FAQs

Countertop Process/General Information

 

Q: Do you provide “free in-home estimates”?

A: Yes, we do provide free estimates! You have 2 options:

  1. You can fax your plans to (407) 445-2666 or email your plans to sales2@southeaststone.net.
  2. Call (407) 253-4881 to make an appointment for a sales consultant to visit your home or office to take measurements and give you an estimate.

Q: Do you accept credit cards?

A: Yes, we accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express for retail transactions.

 

Q: What is the process in replacing my countertops?

A: First, you meet with a sales consultant to review your plans to determine your estimated square footage required.  Next, you decide on what type of surface you would like to select.  You will then agree upon a price, sign contract, terms and conditions and pay a 50% non-refundable deposit.  We will template your countertops, order your materials, fabricate and install your countertops on a specified agreed upon date.
Q: How can I determine my real bottom line cost?

A: Many things go into the cost of your countertops. While selecting a countertop surface and comparing prices, keep in mind some of  the elements that go into your countertop price are: square footage; number of slabs required/material yield; layout; edge profile; backsplash; sink; stove; cut-outs, optional stain warranty and access to your home.

 

Q: What are your lead times?

A: For a typical size kitchen countertop project, the process usually takes 10-14 business days from order through installation. (This time can vary depending on workloads.) It is imperative we have all your information and final selections at template in order to begin fabricating countertops, missing information will delay the process.

 

What do I need to know about the Template and Countertop Installation Process?

 

Q: What is a template?

A: A template is a pattern made of your future countertops that will be used to produce your countertop to your specifications.  We template using a Digital Laser Templating System.  48 hours after your template, shop sheets are available for your review and approval.

 

Q: Do I need to be there during the measure / templating of the countertops?

A: Yes. The customer must be present during this process to review items such as seam locations, overhangs, radius corners, and other such issues which commonly arise. You will be asked to sign the drawing of your countertops which will indicate the approximate location of the seams and other specific information of your project.

The appointment to template is the last chance to make changes to the original order.  Changes must be made in writing and either faxed or emailed to your Project/Sales Coordinator.

 

Q: Do I need to have the existing countertops removed prior to the templating date?

A: Not always. Walls are rarely straight, and corners are rarely square.  To ensure the highest degree of accuracy, we prefer your existing countertops be removed.   However, Southeast Stone recognizes that being without a working kitchen for several weeks would be very difficult. Although it is more accurate to measure with the existing countertops removed it is not mandatory. However, occasionally the templater will not see something that becomes visible after the existing tops are removed. This may mean that a piece has to be remade or reworked. No financial compensation will be given due to delays in installation caused by measuring issues.

 

 

Q: What other items do I need to know prior to templating?

A:

  • Final pricing will be based on actual field measurements and conditions.

 

  • Granite, Marble, Quartz & Natural Stone are high-end countertop selections with certain colors and slabs costing thousands of dollars. For this reason, installed countertop pricing may vary based on material yield and number of slabs required.  Southeast Stone cannot and will not be responsible for slab overages based on having to cut extra slabs to complete installation.  Confirm all pricing after template and slab selection/layout.

 

  • Undermount sinks, faucets, and cook tops MUST be onsite during templating.

 

  • Farm or apron sinks must be mounted in their final location prior to templating.

 

  • It is the CUSTOMER'S responsibility to make sure the sink, faucet, cook top, and down draft fit into their respective cabinets.

 

  • Cabinets must be fully installed including finished panels prior to the template. No finished panels may be added after the template has been made.

 

  • Existing countertops should be cleared of items which may interfere with the measuring process.

 

  • Overhangs at the cabinet are designed to cover or hide inconsistencies of the cabinets. Overhangs will vary slightly over the length of the tops.

 

  • Gaps behind the splashes and the tops are caused by irregularities in the walls. Southeast Stone will not caulk any gaps between the walls and the granite.

 

  • Some of the walls are bowed and inconsistent. No wall is perfectly straight. There will be areas where small gaps are visible. The size of these gaps is determined by the severity of the bows in the walls. Countertops cannot be scribed in an attempt to follow the irregularity of any wall. Countertops will not be replaced due to gaps between the walls and the countertops.

 

  • Caulking is done where stone meets stone. We caulk the top splash to the wall and the ends.

