Countertop Installation FAQs 

 
 
What are fissures and pits in natural stone?

Fissures occur naturally in many stone types. The term "fissure" is used in the stone industry to describe a natural, visible separation within the stone. This separation may start and stop within the face of the stone or extend through an edge. A fissure differs from a crack in that it is a naturally occurring feature of the stone, and does not affect the stone's overall durability. All granites contain some degree of fissure. Some contain more than others. Because fissures are a natural occurrence in all granites, we do not replace countertops due to fissures.

 

Pitting of the countertop surface, particularly in granite, is a common characteristic of natural stone. 

 

The pits do not make the granite less durable or inferior, and do not qualify a slab for replacement. Pits are common in all granites and should be expected when dealing with natural stone. 

Fissures occur naturally in stone, and do not affect the durability. 

Why aren't my seams smooth?
 

Chipping may occur along the seam, particularly in natural stone. The exiting portion of the diamond blade used to cut granite will create many small chips. A small chamfer, called an "arris", of approximately 1/16" x 1/16" can be used to eliminate most of these small chips. 

 

Large chips may be repaired with epoxy or polyester resin. Stone Interiors does not use arrises, unless requested, when installing granite countertops. Seams are assembled and the small chips are filled with polyester resin.

The industry term "lippage" refers to the planar offset of the finished surfaces of two adjacent stone pieces. Due to the relatively tight seams used in countertop installations, even minor amounts of lippage are noticeable.

 

Lippage may be unavoidable . Lippage at the center of the countertop of approximately 1/32" or 0.8mm is considered industry-standard. Countertops will not be replaced due to lippage within acceptable industry standards.

 
Will my countertop match the showroom sample?

If you are purchasing your countertops directly from Stone Interiors, we encourage you to visit the showroom and view your slab in person before installation (especially if you've chosen a natural stone). If you purchased your countertops from a different distributor, then the sample you viewed may not exactly match the lot that your job will be cut from. You may request to visit our facility and view the slab or have a picture sent to you for approval.

 

Slab viewings are done by appointment. Please call in advance so that we can have your slab ready when you arrive. 

Samples are helpful early in the process, but if you're purchasing natural stone, you should see the whole slab before purchasing.

 
Why is there a gap between my countertop and the wall?

No wall is perfectly straight. There will be areas where small gaps are visible. The size of these gaps is determined by the severity of the bows in the walls. Granite is extremely rigid and cannot bend to follow the irregularities of walls.

 

A small gap does not affect your countertop performance and is recognized as acceptable by the Natural Stone Institute. Countertops will not be replaced due to gaps between the walls and the countertops. Installing backsplash can minimize the appearance of gaps. 

 
How long should the overhang for my countertop be?

Unsupported overhang cannot exceed 1/3 of the supported top, to a maximum of 6" on 2cm material and 10" on 3cm material. Supports can be installed  after the granite has been installed. We will advise you on how many brackets you need for your particular countertop, as well as cost, before your installtion.

 
How quickly will my countertop be installed?

Customers planning events in their home should allow for an extra few weeks between your countertop installation and the event date. While we do our best to stick to tight timelines, any major construction project can run into unforeseen delays (such as the material breaking during transportation or installation, among other things). 

The installation itself will likely only take one or two days. 

Do I need to be home during the measure appointment?
 

Yes. The customer must be present during this process to review details of your job, such as seam locations, overhangs, and radius corners. You will be asked to sign the drawing of your countertop, which will indicate the approximate location of the seams and other specific information about your countertop.

Do I need to have the existing countertops removed before the measure appointment?
 

No. Stone Interiors recognizes that being without a working kitchen for several weeks would be very difficult. Although it is more accurate to measure with the existing countertops removed, it is not mandatory.

 

However, occasionally the measurer will not see something that becomes visible after the existing countertops are removed. This may mean that a piece has to be remade or reworked. Stone Interiors will remake this piece at no cost to you. No financial compensation will be given due to delays in installation caused by measuring issues.

If you need to have your existing countertops removed, Stone Interiors offers this service for an additional fee. Partner with your Stone Interiors Representative to schedule the tear-out of your existing countertops. 

 
What else do I need to know prior to my measure appointment?

The following conditions must be met in order for us to take an accurate measurement of your space. 

 

  • Undermount sinks, faucets, and cook tops must be onsite during measure.

  • Clear items off the surface of your existing countertop. 

  • Cabinets must be fully installed, including finished panels, prior to the measure appointment.

  • Farm or apron sinks must be mounted in their final location prior to the measure appointment.

Please note that final pricing will be based on actual field measurements and conditions.

 
What else do I need to know prior to installation?
  • Standard backsplash height is 5" on remodels and 4" on new construction. Stone Interiors will not be responsible for backsplash that does not cover paint or wallpaper lines. It is the customer's resposibility to have electrical outlets moved up or down . This should be done prior to installation.

  • Stone Interiors will provide dishwasher clips. The dishwasher must be installed prior to our arrival. Stone Interiors will not adhere clips to wood, nor wood to stone. 

  • Undermount sinks may be reconnected 24 hours after installation. Reattaching the plumbing before the sink has had time to set may result in the sink moving or dropping.

  • The tear-out and installation of countertops is a major construction process. While we take every precaution to protect your home, some dust is inevitable. Customers should remove or protect any items near the installation area. Dust will also continue to settle for 24 hours after we've left. To limit the spread of dust, please turn off your AC/heat before the installation. 

  • Mirrors in bathrooms that are permanently affixed to the wall and rest within 1" of the existing backsplash or vanity must be removed prior to the tear-out of the existing vanity. Any damage to mirrors or cabinetry will be the responsibility of the homeowner.

  • Installers are not expected to move, install, or adjust appliances.

  • Upper cabinets must be installed if you are purchasing full-height backsplash.

Are my cabinets strong enough for granite?
 

 Most cabinets can easily handle the weight of granite countertops. It is often not possible to assess cabinet problems prior to the removal of the existing granite. If significant problems are detected after the removal of the existing countertops, the installation of the new countertops may be delayed. 

 

Countertops can be shimmed and installed on cabinets that are out of level up to 1/2". Beyond 1/2" the cabinets must be repaired. It is the responsibility of the homeowner to have the cabinets repaired so that they are level and secure within industry standards.

 

If the installation must be rescheduled and a new appointment day is needed, trip charges will apply.

Stone Interiors is committed to fabricating and installing countertops using guidelines set by the Natural Stone Institute (formerly known as the Marble Institute of America).

Granite, marble, quartz, or quartzite countertops are a beautiful addition to your home and will provide many years of service. 

We hope you enjoy your new countertops and thank you for allowing Stone Interiors the opportunity to complete your kitchen or bathroom with the right stone. 

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