Can You Paint Granite Countertops? (Find Out Now!)

Ossiana Tepfenhart
by Ossiana Tepfenhart

Your granite countertops were more than likely a major selling point when you first purchased your home. Granite is a highly durable and often beautiful material. Over time, however, your pristine and shiny granite countertops may have lost their sparkle. Or maybe you are looking to take your kitchen in a new direction.

New granite is expensive to purchase. It can be even more pricey to install. If you want to upgrade your kitchen but don’t have a huge budget for new countertops then painting them may be a great option for you.

Before you paint your granite countertops you should scour, sand, and clean the surfaces. Prepare the surrounding areas so you do not get paint in the wrong places. Choose the right paint for your granite countertops. You may want to opt for a painting kit if you have a specific look in mind. Be sure to seal the paint once you are happy with the new look.

Painting granite is not something that you should do lightly. Unlike a canvas or a wipe-away board, this is a fairly permanent decision. Here’s what you need to know about this endeavor…

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Why Paint Your Granite?

You Want A New Color Scheme. Some styles of granite fall in and out of fashion. You may want a different color scheme, but like the shape, strength, and design of your granite countertops. Choosing a perfect paint color to cover the granite can be a great solution.

Upgrading On A Tight Budget. New granite can cost anywhere from 30 to 100 dollars per square foot. This does not even include installation. You may have the budget for new cabinets but not new granite. Painting your existing granite countertops gives a fresh look without costing thousands of dollars.

The Granite Is Old And Faded. Granite can lose its shine and allure over time. This can happen quickly when the granite is not sealed properly. Painting over your granite countertops is a great way to breathe life back into them.

Should You Paint Granite?

A better question than “can” you paint granite is “should” you paint granite. Many people are under the impression that you can just paint granite without much prep work, and remove the paint if you get bored of it and want to return to granite. This is not true. Once you start painting granite, you have to keep your granite painted or spend a fortune getting it resurfaced.

Going back to a smooth finish isn’t doable, because you need to sand down the granite before you can apply paint. If you remove the paint, then you end up with a rather gross-looking slab or rock. It would take serious work to get it to go back to the classic look it had before. Before you decide to shop for paint, think about that—and I mean really think about it.

Is Painting Granite Worth It?

Honestly, in most situations, painting your granite is not a good idea. Granite countertops are notably good for home prices, even if they are Uba Tuba. Painted countertops, on the other hand? Not really that big a bragging right. In many cases, you’re better off choosing a different tiling method by browsing granite ideas online.

Painting granite is not something most people should want to do unless the granite itself is already showing lots of scratches and dings. Simply put, people like stone and this will prevent you from having stone ever again. If you are going to paint granite, choose a color that you won’t regret and that will go with everything that you want to install. (Neutrals are good for this!)

How Long Does Painted Granite Last?

Here’s another issue that you need to think about: longevity. If you choose to paint your granite, you won’t have decades upon decades of lifespan like you would with plain old stone. Painted granite will need to be touched up every 10 to 15 years with regular use and a good sealant.

Of course, there are always exceptions to the rules, too. There is only so much protection that sealant can offer. If you had a pot catch fire and then get placed on your countertop, then you probably will need more touchups soon. Keeping your stuff out of high heat and avoiding having larger pools of water sit on your counter is a must for anyone who wants to prolong their countertop’s life.

Purchase The Right Paint

You can use epoxy, acrylic, or latex paint to cover your granite countertops. When you select your paint you should aim for a paint that not only matches your aesthetic but one that will stand the test of time. Keep in mind that countertops are often frequently used, so durability is key.

Countertops also encounter a great deal of moisture and heat in their lifespan. Acrylic latex paint is known to work well within these elements. If you are uncertain about what paint you should use simply ask a paint professional at your local hardware or paint store.

Painting Kits

There are a variety of painting kits you can purchase to achieve a number of aesthetics. Some paint kits can make your granite look like new and different colored granite. Some paint kits can transform your granite to look like marble.

Most of these paint kits come with everything you need to complete the entire project, including tools to prepare your surfaces. There are often more steps involved when you try and create faux granite and marble surfaces. These kits usually do a great job labeling the steps and making things as organized and simple as possible.

Tip: Read reviews before purchasing a paint kit. Kits vary in quality and complexity. Be sure to choose the best kit for you.

Prime The Countertops

Once your surfaces are prepared and you have the right paint, you are ready to prime the granite countertops. Be sure you use a quality primer that works well with glossy granite surfaces.

First, use a paintbrush to coat the edges and hard to reach areas. Use a very thin layer of primer. If the coat is a bit thick feel free to blend it inward. Next, use a paint roller to roll on a thin coat of primer on the larger center areas of the countertops. Rollers are not only time savers. They also help provide a thin and very even coat.

Time To Paint

The painting steps will vary based on the approach you take. If you decide to paint your granite countertops all in one color, be sure to paint in very thin coats. Allow ample time to dry between layers. Apply additional coats until no primer coat is visible.

If you use a paint kit there will be specific steps on how to paint. Paint kits often use two or three types of paints, including one or two sponge layers. When you use a paint kit be sure to follow the steps exactly. Mixing up a step can lead to a very different, often undesirable, look.

Tip: If you use a paint kit, it may be beneficial to watch a video first. There are a plethora of videos showing how to apply a paint kit available online. They provide additional techniques to make your granite countertops look fresh and authentic.