 

  • Standard backsplash height is 4”. Southeast Stone will not be responsible if the backsplash does not cover paint or wallpaper lines. It is the customer’s responsibility to have electrical outlets moved up or down to miss or fall within splash. This should be done prior to templating.

 

  • Southeast Stone will install a metal strip for your dishwasher attachment so your appliance company can attach your dishwasher. Should a dishwasher become unattached at a later date it will be the responsibility of the homeowner to correct.

 

  • Undermount sinks may be reconnected 24 hours after installation of the new countertops. Reattaching the plumbing before the sink has had time to set may result in the sink moving or dropping. If this occurs it will be the homeowner’s responsibility to correct.

 

  • The tear out and installation of countertops is a MAJOR construction process. Cook tops and surface sinks will be cut in place, inside the home to avoid breakage. THERE WILL BE SIGNIFICANT DUST CREATED DURING THIS PROCESS. Owners should remove or protect any items left under the cabinets. You should turn off your ac / heat. You may also want to drape or cover the construction area to reduce the amount of dust and debris that reaches other areas. Construction site will be left broom clean. Dust will continue to settle for several hours after the installation has been completed. This cleanup will be the responsibility of the homeowner.

 

  • Mirrors in bathrooms that are permanently affixed to the wall and rest on or within 1" of the existing backsplash or countertop must be removed prior to the tear out of the existing tops. Any damage to mirrors or cabinetry not removed will be the responsibility of the homeowner.

 

  • Installers are not expected to move, install, or adjust appliances.

 

  • Upper cabinets must be installed if the job requires a full height back splash. It will take 48-72 hours after the initial install for a Full Height Backsplash to be installed. We have to take measurements and fabricate backsplash after the initial countertops are installed for correct measuring. If you have under cabinet rim the return pieces need to be removed for proper measurement and to aid in the installation process. It is helpful to have a cabinet trim piece to cover any spaces between cabinet backsplash.

 

Q: Can I have Southeast Stone remove my existing countertops?

A: Yes. Southeast Stone offers this service. Please contact your sales consultant for pricing.

 

Q: When will the tear out/removal happen?

A: The tear out is normally done the same day of the installation. On rare occasions, especially with large tear outs, it may be done the day before. If this is required you will be notified in advance of the situation. The homeowner will be responsible for all plumbing, gas or electrical disconnects prior to the removal.

 

Q: What are some things I should know about the tear-out of my existing countertops?

A:

The removal of existing countertops and the installation of new countertops is a major construction process.  There will be minor damage to surrounding areas and some amount of dust and debris will be created.

The sink, faucets, and dishwasher will need to be disconnected prior to removing your old countertops.  Most homes have shut-off valves under the sink.  If your home does not have shut-off valves, a plumber should be contacted to have them installed.  A countertop installation may take a few days to complete and shut-off valves for kitchen faucets must be in place to avoid having the water completely shut off to your home during this process.

There will be some unavoidable minor damage, dust and debris done during the countertop installation process and tear out to surrounding walls, existing tiles, and possibly cabinets.  Countertop installers are not responsible for this damage.  This type of damage occurs with most installations and the customer should be prepared to make touchups and repairs once countertops are installed.

Southeast Stone will not discount, credit, or in any way reduce the price due to minor scratches or construction damage.

 

Q: Are my cabinets structurally sound enough to handle the weight of granite countertops?

A: Most cabinets can easily handle the weight of granite countertops. It is often not possible to assess cabinet problems prior to the removal of the existing tops. If significant problems are detected after the removal of the existing tops, either in structure or levelness, the installation of the new countertops may be delayed. It is the responsibility of the homeowner to have the cabinets repaired to within industry standards. If the installation must be rescheduled and a new appointment day is needed return trip charges will apply. Countertops can be shimmed and installed with out of level cabinets up to 1/4". Beyond 1/4" the cabinets must be repaired. Countertops sit directly on the cabinets and are held in place with silicone/acrylic caulk.

 

Q: What are some things I should know about the installation of my new granite countertops?

A:

  • Owner or designated representative must be onsite during the entire installation process. Owner's representative must be able to make decisions on issues which may arise during this process. They will be required to sign the completion forms at the conclusion of the installation.

 

  • All seams will be placed at the discretion of the fabricator. Every effort will be made to indicate the seam locations during the measure. The fabricator reserves the right to move seam locations as needed to cut around inclusions, cracks, or other major irregularities within the slab. No financial compensation will be given due to seam movement.

