There is a lot of demand within the natural stone market, leading to it being valued at $35,120.1 million worldwide as of 2018. Indeed, this value is expected to grow over time, projected to reach $48,068.4 million by 2026. Natural stone has been used to accent patios, outdoor kitchens, fireplaces, and countertops as well as residential tile. In fact, natural stone slabs have become so popular that there are many different types of natural stone for homeowners to choose between.
But one type of natural stone seems to reign supreme for many homeowners seeking out residential tile and stone slabs for countertops. This is specifically granite, notably for its affordability, hardness, and varied colors and patterns. With that being said, as popular as natural granite slabs are within the natural stone market, there are a lot of things that homeowners don’t know about this stone. With that in mind, let’s explore some of the things you might not know about granite.
1. It’s Been Used to Build Wonders
You may be thinking about granite in terms of residential tile and stone slabs for your home, but it’s actually been used to create some of the world’s most remarkable landmarks. In fact, granite has been used to build since the Ancient Egyptians were in power. Additionally, Mount Rushmore was constructed in part using granite, and the Statue of Liberty is only standing now because its base is granite. Natural granite can also be found across the world in various national parks, like Yosemite National Park in the United States. Granite quarries can also be found in Brazil and China, and are rather beautiful if unexpected sources of the stone.
2. It’s Incredibly Hard
Many homeowners don’t realize that the sources of residential tile and stone slabs that they explore are comparatively not that hard. Marble, for example, is known as a type of luxury stone that, though beautiful, is easily damaged. Granite is different in that it looks great while also being quite tough. It’s actually one of the hardest materials in the world, ranking an eight on the Mohs scale. The Mohs scale ranks the hardness of mineral materials on a scale of one to 10, attesting to the hardness of granite. Additionally, granite is hard enough to damage knives. This is why homeowners with granite countertops are advised to use cutting boards if they don’t want their knives to be broken or worn away.
3. It’s Heat Resistant
Another advantage of granite, especially in the kitchen, is that it’s quite heat resistant. When hot pans and skillets are placed on granite countertops, they generally will not be harmed or burned in any way. Nonetheless, it’s important for you to use trivets and hot pads to prevent heat damage.
4. It’s Easily Cared For
Perhaps one of the main reasons why granite is a primary source of residential tile and stone slabs is that it’s rather easy to maintain. Generally, granite simply needs to be cleaned regularly as you would clean most tiles and countertops. It also needs to be re-sealed regularly, which will ensure that there isn’t any damage from liquids. Usually, most types of granite only need to be re-sealed once a year.
5. Granite Is Made of Different Materials
Granite is actually not a simple rock that exists independently. Rather, it’s made of other materials, contributing to its beautiful and unique appearance. The most common types of rock that contribute to granite are quartz and feldspar.
6. Granite Is An Igneous Rock
While granite is made up of different materials, it remains a type of igneous rock. Igneous rock comes from beneath the earth’s surface and is essentially made up of magma. Magma cools and solidifies over time, turning into different types of rock including granite. This is in contrast to limestone, which is a sedimentary rock, and marble, which is a metamorphic rock.
It’s no wonder that granite is so popular among homeowners. Relatively low maintenance and remarkable to look at, this type of material is both functional and aesthetically pleasing. Additionally, you can use granite throughout your kitchen and bathrooms. What’s not to like?