Things You'll Need
Treat a small, inconspicuous area of the granite to test the surface's reaction before trying to clean a stain. If the granite stains further or has an otherwise unfavorable reaction to the granite, don't attempt to clean the granite yourself; call a professional cleaner for advice.
Many cases of granite discolorations are simple stains that are easy to remove. The porous granite soaks colors and dyes, often resulting in stains after lots of use or exposure to some fluids or objects, such as oil-based cosmetics, food, colored drinks and metal objects. Start by determining the source of the stain. If you're not certain what caused the stain, consider its size, shape and location to give you clues. For example, a stain in the kitchen is likely organic in nature and caused by food, whereas a stain in the bathroom is more likely to be oil-based and caused by cosmetics. With only a few supplies and about an hour of time you can make your granite look as good as new.
Soak the corner of a cleaning rag with ammonia and gently rub it into biological or oil-based stains, such as those caused by cosmetics, algae, mildew or tar.
Rub the granite with hydrogen peroxide, using a cleaning rag, to clean ink and marker stains and organic stains such as coffee and milk.
Eliminate water marks and stains by gently rubbing steel wool over the discoloration. Don't rub too hard with the steel wool to avoid damaging the granite.
Mix a one-to-one ratio of talc powder and hydrogen peroxide and rub it onto metal-based stains with a cleaning rag. Rinse off the mixture with water after the stain has been removed.
Leigh Wittman has been writing professionally since 2007. She writes primarily on health, career advice, outdoor pursuits and travel for various websites. Wittman is a licensed nurse and studied nursing at Arizona State University.