 

  • When two pieces of granite are seamed together there may be slight differences in the thickness of the stones. This is very common. These areas will be "feathered" to blend the pieces together. This happens with roughly 80% of all installations.

 

  • Cut outs for undermount sinks will be made to have overhang. This overhang reduces the risk of food particles collecting on the rim of the sink and molding. Overhangs WILL vary as no two bowls are exactly the same. Overhangs should be between 1/16" and 5/16".

 

  • The installation process can create large amounts of dust. No one other than the installers should be in the immediate area of the work being done unless requested by the installer.

 

  • It is the responsibility of the homeowner to provide a safe area for our installers to work. There will be many trips between the installation jobsite and the installation vehicle. The pathways should be clean and clear of debris as well as items of value such as statues, painting, vases, and other items which could inadvertently become damaged. Granite pieces are very heavy and difficult to maneuver. Children and animals should not be allowed near the jobsite. Homeowner should indicate what area is acceptable for use in cutting and staging material.

 

  • The removal of existing countertops and the installation of new ones is a major construction process. There are often delays in projects such as these. Countertops can break during transportation or installation. It is important to understand that delays are possible. Granite required millions of years to achieve its natural beauty and Southeast Stone is committed to installing it correctly so that it may provide years of enjoyment in your home.

 

Q: Some of the walls in my kitchen are bowed and inconsistent. Will the granite bend to follow this bow and conform to the wall?

A: Granite is extremely rigid and cannot bend to follow the irregularities of walls. No wall is perfectly straight. There will be areas where small gaps are visible. The size of these gaps is determined by the severity of the bows in the walls. Stone Interiors will not caulk any gaps between the walls and the granite. Countertops cannot be scribed in an attempt to follow the irregularity of any wall. Countertops will not be replaced due to gaps between the walls and the countertops.

 

Q: I would like to increase the overhang of my new granite countertops on my island to allow for bar stools. Can I do this?

A: Unsupported overhang cannot exceed 1/3 of the supported top, to a maximum of 6" on 2cm material and 10" on 3cm material. Supports, such as corbels or brackets can be installed by the homeowner or contractor after the granite has been installed. Southeast Stone sells both wood and metal supports these situations.  Please discuss with your sales consultant and templator prior to fabrication.

 
Basic Fabrication Information

 

Q: Will my countertop have a seam?

A: We try extremely hard to avoid seams if possible, but the reality is that the majority of countertops will have a seam no matter how hard we try. If designing a large island, please keep in mind the length and width of your surface selection. Slab lengths can vary from 65”-75” normally.
Q: How is the seam placement determined on my stone countertops?

A: Seams are determined by Southeast Stone depending on countertop layout, support needed, and material usage/yield.

 

Q: I have seen some seams which are not perfectly smooth, why is this?

A: The term "Lippage" as used in the stone industry, is the planar offset of the finished surfaces of two adjacent stone pieces. Due to the relatively tight seams used in countertop installations, even minor amounts of Lippage are noticeable. Lippage may be unavoidable due to permanent warp in the slab stock. There should be no detectable Lippage at the front or rear edges of the countertop. Maximum Lippage at the center of the countertop is 1/32" or 0.8mm. Countertops will not be replaced due to Lippage within acceptable industry standards.

 

Q: My neighbor has granite and there are very small chips along the seam. Is this normal?

A: Chipping will occur, particularly in the igneous stone varieties, as a result of sawing operations. The exiting portion of the diamond blade used to cut granite will create many small chips. A small chamfer, called an "arris", of approximately 1/16" x 1/16" can be used to eliminate most of these small chips. The use of an arris will make the seam appear wider than its actual dimension when filled. Large chips may be repaired with epoxy or polyester resin if the completed repair is consistent in color and texture with the surrounding area. Southeast Stone does not use arises, unless requested, when installing granite countertops. Seams are assembled and the small chips are filled with polyester resin.

 

Basic Natural Stone Information

 

Q: What is granite?

A: Granite is a natural stone, formed many millions of years ago when molten rock from the center of the earth's core was pushed towards the surface. Granite's extreme hardness, which approaches that of diamonds, makes it an uncommonly durable surface. It has a natural beauty which makes it appealing when used as countertop or other surfaces within the home. Granite's natural beauty endures forever. Nations through the ages have chosen granite to memorialize their significant achievements. You can be sure that the granite you choose will stand the test of time and provide many years of enjoyment and service in your home.

