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Installing Granite Countertops

Easy-peasy DIY Tips on Installing Granite Countertops

Installing a raw granite slab as a kitchen counter requires special tools and skills. Read on to know how to install the beautiful and expensive granite countertops which make your kitchen an aesthetic delight.
DecorDezine Staff
Last Updated: Dec 09, 2017
Beautiful, unique, and durable, granite countertops add an aura of elegance to your home and kitchen. This resilient material is naturally resistant to cracks and cuts, thus making it a preferred choice for thousands of homeowners. Granite countertops are also fairly easy to maintain unlike the Formica or plastic counterparts.

Formed over million of years from the molten rock under the earth's surface, granite is made of interlocking mineral crystals, most common among them being feldspar and quartz which may vary with every granite piece. Thus, for your granite countertop, there is a huge selection of material, available in different colors and unique textures. Once you have chosen the granite slab of your choice, you are faced with the dilemma of installing the kitchen countertop yourself or contracting the job to professionals. Whatever your choice may be, the process of installing a granite countertop is labor intensive and requires precise skills.

Installing a Granite Countertop
  1. Once you have made the decision for the perfect slab for your countertop, the granite retailer will make a template for calculating the cuts for the sink and the cook tops. The template is made by putting forth thin strips of plywood on the existing countertop and gluing them with a hot metal adhesive. This rigid pattern can then be lifted off in one piece, thus providing precise sizes.
  2. The template is then taken to the fabrication plant where it is laid on the slab and traced. The next step involves cutting the slab with a laser diamond blade saw. A stone worker then polishes and grinds the edges of the stone.
  3. Once the slab for the countertop is ready, it is necessary to remove the preexisting counters, sink, and dishwasher.
  4. If there are any appliances in the way, such as the dishwasher, they have to be removed. Plumbing and electrical switches have to be disconnected for removing the appliance. Once the old countertop has been removed, the appliances are placed back before the new countertop is installed.
  5. Since granite countertops are extremely heavy and expensive, it is important that the skilled craftsmen do the final fitting and trimming. Most countertops have seams, so whenever possible they should be placed at well supported areas of the cabinetry. While placing the slabs, silicone is applied between the two slabs to enable expansion and contraction of the material. To hold the granite in place, a special epoxy is used, which when placed in the seam, should be mixed with colored resin to bring it to the color of the granite. After the epoxy has set up, remove the excess epoxy with the blade, and apply the sealer to the surface.
  6. Once the countertop is set, holes are drilled for the faucet and the soap dispenser. The backsplash is also fitted and placed as designed.
While placing the countertop, special care must be taken to reinforce the base cabinets and the leveling of the slab. Failure to do this might cause the slab to break with repeated use. Now that your granite countertop is installed, you can just stand back and enjoy this beautiful work of art which has transformed your dull, listless kitchen into a designer's delight fit for an upscale home.