help - etching in new granite countertops??

kellycalJuly 16, 2011

We recently renovated our kitchen and used a granite or what we were told was quartzite actually. It's gorgeous, mostly grey color. (see link below for slab) We have only been using it a few months and when the light shines right we started to notice the top finish is showing spots and rings where there is etching. I actually see a pattern that matches exactly the shape of my stainless steel cheese grater??? The installer looked and said it was etching. I'm told we have to have the tops repolished but that won't solve the problem, it will just try to get out the existing etching.

Has anyone ever heard of this happening? We didn't have this problem with our granite at our old house. I didn't expect it and I'm really disappointed. (We don't use anything strange to clean it or in our cooking or preparing foods.)

Any advice at all is appreciated.

Here is a link that might be useful: granite slab

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That looks an awful lot like Super White or Moon Night quartzite. Very lovely!

Was it sealed? What was used for sealing?

    Bookmark   July 16, 2011 at 5:19PM
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We got the idea for this granite from garden web...I think it was called superwhite here and I have seen similar called Moon night!

We are told is it sealed. We were told that in some cases at the time of quarry, the stone is sealed with something before it ships and that could be the cause...but I don't know what to think. Fabricator thinks repolish could help...but I certainly don't feel this stone could be mistaken for marble. It has all the qualities of quartzite...sigh. The smallest things seem to etch that shine right off.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2011 at 5:38PM
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I've posted a link to a thread (which itself links to another thread) which discusses different types of sealants. It may be that silicone-based sealants are more effective for quartzite? 511 Porous Plus seems to have worked very well for many with quartzite counters.

Here is a link that might be useful: link on quartzite sealant

    Bookmark   July 16, 2011 at 6:07PM
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So your fabricator didn't put any type of sealer on it himself at all? I'd hesitate to buy the story that it was probably sealed by someone else and not really know for sure. I'm no expert, but it might be good for him to grind it down to a polish, or considering having it honed which would show less etching if it did occur again, and have it sealed for sure by your fabricator with the right product. Slush just had her Moon Night installed. You might check with her to see what was used to seal her stone and if she is happy with it.

But....every slab is different. Just because Slush's didn't etch doesn't mean yours won't. Frustrating isn't it? Sorry you're having this problem.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2011 at 6:19PM
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thank you, I'm going to confirm what type of sealant is used by the fabricator...then go from there.

we have a honed marble master bath countertop that shows a lot of soap oil stains etc, but i still love the look and kind of expected it to show some wear. i didn't think simple hand soap would do it, but that might be the case. i need to find out what sealant if any was used on that carrera too.

i'll be back! any other ideas are helpful. i hate to have all these counters repolished, especially the surrounding counters...the island shows the most etching because it is what gets used the most.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2011 at 6:51PM
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Sorry you are having issues. Not sure if my experience is helpful at all to you because I don't have a polished finish. I just posted this on another thread. Copying it here:

We had Moon Night Granite (our place called it granite but others call it Super White Quartzite), installed a few weeks ago. It's also considered a "honed" finish - but it's NOT smooth and I thought honed was always smooth. It's soft to the touch because of the matte finish, and has a lot of really cool texture along the veining. Our fabricator had never worked with it before, but he did say it was a very hard stone for him to cut. Harder than any other granite he's worked with. I sealed it myself with the DuPoint Premium Stone Sealer you get from Lowes. I had tried the 511 Sealer Enhancer on a corner spot but didn't like how much it darkened the stone so I returned it. After sealing it with 2 coats, we left a red wine spill overnight without knowing and it wiped right up with a wet sponge the next day leaving no stain at all. It also has not etched at all. At first I was completely paranoid about it, because I could not find a single person who has a counter-top like mine (with the matte finish and texture) so I was treating it like marble, but after seeing how the red wine cleaned up and not having a single dark water spot issue, I'm hoping we will not have a problem with it.

This photo is before I sealed it. The fabricator wiped it down with acetone before he left.
From Moon Night Granite Install From Berta Install

    Bookmark   July 17, 2011 at 9:50PM
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I know I have read in the past that some quartzite owners had etching problems ( sealant will not help etching, only staining) I think one poster might have said some lighter spots of quartzite might contain talc? I can not find the thread but I did find one of Sfmomoxo thread and I remember her posting more about sealant probs changing the color of her stone too. Soap, altho basic, do often contain citric acid and can etch marble....Hope they fade for you.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 11:21AM
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slush - it's starting to sound like honed is the way to go with this type of material...your stone looks exactly like ours so I know we are talking about the same type of granite/quartzite! It looks great and I love the honed look. In hindsight maybe we should have done honed and then had it sealed with the proper sealer. Taking off that sealant that may have been applied at the time of quarry. But right now it's sitting in my kitchen looking gorgeous aside from the etching! I'm hesitant to have the fabricator come back to repolish which is what they have offered to try. It would be messy and it's sounding like it might not actually solve or problem. Thanks for the photos and the info!

    Bookmark   July 23, 2011 at 10:06AM
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I just got an email from the supplier where we're looking at some White Pearl quartzite (labelled as granite). At first he dismissed my concerns, then when I pointed out it's technically quartzite, not granite, said that quartzite needs to be sealed 7 times! versus 1 to 2 times for granite. Haven't heard that before, but if it's true it may explain a lot. Sochi has a quartzite that others have had problems with. She hasn't had any and her fabricator sealed it with Granquartz 413S, an industrial silicon sealer. She may have more info. that will help.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2011 at 5:16PM
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I believe that there is a marble that is very similar in pattern and coloration to the white quartzite (which is often called super white). I realized this at Mondail because they have both. I've forgotten the name of the marble. Is there any chance that they mislabeled them at the stoneyard?

    Bookmark   July 24, 2011 at 6:56PM
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