 

Q: I have heard that granite has small cracks and pits in it. What are these?

A: Fissures occur naturally in many stone types. The term "fissure" is used commercially in the stone industry to describe a visible separation along inter-crystalline boundaries. This separation may start and stop within the face of the stone or extend through an edge. A fissure differs from a crack in that it is a naturally occurring feature of the stone. ALL granites contain some degree of fissure. Some contain more than others. Since fissures occur naturally in all granites they are not considered a flaw. Countertops will not be replaced due to the presence of fissures.

Pitting of the countertop surface, particularly in granite, is a commonly seen characteristic of natural stone. Granites are made up of several different minerals, each mineral having a different hardness. Granites contain Quartz, Feldspar, Biotite, Amphibole, ferrous titanium oxides, and other mineral combinations. On the Mohs scale, diamonds are the hardest mineral with a rating of 10. Quartz and Feldspar have a hardness of 6.5 - 7 and are very durable. Biotite (small, black minerals found through the slab) on the other hand are very soft (2.5) and can flake easily. All true granites have Biotite in their composition. Because Biotite is relatively soft and flaky, the first few layers can be removed during the polishing process. The pits do not make the granite less durable or otherwise inferior, and do not in themselves qualify a slab for replacement. Pits are common in all granites and should be expected when dealing with Natural Stone. Countertops will not be replaced due to pitting in the surface of any granite countertop.

 

Q: Will my granite match the sample I saw in the store I purchased the countertops from?

A: If you are purchasing your countertops directly from Southeast Stone you will be shown a slab of material from the lot that your job will be cut from. Your finished project will match very closely to what you viewed. You may request to visit our facility and view the slab or have a digital picture sent to you for approval. Slab viewings are done by appointment so please call in advance if possible.

 

Basic Countertop Maintenance
Q: How do I clean my countertops?

A:

  • Granite:If you'd like, you may purchase a special stone cleaner. However, warm water and a light colored dish soap will also work well. Be sure to avoid using any abrasive cleaners that will break down your seal quicker.
  • Silestone:You can use anything from an all-purpose cleaner to soap and water.
  • Corian:Everyday cleaning of Corian can be done by an all-purpose cleaner or warm water. For stains or heavy dirt you may also use a scotch bright light abrasive pad and a little elbow grease!
  • Laminate:Any all-purpose cleaner will work great.

Q: How do I know if I need to seal my granite?

A: One method you can use to check if your granite needs to be resealed is to sprinkle some water on your countertops. If the water soaks into the stone and does not bead up, then we would recommend resealing your granite.
Q: What should I avoid with my countertops?

A:

  • Granite:Wine, mustard, oils, acidic based cleaners, citrus and bleach.
  • Silestone:Any harsh chemicals.

Q: Do I need to seal my countertop?

A:

  • Granite:No, our granite is sealed during fabrication
  • Silestone: The seal is engineered into the stone at production.
  • Corian:

 

Warranty Information

 

Q: What is the warranty on my countertop?

A:  There are 2 warranties your will receive when purchasing countertops from Southeast Stone.  You will receive a 1-year installation warranty from Southeast Stone and depending on the surface you select, you may receive a 10-15 year warranty from the manufacturer.  All manufacturer warranties can be viewed on their websites.

 

  • Silestone:When you purchase a Silestone slab from Southeast Stone for your countertops, you get a 1-year installation warranty from Southeast Stone and a 15-year manufacturer warranty on the product from Silestone.  You will be registered at time of purchase by us and then you will be required to register with Silestone directly.   As an authorized fabricator of Silestone, the product must be installed by SES in order for the manufacturer warranty to apply.   This applies to new full slabs (46 sq. ft.)  only and not remnants or partial slabs
  • Cambria:When you purchase a Cambria slab from Southeast Stone for your countertops, you get a 1-year installation warranty from Southeast Stone and a 15-year manufacturer warranty on the product from Cambria.  You will be registered at time of purchase by us and then you will be required to register with Cambria directly.    This applies to new full slabs (46 sq. ft.)  only and not remnants or partial slabs.
  • Granite:When you purchase a Granite Countertop Southeast Stone, you get a 1 year installation warranty from Southeast Stone.  You may purchase an optional 15-year warranty against staining.

