Making your own homemade granite cleaner is cheap and easy. You don’t need to buy expensive brand name products like Method or Seventh Generation. Everything in our homemade cleanser can be found at the dollar store.
Homemade Granite Cleaner Recipe
- 1 cup Isopropyl Alcohol
- 3 Cups Water
- 3 Drops Of Dish Soap
- Essential Oil (optional but recommended)
First, use a funnel to pour the isopropyl alcohol into a spray bottle. Next, pour the water into the bottle. Then remove the funnel and add 3 drops of dish soap and your favorite essential oil. Lastly, put the top on the spray bottle and give it a couple shakes to combine the ingredients.
That’s all there is too it. Simple right?
If you want to make it even more eco friendly you can swap out the dish soap for castile soap. If you’re not familiar with castile soap it’s made with oil extracted from plants (traditionally olive oil), lye, and water. It’s vegan friendly too since none of the fat used to make it comes from animals.
Why I Recommend Using An Essential Oil
The scent of isopropyl alcohol can be overpowering. Using an essential oil will help cut the smell of the alcohol and make wiping down the counters more appealing, and I mean that quite literally.
Personally I love the smell of eucayptus and citrus but hate the smell of alcohol, vodka not included of course. :-)
Adding a citrus scented essential oil to the recipe makes my entire kitchen smell like lemon, and that makes me want to use the cleanser more often. If I don’t enjoy the experience of using a cleanser I’m just not going to use it. So add whatever essential oil to it that makes you happy, I promise it won’t damage your countertops and it will make the cleaning process much more enjoyable, and you much more likely to use it.
The Do’s Of Granite Care
To keep you granite shiny and new there are a few thing you can make part of your routine to keep them in tip top shape.
Clean Them Regularly
Liberally spray your homemade cleaning solution on the surface of the countertop. Let the solution sit on the surface for 3 minutes so that the alcohol has a chance to disinfect your counter. After 3 minutes use a paper towel to wipe up the excess and follow it up with a microfiber cloth for the final dry. The microfiber cloth gives a quick polish and will bring out natural luster.
How Often Should You Clean Your Counters?
You don’t need to do this daily. Two times a week is more than enough as long as you’re wiping up small spills as they happen. There’s no harm in doing it every day, it’s just not necessary.
Prevent Stains (A Quick How To)
Most colors of granite countertops are very hard to stain but there are exceptions to the rule. Instead of finding out the hard way if your kitchen work surface is prone to staining, it’s easier to practice this 2 step preventative maintenance.
Seal Your Countertops Once A Year
This takes about fifteen minutes and it’s the most important thing you can do. Any natural stone will have pores and stains have a nasty habit if finding their way into them and taking root. Once a stain finds its’ way into the pores it’s much harder to get out.
The easiest thing to do is apply a sealer once a year. The sealer will fill the pores and create a protective coating that will your homemade granite cleaner more effective.
If you’re looking to buy a sealer Tenax Proseal is what a lot of fabricators use and recommend. The quartz size is the best value here on Amazon but the smaller size will probably last you many years.
Wipe Up Spills Immediately
Anytime you spill something clean it up as soon as you can, especially if it’s acidic. High pH foods can quickly start to eat at the stone and cause it to look dull or etch. Once that happens it becomes easier for stains to settle in.
When I’m in the cooking or baking zone I can be guilty of not taking my own advice here. I regularly get to splashed tomato sauce or oil spills 10 to 15 minutes after they happen, but because we are diligent about sealing we have yet to have a problem. Your mileage may vary depending on the stone you choose so I always recommend spills be quickly sopped up.
Granite is incredibly hard to damage but if you want to be extra cautious you can use coasters. Some people do find that the stone they picked out darkens when wet and take a long time to dry. The reason this happens in the pores fill up the water if they aren’t sealed, so don’t be afraid to pick out a set of coasters that match your decor.
Use A Cutting Board
Even the sharpest kitchen knife won’t damage granite, but it will dull the blades of the knife. That’s why you should always use a cutting board, even if you’re just slicing up a quick onion.
Pro Tip: You can use your bottle of homemade cleaner to clean and disinfect your cutting board too.
Use Trivets Or Pot Holders
I don’t think this is a necessary precaution because damage from high temperatures is rare. I also think it completely defeats the purpose of installing granite countertops. But if you want to be safe you should use trivets or pot holders to place hot pots and pans on.
I do however want to caution you against different types of cookware. A fresh out of the oven aluminum baking sheet with cookies on it won’t damage granite countertops. But the risk is higher for cookware that hold its’ heat for long periods of time like cast iron pans or pots full of hot oil. Even I use a trivet for items like that. They can really heat up the stone if left on the surface for extended periods, and that’s when cracks from thermal shock can happen.
The Don’ts Of Granite Care
Never use This Common Household Cleaner
A lot of cleaning products around your home can do serious damage to natural stone. The damage may not be visible to the naked eye the first time you use them but over time they will destroy your worktop.
The most common homemade cleaner ingredient that should never be used on granite is vinegar. Most people assume that it’s a mild cleanser and antiseptic so it would be perfectly safe, but because it’s slightly acidic it will slowly eat away at the minerals in your countertop and cause them to lose their shine. Once that happens there is no repair that can be done and the only way to fix them is to replace them.
Other Products To Avoid
You can’t just grab any bottled cleaner from under the sink and most natural homemade cleaning recipes using common household ingredients aren’t safe either. You’d be better off using water than anything else on this list.
- Formula 409
- citric acid (citrus scented essential oils not included because they have a neutral pH)
What Else Can You Clean With It?
A full bottle of homemade cleaner is going to last you a long time, so you might be wondering what else you can use it for.
Feel free to liberally spray it just about anywhere except on wood. Don’t let alcohol come in contact with wood surfaces around you home. Alcohol can strip shellac and other types of varnishes off finished wood very quickly.
This concoction is great for stainless steel or painted appliances. It’s also good for other stones like marble and soapstone. It’s useful in the bathroom on your porcelain toilet and sink or on the tile floors.
Discover All There Is To Know About Granite Cleaning
There are lot's of different things you can do to keep your countertop in tip-top shape other than making a homemade granite cleaner. Here are a few of our best tips.
If you haven’t bought your countertops yet then you’ll save some money by reading this page about getting granite countertop discounts.
Click here to learn how to design an elegant kitchen that fits your budget.