I recently received an e-mail from a customer who purchased their granite countertops from a “Big Box” store and weren’t too pleased with the result. They attached several photos and asked my opinion about an issue they were having. Let’s take a look at the question…
“I recently bought a granite countertop from “Big Box” store “X” and since day one, I noticed a crack in the stone and they, along with the fabricator of the stone, said that it was a fissure. Any chance you could give me your opinion?”
Since I don’t make it a habit to open attachments from e-mails of people I don’t know, and didn’t want to put myself in a position to possibly get into some sort of legal issue, I did not respond to this person’s e-mail. I do feel however, that the topic is of value, so I decided to respond here.
First of all, let me just say, “BEWARE” when buying granite from a “Big Box” store. While many widgets and gadgets may be less expensive at a “Big Box” store, granite countertops typically are not and if you want a quality product, you may as well forget it all together. Also—“Big Box” stores require “Big” profits! While you may think you are getting a deal on your granite, think again. Most “Big Box” stores are the most expensive place to buy, and typically use a lower priced fabricator, and you know what that means.
As far as the fissure versus crack issue, it is hard to say for sure without seeing the stone. Fissures are very common in granite and can be described as a visible separation, or fracture along inter-crystalline boundaries that occur naturally in the stone. According to “Fissure Cut Bait,” an article found in the June, 2007 issue of Stone Business magazine, “there are several ways to determine if a suspected area in a stone is a crack, or a fissure. Fissures are not typically prominent in sink areas. A crack could be caused in a sink area during transportation, or from in-proper handling of the stone. Fissures do not change the plane of a surface. If a level was placed across the questionable area, you shouldn’t be able to slide a business card underneath it. Fissures will show up in more than one area of the stone, not just in one place. With fissures, you shouldn’t be able to catch a fingernail, business card, car key, etc. in the area.”
Thanks for reading!