If a homeowner wants to take the path of least resistance, they can go to a Big Box place, order a stone countertop and the store will send someone to install it. The truth is, many people do not know a proper installation from a bad one until something happens. A good stone yard has installers who know their material and how to work with it. When a countertop is going to be there for the life of the home, there’s no reason it should be of poor craftsmanship. Today, we’re going to take about some things which should raise red flags during installation or should be made right before the installation is finished.
Expectations should be met
Countertop installers who make the grade have good reviews online because they offer quality craftsmanship, but it’s more than that: everything should be reviewed and discussed, so the homeowner is part of the decision process at every step. If a customer orders a honed countertop, the countertop should be honed. They should install the exact slab the customer ordered and it should be high quality.
Ugly seams are the bane of stone countertops. There is no reason in the world why a seam can’t be barely visible and only if you know where to look. The seam should also be situated in a place where it won’t draw attention or shift over the years, such as a spot right over the dishwasher. Some installers take meticulous care to make a seam barely-there.
Cracks usually occur in front of the sink or the thin part around a stove. When rodding of these areas isn’t done correctly, it can not only create a vertical crack in the countertop but can create a horizontal crack which can extend way past the thin strip.
Chips, saw marks, scratches, polisher marks
After a countertop is installed, it shouldn’t have any chips, saw marks, scratches, or polisher marks. These are all the result of poor or lazy craftsmanship. A homeowner should never end up with a shoddy product, no matter what kind of excuses the installer makes. When it’s finished, the customer’s remark should be, “Wow!” not, “Uh-oh.”
Other damage to the home
Homeowners know the drill when it comes to installation: get everything out of the way that might hamper installation as a courtesy. But, there are some things which can’t be removed, such as drywall, appliances, etc. An installer should not damage those items. Stone countertops are heavy, so they have to be handled carefully. Will we dent the fridge when we install a countertop? No! Nor will we ruin the drywall, scratch the flooring, or anything else which might create problems. A standard of professionalism should be expected.
A homeowner should want countertop installers to show up when they say they are going to show up. Everyone’s time is valuable, and sitting around waiting for an installer because he thinks he’s busier than the customer is just wrong. Even worse is when an installer keeps a customer waiting and then doesn’t show up.
It’s easy to lament countertop problems after the fact, but those problems can last for years, and sometimes for the life of the countertop. Considering how long the average stone countertop lasts, it’s essential to get it right in the beginning.
If you have a home, business or rental property in the Metro Phoenix area and are considering upgrading with granite countertops or other stonework features, call us here at JDM Countertops at 602-461-7559.