Is natural stone a perfect material?
Granite has a crystalline, granular structure with a range of colors and consists mostly of quartz, feldspars, and minerals. Due to the fact that granite was formed over millions of years it has plenty of strength, permanence, solidity, quality, and hardness. Different types of stones look different because they are different in composition and how they were formed deep in the Earth. Therefore, the surface finish and properties of each type of natural stone will differ. It is normal for most natural stones to have natural characteristics such as small fissures, color variations, light surface pitting, resin filled occlusions, and small variances on the lustre of finish or "dull spots".
A stone countertop will not be flawless. Some natural stones are near perfect -Such as the hard quartzites. Some granite and marble species have less natural characteristics than others. However, most natural stones form a hard and beautiful surface that is inert (will not self-change).
Some granites exhibit more pits, fissures and dull spots than others, and they may also be more or less visible depending on the lighting conditions present in a room. Pits, fissures and dull spots do not compromise the integrity of the granite in any way; they are natural characteristics and will not impair the function or durability of the material. They are an expression of nature.
Fissures/ Hairline Cracks:
Fissures are natural cracks, and many beautiful stones (most marbles and granites like Bianco Antico, Antique Brown, Delicatus, and some quartzites) are naturally fissured. Granite, Quartzite, and Marble can come fissured from the Earth and cannot be "unfissured". When stone slabs/sheets are cut from the large blocks, most surface flaws are repaired by the slab manufacturer with resins to repair and improve the surface finish. The material will still remain fissured inside which causes some of the interesting surface features of stone.
It is possible for a fissure to open up. If so, a resin is applied to seal the open fissure. The resin forms a strong bond. During fabrication, steel or fiberglass bars are often inserted inside the stone along the edge to provide extra strength. There is no need to worry that fissures will cause the stone to fall apart at the sink or anywhere else.
“Pitting” is normally due to the fact that granite is a natural product that has crystalline structure, sometimes resulting in small spaces between the varying mineral crystals.Surface Pitting can be caused by natural occlusions (empty pockets as could be created by trapped gas), metallic minerals, crystal grain boundaries, ect. In some cases, certain tiny crystals may also be removed during the polishing process causing the pits to become more visible.The depth of the pitting is minimal- just below the surface and is visable on reflected light. From a point of view this type of surface texture is normal and to be expected for nearly all granites and marbles. Therefore this “pitting” cannot be avoided in all granite types. The good news however is that the pitting will not become worse with regular use or with the passage of time.
The composition of quartz, feldspars and other minerals will determine the final appearance of the polished granite surface. While the overall appearance will be that of a high gloss finish, some components within the granite may not accept the same level of polish as the rest of the crystals, which can result in “dull spots” or “water marks”. Often these spots are visible on the crystals which are present in some granite.
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