Bottom line—with quartz, you can get any design you want, and the possibilities are virtually endless.
Unlike natural stones that have microscopic pores throughout, engineered quartz countertops are non-porous.
Porous materials allow liquids to seep beneath their surface, which can lead to staining, discolouration, and irreversible damage.
Even worse, germs and bacteria can make their way into pores, making it difficult to clean and disinfect. Because of this, homeowners with natural stone countertops are required to keep them properly sealed.
The process of sealing countertops is relatively easy but who wants to add another to-do to their home maintenance checklist when they don’t have to?
With quartz, you don’t have to worry about any of that. Since it’s a non-porous material, you don’t need to seal it, and you never have to worry about liquid or bacteria penetrating the surface.
This leads to my next two advantages of quartz countertops, stain resistance, and low maintenance.
Due to its non-porous composition, quartz countertops are extremely resistant to stains.
Countertop stains commonly occur when liquid from a spill penetrates the pores of the stone. Granite and marble are more susceptible to staining due to their porous nature.
If you look closely at older kitchens with stone counters, you’ll likely notice white spots, discolouration, and fading, especially if the owner forgot to reseal the surface every few years.
Here’s a look at a subtle, but noticeable stain on a marble countertop that is nearly impossible to remove.
Since quartz is non-porous, there is no way for liquids to seep in and cause stains, even if you forget to wipe up a spill right away.
For most homeowners, but especially for families with young children, this is a major selling point.
Consumer Reports conducted a test where they put splotches of different substances such as vegetable oil, coffee, and grape juice on quartz and granite countertops and let them sit for 20 hours.
While both materials showed high resistance to stains, quartz was more resistant to stains compared to granite in several categories, including beet juice and food colouring.
Although quartz is stain-resistant, it’s not stain-proof. The resins and pigments that make up 10% of quartz countertops can react with certain chemicals and lead to damage.
Avoid contact with bleach, high pH cleaners, permanent markers, paint, paint remover, nail polish remover, glue, and oil soaps. Exposure to these materials could damage and stain your quartz countertops.
One of the main reasons people buy quartz countertops is because they require little to no maintenance.
All this talk about sealing granite countertops, forget it. With quartz, you never need to worry about sealing and cleaning is a breeze. You simply wipe them with soap and water.
With other materials, especially marble, you have to pay close attention to every substance that comes into contact with it, but with quartz, there’s not much to worry about and not much to do.
After all, you’ve got plenty of home maintenance projects to worry about; your countertops shouldn’t be one of them.
Quartz is a fantastic material not only for kitchen countertops but also for bathrooms, fireplaces, bars, and any other area of your home. It’s an extremely versatile material due to its durability and variety of colors and designs.
Quartz countertops in a bathroom
While other materials are limited by their design and ability to withstand certain elements, quartz has nearly limitless applications.
Cons of Quartz Countertops
So far, I’ve covered all the wonderful aspects of quartz countertops, but before you call your contractor and order a bunch of stabs, you need to understand the downsides. Here are the reasons you might want to pass on quartz countertops.
If you’re on a tight budget, you might want to consider other materials besides quartz. All the great aspects of quartz—durability, non-porous, ability to custom design—come with a cost.
The price of quartz countertops ranges between $70 and $180 per foot run, including installation, but the actual cost depends on the quality of quartz, style, design, and type of edging.
The number of slabs and finishes will also impact the cost. The more cut outs you need for sinks, soap dispensers, and fixtures, the higher it will cost.
Quartz can be customized into almost any design imaginable. The versatility of its appearance is a distinct advantage; however, if you’re looking for the truly unique look of natural stone, you might be better off with granite or marble. Modern technology has enabled manufacturers to mimic the look of natural stone with engineered quartz, but it’s impossible to match the smooth waves and veining you get with the real thing.