Granite Countertops Installation. Do It Yourself Guidelines
– Straight edge
– Spirit level
– Drill bits with suitable drill for granite
– Suitable saw (Hand held) for granite
– Jig Saw (for wood)
– Polishing heads
– Adhesive (Akemi, Araldite, Polyurethane glue)
1. Prepare the base: The existing cabinets should be firmly fixed in place before the installation of a granite countertop. Use a tri-square to ensure the cabinet corners are square and level by using a spirit level.
2. Make the sink cut-out: The cut can be done for a drop-in or undermount sink. The undermount sink cut should be done prior to the installation of the slab on the cabinet. Mark the granite surface using the manufacturer’s template and leave sufficient margin from the front / rear edge. Cut the slab along the mark, having first set the granite slab on a work bench. Ideally, cutting the granite slab should be done while outside to avoid excess dust.
3. Lay the granite slabs – Once the base cabinets are laid out and secured, you are ready to do the installation of the countertop slabs. Place the slab on the cabinet and align it square to the front end of the cabinet. Check the level and make adjustments, if required. Remove the slab, apply glue to the cabinet frame, then place the slab on the cabinet and let it set. Make adjustments before the glue hardens. Continue the installation of the other slab by selecting the most suitable piece.
4. Butt the seam joints – Thoroughly clean the edges that are to be seamed. Ensure that the edges are straight and square to the slab. Prepare epoxy and add a small amount of color to match the color of the granite and mix it. Add hardener, 3 percent hardener to 97 percent resin, and mix. Properly align the edges and surface of the two sections and tightly butt the slabs. Use clamps to bind the two slabs together during the hardening process. Once the glue has hardened, remove any excess adhesive with a razor blade and clean the surface at the joint with acetone or mineral spirit.
5. Seal the Countertops: After the installation is complete, the surface should be sealed to protect the countertops from staining. Apply the sealer on the top surface and allow the granite surface 20 minutes to absorb it. Clear the excess sealer with a clean cloth, following manufacturer’s recommendation where applicable. Apply a second coat to protect the granite surface if desired. For preventative maintenance, sealer for granite countertops should be applied every 1-2 years depending on usage and wear. Using a water-based sealer will aid in resisting oil and acidic stains without changing the appearance of the granite countertop. This will help to simplify maintenance.