You just signed the paperwork and your new granite countertop is on its way. So what can you do in the meantime to ensure a smooth installation? Plenty, according to our home improvement experts. Read on for some great tips.
Be Hands-On with Your Project
Clients should expect to have the opportunity to have a hands-on experience with the granite before installation. This will allow you to make certain that it is what you want and help reduce the likelihood of disappointment after installation is complete. The benefit to the dealer or installer is that this will help eliminate any questions about what the client wants and ensure that you are completely satisfied with your purchase.
Tasks clients should perform before and during installation include:
Before installation, clients should check to make sure that they are getting exactly what they want in terms of color, pattern, and any other specifications so there are no surprises.
During installation, clients should be present if possible. This will give them a chance to both observe the progress being made as well as alert the installer of anything that needs special attention (i.e. electrical outlets). This is also an ideal time for clients to ask questions regarding how best to care for their new countertops.
After installation, clients should clean their countertops regularly using only household products. Clients should also re-seal their countertops annually or more often depending on how they are used (i.e. heavily used areas may need resealing every 6 months). Failure to properly seal granite can lead to water stains which will permanently cause damage.
Clear the Area
Installing countertops requires precision and focus. During the process, clients should not interrupt them. They should be given their space and time so that the installation will not be an even more difficult task. The path to the kitchen must not be blocked. There should be less clutter to avoid accidents. Workers would remove the previous existing countertop first before applying the new one. They would also inspect it and its cabinets to make sure that they are secure and would not give away when they start installing.
Clients should expect a little noise because they will cement the materials and then do some seaming. There would inevitably be the problem of dust but nothing that you can’t sweep or vacuum away. If it’s a small countertop, it would only take 3 hours at the most and maybe 5 or 7 hours for larger ones.
Remember the Prep Work
When getting granite countertops installed, you should expect all of the following:
- Yes, you can pay to have contractors remove your countertops too. It will cost more though!
- Granite is heavy and hard to move, so it’s best if the contractor crew can pull up right outside your home and carry in the stone without having to climb over clutter. Make a path in advance and it’ll go much easier.
- If your cabinets aren’t level, the installation automatically gets a lot harder – the crew will need time to level them before adding the stone.
- Cover anything in the vicinity you don’t want to be covered in granite dust.
Make Sure Your Cabinets Are Level
When having granite countertops installed, clients should expect an installation crew to come to the house at the set time. Members from the team will need to go into the house to make a final inspection before bringing in the granite.
If it’s a new build, the cabinets will be ready for installation, but if it’s a renovation and the client is keeping their cabinets, the old countertops should have already been removed, unless that was part of the contract with the granite installer.
Assuming that the older countertops are gone, the crew will ensure the cabinets are level and make any minor changes to the level that they need to. If the cabinets are too far from level, leveling the cabinets can be extensive and time-consuming.
Once the cabinets are deemed ready for countertops, the crew will begin to bring the granite into your house and lay the pieces as planned. Next, they’ll secure seams with epoxy and fasten the countertops to the cabinets. Finally, if the granite requires it, they’ll seal the countertops.
The whole process should take about four to six hours. Clients should plan to be available to answer questions but should stay out of the way. Granite is heavy, and the installers are professionals. Clients could quickly get in the way if they’re not careful.
Keep Expectations Realistic
1. Sometimes they don’t fit the first time. Even with the best will in the world and having measured twice and cut once, the countertops won’t fit the first time. It’s scary and you will panic, especially as they’re not exactly cheap, but don’t worry as the contractor will ensure that they do fit properly before they sign off on the job. So you will panic, but it will be a brief moment of fear, as all will be well in the end.
2. Expect to find dust in places that you never expected to find for the next six months. Counter installation is a messy job, and you’ll find wood and stone dust in all sorts of strange places for the next half a year.
3. Add an extra day. No matter how long the contractor says the installation will take. Add an extra day to their estimate. That way, you won’t be disappointed when they don’t finish on their timescale, but do manage to complete the installation in the time that YOU allotted for the work.
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