Granite is one of the most durable surfaces you can have on countertops in your kitchen or bathroom. Granite countertops are also highly sanitary since they’re non-porous, the colors will never fade, and even hot items won’t damage the surface. Even when you consider all of the wonderful things about granite countertops, you’ll still need to keep them clean to prevent damage. Here are five ways you can do this safely and effectively.

1, Lightly Dust Your Countertops

While it is difficult to scratch a granite countertop, it’s not impossible. Avoid the possibility of particles creating subtle scratches by getting into the habit of frequently dusting off your countertops with a soft, dry cloth. This can also help keep your surfaces shiny.

2. Clean Up Any Acidic Food/Drink Spills Quickly

If you spill coffee or soda on your granite countertop, quickly wipe it up since acidic beverages and foods can affect the granite sealer. Acidic foods and drinks that may damage your countertops also include high-protein foods and supplements, fruit juices, fresh meat, and some dairy products. In the bathroom, be cautious with toiletries that may be acidic, such as toothpaste, mouthwash, and perfume.

3. Use a Neutral PH-Balanced Cleaner

If you’re going to use some type of product to spray and wipe your granite countertops after meal prep or accidental spills, opt for a pH-balanced cleaner. Preferably, you want to use a cleaner like this that’s specially formulated for granite, especially if you plan to use it for everyday surface cleaning.

4. Blot Up Spills Quickly

No granite countertop is going to stay spotless at all times, especially if you normally have a bustling kitchen or bathroom or a house full of kids and pets. When spills do occur, use a white, dry cloth to immediately soak them up. Next, spray the affected surface with a stone cleaner. Lastly, use another clean cloth to dry the surface.

5. Use Specialized Stain Removers or Mixtures for Tough/Deep Stains

If you have an oil stain or a similar type of deep stain to deal with, use a specially formulated oil stain remover. For deep, non-oil stains, options include a poultice paste made with baking soda, a poultice mixture with liquid soap and flour, and a rubbing alcohol spray with a few drops of liquid dish detergent added.

There’s no denying that the granite countertops Portland homeowners choose to use in kitchens and bathrooms can be wise, long-term investments. In fact, with proper care, it’s not unusual for quality granite countertops to last for many decades. Being proactive with how you clean granite surfaces can increase your odds of enjoying this type of longevity.