Granite worktops make an elegant addition to any kitchen. However, unlike laminate, this premium natural stone is more complex to install and requires special treatment.
It is always best to hire a professional fitter to install granite worktops to ensure you end up with a professional, pristine finish. If you are wondering how granite worktops are attached, this post will explore how they are fitted to get the best results.
How Granite Worktops are Fitted
The process of fitting granite worktops follows a specific order to ensure they are measured correctly and secured seamlessly.
- Choosing your Granite Worktop
Once you have chosen the colour and design of granite to complement your kitchen design, you will get a quote based on your initial planned measurements. At this stage, you will find out how many slabs you need.
However, you will need to wait until your cabinets have been installed before getting more precise measurements.
Your cabinets must be in situ and secured securely to the walls and floor to ensure they are level. For an under-mount sink, you will measure exactly where you want it placed.
You will also need to decide what kind of edging you prefer and how much overhang is required. A wider overhang can be used as a breakfast bar, but anything over 12 inches will require additional brackets.
You may want to include a splashback around the sink area or even over a windowsill, and you may need cutouts for sockets or a hob.
It is best at this point to confirm measurements so the right amount of granite will be ordered. A templater will measure and create a template so that your granite slabs are cut precisely to size with all cutouts included.
Professionals can determine where the best place for joins is to give a seamless effect.
You may wish to save money by fitting your granite worktop yourself. However, according to DIY Doctor, granite is a heavy, strong material, so it is more challenging than fitting laminate.
2. Supporting your Granite Worktops
Granite is a heavy material, so it may be crucial to install extra supports such as plywood around the tops of the cabinets to support the weight, especially in corners.
It is worth the fitter checking that everything is level before drilling into the cabinets. The support wood must be adequately secured to ensure the granite slabs are safely held in place.
3. Attaching your Granite Worktops
Granite slabs are extremely heavy. It is usual to have a two-person team to handle them safely.
Each slab will be placed over the worktop and manoeuvred carefully into place. Adjoining slabs must be pushed together tightly to create tight seams.
You may think granite would not need securing due to its weight, as it will sit nicely on your cabinets. However, it is usual to use products to seal the granite to the surface.
Once it has been confirmed that the worktop fits perfectly, it will be temporarily raised to place silicone sealant around the edges of the plywood. A bead of caulk will then be run around the seams to ensure that all the joins are watertight.
How to Ensure You Get a Good Finish on Your Granite Worktop
There are a number of issues you should consider to ensure that your granite installation goes well.
Quality of your granite worktop
The final finish will depend enormously on the quality of the granite you choose.
There are some simple ways to determine the quality of granite.
- Remember that the lowest price may not be the best quality.
- Look at the appearance of the granite. As it is a natural stone, the pattern will not be uniform.
- Granite is naturally porous and will absorb water until it has been sealed.
- When tapped with a hammer, a good quality slab will produce a ringing sound.
Choose an Experienced Fitter
It is crucial to choose a fitter that has experience working with granite. This will ensure you do not waste your money on premium materials only to have an inferior fit.
Going with a specialist like Mr Worktop Fitter means you can guarantee quality workmanship.
Prepare Your Cabinets for Granite Installation
Due to the weight of the granite, you may need to apply plywood to give additional support. Cabinets must also be level before installation.
The templater will explain if any additional support is required on your cabinets.
When attaching granite worktops, silicone sealant should be applied first. Seams can be made watertight with a bead of caulk.
How to Look After Your Granite Worktops
Once you have attached your granite worktops, it makes sense to take care of them. To keep your granite worktops attached and looking their best, it is vital to look after them properly.
Although granite has excellent heat resistance, it is best to keep hot pots away from the surface by protecting them with mats. Granite is robust but can be chipped, so take care not to drop heavy objects.
Although granite is porous, it will usually come pre-sealed, and sealant can be reapplied every six months or as your supplier recommends to keep the worktops protected.
If you are looking for granite worktops or have a granite worktop that you want fitting, get in touch with us at Mr Worktop Fitter.