With the rise of outdoor kitchens, BBQ stations, and bars, maintaining outdoor countertops is as crucial as ever to you as the homeowner. Keeping these surfaces looking new after years of use can be as simple as maintaining them like your indoor countertops—with a few key exceptions.
Here are the top ten things you can do to maintain your outdoor countertops, whether they are natural or engineered stone.
A clean countertop is the key to a long-lasting countertop. Using mild soap and water, wipe down countertops regularly to avoid a buildup of dirt and food debris. This is especially important if raw meat is present to prevent the danger of cross-contamination.
When not in use, remove objects from the countertop and prevent reactions to the surface and exposure to the elements. For your safety, never sit or stand on the countertop.
Just as you would treat a wine stain on a shirt as soon as possible, clean any spill on the countertop immediately to prevent stains. Tough stains can be cleaned with a nonabrasive paste of water and baking soda left on the stain for a few minutes and then wiped clean.
For stubborn food stuck on the surface, avoid steel wool and instead use a plastic putty knife to keep scratches to a minimum.
Cutting boards are an excellent and inexpensive item for maintaining outdoor countertops. Keep a few nearby instead of cutting food directly on the countertops. Cuts and scratches on the surface allow dirt and bacteria to hide, making thorough cleaning more difficult.
Hot pans can scorch the top of countertops or leave burnt carbon on the surface that will be difficult to remove.
When not in use, protect your countertop from the elements. Install shade to keep out the sun and cover to keep snow or ice from damaging the surface.
Some typical BBQ and bar ingredients can discolor or stain outdoor countertops. For added protection, use a tray to store items like:
Mild soap and water will do the trick to keep surfaces clean, but if you choose to clean with traditional cleaners, avoid bleach wipes, vinegar, and ammonia-based cleaners like glass cleaner.
This tip doesn’t apply to all types of countertops, but granite countertops specifically can benefit from shine enhancers for added protection. Speak with your installer about how often you should use a shine enhancer to help your granite countertop always look its best.
With these tips, you can maintain your outdoor countertops to enjoy the outdoors for years to come.
For more help with your outdoor countertops or for guidance in finding the perfect material, contact us at Designer Marble and Granite today. We can help you find and care for your beautiful outdoor counters.