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Stone Master Marble & Granite Inc Questions and Answers

 

General Questions


Do I have to buy a whole 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.


Where do you operate?
stone master marble and granite inc. operates within the greater area -la to sun digo rever side to solvang . We are a direct fabricator and installer of kitchen countertops, vanities, Jacuzzi surrounds, fireplace surrounds, and custom designs.

Product and Maintenance Questions


What's the difference between Granite and Marble?
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, limestone, travertine, marble, onyx, starts out as sediment, animal skeletons, shells, plant matter and silt at the bottom of bodies of water. After millions of years this solidifies into stone (lithifies). Because its main component is calcium, it can be affected by acids such as vinegar and citrus beverages.


Should I use Granite or Marble for my kitchen counter tops?
Although typical application of marble is for bathroom vanity tops, Jacuzzi tops and fireplaces, it is possible to use it in the kitchen. However, we don't recommend it due to the fact that it is easy to scratch and can be etched by acidic substances, such as vinegars, ketchups etc. The high-gloss of the marble countertop can be partially lost as many chemicals etch its surface. Granite in turn is considered the second hardest stone, its polish is not subject to etching by household acids, or scratching by knives, pots and pans under normal use. It is also not affected by typical kitchen heat such as hot pans.


Is it necessary to seal stone?
Since most mineral surfaces are porous they absorb liquids, which may result in discoloring and staining. Although there are many commercial grade products available on the market which may bring the stone to its original luster, taking simple precautions and regular maintenance can save a lot of trouble and cost. All of our marble and granite tops are sealed immediately after they are installed. The impregnating substance penetrates the stone clogging most of its pores making it quite impervious to alcohol, juices, soft drinks, cosmetics, cleaners, coffee, food and even oil. With the course of time, depending on how heavily the tops are used, the sealer gets worn out. The clear indication of this happening would be the fact that the liquids are easily absorbed into the stone leaving temporary (if promptly wiped off) stains. You should re-seal your marble every six months and your granite every 12 to 24 months. For best results, it is recommended to use the same sealer which was used initially. You can obtain it from www.


Will my chosen color look like the picture on your website?
The samples you see on our website have been photographed and saved as digital images. The color tones may not be absolutely correct due to variations in computer systems, monitors and compression algorithms. Also, granite is a natural material with naturally occurring variations in color, tone, granularity, pattern, etc. These variations are expected and are the source of its natural beauty.

Do you sell stone sinks?
We carry a small selection of stilanstile sinks, and can custom fabricate undermount and farm sinks. However, it should be noted that our custom fabricated sinks are assembled from 3/4 slabs, rather than carved from a block of stone.

Can you hone CaesarStone™?
We do not hone CaesarStone™, but it can be specially ordered with a honed finish directly from the manufacturer.
What edge profiles can be used with CaesarStone™?
All of our popular, premium, and laminated edges are available for use on CaesarStone
What is the standard overhang for kitchen and bathroom counter tops?
For kitchen countertops, the average overhang is 1.5" on the front, and 1" along the sides. Bathrooms will usually have even overhangs at either 1" or 1.5". These sizes are not mandatory, and you're welcome to choose any size of overhang.

 

Granite Specific Questions

What should I know about Granite?
Granite is a natural stone. It is very hard and durable, heat and scratch resistant as well as easy to maintain. Aside from the practical aspect, granite is very versatile in the design field. It comes in various colors and patterns. We stock more than 1000 colors to choose from on site. All stones are not exactly the same, each lot will have unique characteristics attributed to the specific granite. Because it is a natural stone, it has been blessed with a remarkable natural beauty that has captivated humans throughout the ages. Inherent in such natural products is a certain lack of predictability that architects and designers celebrate. Consumers who are less acquainted with the material often expect the stone to be identical to the picture or sample they were shown. Although sample stones are intended to be representative of the quarry's product, the material quarried at one time may differ slightly in color and veining from the sample. Moreover, even a single marble or granite slab will possess a certain amount of color variation from one end to the other. Interior designers and architects have come to view this tendency of natural stone as an advantage. Slight irregularities can be pleasing, introducing an element of the natural into human-designed spaces, whether residential or commercial.


Can granite surfaces be damaged?
Like any solid surface, high impact blows can harm granite. Because of its crystalline structure, it can chip if subjected to sharp tipped hard objects. Unsealed, granite can absorb stains such as oil, which can ultimately cause dark spots or discoloration. Fortunately, under typical household use, granite is not subjected to such events. Also, heat from pots and pans or burning liquids will not affect granite under normal circumstances.

Can I set a hot pot on my granite counter top?
Granite is formed by extreme heat combined with pressure occurring beneath the earths crust. It is extremely unlikely that a granite countertop would crack or discolor when subjected to a hot pan.

Can granite chip?
Only in cases of severe abuse with a hammer or impact tool. A chip can be filled with a granite dust and epoxy mixture. If a chip occurs on your countertop, do not throw out the chipped pieces. We can use them to fix the countertop, so that no one will be able to tell it was ever chipped

Does granite crack?
No, not with regular use. Granite is most susceptible to cracks during shipping and installation. Normal use will not overstress this durable material.

