When it comes to designing a kitchen, stone counter tops are among the first thoughts for stylish touches. The long-lasting loveliness of stone has made it a top choice in counters for quite a while now. The big question today is: Will you choose granite or quartz for your kitchen counters? Both are beautiful, and you will do well with either of them.
Granite and quartz are both hard stone surfaces. Granite is the natural stone, and quartz is the new engineered stone with lots of the same good points. Both are hard enough that you use a cutting board to save your knives instead of your counter tops. They look very similar, and they even cost about the same.
Granite, being a natural stone, comes out of the ground with countless variations. The different minerals that make up granite and give it the colors and patterns that make it so interesting, are different sometimes from one side of a slab of stone to the other. This is part of the charm of granite, making each counter top a natural work of art. Quartz is actually the mineral that makes up the biggest part of granite and gives it the qualities of strength and hardness. Other minerals in the granite give it the personality features of color and style.
Quartz countertops are engineered stone that takes ground up quartz and mixes it with resins, polymers, and pigments. The mineral quartz is pretty much colorless, the engineered stone requires added pigments to give it the color and personality of real stone. It does give you more options for making the counter tops be exactly the color and pattern you want. The material is approximately 90% quartz and resembles natural stone in a lot of ways. However, direct sunlight can eventually fade the color of the quartz counters. Avoid anything that damages the resins or pigments, as the damage cannot be undone. This includes products such as nail polish remover, turpentine, drain cleaner, and dishwasher rinsing agents. Anything that is highly acidic or highly alkaline, as those chemicals can disintegrate the bonds between quartz and resin.
Granite is more porous than quartz, and requires sealant to prevent staining. If the granite does stain, there are ways to professionally remove the stains. You can test to see if granite needs sealing by putting water on it and waiting a few seconds. If the stone gets a dark look, it is absorbing the water. Most sealants that you, as a homeowner, can do need to be applied anywhere from every six months to every three years depending on the counter and the amount and type of use it gets. Dr. Clean Home Care offers a sealant that can seal the granite and comes with a 25 year warranty! It is well worth the investment to have the job done right once, and not have to worry about it for 25 years.
Quartz is much less porous, which means sealing does not do much good on quartz. While quartz is considered stain resistant, if quartz comes in contact with permanent markers/inks and some chemicals, solvents or dyes it becomes discolored or stained. Avoid letting your counters have contact with these products, as there is no way to remove the stain afterwards. While it is easy to care for your quartz counters, experts still recommend a thorough cleaning from time-to-time. With the list of chemicals you must avoid with quartz, it is a good idea to hire a professional for this deep cleaning.
Whether you choose granite or quartz is mostly a matter of personal choice, there are good points for either counter. Both are beautiful and will last you a long time. At Dr. Clean Home Care, we know how to keep your counters looking their best and performing as you expect for the investment they are. Whether you need a granite counter deep cleaned and sealed, or you need a quartz counter deep cleaned. Contact us today for more information on how we can help you with this and all your cleaning needs.