Frequently Asked Question
What is the difference between marble, granite and quartz stone and their suitability for use in construction?+
Marble is a hard crystalline metamorphic form of natural limestone. It is found around the world and is available in a variety of stunning colours including a large range of white and lighter colours. Marble, however is much softer and more porous than granite or quartz stone and is therefore less suitable for use as kitchen worktops and bar counters etc. where it is likely to stain and mark due to heavy use. It is more suitable for bathrooms and is commonly used for vanities and shower enclosures due to its aesthetic virtues.
Granite is a very hard, granular, crystalline, intrusive igneous rock consisting mainly of quartz, mica, and feldspar. It is much harder and tougher than marble and therefore more suitable for kitchen worktops than marble. In fact due to its density and hard wearing nature it is commonly used as a construction stone for bar counters, floors, and desks and for cladding the outsides of buildings etc.
Quartz stone is a man-made material and consists approximately of 94% quartz which is a form of crystallised silicon dioxide. Like granite, because of its hard and resilient properties it is particularly suitable for use as kitchen worktops and indeed bathrooms and floors. Quartz and the darker granite stone surfaces are extremely resistant to stains and scratches. Granite and quartz stone worktops are available in wide range of colours and surface finishes. The most popular surface is a high polish because it not only looks stunning but is easier to clean and maintain especially as hygiene is of utmost importance in the kitchen. Matt (honed) and rough (anticato) finishes are also available on special order. Can I see physical samples of different materials? Yes of course, you are more than welcome to visit us at our factory showroom. If this is not possible we can arrange for samples to be sent to you. There will be a small charge for postage depending on the number of samples requested. Once you have placed your order with us you may request for us to bring some samples when our team comes to template. What should be the thickness of the worktops?
Is granite stone unbreakable?+
Whilst granite-stone is extremely hard, it can chip and even break if proper care is not taken. Please refer to our care instructions for further details.
How long does it take from placing an order to installation?+
Generally, from the time your order is placed we aim to template, manufacture and install your requirment within 10 working days. Where the material has to be especially ordered we will advise you of the lead time.
Will any manufacturing or cutting take place in your van or in my house?+
Whilst the majority of the manufacturing is carried out in our factory premises there may be a small amount of cutting and polishing that may need to be done on site during the fitting process. This ensures that the final product is fitted to a very high standard and finish.
What payment methods do you take?+
We take cash, card payments and online transfers. We do not accept cheques.
Does granite scratch?+
Granite is one of the hardest surfaces you can invest in for a work surface and is highly scratch resistant. It is the most durable surface money can buy ideal for use for a kitchen worksurface. That said, it will scratch if an object of the same hardness or harder (granite, quartz, diamond, etc) or and earthenware item it pushed across the surface such as a piece of pottery or glass with a sharp edge or point. Your knives would blunt before they scratched the surface if you intend to use the surface directly as a chopping block however we advice against this, instead use a separate chopping board, this will ensure the surface is kept in mint condition and your knives are kept sharp! This also applies to any quartz surface like Q-stone.
Does granite stain?+
Granite is naturally porous and if left untreated will absorb liquids fairly easily. To protect the surface, we apply a stain-stop treatment both in the factory and again once the job is completed. Some granites need more treatment than others, a rough rule is the lighter the granite, the more treatment is required. We advise that you reseal the surface every 2-3 years in a domestic environment. There are some simple tests we can advise you to check if the seal is still intact. Sealing granite gives it a greater resistance to staining, it does not make it impervious to stains however. If you have any containers that you intent to keep on the surface such as an olive oil bottle, we advise that you stand these on a coaster or in a basket to take any standing liquids off the surface.
In addition, harsh or corrosive substances such as red wine, citric acids or oils will adsorb even through stain treatments is left standing on the surface for a period of time. Generally, to ensure your surfaces are kept in good nick, clean off all surfaces used after food preparation, clear up any standing liquids and keep any liquid containers from standing directly on the surface for long periods of time.
Quartz is different. This is a man made material that is non porous therefore the risk of liquids absorbing is non existent. Corrosive materials listed above would still damage the surface but generally the quartz is much more resistant to staining than granite.
Is granite heat resistant?+
Granite is formed by extreme heat and pressure, combined beneath the earths crust. It can not be affected by heat from a hob or pan. A lit flame placed under the granite will have no melting effect and will not leave any burned or scarred marks. You can put hot pans directly on the surface unless the temperatures are at an extreme. However we do advise that you use pan stands or trivets to stand hot pans on. This is to avoid any damage to the surface cause by something splashed on the underside of the pan and then heated which may cause some staining.
The only other potential side affect attributed to heat is the expansion and contraction but this is only to be considered when using granite for a hearth or in some commercial situations.
Quartz on the other hand does not have the same heat tolerances as granite and can scorch and mark if exposed to direct heat from a flame or hot pan. We would definitely advise on the use of pan stands for any quartz top.
Can granite be repaired?+
Granite is hard, very hard, so in order to chip the surface, it needs to be impacted with another hard object. In the unlikely event that your worktop does chip, we can fill the chip and polish it up so long as the cavity is big enough for the resin to stick into. The resin may appear duller next to the granite surface when polished although if you have the piece that has fallen out of the chip, we can usual glue this back in and polish up. There are a range of specialist chemicals at our disposal that we can use to address any mild staining or oil marks. Should your surface become scratched, it is difficult to polish out without affecting the rest of the surface however not impossible. The best way to avoid damage is prevention, check our other FAQ’s for more advice on care for worktops. Word of advice, take care around dishwasher areas as this is the most common area where pots and dishes impact on the edge of the worktop when loading and unloading.
Can we replace existing worktops with granite?+
Yes although there are a few more factors to consider when replacing existing top rather than starting from new. Do the tiles need to come out? Can the units take a heavier granite top? Can I reuse my appliances? Click here to view our factsheet specifically for replacing existing work surfaces with granite. Granite worktops add value and durability to your kitchen and we will give you all the assistance we can to ensure that you get the right materials and specification to suit your project.
Is granite expensive?+
Not necessarily. We have a vast range of different materials all priced individually so there is definitely a granite surface available no matter the budget. A granite worktop adds value to your property so whether you're looking for a renovation to sell or simply a more durable surface, you don't have to pay over the odds for a granite top.
What is the longest length possible in granite / quartz?+
Granite slabs range from around 2.6m up to 3.0m long. There are occasional batches that can extend to 3.4m but these are few and far between. Quartz slabs are set at a maximum slab length of 3m however some brands offer a longer slab for limited colours. It would be advisable to check with us first about maximum lengths of the materials you had in mind before committing to a design that could limit your options for material choice.