The Counters Blog

Man Made Quartz Vs. Quartzite: Which Is The Right Countertop For You?

Quartz countertops made with chips have a mottled, speckled appearance since you can see the individual stones suspended in the resin. Countertops made with quartz dust, on the other hand, are much more uniform in appearance—more like a slate or a sandstone—as no discernible grains or individual stones will be visible. Quartzite countertops are an actual slab of natural quartzite stone. Over time, these factors cause the materials to recrystallize and reconfigure the quartz grains into an incredibly strong, interlocking structure. In fact, this is one of the greatest features of quartzite: it gives you the look of marble, but with more durability. Finally, while quartz countertops by and large don’t resemble natural stone, the beauty of quartzite lies in the fact that no two pieces are the same. This surface can also be damaged by heat from, say, a hot pot or a kettle of boiling water, though this can be prevented by using trivets and other heat-diffusing objects. The surface is very resistant to scratching and chipping as well as etching which, again, makes it a good alternative to marble. Because the quartz chips or dust is suspended in resin, it never needs to be resealed. Although quartzite countertops are incredibly durable, that doesn’t mean the surface is maintenance-free. While this is a relatively easy process you can do yourself, some homeowners don’t like the added work and get lax with the maintenance, which can cause damage to the stone over time. So, if you want the look of marble without all the fuss, the expense will likely be worthwhile. Quartzite is durable, easy to cook and entertain on, and can withstand heavy traffic. Quartz is also extremely durable and requires no maintenance, though it can be more easily damaged by heat, natural light, and some oils. Let’s check out the differences between both surfaces and figure out which one would be right for your space. Usually, the composition is about 90-95% quartz to 5-10% resin. Color options here are pretty limitless, as resins can be tinted to any hue and the quartz chips can be as uniform or diverse in color as you’d like. As above, the resin used to color the countertop can be tinted pretty much any color, but since the quartz is so finely ground the overall appearance and color will be very even, without much variation. Quartzite is a metamorphic rock that starts out life as a quartz-rich sandstone that transforms under intense heat, pressure, and metamorphic activity. As a natural material, quartzite countertops come in a more limited color palate than quartz, though they are often multi-hued and can have dramatic marble-like veins. Your countertop will be completely unique to you, its own work of art. The resins can sometimes also be stained by some common household oils, so care should be taken to wipe up any oil spills immediately. It won’t be damaged by heat or cold, nor will it be discolored by sunlight. As mentioned above, as long as you protect it from intense heat and direct sunlight and be sure to clean up any oil spills immediately, you never really have to worry about your quartz countertop being damaged. You’ll need to reseal your quartzite periodically to prevent water from getting into the stone’s natural pores, about every 6 months to 1 year depending on how much wear and tear it gets. Quartz may be cheaper for complex surfaces since it’s easier to cut and manufacture than natural quartzite, but it really depends on the work involved and difficulty of installation. However, certain slabs will very closely resemble marble in their coloration and veining, but don’t have all the maintenance issues that natural marble comes with. As we’ve illustrated above, there are definite pros and cons to each material that need to be taken into consideration alongside how you live and work in your kitchen. You’ll just have to commit to regular resealing to maintain the appearance and, like other natural stones, be careful not to drop anything heavy on it to prevent chips or cracks. Have you installed a quartz or quartzite countertop in your home?

Granite Vs Quartz by Now that you are ready to update you have a few decisions to make. Often, granite becomes a centerpiece of the room, yet blends perfectly with the cabinets, walls and flooring. Resists heat: tolerates hot pans from the stove or a hot curling iron in the bathroom. Sealers can be applied when needed and usually last 10-15 years. Unsealed or poorly sealed granite can absorb liquids producing a stain. A heavy object dropped on a corner might crack or chip the granite- this is uncommon. The manufacturing process includes a manmade surface over the granite particles, giving the engineered stone a truly solid surface. Has a softer “look” than granite, as it doesn’t look like stone. Will not harbor bacteria or viruses- a great benefit in the kitchen and the bathroom. Quartz provides a more uniform look for those wanting more of a “solid” look. I review the choices of granite and quartz, we discuss their concerns and reasons for leaning towards one or the other. As we look at the many choices, most homeowners will start to choose either the granite or the quartz and then pick out the color of their choice. Right now, you may have tiled counters, cracked and yellowed cultured marble in the bathrooms or laminate in the kitchen. Concerns over cost and continual maintenance for granite are the most common. Although there are other choices, we’ll concentrate on the differences between these two popular products. With a little explanation and time spent looking at the actual pieces, you should be able to determine the right choice for you. Very resistant to stains and won’t absorb liquids when it is properly sealed. It is virtually maintenance-free, allowing for no bacteria or stains to enter into the material. Non-porous so it resists staining much better than granite, marble and concrete. Each piece of granite will differ somewhat in color and the placement of the dark and light swirls throughout the granite. In addition, this is often the choice for a contemporary home focusing on a minimalist appearance. Keep in mind that this is a process and it takes a few visits to understand what works best for you.

