Granite Countertop - Adding Elegance To Your Kitchen Or Bathroom

A polished granite countertop adds an element of elegance to any kitchen or bathroom. The polished surfaces bring dimension and beauty to these two functional rooms in many homes. When choosing countertops, homeowners will probably consider many factors such as aesthetics and functionality, but few will consider the origin of the material.

Granite comes from the very heart of the Earth. It begins as red-hot magma, a fiery liquid that pushes up from deep beneath Earth's crust. A slow cooling period, sometimes spanning millions of years, produces the rock that will eventually pierce through the overlaying crust. The rock that emerges is one of the hardest known and is unique to the planet Earth.

Areas where large supplies of granite can be found are called quarries. These quarries are the source of all the granite that will eventually become that lovely countertop. India, the Southeastern United States, and Vermont house some of the largest granite mines in the world.

Long before granite was mined to become a part of interior furniture, it was used as material for important or sacred buildings. In Egypt, the Pharaohs chose granite as a building material for the massive pyramids that would become their tombs. These monuments that celebrated their lives and guided them through the afterlife needed to be built of something that would last. In eleventh century India, Hindu gods were honored with temples made of this durable rock.

Today, granite is still used for structures that need to last longer than the average structure. Many tombstones are made of granite, ensuring the memories of loved ones will be well preserved. Structural properties allow granite to nicely weather the elements, making it an increasingly popular choice for the erection of public monuments. The most popular modern use for granite is to furnish the interiors of homes, particularly countertops.

Before granite becomes a countertop, it is taken out of a quarry in a large rectangular block. The means of extracting the marble varies, but the most common methods are drilling and blasting. Once the marble has been removed from the ground, it is carefully transported to a facility that uses specialized machinery to cut the hard rock into uniformly sized slabs. The slabs are sanded and polished to perfection, taking special care to ensure that there are no imperfections on the surface. Any customizations or carved details are completed at this stage. The granite is now ready to be installed in a home, a million-year-old piece of history fit for the Pharaohs.

Find out more about adding a granite countertop in your home.

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