 

Q?
Warranty Information
A.

Q: What is the warranty on my countertop?

A:  There are 2 warranties your will receive when purchasing countertops from Southeast Stone.  You will receive a 1-year installation warranty from Southeast Stone and depending on the surface you select, you may receive a 10-15 year warranty from the manufacturer.  All manufacturer warranties can be viewed on their websites.

 

  • Silestone:When you purchase a Silestone slab from Southeast Stone for your countertops, you get a 1-year installation warranty from Southeast Stone and a 15-year manufacturer warranty on the product from Silestone.  You will be registered at time of purchase by us and then you will be required to register with Silestone directly.   As an authorized fabricator of Silestone, the product must be installed by SES in order for the manufacturer warranty to apply.   This applies to new full slabs (46 sq. ft.)  only and not remnants or partial slabs
  • Cambria:When you purchase a Cambria slab from Southeast Stone for your countertops, you get a 1-year installation warranty from Southeast Stone and a 15-year manufacturer warranty on the product from Cambria.  You will be registered at time of purchase by us and then you will be required to register with Cambria directly.    This applies to new full slabs (46 sq. ft.)  only and not remnants or partial slabs.
  • Granite:When you purchase a Granite Countertop Southeast Stone, you get a 1 year installation warranty from Southeast Stone.  You may purchase an optional 15-year warranty against staining.
Q?
Basic Countertop Maintenance
A.

Q: How do I clean my countertops?

A:

  • Granite:If you'd like, you may purchase a special stone cleaner. However, warm water and a light colored dish soap will also work well. Be sure to avoid using any abrasive cleaners that will break down your seal quicker.
  • Silestone:You can use anything from an all-purpose cleaner to soap and water.
  • Corian:Everyday cleaning of Corian can be done by an all-purpose cleaner or warm water. For stains or heavy dirt you may also use a scotch bright light abrasive pad and a little elbow grease!
  • Laminate:Any all-purpose cleaner will work great.A: One method you can use to check if your granite needs to be resealed is to sprinkle some water on your countertops. If the water soaks into the stone and does not bead up, then we would recommend resealing your granite.

 

  • Q: What should I avoid with my countertops?
  • A:
  • Granite:Wine, mustard, oils, acidic based cleaners, citrus and bleach.
  • Silestone:Any harsh chemicals.A:

 

  • Q: Do I need to seal my countertop?
  • Granite:No, our granite is sealed during fabrication
  • Silestone: The seal is engineered into the stone at production.
Q?
Basic Natural Stone Information
A.

 

Q: What is granite?

A: Granite is a natural stone, formed many millions of years ago when molten rock from the center of the earth's core was pushed towards the surface. Granite's extreme hardness, which approaches that of diamonds, makes it an uncommonly durable surface. It has a natural beauty which makes it appealing when used as countertop or other surfaces within the home. Granite's natural beauty endures forever. Nations through the ages have chosen granite to memorialize their significant achievements. You can be sure that the granite you choose will stand the test of time and provide many years of enjoyment and service in your home.

 

Q: I have heard that granite has small cracks and pits in it. What are these?

A: Fissures occur naturally in many stone types. The term "fissure" is used commercially in the stone industry to describe a visible separation along inter-crystalline boundaries. This separation may start and stop within the face of the stone or extend through an edge. A fissure differs from a crack in that it is a naturally occurring feature of the stone. ALL granites contain some degree of fissure. Some contain more than others. Since fissures occur naturally in all granites they are not considered a flaw. Countertops will not be replaced due to the presence of fissures.

Pitting of the countertop surface, particularly in granite, is a commonly seen characteristic of natural stone. Granites are made up of several different minerals, each mineral having a different hardness. Granites contain Quartz, Feldspar, Biotite, Amphibole, ferrous titanium oxides, and other mineral combinations. On the Mohs scale, diamonds are the hardest mineral with a rating of 10. Quartz and Feldspar have a hardness of 6.5 - 7 and are very durable. Biotite (small, black minerals found through the slab) on the other hand are very soft (2.5) and can flake easily. All true granites have Biotite in their composition. Because Biotite is relatively soft and flaky, the first few layers can be removed during the polishing process. The pits do not make the granite less durable or otherwise inferior, and do not in themselves qualify a slab for replacement. Pits are common in all granites and should be expected when dealing with Natural Stone. Countertops will not be replaced due to pitting in the surface of any granite countertop.

