Slate Vs Granite Kitchen Countertops

If you’re looking for beautiful and dark-colored materials for your countertop replacement, then two of the most popular choices are slate and granite. If you want to know the key differences, then keep on reading.


Durability is probably the most important factor to consider when you’re trying to figure out what kind of countertops you need for your kitchen. The more durable a kitchen countertop material is, the more long-lasting it will be.

Slate Is generally a hard material, having a hardness of 5 on the Mohs hardness scale. Granite is also a quite hard material and it also has the same hardness as slate. But the most preferred material, when it comes to durability is granite because it is a thick material and it doesn’t wear and tear easily.

Slate, although it’s reasonable in durability, is a thinner material and it doesn’t last as long as granite. It can scratch and chip easily, because of its thinness and it is also quite sharp around the edges, so it needs to be buffed into rounded edges so that it’s not pointy and doesn’t harm anything or anyone.

Granite is also available in the form of tiles, but those are considered to be very strong, as compared to slate, even in its slab form. Slate slabs generally have thin widths, which is the standard for manufacturing, but this can lead to a lot of damage on the countertops, especially if there’s too much force and impact on the surface, which can cause slate to chip and crack.


Buying a countertop material is one thing, but taking care of it and maintaining it is a whole different story in itself. You obviously want to go for a material that is strong and durable, but you also want it to be as low-maintenance as possible.

Granite Countertops

If you know anything about granite countertops, then you would know that they require a lot of maintenance and care. They need to be cleaned with special pH-balanced cleaners and you can’t clean these countertops with acidic or harsh cleaners, otherwise, it will ruin a perfectly good countertop.

Granite also needs to be polished and varnished from time to time, if you want to preserve its natural shine and luster.

Slate Countertops

On the other hand, slate kitchen countertops are a bit light on the maintenance side, but it doesn’t mean that this material doesn’t need to be taken care of, at all. Slate is still a maintenance-heavy material, but it’s not as demanding as granite. You can get away with not polishing it because it has a natural shine that can be preserved just by sealing it.

You don’t need any special cleaners to clean slate countertops either. They can be cleaned with a simple soap and water solution, which makes slate a better choice than granite.

Waterproofing Properties

Another very important thing to consider when looking at different countertop materials, is the fact that they are water resistant. Sealing countertops is important it needs to be done regularly and it should be done by a professional, which in turn, means that it’s more expensive too.

Granite Countertops

Granite countertops Durham NC need to be sealed because the material is naturally porous. Almost all natural stones are porous, which means that they can absorb any type of liquid in itself and therefore, it can lead to damage in the countertops.

Slate Countertops

Slate countertops are also porous. They also need to be sealed, otherwise, the material can be ruined very easily by water or moisture. So, there’s really nothing that is different about slate and granite, when it comes to sealing these materials for use in the kitchen.


Price is a very important factor to take into consideration, because a lot of the time, people tend to go for more reasonably priced options because not everyone can afford insanely expensive countertop materials.

Granite Countertops

Granite is a very expensive material and even though it’s quite popular, the price isn’t justified by most people and they tend to not go for it as much. A normal granite slab will cost you anywhere between $75 to $180, depending on where you get it from and the thickness of the slab.

Slate Countertops

As for slate countertops, they are a bit more on the inexpensive side and they are quite reasonable and affordable for a lot of people. A slab of slate will cost you about $30 to $100 max, for a 1×1 ft. slab.

Granite is very expensive as far as maintenance is concerned as well, so this makes slate countertops a better option because they won’t put a dent in your wallet.

Heat Resistance

Heat stains are a pain in the neck and they are almost impossible to remove. They are ugly and black and they will make the countertops look very unpleasant. Heat stains are normally caused when you put extremely hot things directly on the countertop surface. Heat can shock the countertop material and it can lead to the formation of black and semi-permanent stains.

A good thing about granite and slate is that both materials are generally heat resistant and you don’t need to protect these materials from hot pots and pans. You can set them directly on top of the surface and there won’t be blisters or shock stains on them.

The majority of the credit for amazing heat resistance is the fact that both of these materials are formed deep inside the Earth under extremely high pressure and temperature. This allows granite, as well as slate, to be extremely durable against heat.

Although both of these materials have incredible heat resistance, it’s better if you still take care of them, by having trivets to set hot pans and pots on and using cutting boards to deal with any hot foods. This is going to ensure that the appearance of the countertop remains as good as new.


You want to go for a countertop material that is easy to clean as well. One major drawback of both slate and granite countertops is that both of these materials are generally dark in color, so dirt and dust can show very easily and you need to clean them almost every day to make the countertops look tidy and neat.

Granite Countertops

Granite countertops need to be cleaned with special cleaners which don’t have any acid in them because the acid can react violently with the stone and it can cause huge holes to form on the surface of the countertop.

You can’t clean these countertops with soap or detergent, because they won’t get clean enough and to really bring out the shine, you will need cleaners with a basic pH.

Slate Countertops

Slate countertops can be cleaned with some water and detergent mixed together. Slate countertops are very easy to clean and if you buy a lighter color for the kitchen countertops, then you can get away with not cleaning it for a day or two, although daily cleaning is recommended.


Both slate and granite are functional and beautiful materials and now you know the comparison between the two of them, which can make things easy for you. Get in touch with granite countertop installers Raleigh NC for learning more differences between slate and granite and should you choose granite.

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