Granite can be characterized as strong, durable, unique, elegant, hard and beautiful. It is one of the oldest natural stones in existence, and it offers an infinite number of patterns and colors to select from. It has long symbolized the feeling of longevity and strength. Granite is a very versatile stone, which can find a home in a modern penthouse design or on a horse farm in a stone cottage. It can be as eye-catching, or as subtle as any design plan dictates.
There was a point in time when granite was not affordable for most, but now it is referred to as an affordable luxury. Pricing has come down, and now it appeals to the masses. Granite is composed of small and large grains of crystals. Granum is the latin word that granite is derived from, meaning grain. It starts out as a molten mass of magma , and as it cools, granite is formed. The main minerals in granite are silicates , feldspar , and quartz. It is important to note that the most important mineral in granite is quartz.
Most granite is comprised of 40 to 60 percent quartz. Not to be confused with the manmade stones, commonly referred to as Quartz. Our sister company, United Granite is located in Maryland installs and manufactures countertops, fireplace surrounds, and more. Whether you choose marble, granite, cambria, zodiaq, onyx or, silestone to name a few, United Granite is the place to visit.
When making a comparison between granite and marble, there are a number of differences to note. Granite has a greater resistance to acid, and therefore etching is less likely to occur. Various cleaning products, vinegar, lemon, ketchup, etc. can be culprits of this. It is also virtually scratch proof. You can cut directly on the surface and it will not harm the stone. Your knives will actually become dull from doing so. Another important thing to note is that keys, ceramic dishes, utensils, etc. will not scratch the surface, unlike marble.
In addition, granite can withstand temperatures of up to 1200 degrees Fahrenheit, so no worries about burn marks on the countertop. One thing you should be mindful of however, are the seams in your countertops. You should make a point of not putting a hot saucepan or anything comparable directly on a seam. This can compromise and possibly weaken them. A final characteristic worth mentioning is that granite has a lower water absorption rate than marble and limestone. The darker granites have smaller crystals, making it harder for liquids to penetrate the stone. On the other hand, the lighter granites have larger crystals, making it easier to penetrate.
All granite should be sealed, but it is especially important with the lighter colored stones. .Because of granites durability, it is most often used for countertops and monuments. Not only is it used for countertops on a bar and in kitchens, but it is also found in shower surrounds, used for flooring, and can be a stunning material used for fireplaces. Outside, you will find it used for columns and fountains. As mentioned above, granite is available in an infinite number of colors and patterns. It is probably best to narrow down your color selection, and then look at the patterns available within that color range. You can choose from, simple whites, golden yellows, exotic reds, ocean blues, forest greens, chocolaty browns to charcoal grays and jet blacks.
Granite can be consistent, or speckled, while other types might have movement or veining running through them. Ultimately the color and pattern you choose will create the unique character and atmosphere you want for your space. There is no doubt that granite is one of the most durable stones you can put in your home..Granite is also used for other purposes such as flooring, thresholds, bath tub surrounds, kitchen peninsula and islands, shower seats. We are here to help in VA and MD with any granite project that you have.
Fairfax Marble has the best natural stone selection in the mid-Atlantic. Visit one of the Virginia locations if you are looking for granite countertops in Virginia
Please use this material index as a reference to some of the most common stones we offer. Due to the nature of the products, color selection varies per location and as we frequently receive new shipments of slabs, some colors may not be available for viewing on this website.
Please visit our slab showrooms to see our latest inventory.