Quartzite, granite and marble countertops are incredibly beautiful. However, quartz countertops offer similar elegance with less care and maintenance. Unlike the former three, the latter is made from engineered stone and thereby requires no sealing.
Generally, countertops made of natural stone are sealed to prevent staining. Otherwise, substances such as cooking oil, acidic and alkaline cleaners, and water and fruit juices can find their way through the porous surface thereby penetrating deep into the stone and causing permanent damage.
The material that makes engineered quartz is non-porous, durable and quite resistant to damage that results from spillage. Furthermore, it offers more flexibility in terms of cleaning.
The Pros and Cons of Quartz Countertops
- Quartz offers a good looking, classy finish. Additionally, most companies provide a variety of patterns to choose from.
- Since quartz is reinforced with resins and other materials, it is highly durable. It can be put to use for a long time without developing scratches and cracks with proper maintenance. Furthermore, the polish is also long-lasting.
- Quartz rarely develops permanent stains, mold or bacteria because it is non-porous. Spillages do not penetrate into the stone.
- The stone is quite resistant to heat. It can accommodate hot items to a certain degree and for short periods.
- Quartz is scratch and cracks resistant. It can easily take pressure from falling objects especially in the kitchen where things get out of order constantly.
- Unlike granite and some other types of countertops, granite does not require sealing after a certain period of use.
- Quartz is relatively friendly to common household cleaners.
- Lastly, quartz is highly customizable to meet desired interior décor needs.
- The main disadvantage of quartz is damage that results from prolonged exposure to sunlight. Accordingly, it is only suitable for indoors use. In addition, installation should be done in areas that do not come into contact with direct sunlight.
- Although the stone is heat-resistant, repeated contact with extremely hot objects can result to damage.
- Subjecting quartz to sudden temperature change can ruin the polish.
- Quartz can scorch, scratch, stain and crack but under rare circumstances.
- Quartz is not friendly to solvents and harsh chemicals that are common in bleach and some other commercial cleaning agents.
Cleaning Quartz Countertops
How you clean quartz countertops should depend on the purpose and kind of dirt that you intend to remove. The first thing to consider is a daily cleaning routine. Secondly, pay attention to spillage, staining and removal of sticky and greasy substances.
In most cases, quartz makes kitchen countertops and the inside walls of bathrooms. Since both areas tend to be busy on a daily basis, it is important to invest in an every day cleaning routine.
As for kitchen countertops, it is best to clean after every use. This means that you should clear dirt and wipe off residues as you cook or engage in various kitchen tasks.
- Remove big dirt particles by hand and use mild detergent, water and a clean microfiber cloth or sponge to clean the countertops thoroughly.
- Dip the sponge or microfiber cloth in water and detergent solution. Wring out excess solution and wipe the surface in a circular motion.
- Repeat the process and clean the entire countertop.
- Rinse the sponge in clean water and wipe the countertop again to clean out soapy residue/
- Dry the countertop with a kitchen towel or clean microfiber cloth.
As for bathroom, it is important to rinse the walls after every use. Showering leaves soap and hard water stains on bathroom walls and doors.
- Rinse your bathroom with clean water to prevent soapy water streaks from forming.
- Enhance cleanliness by light cleaning daily with a solution of warm water and mild detergent.
- Dip a clean sponge into the solution and use it to clean the walls thoroughly.
- Fit a small pipe into the bathroom tap and rinse out the soapy residue with water generously.
Removing Sticky and Greasy substances
There will always be sticky substances to remove on your kitchen countertops. However, this is an easy task if executed correctly.
- Use a putty knife or blunt object to scrape off the substances.
- If using a metallic object, to do not be forceful to protect the countertop from developing scratches.
- Follow up by cleaning the surface with a cloth dipped in a solution of mild detergent and warm water.
- Rinse thoroughly
- Buff with a dry cloth to prevent streaks from forming.
Leaving spillages on quartz countertops for prolonged periods can lead to staining. Treat stains as soon as possible to prevent permanent damage.
Turn to rubbing alcohol as your first solution for stains treatment. Besides a high level of effectiveness, it removes stains from countertops, clothes, upholstery and a wide range of home surfaces and items.
- Spray rubbing alcohol on a stain and let it sit for about a minute or two.
- Rub the stain with a white microfiber cloth repeatedly until it gradually thins.
- Repeat the steps if need be until the stain disappears completely.
- Dip a clean sponge in clean warm water and rinse the surface thoroughly.
- Buff the surface with a clean, dry microfiber cloth to maintain natural shine.
Use a commercial stain remover that is suitable for quartz if rubbing alcohol fails to work. Simply follow the instructions that come with product that you decide to use. B.C stone which is a leading company in developing quartz recommends Goo Gone.
Quartz countertops have a certain level of glow and shine. There are two ways that can help maintain the appearance.
Firstly, always buff the surface with a dry cloth or paper towel immediately after cleaning.
Secondly, use a multi-purpose shine restorer.
How to Care for Quartz Countertops
- Avoid placing hot cooking pots and things that are directly from the oven on your kitchen countertops. Extremely high heat scorches and discolors quartz.
- Avoid brining your countertops into contact with highly acidic or alkaline cleaners. Additionally, ensure that the surfaces do not come into contact with solvents.
- Clean your countertops regularly. Essentially, this prevents spilled substances from drying on the surface which can ultimately lead to stains that are difficult to remove.
- Avoid cutting fruits, vegetables and everything else directly on your countertops. Instead, use cutting boards because they protect the countertops from developing marks.
- Treat stains with cleaners that are friendly to quartz and stone countertops.
- Do not use a cleaning product unless you are sure that it does not damage quartz countertops.
- Avoid abrasive scrubbers and cleaning agents that contain bleach when cleaning your countertops.