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Thread: Sealing granite

  1. #1
    Jerome W. Young's Avatar
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    Default Sealing granite

    Anyone run into this problem.
    I typically spill water onto new granite installations to check to see if it soaks in. I have found that the water will soak into the granite leaving a dark stain until it dries and have been told that the granite was not sealed properly. I have found this quite a few times. Is this a real problem ? and what is the practical solution?

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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    I'll wait for that answer too.

    We have a granite countertop installed and have been told by various granite installers and suppliers: a) you do not need to seal granite; b) you do need to seal granite ... so I have not yet sealed our granite.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  3. #3
    David Banks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerome W. Young View Post
    Anyone run into this problem.
    I typically spill water onto new granite installations to check to see if it soaks in. I have found that the water will soak into the granite leaving a dark stain until it dries and have been told that the granite was not sealed properly. I have found this quite a few times. Is this a real problem ? and what is the practical solution?
    Without the sealer the granite will stain. So yes that is a problem for most people. Should be sealed at time of installation and then yearly if I remember properly.


  4. #4
    David Banks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Good info here.
    Granite Sealer


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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Yes, granite and all natural stone counter tops should be sealed.

    Another issue I find with new stone installs is how the sink is mounted. Most of the better installs mount the sink on the underside of the counter top, and for a good reason. Top mounted sinks if not sealed with a non-oil base sealer can be a problem. I have found many top mounted sinks that have been sealed with plumbers putty. After a week or so the oil from the putty migrates into the stone and will leave a dark ring around the sink. This can't be removed and the counter top needs to be replaced.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    This is a very interesting topic. One that I'm not very knowledgeable about. In the attached, is it safe to assume that sealing the surface will not correct this problem since it seems that water has penetrated the edge of the stone? Or as Scott mentioned, could an oil based sealant have been used that created this stain? How far would such a stain migrate into the stone?

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    Last edited by Eric Barker; 01-05-2008 at 08:09 AM. Reason: Additional question added.
    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Barker View Post
    This is a very interesting topic. One that I'm not very knowledgeable about. In the attached, is it safe to assume that sealing the surface will not correct this problem since it seems that water has penetrated the edge of the stone? Or as Scott mentioned, could an oil based sealant have been used that created this stain? How far would such a stain migrate into the stone?
    Eric, that photo could show moisture wicking up the stone, or it could be the caulk they used. Dry it out and see if it lightens.

    I see the oil stained blotches on granite and marble too, and it shows up around the sink rims and plumbing escutcheons. The newer "thin veneer" overlay granite tops are becoming popular, and sometimes installed by less knowledgeable techs. I see the blotches in those installs, frequently.


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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Eric,

    You also commented on the not-installed-horizontally grab bar installation too, I presume.

    I know some people install them like that because that is how *they* want them, and some because they just don't know how to install the grab bars. In fact, in our house down in South Florida, I installed one at an angle because my wife's sister lived with us for about a year after she moved down from Rochester, NY. *She* felt more comfortable having it at an angle, so I installed it that way.

    However, the next person in may need to use it and fall, because it was not horizontal (probably not why they fell, but that would be the reason their attorney said they fell). You would not want to hear from their attorney, unless, you could point to your report and say 'see, right here, it says *DO NOT USE the grab bar in xxxx as IT IS NOT installed properly*, it's in the report, right here'. At which time the attorney may (may) go looking elsewhere.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    badair http://www.adairinspection.com Garland, TX 75042 TREC # 4563
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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Barry,

    Thanks, I am now back to "We have a granite countertop installed and have been told by various granite installers and suppliers: a) you do not need to seal granite; b) you do need to seal granite ... so I have not yet sealed our granite."

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Jerry,

    OK, I'll bite. Why is a grab bar installed at an angle incorrect? It seems to me that any horizontal bar would be useless or perhaps even hazardous unless it was installed for a specific person at a specific height. It seems to me that if an attorney would use an angled bar as an excuse for a fall, then an attorney would be just as likely to use a bar installed at an improper height for a specific individual as an excuse for a fall. For instance, a bar installed at an optimum height for my wife (5'2") would not be at an optimum height for me (6'2"), and vice-versa. The bar installed at an angle would help to provide a usable height (granted, not an optimum height) for a variety of people.

    As an example, watch people using a handrail as the ascend or descend a stairway. The handrail is installed at the same angle as the stairway, but each person using the handrail will grasp it in a different location, depending on their height (among other factors). An individual chooses where to grasp the handrail depending upon his/her own needs.

    Should we notify a client that any grab bar be evaluated by a qualified grab bar installation specialist to ensure that the bar was installed at a proper height for an individual prior to use?

