A blue stain on a granite countertop can be an unsightly blemish and may be caused by various factors. One common cause is the presence of acidic foods or liquids, hard water, or improper cleaning. If you have encountered this issue, it’s important to handle it with care to avoid damaging the countertop.
Why Is My Granite Turning Blue?
The most common culprit for blue stains on granite countertops is usually blue food coloring, which is commonly used by pastry chefs or home cooks to dye fondant during baking. Alternatively, there are creative ways to use food coloring that could lead to staining.
For kitchen granite countertops, there aren’t many naturally occurring blue foods that would stain the granite and make it difficult to remove. However, this issue is more noticeable on light-colored granite.
In any case, the longer the stain remains on the granite, the more challenging it becomes to remove.
How to Get Blue Stains Out of Granite Countertops
Here are a few simple methods you can try yourself to remove blue stains from your granite countertop:
1. Blue Stains Caused By Printer Ink
Accidents involving printers on light-colored granite countertops happen more often than they should. If you find ink stains on your granite countertop, it’s essential to handle the situation properly to effectively remove the stains.
How do you get blue ink out of granite? Using an alcohol-based cleaner, such as “Windolene” (which works well despite being marketed for glass), is a cost-effective solution for removing printer ink stains. Alternatively, any alcohol-based wipe will suffice. The challenge lies in applying the solution effectively.
- Spray the alcohol-based cleaner across all the affected areas of the countertop, ensuring thorough coverage.
- Allow the solution to sit for a couple of minutes.
- Use a sponge and detergent solution to wash the entire granite countertop.
- Wipe off any water residue with a dry and clean towel until the surface is completely dry.
- Repeat the process if needed, leaving the alcohol solution on the stain a bit longer until the desired result is achieved.
Avoid using any printing devices or ink-based writing materials on your granite countertops. It’s best to reserve your countertop for activities suited for desks. Using it as a workstation, whether for your kids’ art area or making grocery lists, is a recipe for disaster.
2. Stains Caused By Food Coloring
Food coloring is the most common cause of blue stains on granite countertops. It’s easy to forget about food coloring when you’re focused on cooking or baking. While it is safe to consume, it can leave stubborn stains on any surface it comes in contact with. Prompt cleaning is crucial to prevent buildup and ensure easy stain removal.
While an alcohol-based cleaner can remove food coloring stains, if the stain has had time to build up, it may not be as effective. In such cases, using a poultice is the recommended method. A poultice is a paste made from a mixture of powder and liquid that is used to remove stains from granite and other stones.
- Spread a thin layer of the poultice mixture on the stained areas of the granite countertop.
- Cover the poultice with plastic wrap, ensuring the edges are sealed to prevent drying.
- Poke a few holes in the plastic wrap to allow the mixture to breathe and facilitate the reaction.
- Leave the poultice on for 24-36 hours.
- Clean the countertop to remove the poultice, and wash and rinse if necessary.
- Repeat the process if you’re not satisfied with the results.
Whenever you work with food coloring, use parchment paper to cover the granite countertop. Additionally, clean up any spills as soon as possible to avoid allowing the stain to set and become harder to remove.
3. Blue Stains Caused By Clorox
While Clorox may seem like a convenient cleaning agent, particularly as a bleach, it can cause blue stains on granite countertops due to two main reasons.
First, many types of Clorox are blue in color. When used frequently and in excess as a cleaner, it leaves behind residue that gradually stains the granite.
Secondly, bleach is an alkaline solution, which is detrimental to granite as it dissolves the silica compound that gives granite its smooth appearance.
Using a poultice may not completely remove blue stains caused by Clorox, as the silica from the granite may have dissolved. In such cases, the recommended approach is to polish the granite countertop and then reseal it.
- Apply polishing powder or paste across the entire surface of the granite countertop.
- Use a hand grinder to work the powder or paste into the granite, smoothing out the surface and removing the stains.
- Repeat the process until the entire surface is properly sanded.
- Clean the countertop with water and ensure it is thoroughly dry.
- Apply a silica-based sealant to the dry surface and leave it for up to 10 minutes.
- Before the sealant dries completely, wipe off any excess.
- Allow the countertop to dry completely, and you’re done.
Avoid using bleach to clean granite countertops. It’s not limited to Clorox; all types of bleach can damage your granite countertop. Despite its stain-removing properties, bleach is highly alkaline and dissolves silica, which is harmful to granite.
Blue stains on granite are typically caused by man-made substances. Ironically, the cleaning agent Clorox can cause stains on your countertop. It’s important to understand that using excessive amounts of cleaning agents can actually create the problem they’re intended to solve.
But with the solutions provided above, you should be well-equipped to handle any blue stain on your granite, no matter the cause. Whether it’s using a homemade poultice, a baking soda solution, or polishing and resealing, you can keep your granite countertops looking as good as new!