2

We recently had LEATHERED granite countertops installed. We are waiting for the majority of the kitchen backsplashes to be cut to height in order to fit under existing wall tile, but one piece was installed already. The silicone is so shiny, it sticks out like a sore thumb. I applied some translucent silicone in one spot to experiment and it is not much duller. I can't imagine latex caulk or grout being an option with this application. I have reached out to our granite company, but I would also like to get other opinions.

enter image description here

4
  • maxisil.com/…. Not sure if there is a clear matte silicone but some colored option here. You could try wiping the cured caulk with denatured alcohol to perhaps dull it a bit
    – Kris
    Jun 3 at 12:45
  • @Gunner Yeah, just waterproofing UNDER it and in the tiny corner could be the thing to do in the end. I know a lot of people like this tape method to prevent peeling from rubbing when cleaning.
    – Evil Elf
    Jun 3 at 13:31
  • +1 Good question for common DIY problem. What is "LEATHERED" ?
    – P2000
    Jun 3 at 16:50
  • @P2000 Instead of honing the stone to a polished finish, it is smoothed with diamond tipped brushes. It has a slight pebbled matte finish.
    – Evil Elf
    Jun 3 at 17:51
8

Wow! Not how I ever installed any backsplash.

I would have applied a small bead of silicone to the bottom edge of the BS, install it on the counter top and push down and hold down until dry (sticks work, weight plates) and scrape off any silicone that squeezed out so all you see is a tiny or no seam. I would not apply it after the splash is installed, it never comes out right.

You can try to remove the excess carefully with a sharp razor blade and slice down between the splash/countertop and silicone very slowly and carefully and remove the excess unsightly silicone.

Tape never works, there will still be a raised edge that you will have to smooth out.

3
  • I think this answer provides the best approach, since you say in the question most of the backsplash hasn't been installed yet. So I won't make this an Answer but if it HAD been installed I would say use a much smaller bead and use color-matched caulk, maybe black, rather than clear. IDK if black is available matte but I'm pretty sure clear isn't.
    – jay613
    Jun 3 at 16:49
  • And ya as you say in the question don't use grout there, it won't last. You need a tiny bit of flex between the counter and the backsplash.
    – jay613
    Jun 3 at 16:55
  • 2
    In the end, the company's seasoned installer stated that with leathered granite, even a tiny seam crack filled with silicone will be shiny. He is going to have the crew just seal the bottom of the backsplash to the top of the countertop and leave the seam empty. That is how he does them and a newer hire was just doing the best he could.
    – Evil Elf
    Jun 3 at 19:23
3

Based on the super straight lines I assume the installer used the tape method but chose to expose a lot of granite rather than targeting just the seam.

Either have them do this or do it yourself after they install everything:

enter image description here

Courtesy of https://www.tilecleaning.org/recaulk-granite-countertop.htm

For the existing install the only fix is to remove the silicone and apply it properly.

4
  • 2
    I have never had any luck with the longevity of "Siliconized" products. I want to stick to a 100% silicone solution.
    – Evil Elf
    Jun 3 at 13:32
  • @EvilElf I guess it comes down to the physical procedure then. The installer could have used tape as seen here: pinterest.com/natco465/re-caulking-granite-countertop or youtube.com/watch?v=SxtkcK1jzdg
    – MonkeyZeus
    Jun 3 at 13:39
  • They DID, but apparently their routine is a large swath of it? In the end, I imagine I will tell them to install them and I will seal them myself.
    – Evil Elf
    Jun 3 at 13:43
  • 4
    @EvilElf Sounds like we have an answer then; if you want it done right then do it yourself!
    – MonkeyZeus
    Jun 3 at 13:46
2

In addition to the preferred option of only caulking in the crack not on the crack, there's also the option of using colour matched and texture matched caulking.

It's usually used for caulking between grouted tiles and a finishing edge or counter top, but it could also be used where there is an existing gap that needs filling by anything but shiny silicone.

They are far more expensive than regular caulk, but you only apply it to the critical interfaces. It's acrylic based with the endurance of silicone and is anti-mold.

With a wide variety of colours available you can match it to the dominant colour in the granite.

I don't know all the brands, but here's an example that I have used: "Keracaulk S" Sanded Acrylic Caulk 311ml - Ivory

enter image description here

1
  • 1
    I am currently looking at Poly-Sil by Color Rite. They seem to have a great following in contractor forums.
    – Evil Elf
    Jun 3 at 17:52

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.