 

Q: Will my granite match the sample I saw in the store I purchased the countertops from?

A: If you are purchasing your countertops directly from Southeast Stone you will be shown a slab of material from the lot that your job will be cut from. Your finished project will match very closely to what you viewed. You may request to visit our facility and view the slab or have a digital picture sent to you for approval. Slab viewings are done by appointment so please call in advance if possible.

Q?
Basic Fabrication Information
A.

 

Q: Will my countertop have a seam?

A: We try extremely hard to avoid seams if possible, but the reality is that the majority of countertops will have a seam no matter how hard we try. If designing a large island, please keep in mind the length and width of your surface selection. Slab lengths can vary from 65”-75” normally.

Q: How is the seam placement determined on my stone countertops?

A: Seams are determined by Southeast Stone depending on countertop layout, support needed, and material usage/yield.

 

Q: I have seen some seams which are not perfectly smooth, why is this?

A: The term "Lippage" as used in the stone industry, is the planar offset of the finished surfaces of two adjacent stone pieces. Due to the relatively tight seams used in countertop installations, even minor amounts of Lippage are noticeable. Lippage may be unavoidable due to permanent warp in the slab stock. There should be no detectable Lippage at the front or rear edges of the countertop. Maximum Lippage at the center of the countertop is 1/32" or 0.8mm. Countertops will not be replaced due to Lippage within acceptable industry standards.

 

Q: My neighbor has granite and there are very small chips along the seam. Is this normal?

A: Chipping will occur, particularly in the igneous stone varieties, as a result of sawing operations. The exiting portion of the diamond blade used to cut granite will create many small chips. A small chamfer, called an "arris", of approximately 1/16" x 1/16" can be used to eliminate most of these small chips. The use of an arris will make the seam appear wider than its actual dimension when filled. Large chips may be repaired with epoxy or polyester resin if the completed repair is consistent in color and texture with the surrounding area. Southeast Stone does not use arises, unless requested, when installing granite countertops. Seams are assembled and the small chips are filled with polyester resin.

Q?
What do I need to know about the Template and Countertop Installation Process?
A.

Q: What is a template?

A: A template is a pattern made of your future countertops that will be used to produce your countertop to your specifications.  We template using a Digital Laser Templating System.  48 hours after your template, shop sheets are available for your review and approval.

 

Q: Do I need to be there during the measure / templating of the countertops?

A: Yes. The customer must be present during this process to review items such as seam locations, overhangs, radius corners, and other such issues which commonly arise. You will be asked to sign the drawing of your countertops which will indicate the approximate location of the seams and other specific information of your project.

The appointment to template is the last chance to make changes to the original order.  Changes must be made in writing and either faxed or emailed to your Project/Sales Coordinator.

 

Q: Do I need to have the existing countertops removed prior to the templating date?

A: Not always. Walls are rarely straight, and corners are rarely square.  To ensure the highest degree of accuracy, we prefer your existing countertops be removed.   However, Southeast Stone recognizes that being without a working kitchen for several weeks would be very difficult. Although it is more accurate to measure with the existing countertops removed it is not mandatory. However, occasionally the templater will not see something that becomes visible after the existing tops are removed. This may mean that a piece has to be remade or reworked. No financial compensation will be given due to delays in installation caused by measuring issues.

 

 

Q: What other items do I need to know prior to templating?

A:

