Best Granite Cleaners

Updated September 2019
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
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How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

19 Models Considered
6 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
283 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.

Buying guide for best granite cleaners

Last Updated September 2019

Granite countertops are one of the most beautiful kitchen or bath additions you can make. They are naturally bacteria-resistant and most are sealed to prevent stains. But it’s important to know that many common household cleaning products can damage your countertops over time, leaving them dull and streaked.

To keep them shining and scratch-free, cleaning, even if only weekly, with a specialized granite cleaner can make them sparkle again. Some cleaners are made specifically for removing stains, some can enhance your counter’s seal, and some are gentle enough for daily use.

Whether you want one that smells like apples or one that works on a variety of stone types, our handy shopping guide will help you consider the best choice for your household. If you’re ready to buy, take a look at our recommended products.

Most granite cleaners can also be a good choice for other types of stone countertops. Check the label to see if the cleaner is safe for quartz, soapstone, marble, or limestone.

Key considerations

Sealing

First up in caring for your granite countertops is to understand the importance of sealing. Most stone is porous, although to varying degrees. It will soak up water and can stain if you are not careful to wipe up spills quickly. Sealing helps liquids roll off the countertop, instead of soak into it, decreasing the risk of staining.

If your countertops are new, you can safely assume they have been sealed. If, however, you have purchased a new home or moved into someplace that already has granite installed, the sealing could be old or worn out.

One indicator that it is time to reseal is when you begin to have problems with stains and the finish looks dull. If you notice that liquid seems to quickly soak into your countertop, it is probably time to reseal.

Sealing is a job that should be done at least once a year. If you use your countertops often, you may need to seal more often. Proper sealing requires time off your countertops — perhaps as long as a full day.   

The good news is that the right kind of granite cleaner can pull many stains off of your countertop and help restore their shine. Some also help enhance sealers to make them last longer.

DID YOU KNOW?

Even water can potentially cause staining on an unsealed stone countertop.

Types of granite cleaners

  • Stain lifters are formulated to combat soaked-in stains. One of the most common and problematic stains are oils, which will not lift with a normal water cleaning. These granite cleaners will help to lift oils, including those left behind by grease and fingerprints as well as ground-in dirt.
  • Sealer enhancers are granite cleaners with a sealing function. These are not going to be as effective at sealing as regular sealers, but they can strengthen the durability of your seal and extend your time between full sealing. Also, they take less time to dry than other sealers. If you have a lot of problems with stains, you may want to try to use a stain lifter before using a sealer enhancer.
  • Daily-use granite cleaners are generally used to supplement regular hot-water wash-downs. These cleaners can help keep your countertops shiny as well as clean. Make sure the cleaner you choose for daily use is nontoxic, which will allow you to prepare food where you have cleaned without requiring a rinse.

Features

Compatibility

Many granite cleaners are made for use on several stone types, like marble, quartz or limestone. This feature can come in handy if your household has a variety of stone countertop materials in kitchen, bars, bathrooms, or an island area. Check the labeling carefully to make sure your stone is compatible with the cleaner. Do not use a cleaner on your stone unless it is specifically listed on the label; it could damage your surface.

Natural or hypoallergenic ingredients

Keep in mind, if you’re cleaning in the kitchen, the surface you use your granite-cleaning solution on is one where you prepare food. While many are considered “use ready” after application, you may want to consider an all-natural and biodegradable cleaner for peace of mind. Most of the daily cleaners boast this feature. Some granite cleaners use safe plant-based formulations.

pH neutral formulations

Those cleaners that boast a pH neutral formulation have put together a product that is safer on your countertops than other types of cleaners. That pH balance is important, because acidic cleaners can damage or weaken the seal of your countertops — potentially doing permanent damage to your surface over time.

Fresh fragrance

While granite cleaners are likely to come with a “clean” fragrance, some have a more natural smell than others. In your kitchen, you may want to consider granite cleaners that smell like apple, orange, tangerine, lemongrass, or lime.

If you use a granite cleaner, it can keep your countertops in better shape and reduce how often you need to reseal.

Granite cleaner prices

The best way to compare pricing on granite cleaners is to look at the cost per ounce on the bottle.

Inexpensive: For about 10 to 30 cents an ounce, these cleaners will do a good basic job on your granite, but may not have the versatility for use on many stone types as other cleaners. They also won’t help boost your seal, but they won’t break it down either, like other household cleaners.

Mid-range: In the 30 to 50 cents an ounce range, you will find slicker-looking packaging and better stain-lifting capabilities. These cleaners should be able to handle many types of stone.

Expensive: For around 50 to 90 cents per ounce, you will find granite cleaners that are also sealers. These products are the most expensive but are also needed less often.

EXPERT TIP

Dark granite countertops will be less likely to stain because they are less porous than light-colored granites. Their dark color also hides stains better.


Staff  | BestReviews

Tips

  • A general multi-surface cleaner is not the best choice for granite countertops, because it may contain an acidic base, which could etch and damage your stone.
  • When looking for natural solutions to clean your granite, never use an acidic cleaner like vinegar. Vinegar can break down the seal on your granite countertops.
  • Before you reseal your countertops, always do a thorough cleaning followed by a water rinse.

Other products we considered

There are many granite cleaners on the market that offer you the convenience of cleaning with disposable wipes. Weiman Granite Wipes are an excellent daily wipe that works well for any nonporous sealed surface. Granite Gold Disinfecting Wipes safely kills germs on both stone and ceramic surfaces (the company also makes a sealer wipe, which can cover about 75 feet of stone with each wipe). If you are concerned about waste, you could try this reusable microfiber cloth from Stone Care International, which lifts stains and bacteria without chemicals.

Most granite cleaners should not be used on floors, because their shining properties can make floor tiles too slippery.

FAQ

Q. What do I do if I have an oil stain on my granite countertop?
A.
While most liquids will evaporate and dry off of the top of a granite countertop, oils can leave a stain mark. To remove these kinds of marks, you can make a paste to draw the oils out of the granite and eliminate the stain.

Q. How often do I need to clean my granite countertops?
A.
If you spill something acidic, like a soda, wine, or coffee, you will want to wipe it up as soon as possible. The acid could damage your sealer. Oils can also cause stains. Use hot water to wash it clean on a daily basis. A granite cleaner can be used weekly to help boost the sealer and get at tougher stains. Polish your countertops every month. Check yearly for sealing issues, and reseal if necessary.

Q. How do I tell if my granite countertops are properly sealed?
A.
Pour one-fourth of a cup of water on the countertop. If it absorbs within ten minutes, you need to apply sealer. If the water soaks up in less than five minutes, you will need more than one coat of sealer. If it takes more than 30 minutes, you do not need a sealer.

The team that worked on this review
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    Alvina
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    Karen
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