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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Our granite countertops were sealed when we moved in. Have they been sealed since? NO

    Does mother nature seal granite? I don't think so.

    rick


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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Some garanites are more suseptible than others. The lighter colors will eventually darken just from body oil coming off your hand. For instance where you put your hand on a vanity top every morning when you brush your teeth. Sealing is recommended for any granite where oils could come in contact. Removal of stains is possible but can be a real pain.
    Google "removing oil stains from granite" and you will get the idea.


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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Quote Originally Posted by Gunnar Alquist View Post
    Why is a grab bar installed at an angle incorrect? It seems to me that any horizontal bar would be useless or perhaps even hazardous unless it was installed for a specific person at a specific height. It seems to me that if an attorney would use an angled bar as an excuse for a fall, then an attorney would be just as likely to use a bar installed at an improper height for a specific individual as an excuse for a fall.
    Because this is the accepted standard locations for grab bars:

    From the ADA Accessibility Standards for Design (28 CFR Part 36)
    - 4.20 Bathtubs.
    - - 4.20.4 Grab Bars. Grab bars complying with 4.26 shall be provided as shown in Fig. 33 and 34.

    (Note: Fig. 34 shows two bars in one location, that is only depicting the height range for which the bars are to be installed within.)

    You can also view these here at ADAAG:ADAAG Homepage and ADA Accessibility Guidelines
    Fig. 33:ADAAG Figure 33
    Fig. 34:ADAAG Figure 34

    With back up like that, you are typically pretty safe. Those are the federally accepted, federally produced, federally support, federally backed, ADA accessibility design guidelines.

    Install the bar at an angle? You are on your own.


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    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Jerry, there you go again, putting your own interpretation in the mix.

    Nowhere in the very detailed specs published by the ADA do they state INSTALL HORIZONTALLY ONLY. The pictures and attached text give ranges of inches (between 30-36 inches...)and again, they do not use terms such as level, flat, horizontal, non-angled, or whatever. Yes, they include some diagrams, but they are vague and non-specific in this regard.


    A4.26.1 General. Many disabled people rely heavily upon grab bars and handrails to maintain balance and prevent serious falls. Many people brace their forearms between supports and walls to give them more leverage and stability in maintaining balance or for lifting. The grab bar clearance of 1-1/2 in (38 mm) required in this guideline is a safety clearance to prevent injuries resulting from arms slipping through the openings. It also provides adequate gripping room.
    Fig. 34(b) With Seat at Head of Tub. At the foot of the tub, the grab bar shall be a minimum of 24 inches (610 mm) in length measured from the outer edge of the tub. On the back wall, two grab bars are required. The grab bars mounted on the back wall shall be a minimum of 48 inches (1220 mm) in length located a maximum of 12 inches (305 mm) from the foot of the tub and a maximum of 15 inches (380 mm) from the head of the tub. Heights of grab bars are as described above.
    They are clear on distance to the wall, size and spacing, bend stress, tensile force, non-rotating bar, space between the bar, strength of the bar, including shear values.

    I would think that if the requirements were so specific in these areas and published in many charts, then this simple placement requirement, regarding angles, would be there as well.

    I see no requirement that the all grab bars need to be horizontal; none at all.

    Dom.


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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Quote Originally Posted by Dom D'Agostino View Post
    Jerry, there you go again, putting your own interpretation in the mix.
    Dom,

    At least you didn't call me on this - I got to catch it first:

    I said: "(Note: Fig. 34 shows two bars in one location, that is only depicting the height range for which the bars are to be installed within.)"

    That is because of what everything I'd seen previously, however, after your post and going back to read what it said under Fig. 34, I found this:

    "On the back wall, two grab bars are required."

    So, I guess one grab bar *was* MY "interpretation.

    Now, though, let's look at your post as you meant it ...

    "One grab bar shall be located 9 inches (230 mm) above the rim of the tub."

    Okay, that bar MUST be "horizontal". It MUST be 9" above the rim of the tub.

    "The others shall be 33 to 36 inches ( 840 mm to 910 mm) above the bathroom floor."

    Okay, install it so one end is 33" above the bathroom floor and the other end is 36" above the bathroom floor. "As worded" ... I guess it is not allowed to be level?

    That's *almost* level.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Sealing granite

    Dom
    The way I read Jerry's reply and the ADA requirments, Jerry is correct.
    He is not saying that it is required to have the grab bar the way the ADA recommends, but only that "IF" something were to happen and the grab bar is in complience to the ADA recomendations then, those same recomendations can be used to support the reason that the grab bar is the way it is, anything else and, as Jerry said, "you are own your own".

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

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