How to Remove Etching from a Granite Countertop

If you have etched granite that has become dull, grainy, or scratched, you have probably figured out by now that wiping it down with granite cleaner does nothing to remove the etching. You can sanitize the stone, but the etching remains.

This type of granite damage can be called etching, pitting, dulling, or scratching. Unlike scratches from ceramic, diamond jewelry, or other stone, the scratches that we call “etching” are due to a chemical reaction. 

To remove etching from a granite countertop, the stone must be sanded or ground to level the surface. Once it’s smoothed out, the granite can be buffed, polished, or honed and then sealed for protection.

What Causes Etching on Granite Countertops?

Granite etching is usually due to the frequent use of improper cleaning products or acidic food spills that have been neglected. These include:

  • Acidic spray cleaners
  • Vinegar cleaners
  • Tomatoes
  • Citrus fruit
  • Wine and other alcohol

Is There a DIY Fix for Etched Granite?

For the sake of your granite, we do not recommend DIY solutions to granite etching. The granite repair kits found at hardware stores can only help a little bit with very minor etching issues. These products cannot fix major etching, and may actually harm your granite even more!

Unfortunately, many people exacerbate the problem of etched granite with DIY products. Then, the professional granite repair they need is more complicated and expensive than it would have been if they had simply called Sandifer’s first.

Rest assured, we do not recommend against DIY solutions just to make a sale. Repairing granite with chemical etching simply requires professional-grade tools and techniques. We want you to get the job done right the first time, for the right price.

The Proper Method to Remove Granite Etching

Etching might feel like something is stuck to the surface, but it’s actually physical damage to the granite. Removing the etching, then, involves sanding or grinding to even out the surface. At Sandifer’s Stone and Tile Care, here’s how we typically repair etched granite countertops:

  • Determine the extent of etching. Depending on how deep the etching runs, we use various grades of sanding and diamond-infused grinding tools to smooth the surface the minimal amount necessary to create a smooth surface.
  • Honing and polishing. These professional granite repair techniques recreate the original surface of the granite or create the new type of surface texture that you want.
  • Sealing for protection. Granite countertops must be sealed after honing or polishing, and resealed every year or so. Stone sealing does not provide foolproof protection, however, thanks to the strength and resilience of granite it can easily stand up to acidic spills with low-stress cleaning needs in the future.

Granite Countertop Repair in Charlotte, NC

If you live in the Charlotte area, you can contact us online to schedule an appointment for Charlotte granite countertop restoration services. We also serve the Columbia, SC area and many of the surrounding communities.