frequently asked questions

Does natural stone add value to my home?

Yes. Stone surfaces in your home will always add more resale value than any other surfacing material. Stone and quartz countertops are very desirable to homebuyers, especially throughout the kitchen. Stone countertops will last a lifetime, which means that after the cost of the initial installation (with proper maintenance and care) they never need to be replaced.

Yes. The minerals present in natural stone are toxic to most bacteria. Coupled with a good sealer, natural stone countertops are very hygienic. The NSF (National Sanitary Foundation) certified solid surface, quartz and ultra-compact.

YES! We are MIA (Marble Institute of America) accredited as well as members of ISFA (International Surface Fabricators Association, National Stone Institute (NSI) and Artisan (an elite group of fabricators).

Make sure your stone fabricator is not just a “dues paying” member of an industry organization, but that they hold MIA Accreditation or some type of certification for compliance, assurance, and quality craftsmanship.

YES! We provide complete one-on-one project consultation, guidance, and design expertise along with hassle-free sales, service, and support. We only employ highly qualified, experienced personnel who are knowledgeable and professional. We begin by asking what is important to you and then educating you on the features and benefits of materials based on your needs. Check out our process to learn more. When you are passionate about something, you love to talk about it! We love to talk about countertops and we’re excited to walk beside you every step of the way.

We only allow Grade A and first-choice quality natural stone and Breton SPF zero pin-hole quartz in our fabrication. In an industry that is brand saturated, we made the decision in 2013 to focus only on the best brands for all of our materials.

There are different grades of stone just as there are different grades of diamonds. While they appear similar, there are color, structural, and quality differences that dictate how the stone is graded at the quarry. “First Choice” is typically the highest quality. Standard grade and grade C or D is used often by box stores and box store competitors. This is not acceptable to us.

YES! All steps of our process are provided by a trained Paxton team member and never a subcontractor. We strive to make every experience an exceptional one. We fabricate your custom projects right here in Lansing, Michigan. 

Check to see that your fabricator is not outsourcing. Make sure whoever is doing the fabrication and installation is a trusted and respected professional.We are considered experts in the industry and we make everything we sell, handling all countertop details from template to fabrication & installation.

Prices of natural stone can differ for a wide variety of reasons. Typically the more expensive the stone, the more rare it is or difficult to obtain. Pricier, more exotic stones usually come from India, Brazil, and Italy. Other reasons stone pricing can differ can depend on quarrying and processing costs, availability, shipping and importing, complexity of fabrication and its popularity with buyers.

Yes. Outdoor countertops add a beautiful complement to pool areas, decks, and patios. However, they do require more maintenance – especially here in Michigan with our seasonal changes. When considering natural stone for outdoor countertops, be sure to select a hard stone. Some types of stone are softer than others and will weather and stain easier. We can help you select an appropriate stone for your outdoor application. Ultra-Compact Dekton is a superior outdoor kitchen product).

What are the most popular surface finishes?

Natural stone surfaces can be finished in a variety of ways but polished, honed, and leathered are the most popular.

A polished surface is the most common and desirable. Polished surfaces have a great appearance and are easy to keep clean and maintain. In addition, a polished surface has a high luster and sheen bringing out the dramatic colors and rocky patterns of the stone.

Honed finishes are gradually becoming more popular for stone countertops. This finish is smooth but less shiny than polished finishes and gives your home a more natural, casual feel. One drawback of honed surfaces is that they are known to show stains more than others. But, don’t let this deter you from choosing a honed finish.

A leathered finish begins with a honed surface, then it is swept with diamond-tipped brushes. The process brings back the color and closes pores on the surface. The result is between polished and honed. It has more sheen and is less porous than a honed finish.

How do you clean synthetic countertops? Formica & Dekton?
Formica countertops and those made out of Dekton are generally easy to clean with warm water and a gentle household cleaner*.
• Remove any debris
• Simply wipe down the countertops
• Rinse with water

*Always be sure to spot-test any cleaner to ensure it is safe to use with your counter’s finish.
Special care should always be taken with natural stone countertops such as granite and marble. To ensure they stay in top condition, follow these guidelines:

• Daily– Wipe off debris with a dry paper towel. Once all debris is removed, wipe down the entire countertop with either a natural-stone-safe wipe or natural stone soap and a clean, damp paper towel.
•Long-Term– Every two to three years, granite countertops should be resealed to guard against staining, create easier wipe-up and preserve their natural beauty.

Please note that all countertops should be cleaned using a neutral stone soap only (pH7). This will help prevent damage and promote lasting use.

Etching is surface damage. When acids from liquids such as fruit juices, alcohols and even some cleaning products come into contact with certain minerals in your stone, they leave dull spots or rings. Sometimes an etch can be felt (it feels rougher). Other times, you cannot feel a difference but you’ll see a dull looking area.

Natural stone countertops deliver dazzling beauty and amazing performance. They are scratch-resistant, but not scratch-proof. Take care not to introduce etching into the surface. Etching is a type of surface damage usually caused by acidic fruit juices, alcohol, and some cleaning products. You can’t always feel it, but you may notice a dull-looking area and it might start to look worn down.

