In most cases when granite is cracked or chipped, it is rendered useless and off to a new expensive piece, with a whole lot of headache. Through this post, I hope that you will obtain the knowledge to fix this crack or chip instead of resulting in depleting your vacation fund!
Before you get started make sure you have all the proper tools and materials to finish the job. Otherwise you could be making the chip or crack worse. Here is a list of tools that you need to have in order to complete this project.
– Variable Speed Grinder
– Matching color crushed granite ( basically a pile of granite dust and very fine pebbles)
– Wet Buffer Pads ( 100, 200, 400, 800, 1500, 3000)
-Dry Buffer Pads ( 400, 800, 1500, 3000)
–Steel Wool ( Most fine grit you can get)
– 2 part Epoxy ( Hardener and Resin)
Okay now that you have your tools and material, it is time to start repairing that pesky chip, and getting that counter top to look like the first day you installed it.
First, start by crushing a small amount of the same color granite into fine dust. This is used to fill in the chip, and mask the issue at hand. Using your 2 part epoxy, mix some crushed granite together creating a paste like consistency. It is important that this consistency is semi-solid otherwise it will not hold its form to replace the chip.
Now take your mix and fill in the chip, making sure that you leave more material (mix) on top of the counter top so you have plenty of room to polish towards the end. You can see in the example below how the mix is larger in height compared to the counter top.
Next step is to cure the epoxy mix using a heat gun. This allows the mix to set up properly, and for it to harden at the right consistency. When curing, try using this approach to getting everything done right. Allow the epoxy to bubble for a few seconds, take off heat and pat down with your finger or putty knife. Do this a couple of times so that the granite and epoxy bonds well and creates a nice firm material to work with the next day. Let this dry for a complete 24 hours before starting these next steps.
It is now 24 hours later and time to start prepping your area to finish repairing your unwanted granite crack or chip. Start by taping off your work area, and any areas around the chip so that clean-up is super easy when finished. There will be a lot of dust created in this process, be sure to cover anything you do not want dusty. I have provided a picture below of how a work area should be prepped before any buffering takes place. As you can see, the more prepping you do the less you have to clean once finished!
After you have prepped your work area, it is time to start buffering your chipped area using wet polishing pads, starting with 100 grit. This grit is one of the roughest to start with, but if you work your way up, the better your final product will be. Continue to polish using your wet polish pads and remember to always add some water on the surface. This allows those pads to operate properly, and smoothly without scratching the surface. Once you have gone through the different grits, you will notice that the surface is still not completely smooth, and it definitely does not have that factory shine like it did originally. This is completely common at this step, because it is now time to switch to dry polishing pads.
When dry polishing I would recommend to begin at 400 grit, and continue to 3000 grit. When dry polishing it is crucial to have good speed and pressure on your grinder. After you have gone through all of your dry polishing grits, you may ask yourself- How come this area’s polish still does not match the rest of the counter top? This is easy. The manufacturer used a chemical bond agent to create that great final sheen. You can do the same using a material called “Tin Oxide”! This product comes in powder form and in different colors, so you would want to match this color with your granite. Using a felt pad, polish your area over and over again for about 10 minutes. After you polish with Tin Oxide, you only have a couple more steps to achieve that awesome final sheen!
At this step in the process you should have a semi polished area, but you still do not have that shine to match the rest of your top. This final step allows for you to obtain this final shine using a 2 part penetrating epoxy. Mix a small amount together and rub on the surface of your work area. Let this stand for about for 5-10 minutes, allowing the epoxy to seep into the seams and cracks of the granite. Once that time has elapsed, wipe off this material using a paper towel. To completely clean off the epoxy and other material you have been using to polish- use some Lemon Pledge with a steel wool pad to slightly buffer again. I would give this about 2-5 minutes of time or until the stickiness from the epoxy is gone. Clear your work area of any tools, and remove your prep. You should have a perfectly fixed chip or crack, with a matching shine to go with it! Below is a video presentation of a granite contractor going through these steps as well, enjoy!
I hope that this post was sufficient in information to help you repair your pesky little chip or crack in your counter top. If you have any questions feel free to contact us anytime!