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Questions - General
Can you describe the process of ordering with your company?
The whole process is designed for quality and speed. First, the client picks a stone. Then we give the client an estimate based on their specific project. After that, the client can place an template order. From the time the template is made, our clients can expect a typical turnaround time of one week or less.
Do I need an appointment to come down to your place?
No appointment is necessary. Colonial Marble & Granite is open to the public Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 8:00 pm, Saturday from 9:00 am to 7:00 pm, and Sunday from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm.
Where do you operate?
Colonial Marble & Granite operates within the tri-state area –DE, NJ and PA. We are a direct fabricator and installer of kitchen countertops, vanities, Jacuzzi surrounds, fireplace surrounds and custom designs.
What is your payment policy?
Colonial Marble & Granite accepts credit cards, cash, personal check or certified check only. After the order is placed, the grand total is broken up into two payments: 50% prior to template and the other 50% at the end of the installation.
Do I have to buy the whole sheet/slab?
No. We will determine how much material is needed for your countertops. We do not charge you the price of full slabs. You pay for what is required to fabricate your tops.
What information do I need to obtain a free quote?
We require our potential clients to provide Colonial Marble & Granite with the general overview of the project along with personal information such as name, town, state, zip code, a phone contact and, if known, the name of the stone and the desired edge finish. We then can process the specific measurements and respond with an approximate estimate for the job. This information can either be faxed to us or brought to our showroom when the client comes in for a walk through our warehouse.
Questions - Marble
What is the difference between granite and marble?
The main difference between granite and marble is that granite is a highly dense material formed deep inside the earth’s core while marble is formed from sediments under the seabed. Both solidify into stone after millions of years but the mineral composition of the two stones makes marble and granite react differently to various chemicals and household cleaners.
Can I seal marble?
Just like granite, marble is sealed after the fabrication process; unfortunately, because of its porous nature, sealing marble is insufficient for everyday kitchen use.
Where can I use marble?
Marble can be used for a number of various applications, such as fireplace surrounds, tabletops, saddles and shelves. Ideally it can be applied to a number of projects in the bath area, such as Jacuzzi surrounds, vanities, floor and shower paneling. It is generally safe to use marble in low-traffic areas.
How do I deal with sink and stove cutouts?
With our water-jet technology we have the ability to perform any sink or surface unit cutout with computer-aided design files. Undermount sinks (sinks that are mounted under the countertop to avoid showing any rim) are fully cut out and the inside of the hole is polished. The countertop is then flipped over and fitted with special grommets for your plumber to fasten the sink. Self-rimming cutouts are cut 6" into each corner, leaving some of the straight section to be cut in the field to facilitate safe shipping.
Questions - Granite
My little sample of granite has pits on the surface – will I have these on my kitchen counters?
Granite, which is crystalline in structure, always has tiny pits and spaces among the various mineral crystals. These are not seen on a larger piece because the overall appearance of the stone is polished and mirror-like. Granite sometimes has natural fissures as well--these fissures might look like cracks or structural defects but are actually a naturally occurring result of the immense heat and pressure under which the granite was originally formed. These characteristics are part of the natural beauty of stone and will not impair the function or durability of the material. A product of nature cannot be expected to look manmade.
How are seams made?
Seams are made where the two pieces of stone are put together. The seams are joined with epoxy that is mixed with the color that matches the stone. Then the joined area is smoothened so that only a very thin line is visible.
Does granite have any pits or fissures?
Yes, granite has natural pits and fissures that are part of the stone's natural structure. Some types of granite have more of these characteristics than other types, and pits can be minimized by applying sealer to the surface of the counter.
Can granite be repaired?
It is very hard to damage granite. If any damage occurs, it can be sealed with a mixture of epoxy and ground-up granite chips.
How is granite formed?
Granite is an igneous rock of visible crystalline formation and texture. It is composed primarily of feldspar, quartz and mica. It starts off as liquid magma deep within the earth’s core, where it is cooled and compressed over millions of years under tons of pressure. It is then quarried, cut and polished. After that process granite can be applied in various ways including kitchen countertops, vanity tops, fireplace surrounds and Jacuzzi surrounds, as well as other custom designs.
How do I deal with sink and stove cutouts?
With our CNC technology we have the ability to perform any sink or surface unit cutout with computer-aided design files. Undermounted sinks (sinks that are mounted under that countertop to avoid showing any rim) are fully cut out and the inside of the hole is polished. The countertop is then flipped over and reinforced with metal rods for extra support. Self-rimming cutouts are cut 6" into each corner leaving some of the straight section to be cut in the field to facilitate safe shipping. Undermounted sinks are preferable for most customers because to the aesthetic appeal created by the "invisible" rims.
