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How to Remove Water Stains From Granite Bathroom Countertops?

Water stains on bathroom countertops can be a real nuisance, and we totally get it! It seems like no matter how much you scrub, those marks just won’t go away. Despite granite’s reputation for toughness and resilience, it’s still prone to staining. If not properly maintained, water stains can mar your granite’s sleek, shiny surface, especially around faucets and fixtures.

But don’t worry, there’s always a way to tackle this problem! This guide is here to help, covering everything from removing clean water stains to dealing with hard water marks. We’ll share cleaning tips and advice on how to prevent these stains on granite bathroom countertops from happening in the first place.

What Types of Water Stains Are There? 

You’ll see two types of water stains on your granite bathroom countertops. Keep reading to know about what they are:

Simple Water Stains

In a simple water stain, water is the only culprit. Fortunately, these stains are relatively easy to get rid of. Essentially, what happened here is that water has penetrated the pores of the granite, leaving behind a visible mark. You can easily spot a simple water stain by its look. They appear as dark spots on your granite countertops without any white mineral deposits or other substances mixed in. 

Here’s some positive news: simple water stains will naturally evaporate and fade away. Yes, that is all it takes, and soon enough, the stain will vanish just by wiping it from a normal cloth.

On the flip side, simple water stains signal that it’s time to seal your granite!

Right from the start, your countertop installers ensure that the granite countertop reaches you with a protective sealant to stop liquids and water from penetrating the surface. However, this protective layer can diminish over time due to regular use and irregular maintenance. Granite, being highly porous, acts much like a sponge, soaking up water and various liquids if left unsealed. This quick absorption leads to staining. To keep those simple water stains at bay, it’s crucial to consistently apply a top-notch natural stone sealer to your granite countertops.

How to Remove Simple Water Stains?

To clean simple water stains from your granite surface, follow these steps:

  • Use a soft cloth or sponge to absorb any spills, preventing the formation of stains quickly.
  • Regularly clean the surface with a mild detergent and water to maintain its appearance and prevent stains from setting.
  • After cleaning, make sure to dry the area completely with a soft cloth to avoid any water spots.
  • For existing simple water stains, gently wipe the area with a soft, damp cloth to remove any marks.
  • After removing the stain, buff the area with a dry microfiber cloth to restore shine.
  • If the stain persists, repeat the cleaning process until the water stain is fully removed.

Hard Water Stains

Hard water stains pose a tougher challenge compared to simple water stains. These stains develop when mineral-rich water, containing elements like calcium or magnesium, evaporates on your granite’s surface. As this water evaporates, it leaves behind mineral deposits. Given granite’s porous nature, these minerals penetrate beneath the surface, resulting in a stain.

Hard water stains are recognizable by their distinct look. They show up as chalky white residue or light-colored spots on the granite. In contrast to simple water stains, these don’t just fade away with time. Opt for a granite-specific cleaner to tackle hard water stains on your granite bathroom countertops. It might be easy to reach for just any cleaner from your kitchen cabinet, but holding back is important!

Ordinary household cleaners aren’t designed for natural stone and can harm your granite. Their acidic nature can harm your countertops, strip away the sealant, and dull the shiny finish. To avoid causing more harm, always choose a pH-balanced cleaner made for granite care.

How to Remove Hard Water Stains?

To tackle hard water stains on your granite countertop, here are the steps to follow:

  • Immediately mop up any spills using a sponge or cloth to prevent stains.
  • Address hard water marks the moment you spot them. Any spots or rings from wet dishes should be cleaned promptly to prevent the formation of hard, scaly deposits.
  • Create a mixture of baking soda and water to form a paste. Apply this paste to the stained area and softly scrub with a soft-bristled brush. Afterward, rinse the area with water and dry it with a microfiber cloth.
  • If the stain has penetrated deeper, prepare a thicker poultice with baking soda and water. Spread it over the stain, cover it with plastic wrap, and seal the edges with tape. After 24 hours, remove the plastic and clean off the poultice. Repeat if necessary.
  • For particularly stubborn spots, a single-edge razor blade can be effective. Exercise caution to avoid damaging the sealant as you scrape off mineral buildup from the surface.

How to Prevent Granite Water Stains?

The best strategy to shield your granite bathroom countertops from water stains is through sealing. This involves spreading a protective sealant over the granite, penetrating and clogging the pores. This barrier prevents any liquids or stains from infiltrating the stone. Although re-sealing frequency can vary depending on the granite type, re-sealing your countertops is generally recommended annually. The good news is sealing your granite is a quick task, requiring just a few minutes of your time.


Adhering to these cleaning guidelines will help ensure your granite bathroom countertops remain in pristine condition for many years. And if you’re taking care of other natural stone surfaces in your home, whether granite, quartz, or marble bathroom countertops, remember to clean and protect them by using products specifically formulated for natural stone.
At APF, we specialize in offering stone countertops and are here to assist you in maintaining your countertops in pristine condition. Whether you’re in the process of choosing the perfect stone countertop or looking to book a consultation, our countertop installers are ready to support you. We are dedicated to delivering quality service and high-quality stone countertops for residential and commercial purposes.

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