Care and Maintenance of your New Kitchen & Counters

Taking proper care in the cleaning and maintenance of your new kitchen and counters will help keep your kitchen looking new for many years. Please take the time to review the following recommended methods for cleaning and maintaining your new cabinets and laminate countertops. If you have purchased granite or solid surface countertops, they will come with instructions on how to properly maintain them.

Cabinets with Wood Doors

The recommended way to clean your wood doors is with a damp cloth. For major cleaning, you can use soap and water or a product called “Cabinet Magic” which you can purchase at your local hardware store. If you treat your cabinets as if they are pieces of furniture and clean and maintain them regularly, they will last much longer. Nicks and scratches can happen to your cabinet doors. Putty sticks can be purchased that will match or be close to the cabinet door stain colour you have purchased. The interior of the cabinet should be cleaned with a damp cloth.

**Always avoid the use of excessive water when you are cleaning your cabinets. It could cause any melamine used in the construction to expand if it gets into the particleboard.

Cabinets with Thermal Doors

A damp cloth will handle most of your cleaning requirements, but if you have a more persistent stain you can use “Countertop Magic.” Do not use “Cabinet Magic” as this if for wood doors only.

Countertops

Never use abrasive cleaners, steel wool, SOS pads, etc. as they will ruin the finish on your countertop. Never use CLR or any other type of acid-based cleaner. You can also use “Countertop Magic” to clean your countertop.

Do not allow bleach or a bleach based cleaner to rest on the counter for any length of time as it will cause the countertop to “spot.”

Do not use your countertop as a cutting board. This will cause damage that cannot be repaired. Make sure you do not put hot pots or bakeware directly on the countertop surface. This will cause scorching on the surface or bubbles in the laminate.

Seams and joints should be kept as dry as possible, water can cause delaminating or swelling in the joints. Water damage to a seam is not covered by the manufacturer’s warranty.



MATERIAL CHARACTERISTICS

All woods will darken and mellow with age. Also, variation is one of the inherent beauties of wood. Because of this the grain and texture and colour of any sample will vary from any other sample. When wood is exposed to light it will change colour, especially in the lighter stains. Variations will be more apparent when viewing larger samples, displays, and entire rooms of cabinetry.



Cherry

Cherry displays a distinctive grain pattern and warm colour shadings, ranging from nearly white to dark reddish brown. Dark pockets, pin knots, and random streaks are common. More than most woods, cherry will darken when exposed to light, especially in the light stains.


Maple

Maple is a versatile hardwood with a fine, smooth grain. Maple varies in colour from nearly white to slightly reddish brown. Mineral or sugar streaks occur naturally in maple and can vary from piece to piece. This is more noticeable in lighter stains.


Oak

Oak is a strong hardwood with a long, linear grain, often displaying tiny rays. Oak , at times, has small pinholes and tight knots. Oak coloration can range from a golden wheat to deeper tones and can include grays and greens.


Alder

Rustic Alder is a hardwood with a fine, straight-grain and even texture. The natural colour is a light brown with yellow or reddish tinge. Natural characteristics include spots, knots and blemishes. As one of the softest hardwoods, Rustic Alder can be easily dented or scratched.


MDF

Medium-density fiberboard (MDF OR MDFB) is an engineered wood product formed by breaking down softwood into wood fibers, combining it with wax and a resin binder. It is then formed into panels by applying high temperature and pressure. The benefit of MDF is there is no graining so there is little tendency to split. It is consistent in dimension and is an excellent product for shaping.




10 Myths About Granite

1. Granite is absorbent. Granite qualifies as impervious to water and is actually less absorbent than some solid surface (plastic) products. Granite is commonly used as building material for high-rise buildings due to its ability to withstand gale force winds and rain.

2. Granite stains easily. Granite is resistant to stains. Generally, any liquid spilled on a granite top, if wiped up within a few minutes, will not stain. However, even water can soak into a granite countertop and leave a dark colored spot but this will evaporate in minutes. Liquids that do not evaporate, such as oils will cause stains if left to soak into the stone.

3. Stains in granite are permanent. Most stains can be removed. Even oil stains can usually be removed using a poultice or paste that will draw out the oil from the stone.

4. Granite will lose its polish over the years. While this may be true of marble, granite will shine years from now just as if it was brand new. Granite is highly scratch resistant and will not show wear from daily use.

5. Granite requires a lot of maintenance. Routine cleaning with mild soap and water is all that is generally required. Once a year, a re-application of a penetrating sealer should be performed, which only takes about 15 minutes-less time than scouring a solid surface counter top with a cleanser to remove scratches.

6. Heat will cause granite to chip and crack. Granite is heat resistant and can withstand the heat of hot pots and pans without damage. Impact from a heavy object may chip granite but heat from anything short of a blowtorch will not affect your counter top.

7. Dark colored granites are harder than light colored granites. Granites are composed of a variety of minerals, each of which has specific performance properties. The hardest mineral commonly found in granite is quartz, which is normally a somewhat translucent, white to grey colored mineral.

8. Granite’s tiny pores and fissures harbor bacteria. Bacteria are found everywhere. If it is on a granite top, then it can also be found on a laminate or solid surface top. Use an anti-bacterial soap to wash your counter top if you are concerned.

9. Granite and marble are essentially the same. Besides the fact that they are both natural stones and can be polished, they are otherwise very different. Marble is generally a calcious stone, formed from oceanic deposits and then compressed under pressure (metamorphosed). Granite, however, is an igneous rock, essentially molten magma, which is cooled and then hardened below the earth’s surface.

10. Granite is expensive. Granite is usually competitively priced compared to other high-end surfacing materials. You will be amazed when you compare the price of granite to other popularly famed “luxury surfaces”. Granite offers you an unmatched value with its natural beauty, elegance and longevity.