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A Guide on How to Clean Granite Countertops

Granite is a durable, beautiful stone formed over time from volcanic magma. Granite ranges in color but is known for its beauty. It makes great countertops that can last many years if properly cared for. Granite has become a common selling point in homes and is a major reason prospective homebuyers are looking for new places to live.

Products to Use

The granite countertop cleaner you use will depend on the color of the granite. Light granite is usually cleaner and, over time, will become less dusty. Dark granite will be susceptible to staining and discoloration over time. Mild soap and water is a great cleanser for light granite, but you can also add baking soda. Darker granite needs to be cleaned with a cleaner specifically for dark-colored granite. Meanwhile, chalk or a professional countertop cleaner can be used to clean any granite. It is best to test any cleaners on a small area before using them all over the surface. It is best to clean granite countertops with a soft cloth to avoid damaging the stone. Keep in mind that either way, do not use detergent as this can stain the granite stone. 

Basic Cleaning

Use a microfiber cloth when you dust off your granite countertops. Although you will have to wipe up stains or splatters daily, try to wipe down your granite countertops at least once a week. Once a week, use a damp cloth and a neutral-pH stone cleaner on your granite countertops to keep them pristine.

Never use harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners on your countertops, even if you think they’ll clean the stain better. These cleaners can permanently scratch, pit, and etch the stone’s surface. If an oily stain on your countertop has soaked in, try a poultice of a cup of flour or baking soda and five tablespoons of dish soap.

Add water to the mixture to help it spread more easily on the material. Apply the mixture directly to the stain and cover with a sheet of plastic wrap. Leave the mixture overnight, then wash away the mixture in the morning before leaving for work. Wipe off any excess mixture, then clean and dry the countertops.

Hand using a pink sponge to wipe a granite counter with foaming cleanser, doing household chores
Sponge to wipe a granite counter with foaming cleanser

Seasonal Maintenance

Sealing granite countertops is a regular maintenance task that you cannot ignore. To determine if the countertops need to be resealed again, splash a little water on the surface. If the water sits in small bead-like shapes on the surface or if it spreads and flows freely, then there’s still enough oil in the granite, and you can reseal it. 

However, if the water no longer beads up or spreads, there may not be enough oil left in the granite, and you will not get full protection by just resealing it. Perform this test on areas that get the most use. It’s important to regularly inspect your granite countertops for cracks, chips, or shifting. Otherwise, you risk a sudden break in the granite. Even tiny cracks over time can lead to much worse damage down the road.

If you live in an area where it’s cold and snowy during the winter, it’s important to de-ice your countertops often so that melting snow doesn’t seep into the cracks, causing staining. Also, cover up any stains with food wraps as soon as you spill something.



Granite is a beautiful stone that can be a great compliment to your home’s decor. However, it is important to maintain granite countertops in your home. Research the product before you seal, clean, or maintain your countertops.

McHenry Interiors is your go-to source of custom and high-quality countertops. We are Albany’s favorite store and showroom for countertops, tile, and flooring supply and installation. Experience the showroom quality of browsing today’s most popular flooring options, custom-sized countertops, and impressive tile backsplash all in one stop. If you need countertop installation services in Albany, we can help! Call us at (541) 243-7367 today!