Quartz Vs. Quartzite: What Are They and What’S The Difference by

Whether you like the bold minerals formations in granite, the understated look of white marble, or the soft feel of soapstone, there are almost endless choices. You can’t make countertops out of the mineral quartz alone, so when we are talking about quartz counters, we mean the man-made material. One of the biggest appeals of quartz is that you can get a wide variety of solid colors and consistent patterns. It will not scratch, it does not need to be sealed, and it won’t fade under indoor lighting. Like granite and marble, it is quarried and polished. Granite is igneous, and quartzite, like marble, is metamorphic. That’s why quartzite tends to have a similar look to marble, with a glassy finish and smooth white or gray colors. While they often look like a marble, most quartzites are much harder and hold up better as kitchen countertops. Quartzite does need to be sealed; it is recommended that you seal it twice a year. Granite, quartzite, and quartz are all high quality, durable countertop choices. Quartzite, on the other hand, is a great option for homeowners who love the natural look of marble, but don’t want marble’s risk of etching and scratching. If you like both and can’t decide, ask your local fabricator to talk more about the nuances of each material and how it will work in your individual kitchen or bathroom. The only downside is that it quartz is not heat resistant, so you have to use hot pads, and it may fade under direct sunlight if used outdoors (the amount of sunlight that will come in t hrough your windows is not a problem). There are three main types of stones: igneous, metamorphic, and sedimentary. Metamorphic stones are created when pure quartz sandstone is super heated deep within the earth. In fact, one of the main reasons quartzite is so popular is its resemblance to marble. While it is more susceptible to etching than granite, you can keep your quartzite looking like new for years and years if you keep it regularly sealed with a high grade sealer. The acidic liquid can dissolve the top layer of polish, leaving a rough spot. They have some minor differences in maintenance, but considering how easy it is to seal your own countertops, the real deciding factors will be your individual needs and style. It is a great choice for those who want a solid color or who don’t like the look of granite or marble. Remember, although the names are similar, these are very different materials and each has many different colors.

5 Sustainable Countertops That Are Better Than Granite by

On the plus side, soapstone is almost completely non-porous, which means it resists stains well. On the minus side, it is still a stone that requires quarrying, which means there is environmental damage done when it is extracted. It also needs regular oiling to keep the surface from getting a blotchy appearance. One has to weigh the pro’s and con’s and find the best solution for them. People pretend they care about durability, but in reality, in 10 or so years they grow tired of their kitchen and want something more current. I cringe at all the home shows with young kids demanding granite. I have spilled natural food colorings all over it by mistake and no staining. Seal does not last long, any citrus cuts through the stain that was used on the counter tops leaving a horrible mess. Granite is by far the most durable surface that comes in 1000’s of colors and styles to suit your needs. Wood dries out quickly, removing the moisture kills the bacteria. As you mentioned, it will not stain no matter how strong the source is. Like before, the accidentally hit the milk bottle on the table which caused the floor to be filled with it. Soapstone has pluses and minuses, so it really depends on what you are looking for in a countertop. It is also less brittle than granite or marble, so chipping isn’t as big an issue. Because it contains talc (which gives it that soapy feel to the touch), it is softer than granite and can develop scratches and dents over time. We don’t personally have stainless steel countertops, but do have ss appliances which are great and finger- and smudge-proof (ish). In this case, the sanitary, durability and heat-resistant are qualities that would have to supersede the fingerprint issue. Granite countertops may look attrative and durable but there are other types that are equally as tough and adorable. At least with laminate countertops, you don’t have to feel half as bad about ruining the planet every time you feel like updating your living space. The radiation coming from smoke detectors is a higher concern than granite, although neither are really worth losing sleep over. This effectively makes the porosity level excellent for defending against stains. Its made to look like granite countertops but its a manufactured material and will never have that one of a kind mystic about it. All of the products have come a long ways and all have certain looks that can look great but the question is for how long and with how much care and maintenance? Your old maple cutting board is far superior to granite, corion, and other pourous materials. Much of the soil that you see comes from the bacteria and its break down of trees and tree parts over time. The rock has been their a lot longer and in much the same state during that time. This is perfect for those with kids like us since they spill everything.

Quartz Or Granite Or Marble Countertops by

Their strength and durability offer years of timeless enjoyment. Doing so could burn or discolor your countertop which is irreparable. Stone sealants have come a long way however, and they will protect your countertops when used properly. It is not porous therefore it is more resistant to staining making quartz a popular, maintenance-free countertop choice. As with any natural stone, price is determined by the characteristics of the stone. Shop us first or bring in your bid and we will do what we can to save you money. Stop by and view our finished kitchen and bathroom displays, then walk through our 10, 000 square foot warehouse and hand select the stone slab for your project. With over 15 years combined industry experience, we can equip you with the knowledge you need to make your countertop purchase. Houzz are peppered with pictures of gorgeous kitchens with custom cabinets and granite countertops but the quartz countertops are just as beautiful. All of these choices are beautiful and will last you many years to come. Here is a breakdown of the difference between each stone that will help you narrow down your choices. If you ever find a chip, we will repair it for you free of charge. Marble is more prone to scratches and staining since it is softer but is still used in kitchens, bathrooms and furniture pieces. It is cut into slabs which are then cut and polished to produce granite countertops. It is also imported from marble quarries around the world, cut into slabs then cut and polished to create countertops. It is made by combining various types of natural quartz with resin and coloring, the typical breakdown is approximately 93% quartz and 7% resin. Some color options are more patterned and consistent while others will have lots of movement, veins and colors throughout. It is often seen in bright white color that you don’t necessarily find in granite. Marble’s distinct feature is the large, unpredictable veining throughout the stone. Typically, quartz countertops are consistent in pattern, appearing as if the countertop is one solid color of stone. Without proper sealing, staining and discoloration can occur. We offer three sealant options, ask your sales rep about sealing your new countertops. Typically though, you can expect quartz countertops to be slightly more expensive than granite.

