Granite Countertops for Your Ottawa Home - How to Distinguish Different Grades

Granite forms when molten lava flows through the natural stone. This process transforms the stone into unique patterns with different colours, grains, and qualities. When cut and polished, granite becomes one of the most beautiful natural materials you can use to elevate the look and value of your Ottawa home.  You can find granite in an endless array of colours and patterns. Do you want granite countertops in a lighter shade to brighten your kitchen or a darker shade that stands out against lighter cabinetry? There’s a perfect granite slab waiting for you, and the natural stone experts at StoneSense can help you find countertops that compliment the design of your kitchen or bathroom.  

Even granite mined from the same quarry can have drastically contrasting qualities. Let’s take a look at how you can tell the difference between different grades of granite.  

Three Grades of Granite — What’s the Difference?  

There are three different levels of granite, as follows:  

  • Level 1: Low-Grade Granite 
  • Level 2: Mid-Grade Granite  
  • Level 3: High-Grade Granite  

Here are the different qualities that go into grading granite: 

  • Colours 
  • Veins 
  • Thickness 
  • Pitting 
  • Markings 
  • Hardness 
  • Country of origin  

After assessing a slab, experts assign it a level that impacts the price and desirability of the granite.  

Level 1 – Low-Grade or Entry-Level Granite 

Level 1 is also referred to as low-grade or entry-level granite. In the construction industry, craftsmen call it builder’s grade or commercial grade granite. It’s used to create prefabricated granite countertops for apartments and furniture.   

Because it’s only 3/8 inch thick, builders attach it to plywood for strength and durability. Level 1 granite comes in simple styles and colours with less variation than higher grades. Typically, low-grade granite comes from China for sale in big box stores.  

If you’re looking to make a lasting impression with your remodel, we don’t recommend level 1 for bathroom and kitchen countertops in Ottawa.  

Level 2 – Mid-Grade Granite 

At 3/4 inch thick, level 2 or mid-grade granite is twice as thick as low-grade slabs. You can find unique colours and designs that help your home stand out. This level also has defined markings that help you customize your countertops. Most mid-grade granite comes from Brazil or India.  

Level 3 – High-Grade Granite 

Level 3 and above denotes the finest quality of granite. The higher the number, the better the quality. At this level, you can choose a granite slab with rare qualities that make supplies scarce. Brazil and India produce high-grade granite with 3/4-inch thickness.  

Do you want granite countertops with rich veins, a mixture of soft and hard minerals, and uncommon colours? If so, StoneSense representatives can help you find the perfect slab for your Ottawa kitchen or bathroom renovation. We also have high-end fixtures such as matte or sparkling faucets and shallow or deep sinks to finish your bathroom, kitchen, or laundry room remodel.   

A representative from StoneSense can help you choose the right granite countertops for your Ottawa home. Feel free to browse through our online gallery for inspiration. We respond promptly when you fill out our contact form to request a free consultation.