1. What is the difference between granite, marble, Travertine, and quartzite?
The Moh’s Hardness Scale shows the relationships between granite, marble, Travertine, and quartzite. Marble and Travertine can scratch and stain due to softness and porosity. Please consult MTTS for more information if you are considering these stones in your kitchen.
Granite & Marble Countertops in Waco, TX

2. What is the difference between Granite (Natural), Quartz (Engineered), Marble (Natural), and Quartzite (Natural)?
Check out the differences between our Stone types here!

3. How often do I seal my natural stone?
MTTS seals your stone during the fabrication process. Lighter granites need to be resealed approximately every 3-5 years; darker granites every 5-10 years. Marble and Travertine should be sealed every 2-3 years in non-food areas. In kitchen areas, they should be sealed annually.

4. What is the purpose of a sealer?
Natural stone is naturally somewhat porous. Sealer will help to protect the stone from traffic and normal wear and tear. The sealer should be a “penetrating” sealer. Please refer to stonetech.com for information and products available for purchase.

5. What is soapstone?
Soapstone is a variety of stone that is available for countertops. It can be found in gray, black, and green. Soapstone does require additional maintenance procedures.

6. How do I clean my natural stone?
Granite/Marble/Quartzite: All-natural stone is somewhat porous and should be cleaned with non-abrasive glass or natural stone cleaner. It should never contain vinegar or lemon. These items are acidic in nature and will eventually etch and or pit your stone. Oils such as salad dressings, butter, etc., should be wiped up immediately. All stone is subject to having natural imperfections such as shading, veining, fissures, and markings. MTTS seals your stone PRIOR to installation. Additional sealing at a later date will be necessary and is very simple to do by the homeowner. Light granites should be sealed every 3-5 years, and darker granite every 5-7. Marble in the kitchen should be sealed or dry-treated yearly. Sealers can be purchased at any hardware store, Amazon, or stonetech.com.

Quartz (Engineered stone): It is considered nonporous and does not require sealing unless purchasing the suede or matte finish. Mild soap and water or a glass cleaner are needed for cleaning. Avoid bleach, acid-based cleaners, abrasive cleaners, or high-alkaline cleaners or solvents. Please avoid UV light (outside) or extreme temperature changes (fireplace areas). Although rare, etching and staining can occur. It is advisable to use a cutting board while using knives and wipe spills off as soon as possible. Mr. Clean Miracle pads are acceptable to remove black or metal marks from quartz.

As a note: Please be wary of placing air fryers or Insta-pots on any natural or engineered stone. The temperature changes have been known to crack the countertop.

7. Do you provide free estimates?
Estimates can be determined from your blueprint or personal drawing. These are sufficient for bid purposes.

8. What is the cost of marble or granite?
Granite and marble’s price is based on the availability of the stone from the quarry, the difficulty of fabrication, and the complexity of your project.

9. Will my natural stone have seams?
Possibly. MTTS prides itself on the seaming of natural stone. Seams can be detected but not offensive. The design of your kitchen, the overall size of the slab, and the directional movement of the natural stone all take part in whether a seam is required. MTTS always tries to place seams at a natural breakpoint or in an area where it is less noticeable. If you have a special request, please make sure you address it at the time of the template. Seam placement is made at the discretion of our highly trained staff.

10. Can I hand-select my slabs?
Yes. We have maps of stone yards in Dallas, Austin, and even Houston. Please note that many stones we buy in bulk to give you a better price. Hand-selected stones that MTTS normally buys in bulk may be higher in price. Also, there can be an additional shipping charge for hand-selected stones. It is always advisable to contact MTTS and discuss your project prior to hand-selecting any slab material. Please see the handout on hand selection of stones that can be found at MTTS or emailed to you.

Please note that stones may have dry veins, cracks, shadings, and markings that are all difficult to observe until fabricated and installed. MTTS is NOT responsible for these items in hand-selected stones. All hand-selected materials will require a 50% job deposit BEFORE the material can be shipped. For possible additional freight expenses or restocking information, please see the office manager. Customers are required to buy the entire slab when hand-selecting. Leftover material (remnants) can only be held at MTTS for a maximum of 30 days. After this time period, the material becomes the property of MTTS. The customer is responsible for arranging the transport of leftover material to another location.

Many of our vendor slab yards will email us a fabricator visit with your name. This is not an actual material hold. Vendors will only “hold” your material for a set amount of time before the material is released back into their inventory. MTTS will be notified of the “hold” and we can reverify with your plans or blueprints if the material amount is correct and send you an updated estimate. MTTS will then need a deposit to have the material shipped to our location.

Choosing slabs that MTTS routinely purchases at a “bundle price” may result in an additional cost. In addition, the same stones can differ in size and price from one slab vendor to another.

11. Do you have slabs at MTTS?
Yes, as a fabricator, we have one of the largest selections of stones in Central Texas. We usually have new stones arriving weekly. MTTS offers one of the only covered slab yards in central Texas.

12. Do you carry scrap pieces of stone?
Yes, we have a large selection of remnants that are available at a reduced price.