How To Paint Granite

If you’re dead-set on painting that granite countertop and are okay with losing the granite veneer, then you can start. To make it happen, just follow these handy steps below:

  • Start by sanding down the area with rough grit sandpaper. You need to rough up the granite to make the paint stick. Power sanders can help here if you don’t feel like doing all the heavy lifting. After you’ve scrubbed and scuffed the surface, use a shop vacuum to clean the area up.
  • Double-check the area. You really cannot afford to have any grit or dust in your work area, since this can actually mess up the paint. If it helps, wipe down the area with a tack cloth and keep an eye on the nooks and crannies.
  • Apply a primer to the area, if you’re not using a 2-in-1 primer and paint bucket. You can do this by using a thick paintbrush or a roller. We suggest using Kilz or a Behr primer that has been graded for stone usage. Give the primer at least two hours to dry. (We actually suggest checking the primer can to find out how long it takes to dry.)
  • Using a roller or a paintbrush, apply your paint. Much like the primer, you will need to take your time and make sure that you’re not missing any spots. Give the paint at least 24 hours to dry. If you want to see if you can get the paint dried earlier, then you can check your paint can to see if it’s fast-drying.
  • Apply a second coat of paint. While a single coat can be alright, having two coats of paint will ensure that you get an even color throughout your countertop. After all, few things will make your counter look as cheap as seeing the old color of your granite bleed through.
  • Wait until the second coat has dried, then add sealer. Apply the sealer to the countertop using a paintbrush, and let it dry. Prior to using your countertop (or fireplace, or backsplash, or whatever), wait at least 24 hours for the sealer to cure.

Give It Time To Dry

Allow plenty of time for the granite countertops to dry once the painting is complete. If you have fans, including ceiling fans, you should turn them on. Air circulation is a great way to help paint dry affectively. It also helps disperse unwanted paint fumes.

Seal Your Work

You can now seal the look once your paint is dry and you are satisfied with your new granite countertops. A sealant layer is especially important to add when working with countertops. A sealant helps prevent stains and also helps make the surfaces easy to clean.

A topcoat or masonry seal will work well to seal your freshly painted granite countertops. Ask a paint specialist if you are uncertain what type of sealant will work best for your project.

Tip: Paint kits may come with a sealant layer. If they do not, research if it is encouraged to add a sealant to the work.

Do You Need To Use Sealer For Granite?

Yes. Most of the time, when you’re using granite in your home, it’s for a surface that will be exposed to water, oil, or high heat. Sealers are there to protect the paint in question from all those elements. A good sealer will prevent damage, lock your color into place, and also give your counter a gorgeous glossy finish that will make things look great.

Of course, if you’re hoping to chop vegetables on the counter, a sealant is also a very wise decision. Some paints can get eaten away or worse, smear, if they are exposed to high acid content—such as you might get from tomatoes. By adding sealant, you make sure that your food stays safe and that your granite will be okay, too.

What Kind Of Paint Can You Use On Granite?

If you choose to paint your granite, then there is some good news on the horizon. The good news is that you have a very wide range of paints that you can choose from. The most popular types of paint that you can use on granite include acrylic latex, epoxy, acrylic, or plain ol’ latex. When choosing a paint, make sure that you pick a primer and sealer that work with that particular paint color.

How Much Does It Cost To Paint Granite?

Painting granite is a relatively cost-effective way to give your kitchen a facelift. Most of the time, professional countertop painting services will cost between $6 to $14 per square foot, which means that you can get a typical countertop painted for around $700 to $1800, depending on the size.

Want to do it yourself? Great choice. This project has the bulk of its costs in labor, which means that you can save a pretty penny on this project by doing it on your own. DIY prices range from about $0.70 to $1.10 per square foot, which means that a typical countertop done with your handiwork will be around $100 to $150 to complete.

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Final Coat, and Thoughts

Granite countertops can be a great selling point for your home. Over time, however, they can lose their allure. They can even become rather lackluster if they are not properly maintained. If you do not have a giant budget for new countertops, painting your granite may achieve a similar desired effect.

Be sure to take your time to prepare the granite before you prime and paint it. Sealing your granite will make it easier to clean and will help preserve your work for years to come.

Related Questions

How much does it cost to get your countertops resurfaced?

Resurfacing your countertop will include stripping any paint off of it, leveling it, polishing it, and making sure that it’s fully glossy. This involves a lot of labor, which means that it can get pretty costly, pretty quick.DIY resurfacing will cost between $200 to $500 for a typical countertop. Most stone countertops with paint will cost $700 to $1300 to resurface professionally. With that said, it’s one of the more popular options in terms of home remodeling and countertop restoration.

Is dark granite going out of style?

Dark granite has been out of style for quite some time, and it doesn’t seem likely that it will be coming back anytime soon. Many people find this granite color to be oppressive, or otherwise too dark for smaller kitchens.The bigger issue, though, is that granite that has a darker hue tends to be dated. We all remember the 90s and early 2000s where this color was everywhere. Many people find it to be a telltale sign of an older kitchen as a result.

Does granite scratch easily?

Yes and no. Granite is fairly hard, but it can still be scratched by many different types of stone. Most commonly, granite tends to be scratched by any type of stone that is harder than quartz. While you can use granite as a cutting board, it’s always possible that you might see nicks and scrapes after prolonged use.To protect your granite countertop, always use a cutting board when you’re chopping up vegetables. It will prevent scratching and also look a little fancier if you do.

Ossiana Tepfenhart
Ossiana Tepfenhart

Ossiana Tepfenhart is an expert writer, focusing on interior design and general home tips. Writing is her life, and it's what she does best. Her interests include art and real estate investments.

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