Installing Granite Countertops

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					Installing Granite Countertops
Granite is not only the hardest material available for countertops; it's
also the most expensive, with prices starting at $60 a square foot.
Though adding granite countertops to any kitchen can be quite costly,
they remain the premiere choice in many new and remodeled homes. The
beauty and warmth offer an aesthetic appeal that can't be found in other
countertop materials.
Granite does cost more than other countertop materials, with the majority
of the price coming from labor costs. Installing granite countertops is
not a project for the do-it-yourself homeowner, seeking to save money on
installation costs. Installation must be left to the professionals who
have the right training and equipment. However, a homeowner can save
money on some of the preliminary preparation and demolition work. Before
the process of installing granite countertops can begin, range tops, the
sink and the old countertops must be thoroughly removed. The remainder of
the installation process must be left to the professionals.
After the granite countertops are ordered, an individual from the
installation company will come to precisely measure the cabinetry and
create templates for the installation. At the time the templates are
created, the professional should be able to tell you where all the seams
will be. The fewer seams, the better, as regardless of how well the joint
is fitted, straight lines in the natural stone are very noticeable. At
this time they will determine if any specialized tools will be required
for the sink and range cutouts.
Prior to the installation, metal rods and plywood will be added to the
top of the cabinetry to create a strong, level surface with additional
support for the sink and range. This is a critical step, as it prevents
the granite slab from breaking during regular use. Success of a granite
countertop installation includes attention to the varying thickness of a
slab.
Although slabs are carefully cut, there may be high and low spots on the
bottom; therefore, leveling is an important step of the preparation
process to protect the stone.
Installers will later bring granite slabs that measure approximately
four-by-eight feet or four-by-twelve feet and are only about three
centimeters thick. The slabs can weigh hundreds of pounds and must be
properly carried to reduce stress on the slab during transport. If the
granite is not carefully laid on the cabinetry, it could crack at a later
time during regular use.
The slab of granite will be precisely cut with a diamond tip saw to fit
the templates. The jointing seams will be sealed and the edge will be
treated to create a smooth, attractive perimeter. The installer can add
any requested trim inlays, such as metallic materials or separate
indications of a solid color. The installer will then apply a penetrating
sealer and polish the surface to a smooth reflective finish.
The installers will note the positioning of electrical outlets, the sink,
and the faucets, as the thickness of the granite may alter some of the
process for re-installation of these items. The installers will also be
trained to make adjustments for setting a cook top and re-securing the
dishwasher stabilizer brackets without causing harm to the newly laid
granite countertop.
The expertise required for installing granite countertops requires that
this be one job left to the professionals. When properly installed,
granite countertops are a beautiful and valuable addition to any home
kitchen.
Granite Countertops provides detailed information on granite kitchen and
tile countertops, advice on installing and cleaning granite countertops,
information on price and locations to purchase discount granite counter
tops, and more. Granite Countertops is the sister site of Kitchen Sinks
Web.

				
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