What Are Granite Benchtops?

What Are Granite Benchtops?

If you like the idea of benchtops which are both beautiful and durable, granite is an ideal choice—but what are granite benchtops and how can you tell if they’re the right option for your renovation?

Here we’ll fill you in on everything you need to know about granite benchtops so you can make an informed decision.

Key Summary

Granite benchtops are a popular natural stone benchtop option that comes in a wide variety of colours and patterns.

what are granite benchtops

What Are Granite Benchtops?

Granite is a type of intrusive igneous rock which is formed when magma or molten lava cools and solidifies under the pressure of the earth’s surface. 

Comprised of a combination of materials like quartz, mica, silica, feldspar and trace minerals, granite appears in varying colours, swirls and patterns, making it a highly versatile and much-coveted option for a variety of interiors projects, including kitchen and vanity benchtops.

Considered to be a very durable yet luxurious benchtop material, granite is a great option if you want to add a unique touch of sophistication and style to your renovation.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Granite Benchtops?

Like most building materials, there are various pros and cons to granite benchtops that should be considered before deciding if it is the right choice for your renovation. 

Here’s a summary of the key benefits and downsides of granite benchtops.

The Benefits

  • One of the most durable benchtop materials – Granite is extremely strong and scratch resistant, it can comfortably tolerate exposure to both hot and cold temperatures and it won’t fade easily in sunlight. Provided it is sealed properly and regularly, it is also very low-maintenance and resistant to moisture and acidic substances. Its typically detailed appearance also means it will be difficult to spot any signs of wear and tear. 
  • Hygienic and easy to clean – Less porous compared to other types of natural stone, granite is a hygienic benchtop option that is very easy to clean, generally only requiring a regular wipe down with a damp, clean cloth.
  • Wide variety of colours and patterns – Available in an extensive variety of colours, patterns and textures, there’s a type of granite to suit almost any purpose or design direction. 
  • Timeless and luxurious: The quality and aesthetic properties of granite exude a sense of luxury that never ages. It adds a unique touch of beauty and style to any room and often draws attention as the centrepiece of the space. 

The Downsides

  • More expensive compared to some alternatives – Granite is one of the most expensive benchtop options, typically ranging in price from around $700 to $2,000 per square metre. 
  • Significant variance between slabs – As granite is a natural stone, each piece is completely different and unique. While samples will provide you with a general idea of what the stone will look like, the piece of stone that is installed may vary slightly from what you expected. If you are very particular, it’s worth visiting the stone supplier to select the individual slab/s of stone you want.
  • Requires sealing – Granite is a porous material, which means it can absorb spills (which could lead to permanent stains) and accumulate bacteria over time if it is not properly and regularly sealed.
  • Susceptible to chipping – While granite is very strong and hard-wearing, it can be prone to chipping or cracking (particularly around square corners and edges) if a heavy object is dropped on its surface.

What Colours and Patterns Do Granite Benchtops Come In?

Granite will typically feature a predominant colour along with different flecks or ribbons of complimentary colours that give it a very distinctive appearance.

While black, grey, white, blue, brown and gold varieties of granite tend to be the most popular options for benchtops, you can also source granite in other colours including green, burgundy, red and yellow. 

The individual appearance of each slab of granite can also vary significantly. While some have a strong swirled appearance, others can have a more solid, speckled or even sparkly texture.

How Often Do Granite Benchtops Require Sealing?

Granite benchtops are typically sealed before installation and shouldn’t require re-sealing for at least one year. 

While many suppliers recommend sealing every 12 months, the sealing requirements will vary depending on the individual piece of stone. Some granite benchtops can comfortably go as long as 5 to 10 years without needing resealing while still looking great!

What’s the Difference Between Granite and Caesarstone?

The key difference between granite and Caesarstone benchtops is that while granite is a natural stone which is quarried directly from the earth, Caesarstone (and other brands such as Silestone, SmartStone and Quantum Quartz) are types of reconstituted or engineered stone. 

Reconstituted stone is produced by mixing crushed natural stone (such as quartz or granite) with resin and other materials to produce a material that looks and performs similarly to natural stone but for a more affordable price. 

Granite Vs Marble: How Do They Compare?

If you love the idea of natural stone, you’re no doubt comparing how granite and marble stack up against each other. Marble and granite are arguably the most popular natural stone benchtop options, however, there are some differences between the two materials. 

While both types of stone are on the costlier end of the price spectrum and cost will largely depend on your individual choice of design and pattern, marble typically costs slightly more than granite. In terms of durability, again, both options are relatively comparable. However, granite is slightly denser and less porous than marble, meaning it may be able to last a little longer between sealing. 

Both granite and marble are excellent and luxurious choices for benchtops and it will ultimately come down to what most appeals to you.

Planning a Renovation at Your Home? The Team at Mint Can Help

If you’re looking for expert advice on how best to incorporate granite benchtops into your renovation designs or if you want some help creating your dream kitchen or bathroom, contact the team Mint.

With decades worth of experience in designing award-winning kitchens and bathrooms across Melbourne, we’d love to show you what we can do. Book a showroom tour at one of our locations near you today.

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