unsightly stains, and allowing you to simply clean them with warm water. These treatments are available with 5 or 15 year stain protection warranty.


One good aspect of laminate countertops is the fact that they’re easy to clean. They won’t show stains as easy as some of the stone counters and it can also handle more powerful cleaners than the others. Use anything such as a simple soap mixture, a vinegar mixture, or a diluted mixture of bleach to wipe your counters clean.

Solid Surface

Designed with minimal maintenance in mind, solid surface counters are a messy cook’s dream. Most messes can be cleaned up with warm soapy water, ammonia-based household cleaners, or dedicated countertop cleaners. It’s important to avoid window cleaners, though, as they can cause a waxy build-up on your counters over time.

No matter what type of countertops you have, it’s always a good idea to do a quick cleanup after every use. With a little diligence along the way, your counters will look beautiful for a long time to come.

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