Santa Fe Floor Care


Stone Fabrication. Stone Restoration. What’s the Difference?

If you are considering natural stone as a material for your kitchen or bath plans, whether new home construction or a renovation project, you will need to know the difference between a stone fabricator and a stone restoration contractor, and you will need to enlist the services of both. Here are the details.

Why the Confusion?

In the stone industry, from quarry to countertop, different types of companies practice different specialties. Some companies are concerned only with supply, others with design and installation, and others with repair and maintenance. Some companies may focus solely on commercial properties while others specialize in residential properties, and some may service both. Although stone fabricators usually do not do repair and restoration work and restoration contractors usually do not do new installation, there are occasionally some companies that do cross over work from one specialty to the other.

Stone Fabrication

Most people know that when it comes to natural stone countertops, fabricators offer a wide variety of options for countertop edges, backsplashes, decorative trim, and more. What many people don’t know is that fabricators rarely do anything with the face of the stone. Occasionally fabricators repair minor flaws in a slab face or provide a custom finish if they are properly equipped to do so, but for the most part, fabricators specialize in cutting and shaping natural stone.

Highly skilled technicians make a rectangle slab of stone conform to your creative vision, matching the specifications of each element in your kitchen design, from cabinets, sinks, and cooktops to faucets and other features. Fabricators finish edges so that they have a clean, elegant appearance that matches with the surface finish. Once stone is installed, a fabricator may wipe down countertops to remove dust or construction debris or apply a sealer, but any other work involving the face of already-installed stone, for example, changing the finish from honed to polished or vice versa, will require the services of a professional stone restoration contractor. Basically, homeowners can expect the appearance of the face of the slab to remain unchanged from the slab selection phase to when they see it as the newly installed top.

Stone Restoration

Natural stone restoration contractors help maintain the like-new appearance of already installed natural stone, such as countertops and vanity tops, as well as walls, tub surrounds, fireplace surrounds, hardscape, and other stone surfaces. Their services may involve repair, restoration, or maintenance.

Over the course of time, countertops will eventually show signs of wear. Acidic substances in food and drinks may cause etching, heavy use may result in fine scratches and dullness, a dropped heavy object may cause a chip or crack. Most of the time, an experienced stone restoration contractor can resolve stone problems, repairing damage and honing and polishing to restore the finish. Stone restoration contractors may also provide maintenance services, such as regularly scheduled visits to clean, buff, and seal stone.

With proper care, a stone restoration contractor can help your natural stone last a long time. When stone replacement services are required, whether it is because of a remodeling decision or out of necessity due to irreparable damage or failure, then it will be time to consult with a stone fabricator again.

This article is one of a series of articles written and published on behalf of SurpHaces PRO Partners.

The Problem With Carpet That Hides Dirt

Carpet in living rooms, hallways, steps, and other high traffic areas can soil quickly. Some colors and styles of carpeting look clean longer than others. Chances are you have heard the well-intended but ill-advised suggestion to choose carpeting that hides dirt so there will be less vacuuming required and you will not feel the need to get it professionally cleaned as often. Why is this bad advice? Here are the details.

Carpets That Hide Dirt

Two factors to consider when it comes to how long a carpet looks clean are color and texture. Keep in mind that we are not talking about the actual cleanliness of the carpet but only how clean it appears to be. Carpeting with speckled patterns, crazy designs, or dark colored carpeting will hide dirt more than solid or light colored carpet. Certain textures with loosely distributed fibers, such as a low shag or Berber, will allow dirt to fall down below the surface, whereas other textures with densely distributed stiff fiber bundles, like cut pile carpet, will keep dirt on the surface longer.

The Cost of Less Vacuuming and Fewer Professional Cleanings

One might imagine that having carpets that stay looking clean longer would be a good thing, but hiding the dirt means you are also hiding the devastating long-term effects of dirt.

Think of dirt as tiny shards of glass. The sharp edges slice along the carpet fibers every time someone takes a step. Over time, the carpet fibers weaken and break. If you allow premature wear to be the norm, you can count on spending more money, because any money you save with fewer professional cleanings will seem insignificant once you are forced to replace your carpet a lot sooner than expected.

If you want to get the most mileage out of your investment, treat carpet that hides dirt like carpet that doesn’t hide dirt.

Carpet Care Tips

The best way to keep carpets looking clean is to actually keep carpets clean. If you keep your carpet looking clean by hiding the dirt, even professional cleaning won’t be enough to resolve the problem once premature wear becomes apparent. Whether your carpet hides or advertises dirt, it can look clean with proper care.

Vacuum regularly, especially high traffic areas. Vacuuming slowly and evenly to remove the most ground in soil. Place high quality, heavy-duty mats at entrances to reduce the amount of grit and grime tracked in from outside. Have your carpet periodically professionally cleaned, whether it looks dirty or not. Professional cleaning loosens, dislodges, and extracts dirt particles and contaminants that a vacuum can’t remove.

Our Carpet Selection Suggestion

Do not choose your carpet based on how well it hides dirt. It may seem counterproductive, but carpet that does not hide dirt may actually be a better choice. Like the adage, “The squeaky wheel gets the oil,” the dirty-looking carpet gets proper care. Go for the solid or light-colored carpet if that is what you really want. Regardless of your carpet selection, proper care is what really matters.

This article is one of a series of articles written and published on behalf of SurpHaces PRO Partners.