Granite Countertop Installation
There’s nothing like fresh a slab of granite getting ready to make your kitchen 10 times more beautiful. You’ll greatly anticipate the complete look, but you must first have the granite installed. Whether you’re planning on installing it yourself or you’re interested in how the pros do it, here’s what you need to know about granite countertop installation…
Phase by phase:
Create a template
The most important part of granite countertop installation: MEASUREMENT.
All measurements need to be exact so the natural stone can be cut to near perfection. Slight cutting adjustments can be done at the time of installation, but you want to avoid any major adjustments.
The simplest way to measure is by creating a cardboard template. You lay the cardboard over the current kitchen countertop, label the edges and the cutouts — sink and fixture holes — and then cut the cardboard to shape. Once cut, the cardboard should be the exact size of the countertop and the holes should perfectly align with the cutouts.
Measure the cardboard and use those measurements for your granite slab.
Choose your granite and granite edge
Now, for the fun part, you get to select your granite! Before you head to a granite shop, it helps to narrow your search online. There are so many different granite designs, color and patterns that your search may be overwhelming at first. Determine your ideal color — gray, white, black, beige, brown, blue, green — and then go to the shop to find THE ONE.
Besides the slab, you’ll also have to decide on a granite edge. Of course, there will be plenty of options.
Some of the more pristine edge types include bullnose, ogee, and beveled. Though, straight edge and square edge can certainly add sophistication to the kitchen. Lastly, a waterfall edge is unique and can stand out remarkably in a spacious kitchen.
Discuss your options with the fabricator or contractor and inform him/her of your final decisions. If you provide your measurements, the professionals will cut the slab to meet them. This will simplify transportation and installation.
Granite is heavy, heavy enough to where multiple people will be needed to transport it. Your contractor will take care of it, but if you’re transporting on your own, be sure to secure the slab vertically. DO NOT lay it flat. It needs to be strapped down (or, in this case, up); there should be a 0% chance the slab falls.
Once it arrives to your home, have some capable individuals surround the granite, pick it up, and carry it in like you’re carrying a heavy glass table. A broken slab will basically ruin the entire project, so be very cautious.
Place the slab on top of the base cabinets and it will only require slight movement from there on out. Now the granite countertop installation process really kicks in.
Assuming you’re working with pre-cut granite, slide the edges up against the wall for proper fitting. Any unlevelness needs to be resolved through the use of a wet saw. A wet saw will finely cut the granite and will limit the mess. Be sure to wear protective eyewear while sawing.
A saw can be rented from a granite shop of department store. You should only use it if you have experience with one and if you can keep a steady hand.
It’s important that the base cabinets are level as well. If they are not, a shim can be added between the cabinets and the floorboards. Don’t add the shim between the cabinet and the granite or else the edge width and design will be affected.
Make the seams disappear
Slabs are typically three meters in length; therefore, the installers will have to deal with at least one seam. Seams are not noticeable from afar, but they’ll definitely prevent your granite countertops from reaching the stage of perfection. Given the total costs of the project and the time it takes, you deserve a perfect kitchen counter!
To get rid of the seam you’ll need to lay tape over it. Use two-part epoxy and spread it over the seam. Ensure you have an epoxy color that blends with the color of your granite. Once it dries, you can scrape the excess epoxy with the putty knife that you used to spread it.
Countertop contractors often bring a pressurized machine that can effectively join the two edges that make up the seam. The practice is tricky so we recommend you rely on the pros if you’re wanting the job done in the most effective way.
Fasten the countertop to the cabinets
Caulk will be used to fasten the granite countertop to the cabinets. We suggest using an acrylic caulk instead of silicon. Silicon can cause staining, or discoloration to the grain. Let the caulk settle for a few minutes and your granite should be securely in place.
Caulk, along with the many other materials or tools we’ve mentioned thus far, can be purchased from your local department store. Some of the bigger, more advanced items can even be rented. Renting is ideal, as you probably won’t take on too many projects of the same or similar labor.
Create the edges
We discussed the edge types earlier. Creating the finished edges is a job best left for the professionals. The task requires expert use of a saw. The edges may need to be rounded and many of the designs demand precise craftsmanship.
You can leave the edges as is, but the look will suffer. They’re also sharp and point, so they can be a risk to you or any children that might be running around.
Talk to an expert and take a look at the various edging that is available to you. There may be a lot to think about when it comes to granite countertop installation, but the good news is that bad choices are very difficult to come by. You’ll find the right granite for your kitchen, without a doubt. The installation will be the finishing touch to the kitchen you dreamt up long ago.
Nadine Floor Company
Nadine Floor Company is your route to flawless granite countertop installation. Our experts have installed so many countertops that the process is purely second nature. We’ll help you choose your granite, transport your granite, and install your granite. Once it’s all said and done, your kitchen will look incredible!