A common question about black granites is “Why is the deep black in my granite seem to be fading?” The best way to prevent this is to go through a reputable supplier that only buys first-quality material, which means they will not be doctored in any way. It is important to view the slabs in person and not purchase based on price alone.

Some vendors buy the cheaper blacks with more “white graining,” and they dye them to hide the defects. Chinese Blacks are becoming very popular due to their low prices, but can be prone to “shakes and vents.” They may also have a grainy appearance, but are oiled or dyed to hide the defects, which will eventually fade, slowly revealing uneven color.

If you suspect it is dyed, you can perform two tests:
1) Take a clean white cloth with acetone on it, and wipe the stone to see if any residue comes off.
2) Take acetone and apply to a different section and wipe the stone with a white cloth – if there is any color transfer, the stone is dyed

Black Granites from India such as Absolute Black, Absolute Black Premium, and Absolute Black Super Premium, are all first-quality, dense black granites, not dyed or oiled. Black Galaxy has an extremely dense black background with bright gold specks which are due to the presence of Bronzite. This is very important to view in person so you can see the quality of the black to make sure it was not dyed.

South African Blacks, common name Zimbabwe Black, have a tight “rice-grain” effect, but are not as dense as Indian Blacks. Nero Impala is also from Africa, but should be categorized as Gray, not Black due to the coloring and grain structure.

Canadian Blacks such as Cambrian Black and Mesabi Black have a “rice-grain” effect with a silvery reflection. Atlantic Black has a slightly larger pattern also with a silvery reflection.

Call Portland Marble (503) 235-9240 or email us for any further questions you may have regarding countertop materials.