Granite is an elegant material that will be a valuable addition to any kitchen. Made from volcanic material that lay under the earth’s surface, the magic of time has gifted granite with intricate patterns and designs and sometimes glitters. This is what makes them a favorite choice for high-end kitchen and bathroom countertops.
Granite slabs are cut to size and the correct measurement is critical. Here are a few steps that you can take to ensure you measure your countertops correctly.
What You Need Before Measuring
Measuring may be intimidating for a non-math person. However, it is extremely important because granite on countertops are usually single pieces cut to size. Measuring properly will also give you a very good visual of the cost especially if you are working with a tight budget.
A simple measuring tape and the correct measuring strategy along with some attention to detail is all you need to properly measure your countertops to be covered with granite slabs. A little bit of arithmetic is involved. But all calculations will be basic enough to be done with a simple calculator so there’s no need to stress.
How to Measure for Granite Countertops
The main goal of measuring is to get the total square footage of your countertops, islands, and backsplashes. Knowing the square footage total will tell you how much stone to order and an estimate of the cost. Here are the simple steps to get you going:
Measure the length and width of the entire surface you want to be covered with granite in inches using your measuring tape.
Multiply the length by the width. This will give you the total area in inches.
Divide the total area in inches by 144 to get the area in square feet. This conversion is important because most contractors and suppliers will communicate in square feet.
For example, the length of your countertop is 100 inches. Multiply it by the width which is usually around 26” (most cabinet boxes measure at 24”. The extra inches will account for the countertop’s overhang). 100 x 26 = 2,600 in square inches. 2,600 / 144 = 18.056 Square Feet.
Measure for the backsplash. This is done by multiplying the length of the countertop by 4 inches which is the standard backsplash height. Once again divide the product by 144 to get the area in square feet.
Repeat steps 1 to 3 for all countertops, islands, and other surfaces you intend to cover with granite.
Measuring other shapes of Countertops
While there are a lot of countertops that are rectangularly shaped, there is an abundance of other shapes and styles. These might be intimidating to measure. But don’t go scrambling for your old geometry textbooks just yet. There’s actually a way to get a measurement of shapes that are not plainly rectangular without having to get into too much math.
One simple rule of thumb when measuring non-rectangular shaped countertops is to partition them into boxes. Take an L-shaped countertop for example. You can subdivide into two rectangular boxes. Once done, all you have to do is to measure the length and width of each box then add them together. The result will be the total square area of the L-shaped surface. Remember that to convert the area from inches to square feet you just need to divide by 144.
Measuring countertops with curved edges can also use this method. Just measure the length starting from the flat end to the farthest point on the curve or the apex. Multiply this number by the width then divide by 144 to get the total square footage estimate.
Important Considerations when Measuring for Granite Countertops
Choosing granite as the surface for your countertops is an investment. For the most part, you are paying a premium price for this material. It will pay itself in the long run though since granite adds value to your kitchen and the property as a whole. There are a few things to consider when making measurements on your granite countertops.
First, granite is made of natural stone. A very hard and dense material. Once cut, there is no going back. Every decision made on granite is final.
Next, overhang. An overhang is a part of the countertop’s edge that exceeds the base. This allows for a wider countertop area without having to modify the base. It also adds aesthetic value. Too much overhang produces larger areas of the stone that is hanging unsupported. These areas cannot bear too much weight and are prone to chipping and breaking.
Lastly, when measuring for countertop surfaces always keep in mind the entire floor plan. Where you put your fridge or gas range may limit the amount of counter space.
There’s a reason why a cliche is a cliche. Because it works. And in the world of construction, measure twice and cut once has been proving time and time again by professionals and DIYers alike. It is extremely important for granite because the material is hard and dense that once cut, there’s no turning back.
Proper measurement will also give you a very clear visual of cost. This is very important when the project has a tight budget.
For any professional help in consulting, supplies, and services, Granite Selection is an expert in the area of natural stones. From measurements to design, to services and supplies, we are the top provider in the Chicagoland area. Call us at (888) 906 3317 and we’ll be happy to help. We are located in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, and will service the surrounding 70-mile area.