Kitchen island 3cm quartz countertop Viatera - Minuet
Quartz and quartzite are two of the most popular countertop materials today for luxury homes.
But the names are rather confusing. And both quartz and quartzite countertops do contain natural quartz. So what is the difference? Even more importantly, which one is better for your kitchen counters in your dream kitchen?
Master bath quartz - viatera- clarino
What Is a Quartz Countertop?
A quartz countertop is engineered stone—meaning it is man-made. Quartz is 90-94% ground quartz and the rest of a quartz counter consists of polymer resins and pigments. It is baked in an oven in a factory.
Quartz Countertops Pros and Cons
Every countertop material has its pros and cons. Let’s look at quartz countertops.
- Smooth, seamless finish
- No sealant required
- Easy to maintain
- Cleanup is simple with soap and water
- Beautiful and shiny
- Moisture resistant
- Smooth, seamless look
- May be a bit less expensive than quartzite
- Can be made to look very much like natural stone
- Easily cut into many shapes and angles
- Nearly indestructible and very durable
- Easy to customize with many different colorations and patterning
- Has a high resale value
- More of a manufactured look than natural stone
- Not heat resistant (Can be permanently damaged if a hot pot sits directly on it that is over 300 degrees Fahrenheit)
- Can be pricey ($60-150 per square foot installed)
- Heavy, requires professional installation
Cosmos Super White Quartz countertop 3cm on a kitchen island
Caring for Quartz Countertops
It’s important to use hot pads or trivets whenever something comes out hot from the oven. If you were to set a hot baking sheet on your quartz countertop, it could burn and the resin inside may melt, leaving a burn mark.
To clean a quartz countertop, use a cleaner made specifically for quartz or simply use soap and water. Don’t use harsh abrasive cleaners.
Quartz is extremely hard and durable, but it is still not a good idea to use a sharp knife directly on the quartz counter. Use a cutting board to protect your beautiful counters and your knives.
Fantasy Brown quartzite countertops
What Is a Quartzite Countertop?
Quartzite is a naturally occurring metamorphic rock made from sandstone and quartz crystals that have been compressed under high heat and pressure along a tectonic plate inside the earth. The way it is formed cause this stone to be extremely hard, heat resistant, and water resistant.
Then quartzite slabs can be mined and cut to use as bathroom or kitchen countertops, desks, and backsplashes.
Quartzite Countertops Pros and Cons
The pros and cons of quartzite are slightly different from quartz.
- Beautiful natural stone with veining like marble or a granite appearance
- Every slab is unique, no “manufactured” look
- Heat resistant
- Very durable and hard, more than other natural stone varieties
- Easy to clean with soap and water
- Moisture resistant if properly sealed
- Increases home value a bit more than quartz
- Works well anywhere in the house
- More environmentally friendly
- Only contains naturally occurring ingredients
- More scratch and acid resistant than quartz and other stone
- More organic feel, grainy and more coarse than quartz
- Can be used for countertops in kitchens and bathrooms, shower floors or surrounds, fireplace surrounds, desks, or even outdoor paving
- More difficult to customize shapes than quartz
- Slightly porous so can harbor bacteria or become stained by moisture
- Requires sealing annually
- Only comes naturally in white and gray with slight variations in color
- Can be expensive ($70-200 per square foot installed)
- Heavy, requires professional installation
- Visible seams
Fantasy brown quartzite
Caring for Quartzite Countertops
Quartzite is heat resistant. If you accidentally set a hot pot or cooking sheet on it, the stone should be fine.
To clean a quartzite countertop, soap and water or a damp cloth work just fine. No harsh abrasives are necessary. But the stone is resistant to chemical damage, so if you use regular cleaning products, you should be fine.
Quartzite is one of the most durable natural stones and is harder than quartz, but it wise to use a cutting board to protect your knives.
One downside with quartzite is that it requires sealing at least annually to prevent staining or etching, perhaps more often than that. But it needs less maintenance than marble. With a proper seal, quartzite can be moisture resistant.
Master bath Viatera - Clarino quartz counterop
Bottom Line: What Is the Difference Between Quartz and Quartzite?
In the quartz vs quartzite countertop debate, the main thing to remember is that quartzite is a natural stone, quartz is a man-made stone.
With quartz, you get antimicrobial protection, lower maintenance, and a wide variety of quartz countertop colors and shapes.
With quartzite, you get heat-resistance, natural beauty, and greater durability over time.
Both require professional countertop installation. And both increase the value of your home at resale.
Ultimately, the choice is yours to make. Which pros and cons fit your lifestyle and family’s needs better?
Ready to Build Your Dream Kitchen and Home in the Greater Columbia, SC Area?
At Blythe Building Company, we build luxury homes all over the Midlands of South Carolina. We’ve been in the custom home building industry for many years and know how important it is for your dream home to be built properly with the best materials and quality.
Please contact us today about building your dream home.
We build in areas like Forest Acres, Lake Carolina, Lexington, Chapin, Ballentine, Irmo, West Columbia, and downtown Columbia.
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