Always follow the specific care instructions for your countertops. If your countertops have a special finish or any seams, be sure to request care information for these features. You can use sealers and impregnators to serve as a moisture barrier. These won’t magically shield against all stains, but they do give you more time to wipe up spills. For serious stains, resurfacing may be required.
Paxton Countertops recommends using PPI Platinum All-In-One to keep your countertops polished, protected, and clean. This protectant spray does not produce any buildup and can be used on any non-walking surface, including brass, chrome, and stainless-steel components. For your convenience, you can purchase PPI Platinum All-In-One spray with your countertop order.

Yes, it can. All-natural stone, including granite, has a minute level of porosity and can stain and etch. Sealers and impregnators serve as a moisture barrier only and do not totally prevent stains. However, they do help by giving you a fair amount of time to wipe up spills. If a serious stain is bothering you, it can usually be removed by resurfacing.

Small chips can occur with heavy abuse, but usually these can easily be repaired. A colored epoxy with small pieces of stone aggregate is used to fill in small areas. If you get a larger chip, save the piece so it can be used to repair the damaged area.

It depends on the stone. Natural stone countertops will not scratch under normal use, but keep in mind that stone surfaces are scratch resistant, not scratch proof. We can help you determine what kind of stone is best for your lifestyle and application.

Yes. If minor damage does occur, natural stone usually can be repaired using a mix of epoxy and ground-up chips of stone. If your countertop is severely damaged or cracked, it may need to be replaced. We are happy to provide an estimate on any repairs you need, even if we did not do the original work.

It depends on the natural stone. A lot of natural stones are filled with resin which could discolor from direct sunlight over time. However, this may go unnoticed depending on the color of the stone.

Will seams be noticeable?

Seams are joints where two pieces of stone meet or join together. Although stone slabs are very big, most countertop applications require a seam. If you have curves, arches or long spans of countertop space, usually a seam is required. A good fabricator will create a project where the seams are barely noticeable.

We will work with you on placement and will order additional material rather than have the color and grain of your countertops compromised. YES, you can be as involved as you would like when it comes to seam placement.

Seams are based on the yield of the slab and onsite details (such as how will a top make it inside, up or down flight(s) of stairs, ceiling height, etc). We cut all of our seams on a dual CNC for crispness. We use an adhesive that is a color-matched quartz bonder which is matched by chemists in a lab. It is manufactured for every individual countertop color, specifically for this industry. HOW COOL IS THAT?

(if you want to nerd out on this our quartz bonder rates 3200 on a flexural rating as opposed to the 900 FR our competitors use).

When the seam is not located at a sink, a quality countertop fabricator will use a special piece of vibrating equipment that will draw in and vibrate out any air bubbles, resulting in a more inconspicuous seam.

Do you finish the underside of natural stone overhangs to eliminate the roughness?

YES! Finishing the underside of overhangs is just another personal added touch that you should expect from your fabricator. No more snags on your pants or hosiery. Feel the difference. The bottoms of our tops are always finished and never rough.

As a personal touch, we also hand-polish the machined edges to eliminate the linear lines. The other guys call it an upgrade (or often they don’t even offer this service), we call it a standard.

We provide a wide variety of edge options to choose from as well as custom edges specific to your liking. We use router bits with different profiles to achieve the style you’re looking for. We will also guide you on any edges that may not be recommended for the material you select, due to the possibility of chipping.

YES! We rod delicate areas including cutouts, rebating into the bottom of your natural stone top, and insert a metal rod and adhesive which strengthens the stone for fabrication, installation, and after.

Paxton uses top-of-the-line mechanical fasteners ensuring your sink will remain securely attached. Our fasteners ratchet into a rebated space in the bottom of your top, followed by the injection of a hard adhesive around the fastener.

Additionally, we fabricate a 3/8” radius edge profile at your sink cut out which will allow for more impact without chipping (think pots and pans).

NO! We use top-of-the-line mechanical fasteners ensuring your sink will remain securely attached. Our fasteners ratchet into a rebated space in the bottom of your top, followed by the injection of a hard adhesive around the fastener. Use of these fasteners will give you peace of mind that your sink will remain securely attached.

Sub-standard fabricators and box store sub-contractors use a basic sink clip to attach a sink to the bottom of the top. Silicone is used to hold the clip in place and wooden blocks are hot-melted surrounding the clip, buying curing time for the silicone to set up. Unfortunately, this widely used method fails regularly. We get at least one call per week due to the failure of clips used by other fabricators.

YES! We provide continuous customer service, personalized visits, and any necessary care after your counters are installed. Any issues and questions will be readily addressed by our team. We offer service packages for all of the different materials we fabricate. These packages may be purchased when you sign your original contract purchase order (discount offered at this time) or later on.

YES! Paxton Countertops is a Kohler Authorized Dealer with a huge assortment of sinks and faucets available for you to view right in our showroom. This allows us to show you actual products that can be coordinated to fit your needs, design style, and budget. It also makes it easier to purchase all of your accessories at one location.

Remnants are smaller pieces of stone or smaller sections of slabs remaining from another project.

YES. We sell remnants and sometimes offer price discounts on leftover pieces. You cannot special order remnants – what you see is what you get. Remnants work great if you only need a small portion of stone for a bathroom vanity, shelving, a laundry room, or for small desks and tables.

What kinds of warranties do you offer?

We provide manufacturer warranties and stand behind our fabrications and products. We partner with major brands on warranty repair and replacement, regardless of who the original fabricator was. They trust as experts in the industry. Your warranty will depend on your specific project.

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