  • Final pricing will be based on actual field measurements and conditions.
  • Granite, Marble, Quartz & Natural Stone are high-end countertop selections with certain colors and slabs costing thousands of dollars. For this reason, installed countertop pricing may vary based on material yield and number of slabs required.  Southeast Stone cannot and will not be responsible for slab overages based on having to cut extra slabs to complete installation.  Confirm all pricing after template and slab selection/layout.
  • Undermount sinks, faucets, and cook tops MUST be onsite during templating.
  • Farm or apron sinks must be mounted in their final location prior to templating.
  • It is the CUSTOMER'S responsibility to make sure the sink, faucet, cook top, and down draft fit into their respective cabinets.
  • Cabinets must be fully installed including finished panels prior to the template. No finished panels may be added after the template has been made.
  • Existing countertops should be cleared of items which may interfere with the measuring process.
  • Overhangs at the cabinet are designed to cover or hide inconsistencies of the cabinets. Overhangs will vary slightly over the length of the tops.
  • Gaps behind the splashes and the tops are caused by irregularities in the walls. Southeast Stone will not caulk any gaps between the walls and the granite.
  • Some of the walls are bowed and inconsistent. No wall is perfectly straight. There will be areas where small gaps are visible. The size of these gaps is determined by the severity of the bows in the walls. Countertops cannot be scribed in an attempt to follow the irregularity of any wall. Countertops will not be replaced due to gaps between the walls and the countertops.
  • Caulking is done where stone meets stone. We caulk the top splash to the wall and the ends.
  • Standard backsplash height is 4”. Southeast Stone will not be responsible if the backsplash does not cover paint or wallpaper lines. It is the customer’s responsibility to have electrical outlets moved up or down to miss or fall within splash. This should be done prior to templating.
  • Southeast Stone will install a metal strip for your dishwasher attachment so your appliance company can attach your dishwasher. Should a dishwasher become unattached at a later date it will be the responsibility of the homeowner to correct.
  • Undermount sinks may be reconnected 24 hours after installation of the new countertops. Reattaching the plumbing before the sink has had time to set may result in the sink moving or dropping. If this occurs it will be the homeowner’s responsibility to correct.
  • The tear out and installation of countertops is a MAJOR construction process. Cook tops and surface sinks will be cut in place, inside the home to avoid breakage. THERE WILL BE SIGNIFICANT DUST CREATED DURING THIS PROCESS. Owners should remove or protect any items left under the cabinets. You should turn off your ac / heat. You may also want to drape or cover the construction area to reduce the amount of dust and debris that reaches other areas. Construction site will be left broom clean. Dust will continue to settle for several hours after the installation has been completed. This cleanup will be the responsibility of the homeowner.
  • Mirrors in bathrooms that are permanently affixed to the wall and rest on or within 1" of the existing backsplash or countertop must be removed prior to the tear out of the existing tops. Any damage to mirrors or cabinetry not removed will be the responsibility of the homeowner.
  • Installers are not expected to move, install, or adjust appliances.
  • Upper cabinets must be installed if the job requires a full height back splash. It will take 48-72 hours after the initial install for a Full Height Backsplash to be installed. We have to take measurements and fabricate backsplash after the initial countertops are installed for correct measuring. If you have under cabinet rim the return pieces need to be removed for proper measurement and to aid in the installation process. It is helpful to have a cabinet trim piece to cover any spaces between cabinet backsplash.

 

Q: Can I have Southeast Stone remove my existing countertops?

A: Yes. Southeast Stone offers this service. Please contact your sales consultant for pricing.

 

Q: When will the tear out/removal happen?

A: The tear out is normally done the same day of the installation. On rare occasions, especially with large tear outs, it may be done the day before. If this is required you will be notified in advance of the situation. The homeowner will be responsible for all plumbing, gas or electrical disconnects prior to the removal.

 

Q: What are some things I should know about the tear-out of my existing countertops?

A:

The removal of existing countertops and the installation of new countertops is a major construction process.  There will be minor damage to surrounding areas and some amount of dust and debris will be created.

The sink, faucets, and dishwasher will need to be disconnected prior to removing your old countertops.  Most homes have shut-off valves under the sink.  If your home does not have shut-off valves, a plumber should be contacted to have them installed.  A countertop installation may take a few days to complete and shut-off valves for kitchen faucets must be in place to avoid having the water completely shut off to your home during this process.

There will be some unavoidable minor damage, dust and debris done during the countertop installation process and tear out to surrounding walls, existing tiles, and possibly cabinets.  Countertop installers are not responsible for this damage.  This type of damage occurs with most installations and the customer should be prepared to make touchups and repairs once countertops are installed.

Southeast Stone will not discount, credit, or in any way reduce the price due to minor scratches or construction damage.

 

Q: Are my cabinets structurally sound enough to handle the weight of granite countertops?

A: Most cabinets can easily handle the weight of granite countertops. It is often not possible to assess cabinet problems prior to the removal of the existing tops. If significant problems are detected after the removal of the existing tops, either in structure or levelness, the installation of the new countertops may be delayed. It is the responsibility of the homeowner to have the cabinets repaired to within industry standards. If the installation must be rescheduled and a new appointment day is needed return trip charges will apply. Countertops can be shimmed and installed with out of level cabinets up to 1/4". Beyond 1/4" the cabinets must be repaired. Countertops sit directly on the cabinets and are held in place with silicone/acrylic caulk.