13. What is the difference between under-mount and top-mount sinks?
Undermount or under-counter sinks are mounted underneath the granite, with the sides of the granite showing and polished. There is an extra labor charge with this type of sink design. In addition to hand polishing the edges, we drill out for bolts and troughs underneath your sink and add steel rods for extra support. We purchase heavy-grade steel clamps and bolt, clamp and caulk your sink underneath the countertop. This sink application requires 24 hours to cure before plumbing should be connected by your contractor. Top mount and vessel sinks sit directly on top of the granite and are not installed by MTTS. There is no additional cost for cutting the hole for these sinks.

14. Do you sell appliances and sinks?
Yes, we carry a small line of stainless kitchen and bathroom undermount sinks.

15. What is the range of price of granite or marble?
Prices range from $45.00 – $400.00 a square foot. This includes Professional field measuring, templates, travel fees, standard edges, cut-outs, labor, sealing, installation, stone material, and sales tax.

16. Do you fabricate and install any other type of countertops besides Marble and Granite?
Yes, and we have examples here at MTTS:

  • Engineered Quartz: Silestone, Cambria, Dupont’s Zodiac, Hanstone, LG-Viatera, Daltile, Vicostone, Elements, MSI-Q, and many others.
  • Recycled Glass: IceStone, Enviroglass
  • Soapstone
  • Limestone
  • Quartzite
  • Porcelain

17. Do natural stone or quartz countertops need plywood or sub-board on the top of the cabinets prior to installation?
No, MTTS installs countertops directly on open cabinetry.

18. Do you tear out the existing countertops?
MTTS is responsible for installing your countertops and, if applicable, under-mounting sinks. Disconnecting and reconnecting plumbing, electrical work for the cooktop and dishwasher, and removing and disposing of existing countertops and backsplash are performed by your contractor. We can offer you the name and number of a certified contractor for your bath or kitchen.

19. What are the different finishes for natural stones?
Most granite and marble are polished at quarries or processing plants. In addition to the polished, glossy finish, there are now other finishes available. Examples include leather, satin, brushed, honed, and flamed. MTTS purchases stones as is, and not all stones are available in multiple finishes.

20. Are any given stones by the same name identical?
Not necessarily. Many stones are graded as C-commercial, S-standard, and P-premium in regard to color variation, pattern, quality, and overall integrity. MTTS strives only to purchase premium slabs.

    21. Does MTTS offer backsplash material?
    If tile backsplash is desired, we can direct you to many stores that offer that product. Small or 4’’ backsplashes are usually routine at MTTS for vanities and other small areas with sinks. Full stone backsplash is an option and will need to be templated at the time of countertop measurements. All upper cabinets must be installed and vent hood spec sheets available in order to template for full backsplash. Plug cutouts in full backsplash are $25-$35 each depending on the material.

    22. Are edge profile labels (names) standardized?
    No, MTTS Eased edge may be labeled as a Flat edge at other companies. See the Edge Profile Tab for pictures of the various edge options.

    23. If needing only a small piece from the remnant yard, do I have to buy the whole piece?
    No, if the material is considered a remnant, you only have to purchase the amount of material you will be using.

    24. How are the corner radii determined?
    Routine corner radii are ½’’ (Unless ogee or Versailles edge…then 1’’). If a different size radius on a corner(s) is desired, it must be brought to the attention of the office manager PRIOR to templates being scheduled.

    25. What is the standard overhang for counters?
    1 ¼’’ overhang is applied to all areas other than vanities. Vanity overhang is 1’’. If a different overhang application is desired, it must be relayed prior to the template to the office manager. Please note that our overhang can vary somewhat due to the wall and cabinet alignment.

    26. What is the standard overhang for kitchen islands?
    There is no standard overhang and it’s at the discretion of the contractor and customer. It should be noted that the following applies:

    The National Stone Institute (NSI) dictates that overhang for 3cm material of 10 inches or greater (6 inches or greater for 2cm material) must have support every 30-35 inches. Brackets can be purchased a/o installed by MTTS or from the contractor. If the contractor is providing the brackets, they must be in place prior to counter installation unless otherwise discussed with MTTS.

    27. What is an example of a remodel schedule?
    Day 1: Countertops and backsplash are removed by the contractor, and the plumbing and cooktop are disconnected.
    Day 2: MTTS installs countertops and if applicable, installs an under-counter sink.
    Day 3: Contractor will hook up plumbing, cooktop, faucet, and set dishwasher.
    Day 4: The contractor or tile company will install backsplash material.

    Things to note on remodels:
    *Under counter Cabinets (at least the top level) must be cleaned out.
    *We will cut out your cooktop on site on Day 2. Expect some dust!
    *All stone is sealed at our shop prior to installation.
    *Under mount sinks MUST cure overnight prior to plumbing being attached
    *We must have all drawers removed and items cleared from under the cooktop
    *Granite does not hang down on the edge like Formica. Trim work may be necessary and done by your contractor
    *Stone (*) countertops go DIRECTLY on open cabinetry
    *Saving existing backsplash is not always possible
    *Saving the sponge holder cabinet at the sink front is not possible

    (*) 6mm, 12mm, 20mm Porcelain must have a sub-board installed by your contractor prior to MTTS installation.

    If you have other questions that were not answered here, always feel free to reach out to us directly! We cannot wait to assist you.

    MTTS Granite and Marble
    305 Granite Drive
    Waco, TX 76712

    Phone: 254-776-6900

    Business Hours:
    Monday – Friday
    9:00 AM to 4:00 PM

    Granite & Marble Countertops in Waco, TX