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Basic Considerations When Installing Granite Countertops

Once you’ve made the decision to include granite countertops or floors in your home décor, you may be a little concerned about what to expect during the installation process. After all, this is a great investment in your home, and you want to know you’ve made a good decision. Assuming you’ve hired a professional granite installation company, you can be sure that your finished countertops or floors will be everything you envisioned.

However, even if you know you’ve done your homework on your granite selection and installer, you may still have some concerns. To put your mind at ease, here are some guarantees regarding the durability and strength of granite.

Granite Installation Considerations

  • Granite countertops are one of the hardest surfaces you can use in your home, yet they are easier for your cabinets to support than the weight of the average person standing on the counter.
  • Granite countertops are measured the same as any other countertop in your home; however, they cannot be measured until the cabinet below has been installed. Also, make sure that the manufacturer that is installing them performs the measurement.
  • Make sure you / the installer allow enough time to finish the project. It usually takes 3-4 weeks from the date the measurements were taken. If there is any problem during installation, this time will be longer.
  • Granite slabs are typically sold in 10 foot rectangular sections, so it is not uncommon to have at least one seam. Also, using an “L” shape is not uncommon as it is more cost effective and works best for corners. When possible, seams on bathroom countertops will be in the sink so that the seam is less noticeable. Granite may or may not be installed over plywood, it is up to the installer to determine if it can be done based on your specific situation.

Sewing

There are several things to keep in mind about the appearance of granite. After all, they are part of the overall look and can add character and beauty to the finished product.

  • The seams are always done on a straight edge and sealed with a small bead of silicone. The silicone bead will be between 1/16 and 1/8 of an inch.
  • Granite slabs vary in thickness, so to avoid an uneven joint, installers use shims on the bottom of the top to level the top surface. This is a normal part of the installation process, so don’t panic if you notice shims, in case you decide to observe part of the installation process.
  • It is standard practice to have some type of backsplash when you have granite countertops. Typically the backsplash is at least 4 inches tall, although it can be taller if desired.
  • Most granite countertops will have a 1-inch overhang, but this can be modified if desired.

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