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I noticed over the past couple of months that we had been developing dark stains on our Formica countertop near our coffee maker. I don’t know what my husband’s been up to (it had to be him after all)! Or whether it has to do with the can of coffee we’re using or the hot coffee cup or actual coffee spills. We developed one dark ring and a couple of other marks.

Today my black tin for loose tea made a mark on the countertop too – so I decided I’d better try to tackle these problems. The first thing that came to mind was lemon juice – since I knew that bleach was a problem with Formica. I’m also trying to use more environmentally friendly products when possible.

So I took out our lemon juice. It’s called Nellie & Joe’s Famous Key West Lemon Juice – Double Strength. It has lemon juice in it and lemon oil from concentrate.

A tin of tea and some lemon juice!

A tin of tea and some lemon juice!

I poured some of the lemon juice onto a paper towel and rubbed it on the tin mark. Nothing happened. Then I went over to the coffee marks and rubbed some lemon juice on them. It looked like they were starting to fade. So I used some more. After a couple of minutes repeating this procedure – I noticed that it actually worked! I got rid of all the stains in the coffee maker area. Then I decided to try again where the tin was. After reapplying the juice a couple of times – it worked too! I got rid of all the stains naturally – with a little elbow grease and lemon juice. Try it out!

If you’d like to share your tricks for cleaning out stains on countertops, feel free to comment below…

Average Rating: 4.9 out of 5 based on 260 user reviews.

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Here’s an article from Reader’s Digest that discusses a how to install granite tile countertops in your kitchen. They’re a much cheaper alternative to stone.

But if you choose to go that route, beware that you’ll have to work a little harder to keep the grout between the tiles clean!

Average Rating: 4.4 out of 5 based on 254 user reviews.

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As if we all didn’t have enough to worry about! Radon, a dangerous radioactive element, has been found in some granite countertops.

From the New York Times:

Where to Find Tests and Testers

To find a certified technician to determine whether radiation or radon is emanating from a granite countertop, homeowners can contact the American Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists (aarst.org). Testing costs between $100 to $300.

Information on certified technicians and do-it-yourself radon testing kits is available from the Environmental Protection Agency’s Web site at epa.gov/radon, as well as from state or regional indoor air environment offices, which can be found at epa.gov/iaq/whereyoulive.html. Kits test for radon, not radiation, and cost $20 to $30. They are sold at hardware stores and online.

Average Rating: 4.7 out of 5 based on 220 user reviews.

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