To care for a granite counter top, always blot up spills immediately, clean the surface with a soft cloth or sponge and be sure to use coasters and hot pads on the surface. Also, always use cutting boards on a granite counter top to prevent scratching the surface.
It is important to remember that although dish soap is commonly used on granite, after a while, it will result in build up which can make the counter top dull. For best results, use a cleaner specifically made for granite and marble.
By using hot pads or trivets under hot pots and pans, homeowners can avoid thermal shock, which can lead the granite to crack, although this does not happen often. Get in the habit of using some kind of protection under hot dishes.
As long as the granite on the countertop is properly sealed, water shouldn't hurt it. However, if a homeowner is unsure as to how well the countertop is sealed, using coasters is always good practice.
Cleaners specifically made for granite and marble not only keep the surface clean and shiny, they also help protect the sealer. If granite cleaner is not available, use plain hot water for quick clean ups.