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Slate Countertop Care & Maintenance

Updated:2014-04-17 11:53:44

The soft grays, reds, purples and greens of different types of slate give countertops made with the fine, metamorphic rock a warm, natural richness. Cooks will appreciate a slate countertop's ability to resist stains as well as the ease of which minimal surface damage is mended. Follow a handful of care and maintenance tips to ensure the appearance and longevity of your slate countertop.

                                                     

 Cleaning

Follow general cleaning requirements that prevent staining and surface dulling. Wipe up spills immediately with a soft sponge, even if a spill is just water. Dust the countertop daily. Dust particles left to accumulate rub against the countertop and create microscopic scratches. Over time, the scratches will build up and lead to a marred, clouded finish. Wash the slate countertop regularly with a damp sponge and mild, non-acidic, non-antibacterial cleaner.

Polishing

 Maintain the slate countertop's lustrous sheen by routinely polishing it with mineral oil. To polish, pour a dollop of mineral oil onto the countertop's surface. Smear the oil around the countertop, using a soft, cotton cloth. Buff the oil into the slate, working in circular motions. Continuously fold over the cloth to expose a dry portion. Apply mineral oil weekly for the first few months after installation, then once a month thereafter.

Scratches

Softness commonly characterizes slate, meaning slate countertops are prone to scratching. However, the softness also makes scratch removal simple. If a pot was dragged across the countertop, leaving a line etched in the slate, buff away the scratch with 120-grit sandpaper. Once the scratch is removed, wipe away the sanding particles, then moisten the area and finish-sand with 220-grit wet/dry sandpaper. Wipe away the particles again and rub the area with mineral oil to repolish.
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