Do granite seams show?
Because granite is a natural material and is mined from the quarry in blocks usually no more than 10’ long, seams are likely. Also, because granite is sold in rectangular pieces, using seams (found, for example, in an "L"-shaped corner) is a good way to reduce costs. The visibility of seams will depend on the granularity, color and pattern. A small, uniform grain (such as Uba Tuba) will not be as apparent as a larger varied grain (such as Peacock Green). A dark color (Absolute Black) will be less apparent than a light color (Imperial White). A dramatic pattern with swaths of color (Paradiso) will show more seams than a uniform pattern (Dakota Mahogany). Most customers have found that the beauty of natural granite outweighs the concern of seams.
How do I clean my granite countertop?
Granite is a very durable stone. It is also much harder than marble. Granite will withstand almost any element it comes up against, including heat and cold. Polished granite should receive the same cleaning care as polished marble by using a mild, phosphate-free, biodegradable liquid dish soap, soap flakes or powder that contains no aromatics. Follow that with a thorough rinsing and drying using cotton flannel or chamois. If you are using any other kind of soap and water, keep in mind that this could lead to soap build-up, which will, in turn, dull your countertop’s finish significantly--and you don’t want that! When using granite cleaner, the best method is to let the cleaner sit for about 30 seconds and then wipe it off well using a soft cloth.
Does granite stain or burn?
No. You can’t burn it with ordinary use. Granite does not stain. The only caveat is that a few colors may absorb some moisture with prolonged contact. Usually, no evidence remains when the liquid is removed and the granite dries, but a problem could arise with dark-pigmented liquids. Our installers seal your countertops with a specially formulated stone sealer that is recommended for use on all granite after installation. Also, regular maintenance of the countertops with use of AGM daily granite cleaner will give great results because the cleaner contains sealer, meaning that every time the countertop is being cleaned, it is being sealed as well.
Questions - Getting Started With Marble and Granite
Do you accept credit cards?
Yes, we do. All payments are required to be credit card, certified check, personal check or cash.
How much deposit do you require before you start to cut our countertop?
Colonial Marble & Granite, Inc. requires a deposit of half the estimated price in credit card, cash or certified check. This payment takes place at the time of the template. If there is no deposit during the template we cannot start the fabrication of the countertop or any other project.
If I fax my drawing with dimensions to you how long do I have to wait for a quote?
Free quotes for faxed proposals are given a 24-hour time frame. We will either call or fax back the estimate assuming that the contact information is provided to us in the original fax.
Is template and installation included in the quote?
Yes, template and installation will be included with your quote.
How close does the estimate come to the final price?
The quote on the estimate is based on the measurements you provide. The more accurate your drawings are, the more accurate the price will be.
What do I need to consider when buying a granite countertop?
Granite is a natural stone. It is very hard and durable; heat and scratch resistant; and easy to maintain--in every sense, it's the material of the future. Aside from the practical aspect, granite is very versatile in the design field. It comes in various colors and structural compositions; our yard stocks more than 200 colors from which to choose on site. All stones are not exactly the same. Each lot will have unique characteristics attributed to the specific granite.
What’s the difference between marble and granite?
Although both are stones and both are quarried from the earth, granite and marble (and marble’s relatives: limestone, onyx and travertine) are very different from each other. Granite is formed deep in the earth’s mantle at extremely high temperatures, and is a very hard, resistant stone made of crystallized minerals. The marble family, including limestone, travertine, marble and onyx, starts out at the bottom of bodies of water as sediment; animal skeletons and shells; plant matter; and silt. After millions of years this mixture solidifies (lithifies) into stone. Because its main component is calcium, it can be affected by acids such as vinegar and citrus beverages.
Is it necessary to seal stone?
Because mineral surfaces are quite porous they absorb liquids, which could result in discoloring and staining. Although many commercial-grade products are available on the market that may bring the stone to its to its original luster, taking simple precautions and regular maintenance can save you a lot of trouble and cost. All marble and granite tops are sealed immediately after they are installed. The impregnating substance penetrates the stone, clogging most of its pores and making it quite impervious to alcohol, juices, soft drinks, cosmetics, cleaners, coffee, food and even oil. Over the course of time, depending on how heavily the tops are used, the sealer can become washed out. A clear indication of that would be the easy absorption of liquids into the stone, leaving temporary (if promptly wiped off) stains. You should seal your marble tops every six months and your granite tops at least once a year.