Can my granite be saved?

MizLizzieSeptember 5, 2012

I'm trying to upgrade my contractor kitchen and guilt is setting in. Seven years ago I had granite countertops put in along with a new DW and slide-in range. Now my white laminate cabinets are yellowing, peeling and hinges are popping. House is 16 years old. Plus, I want lots of drawers, not doors. (Lesson here is just do it right the first time.)

So, I got a quote on refacing and soon realized I could just get new cabs for not much more. That led to fantasies about an induction cooktop and a set of wall ovens. Then I went granite shopping. But I really don't see anything I like much better than what I have. I can't find an undermount sink l like better, either. (Kohler cast iron) If I had one more hole drilled out, I could even have my fantasy faucet in my current config.

Sis points out that if I gave up the cooktop/wall ovens and just bought the Electrolux induction slide-in with 2 ovens, I could keep my granite L area. Is that realistically possible? It has a seam at mid-sink, and one behind the slide-in range. Stone yard says they've got lots of Giallo Ornamental they can match for the new island. But I do want my 4" granite backsplash ripped off. I guess they put that on because the old Formica had one, with tile above it. And I do need an extra hole drilled out into my sink. There's a hole in the sink that was never drilled through.

FWIW, I attach a crappy pic of the L area. The part you canâÂÂt see to the left of the paper towels is where the ovens would go.

Am I just asking for heartache in trying this? Remove granite with sink intact, rip off backsplash and restore that area, then drill out a 5th sink hole and put it all back on again? Would it all have to be hauled somewhere, or is that an on-site thing? Just doing my due diligence here.

And I have to admit, in looking at induction cooktops, I see reviews are mixed and every danged one has a different cut-out measurement. I fear getting a lemon, and then having a hole I can't match. The retribution of the Frugality Gods, my husband calls it.

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If everything hinges on reusing the granite, I would want to know why. It is not an exotic or super expensive material. If the cost of replacing some or all of the granite would push everything over the edge, then I'd look for other options. You may not save that much when you consider the labor cost of taking extra care with the stone and demo trying to save it, clean it up and prep for reinstall -- and that's if you are 100% successful in getting it out whole. There is also some risk of breakage in the handling while cleaning and reinstalling. The best you will get on reusing stone counters is a definite maybe with no guarantees. My fabricator told me stories -- successes, failures and one very large exotic surface kitchen that all came out perfectly except for one piece. He said you just don't know until you try because there can be fissures in the stone that are not apparent until you put the stress on it to try to remove it. You have to be prepared to face the possible cost of starting over on counters, looking for a new island top and/or splash -- as well as other unexpected costs of any reno.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 10:04AM
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Thanks for your insight. Nothing hinges on reusing the granite. I just hate to toss it and buy more of the same thing just to get a wall oven, as much as I might like to have one. At least if it breaks coming out, there is a stoneyard down the street with a mountain of it. I just didn't know if it was possible at all, or if the splash could be removed or the sink redrilled.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 10:30AM
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I too will face your same problem some day. I kept my old cabinets, which are in good condition, and added granite. If I ever replace my cabinets, I would want to keep my granite too. I spent right at $3000 so it's not something I want to throw away!

I think it's possible to try and save your granite. Of course, there is no gaurentee it will come out perfectly and be put back on perfectly. The good news is, it looks like you have a very popular granite that could be found again. If you can save some pieces then you could probably match up any pieces that break or don't come out in one piece. Of course, granite slabs are all slightly different so I wouldn't say any new pieces would match perfectly but again, I think your slabs would be easier to match.

If you like your granite then try to save it. Call up the company that installed it and see what they say....

Good luck

Here is a link that might be useful: My granite install

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 10:40AM
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I get what you are saying Miz but I agree with Lascats. Is there a place that you can repurpose it? A mud room or laundry room counter, a bathroom vanity?

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 10:43AM
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Well, hmm. I could use it when I reno the laundry room. I had planned to wait on that, but . . . tempting. Using it up in the laundry would also allow me to keep the 1" backsplash and the existing faucet config. I would be able to move my 36" sink base and my 36" Lazy Susan corner upstairs, too.

HOWEVER, this would require FOUR cuts across the width of the granite, and would require one new seam in the spot over my existing DW. Basically, I'd cut the granite to the immediate left of the sink, to the immediate right of the corner cabinet. And then cut out one 10.5" section over top of where the existing DW sits and seam it up. I need 91" of countertop in the laundry, ending in just enough room for the lazy susan to turn.

This certainly salvages a lot of material that would otherwise have been trashed, if I can get the granite people to make those 4 cuts and haul it all up a flight of stairs relatively intact, and seam it. If there was a flub, I'd have the top of the island to patch with. But it is a laundry room, and an extra seam or nick would not ruin my day.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 11:40AM
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Do you need two ovens? Both the GE and Electrolux induction slide ins are very good, though the elux install is very specific. There is a great thread about them both in Appliances.

What about using one of those models and an OTR Advantium? I've read a lot of good things about the 240V (120 seems underpowered and not as loved) and am looking forward to putting an Advantium in when I remodel in May. There may be other OTR speed oven options too, and I know I saw a MW/Convection oven from GE somewhere.

This way you can upgrade your range and get a second oven but not have to touch the granite. And btw, I LOVE our induction. Many good threads here and in appliances if you are interested.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 8:26PM
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Thanks to everyone for good advice. I think the best thing to do is to go back to the plan of refacing my existing L area and leave everything there undisturbed. I can live without the ovens. Then I will feel less guilty about tearing out the kitchen island and useless desk area for a complete rebuild on the other side of the kitchen. My contractor says he can reface with Conestoga doors and veneer on the L and build the rest of the kitchen new with Conestoga doors and carcasses, and that no one will know the difference.

He says will then can take the granite slab off the island and have it recut to go into my new china cupboard area that will replace the desk area. The desk slab is small and useless anyway unless I keep it for the powder room . . . Lord, it never ends! But I think this is a good plan that will allow me to spend foolishly on the island which I think will be topped with Crema Marfil marble to kind of coordinate with the GO granite.

So, that's the way I'm leaning. I will console myself with a nice microwave drawer in the kitchen island and maybe even get that hideously expensive Waterstone faucet I've been lusting after. Again, I appreciate everyone's advice.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2012 at 8:58PM
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I really like your granite, well your whole kitchen, actually. I would probably select new doors instead of tearing out the cabinetry. Is there space to install another oven above the one you now have?

    Bookmark   September 8, 2012 at 9:17PM
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Just wanted to chime in and say that your granite is very pretty.
I love the edge profile on your island.
I can see why you want to keep your granite!

    Bookmark   September 8, 2012 at 9:45PM
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Thanks, guys. If I just swap out my old KitchenAid range with the Electrolux induction, it has two ovens -- the regular one up top, and a thin one on the floor where the warming oven would ordinarily be. With the microwave drawer, that should be enough.

I do love my granite. It's kind of plain, but the room opens wide onto our family room which is uber-conservative. Can't take too much verve in the kitchen. Ha.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2012 at 10:53PM
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