 

Q: What are some things I should know about the installation of my new granite countertops?

A:

  • Owner or designated representative must be onsite during the entire installation process. Owner's representative must be able to make decisions on issues which may arise during this process. They will be required to sign the completion forms at the conclusion of the installation.
  • All seams will be placed at the discretion of the fabricator. Every effort will be made to indicate the seam locations during the measure. The fabricator reserves the right to move seam locations as needed to cut around inclusions, cracks, or other major irregularities within the slab. No financial compensation will be given due to seam movement.
  • When two pieces of granite are seamed together there may be slight differences in the thickness of the stones. This is very common. These areas will be "feathered" to blend the pieces together. This happens with roughly 80% of all installations.
  • Cut outs for undermount sinks will be made to have overhang. This overhang reduces the risk of food particles collecting on the rim of the sink and molding. Overhangs WILL vary as no two bowls are exactly the same. Overhangs should be between 1/16" and 5/16".
  • The installation process can create large amounts of dust. No one other than the installers should be in the immediate area of the work being done unless requested by the installer.
  • It is the responsibility of the homeowner to provide a safe area for our installers to work. There will be many trips between the installation jobsite and the installation vehicle. The pathways should be clean and clear of debris as well as items of value such as statues, painting, vases, and other items which could inadvertently become damaged. Granite pieces are very heavy and difficult to maneuver. Children and animals should not be allowed near the jobsite. Homeowner should indicate what area is acceptable for use in cutting and staging material.
  • The removal of existing countertops and the installation of new ones is a major construction process. There are often delays in projects such as these. Countertops can break during transportation or installation. It is important to understand that delays are possible. Granite required millions of years to achieve its natural beauty and Southeast Stone is committed to installing it correctly so that it may provide years of enjoyment in your home.

 

  • Q: Some of the walls in my kitchen are bowed and inconsistent. Will the granite bend to follow this bow and conform to the wall? A: A: Granite is extremely rigid and cannot bend to follow the irregularities of walls. No wall is perfectly straight. There will be areas where small gaps are visible. The size of these gaps is determined by the severity of the bows in the walls. Stone Interiors will not caulk any gaps between the walls and the granite. Countertops cannot be scribed in an attempt to follow the irregularity of any wall. Countertops will not be replaced due to gaps between the walls and the countertops.

 

  • Q: I would like to increase the overhang of my new granite countertops on my island to allow for bar stools. Can I do this?
  • A: Unsupported overhang cannot exceed 1/3 of the supported top, to a maximum of 6" on 2cm material and 10" on 3cm material. Supports, such as corbels or brackets can be installed by the homeowner or contractor after the granite has been installed. Southeast Stone sells both wood and metal supports these situations.  Please discuss with your sales consultant and templator prior to fabrication.

 

Q?
Countertop Process/General Information
A.

Q: Do you provide “free in-home estimates”?

A: Yes, we do provide free estimates! You have 2 options:

  1. You can fax your plans to (407) 445-2666 or email your plans to sales2@southeaststone.net.
  2. Call (407) 253-4881 to make an appointment for a sales consultant to visit your home or office to take measurements and give you an estimate.

Q: Do you accept credit cards?

A: Yes, we accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express for retail transactions.

 

Q: What is the process in replacing my countertops?

A: First, you meet with a sales consultant to review your plans to determine your estimated square footage required.  Next, you decide on what type of surface you would like to select.  You will then agree upon a price, sign contract, terms and conditions and pay a 50% non-refundable deposit.  We will template your countertops, order your materials, fabricate and install your countertops on a specified agreed upon date. Q: How can I determine my real bottom line cost?

A: Many things go into the cost of your countertops. While selecting a countertop surface and comparing prices, keep in mind some of  the elements that go into your countertop price are: square footage; number of slabs required/material yield; layout; edge profile; backsplash; sink; stove; cut-outs, optional stain warranty and access to your home.

 

Q: What are your lead times?

A: For a typical size kitchen countertop project, the process usually takes 10-14 business days from order through installation. (This time can vary depending on workloads.) It is imperative we have all your information and final selections at template in order to begin fabricating countertops, missing information will delay the process.