Does granite stain?
Most natural stones are porous to some degree. Granite has very little porosity. Most colors will never show any moisture. A few colors may show some moisture if exposed for a period of time. For example, a puddle of water left on the counter for 30 minutes for some colors, may show a dark spot when the water is wiped away. This spot will then dry up and no evidence will show. Only a few colors demonstrate this trait. Our installers will seal the countertops after they are installed. Also if AGM daily granite cleaner is used there will be no need to reseal the countertops because cleaner contains some sealer and every time the countertops are cleaned they are also being sealed at the same time.

Is granite expensive?
The cost of granite counters can vary a lot depending on the color, edge profile and custom shapes used in the layout. Our pricing is very competitive and hard to surpass when you consider the total value of our services. Use our Instant Online Estimate tool to get your price right now. It's absolutely free and takes just minutes to complete.

How much does granite weigh?
One square foot of 1 1/4" thick granite usually weighs 16-18 lbs.

Marble Specific Questions

Can marble be used as a kitchen countertop?
Most marbles are too soft and porous to be safely used in the kitchen. Even the more resilient marbles are susceptible to staining and should be avoided if you intend to cook or serve food often. None of our marbles are covered by any type of warranty when installed in kitchens

Where can I use marble?
Marble can be used for a number of applications such as fireplace surrounds, tabletops, saddles, and shelves. It can also be applied in the bath area as Jacuzzi surrounds, vanities, floor, and shower paneling. Generally you can safely use marble in low traffic areas.

 

Order Process Questions

What is the ordering process?
The whole process is designed for quality and speed. First, get an estimate by giving us your layout and dimensions (online, fax or in person). Come visit our yards to select the stone of your choice. After that an order can be placed and we will schedule a templating appointment. From the time the template is made you can expect a turnaround time of 2 to 3 business days.


Can you level my cabinets?
All Granite & Marble does not engage in ANY carpentry work, so all cabinets must be fully installed and leveled, prior to templating.
Do you install stairs?
Although we install stair treads and risers for indoor and outdoor applications, we do not build the structure of the stairs. Due to the significant amount of weight added by the stone, the structure should be designed by a structural engineer, in order to support the added weight.


Do you make and install sink supports?
Sink supports should be made and installed by a carpenter or contractor. Sinks requiring supports should be fully installed prior to countertop templating. Supports should be made to uphold the weight of very heavy cast-iron sinks, and to securely mount sinks with a front apron
Can I buy a slab somewhere else and have you fabricate it?
With approval from the production manager, we can fabricate slabs from outside sources, however since we have no information on the soundness of the stone, we take NO responsibility for any problems arising during Fabrication.

Will you help me with color selection?
Our staff is always happy to help you select a stone color for your project. Our sales reps have been trained in design principles, and have worked with many homeowners just like you. Our website is also an extremely valuable resource, with plenty of photos and videos of completed projects, and advice from our experienced moderators and affiliated professional interior designers in our forums and online chat.

Do I need the faucet at the time of the templates? When do you drill the holes?
While the holes for the faucet are not drilled until the countertops are installed, we require the homeowner to have the faucets available during templating so we can make sure there is enough room for the faucet and sink in the base cabinet. For example, a faucet with a tilting handle would require more space in the back, especially if there will be a stone backsplash installed.

How long do I have to wait until I can use my countertops after they are installed?
The countertops can be used immediately upon the completion of the installation process. The sink however, should not be used for 6 hours after the installation, to allow the epoxy which holds it to cure.


Price and Estimate Questions

What is your payment policy?
The payment procedure is very simple. For projects measured and installed , we collect a 50% deposit at the time of templating. The remaining balance is required at the time of installation. With pick-up orders, a 100% full payment is required upon placing the order. In either case, the payments should be in the form of a certified check or money order, in order to guarantee the fastest possible turnaround time. Personal and business checks are accepted for deposit only, but require a 5 business day waiting period, which delays the project's completion. For jobs installed , the final payment MUST be certified.

What information is required for a quote?
We require our potential clients to provide a top view layout of the project, including dimensions 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 can then process the specific measurements and respond with an 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 in our yard. You can also use our Online Estimate tool, which allows you to create a digital drawing of your project and get a price in 24 hours

Installation included in the quote?
Yes. If you would like to get a quote without installation, please indicate "pick-up" on your request
If I fax my drawing with dimensions to you, how long will I have to wait for a quote?
Proposals for free quotes that are faxed over are given a 24 hour time frame. We will either call or fax over the estimate assuming that the contact information is provided to us in the original fax.

How close does the estimate come to the final price?
The quote on the estimate is based on the measurements provided to us by you. So the more accurate your drawings are, the more accurate the price.

Why are some stones more expensive than others?
There are several factors which determine the price of each stone. First there are costs of mining. Some stones are located in hard to reach areas which increases the costs of mining. Then, depending on where the stone is sent from, the cost of shipping comes into play. Finally, the stone market follows the supply and demand economics, so rare and sought after stones will be significantly more expensive than common and popular stones.

 

 

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