Hot Topics: Does This Look Broken to You?
Here at DoItYourself.com we enjoy providing a place where home improvement novices and experts can come together to share ideas and advice. Inside our Forums, users can browse threads to see what exchanges are taking place on a topic of interest or start their own dialogue by posting something for the community to take part in. With over 250,000 members and counting, this resource is quite active so each week we highlight one of the conversations that may just help you with that next DIY project.
Natural materials have natural flaws, and that can be part of their appeal. But when does a flaw become an error? If you’re not an expert you might not know if you should trust your eye, or trust your installer. Trust the Forum.
Original Post: Is installed granite broken?
I bought Delicatus granite and I'm pretty sure I received a broken piece. I am being told by the store I bought it from (and their granite installer) that Delicatus has 'fissures' like this all the time and this is completely normal.
From Sam, the store's granite guy:
"Went by today to look at it, The Delicatus has a vein/fissure in the sink cut-out and in the solid piece between cut-outs. You can feel those and some other areas as well. Delicatus and others exotics materials always has that and we do our best to not let it break apart. Every sink cut-out has steel rods installed in the front and in the back to add strength to the narrow areas, that goes pretty much on every material. Only thing I can do is probably remove it or remake it in a different material, if we remake with Delicatus again the same thing may happen since the material has fissures and veins and fillers all over it."
When I told them it was broken, they sent me “The 10 Facts About Granite” (oldcastlesurfaces.com/blog/articles/10-facts-about-granite.html) with fact #5 highlighted stating, “fissures in granite are visible separations along inter-crystalline boundaries.” When I looked up “inter-crystalline” it states, “occurring along the boundaries between the crystals or grains.” This crack goes through the crystals and grains, not along the boundaries.
I call BS. To me, this piece of granite has clearly been broken at the weak sink cutout and epoxied back together as if nothing happened. The epoxy runs across the top and down the sink cutout. The bottom wasn't even fixed and I can see a clear crack along the same line. The granite was not broken when I chose it at the yard.
I also just found a youtube video of the exact same thing I believe happened with my granite: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YSUuXGo74F8
Can anybody out there tell me that this “fissure” is completely normal or do you agree that the store and granite guy are both trying to get away with a bad job?
Highlights from the Thread
Pilot Dane Group Moderator
Run your hand over the area. Does it feel like it's broken? Many types of stone have fissures, voids or other imperfections. If you look closely you'll often see where they are filled with epoxy in some cases but some smaller pits may still exist even after cutting and polishing.
I definitely feel a different texture and slight ridge when I rub my hand across the entire crack. I don't have a photo of the entire piece, but you can see the crack start from the very back near the wall and travel all the way to the front. Are there really fissures like this? Is fissure just a granite worker's word for naturally broken granite that they have to fix? This crack looks nothing like the rest of the slab.
chandler Forum Topic Moderator
Granite will break. Who performed the installation? Were you there for it? Did they break it? A mended joint won't take transportation well, so it appears to have been broken on site and put back together (very badly).
Handyone Forum Topic Moderator
I'm not a stone expert, I have been subcontracting it out though for over 14 years on the kitchens I do and see every installation.
To me this is a broken slab plain and simple. Most likely installer error. I wouldn't care why the granite is susceptible to breakage, I would only care it's broke and needs replaced.
I can't imagine any customer I've ever worked with accepting this stone, not with the cost involved.
A little background: There are special clamps used to transport granite, both on the truck and when setting it down in the home. The clamp is long and sandwiches the granite at the weak points. My guess is the installers did not invest in these expensive tools and this is what happens when you take shortcuts.
Pilot Dane Group Moderator
A natural vein or a factory repaired blemish like filling a void is usually very difficult to feel. If you feel the crack and it feels like a crack or break then it's probably a break. Judging by its location I'd guess the sink was cut out at the factory and it broke during transport or installation. Then they fixed it as they might do a seam. Had they done it more properly you might have never noticed. I assume you ordered and paid for an unbroken top so you should have an unbroken top. They should either replace it or offer a discount for you to accept the blemish/damage.
If they want to replace it inspect the slab from which your top will be made. Pay particular attention to look for fissures and run your hand over the slab to feel for imperfections so you know what to expect in the finished piece.