Countertop Comparison Chart by

Read on to find out which countertops are the cheapest and which are the most expensive. How a surface is affected by these factors will determine how long it is likely to look brand new without the need for extensive maintenance. This is a simple yes or no question but a very good one to consider when selecting the right surface for your countertop. Some families use their kitchen as more of a gathering place than a work surface, in which case, the answer to this question might not be as important. Can you set a hot pan on the surface without damage? A red thumbs down means that you should always use a trivet or hot pad. Softer countertop surfaces will inevitably get scratched from time to time. A green thumbs down means your countertop won’t easily scratch so you don’t need to worry about regular maintenance. A red thumbs down means that the surface does not come in a wide variety of colors or has limited availability. With so many possibilities to choose from, it’s hard to know which options you should consider. The chart below compares the main characteristics of the most popular countertop materials in the market today. If you plan on cooking regularly in your kitchen, you will want something for which is easy to care. Should you expect scratches and regular maintenance? With some materials, regular maintenance can remove the scratches to keep your kitchen looking new. A red thumbs up means you should expect some scratches over time.

Granite Countertops Vs. Marble Countertops: What’s The Better Choice For Your Bathroom Or Kitchen? by

When cared for properly, you can keep your marble countertops looking gorgeous for years to come. Will five seconds of red wine leave an indelible mark? Again, using your common sense around basic care will protect you from countertop casualties. For discoloring or heat damage to occur, it must be an extremely hot item that has prolonged direct contact with the marble. Simply use a marble/stone specific cleaner to keep your countertops sanitary and protected. The variation of granite offers an incredibly large selection of colors and patterns and can be used in a variety of ways including countertops, fireplace surrounds, outdoor entertainment surfaces, tabletops and more. The easiest way to prevent stains is to be vigilant about sealing your granite (once upon installation and then re-sealing annually). If you’re worried about the maintenance around spills and staining, choosing a darker colored granite over a lighter stone will better hide imperfections. Other than that, your granite countertops are very resistant to scratches—you can even cut directly on the granite surface without causing any damage. This occurs over time from using the wrong type of cleaners. Use cleaners specifically for granite countertops to keep your surfaces looking their best. Yes, you can place hot pans directly atop the surface, but prolonged contact may cause damage to the sealant leaving your countertops more susceptible to stains and acid damage. Your countertop installers will apply the first treatment and you can purchase a sealant for later use (ask your installer for recommendations on brand and application techniques). Choices between stones should be based on your tastes and lifestyle. If you do find yourself with a bothersome chip, contact your installer as they have many tricks to repair damage of all kinds. In addition, cutting directly on the surface of your marble countertops will absolutely leave marks. If you have marble in your bathroom and use hot styling tools, not to worry. If you clean up spills quickly, you won’t have to worry about substances leaving rings or stains. However, if you do find yourself with a bothersome chip, contact your installer as they have many tricks to repair damage of all kinds. Avoid sliding rings with precious stones like diamonds, topaz or sapphires across the surface of your granite. Both granite and marble are excellent choices to elevate the fashion and function of your kitchen or bath. Did you recently make a choice between granite and marble?

2019 Granite Vs Marble Countertop Cost Calculator and Comparison by

G ranite countertops also increase the resale value of your home. Engineered granite is a mix of natural stone, pigments and resin. Optional features like fancy edges or backsplashes cost extra. It is far less common than granite, especially in kitchens, but it creates an elegant, high-end look. But for those who are prepared to take meticulous care of the surface and appreciate the character that comes with a little wear and tear, it can be the perfect choice. Calcutta, a rarer form marble, tends to fall on the high end of that price range. Marble is also more vulnerable to scratches than granite and it requires sealing and periodic resealing by a professional. Because of the high price tag, some homeowners choose to use marble only in certain parts of the kitchen, such as an inland or baking station. It is beautiful, durable, heat resistant and scratch resistant. There are two types of granite countertops: engineered and slab. Compare free price quotes from multiple companies and save time and money instantly! It remains fashionable and in high-demand, but there’s always potential for it to fall out of fashion. Marble is notoriously more difficult to maintain than granite, which explains why many kitchen and remodeling experts recommend against it. If you’re going for a look that stands out as truly unique and luxurious, marble could be the right choice. Answer a few short questions & get free cost estimates for your project from trusted companies in your area.


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