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How to Protect Your Countertops

After spending countless
hours searching through magazines, bringing home samples and checking how they
look in different lights, you have finally picked out your countertops.
They have been ordered, paid for, delivered and installed. Now comes
the hard part: protecting them from the evils of everyday use! With all the
work, time and money you spent on acquiring your countertops, you
want to make sure that you do everything possible to keep them
looking clean, fresh and new for as long as possible. Here are seven hints that
will get you headed in the right direction. 

Cutting boards

As a general rule, you should
always use a cutting board when cutting anything on your countertops. It’s easy
to be tempted when you are in a hurry to just try and cut something really
quickly without a cutting board, but don’t do it. Take the extra 20 seconds to
get out the board and save your countertops from scratches and nicks.

Coasters

Anything with liquid (hot or
cold) can leave a permanent ring on your countertops if you set it down without
a coaster. Coasters are inexpensive and come in lots of interesting patterns,
so always have at least one set on hand for you and your guests. 

Use pot holders,
trivets & oven mitts

Just like your mother said,
don’t put hot containers on the countertops, because protecting your
countertops is as easy as placing a pot holder, trivet or at the very
least an oven mitt under your dishes as they come out of the
oven. 

Use spoon rests

Another good tool to have on
hand in the kitchen is a spoon rest. Having one right by the stove when you are
cooking prevents you from laying a dirty spoon or fork on your countertop when
you aren’t thinking about it. Cooking liquids can soak into countertops and
leave stains that are difficult, if not impossible, to get out.

Wipe up spills as soon as
possible

Whether it is soda in the
kitchen or contact solution in the bathroom, clean up any spills you have
immediately. Leaving them sitting on the counter, even just for a few
minutes, allows time for them to soak into the countertops and leave a nasty
residue. 

Reseal natural stone
regularly
 

Depending what material your
countertops are made of, you will need to reseal them on schedule.
Leaving them unsealed or waiting too long between seals are an easy way to have
liquid seep into the pores and cause permanent discolorations and stains.

Always use a cleaning
solution and material specific to your countertops

There are certain cleaning
solutions and materials that are great for one countertop, but can ruin another.
Do your research as to what is acceptable to use on your countertops and only
use that when cleaning them.

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