April 11, 2024

The Ultimate Guide to Quartz Countertop Care for Your Home

Quartz countertops are a hallmark of elegance and durability in modern kitchens and bathrooms. At Fox Granite, we understand the importance of maintaining the beauty and longevity of your investment. This guide will provide you with comprehensive steps to care for your quartz countertops so they remain a centerpiece of your home's design.

How to Care for Your Quartz Countertops

Like all stone countertops, quartz countertops are admired for their beauty and easy maintenance. Quartz is man-made, so it's much easier to care for than natural stone. However, knowing the right steps to take can guarantee your countertops stay looking as good as new even years after installation. Regular care involves these simple yet effective steps that you should follow on a daily to case-by-case basis. 

How to Clean Quartz Countertops

If you just installed new quartz countertops, you may be unsure how to properly clean them. No worries. Cleaning quartz countertops is straightforward, making it easy to retain their luster without harsh chemicals. 

Daily Cleaning

Routine cleaning is one of the best and easiest ways to keep countertops clean.

Use a soft cloth, or sponge dipped in warm water and mild soap to wipe away spills and debris. Since quartz counters are not porous, you can wipe them down as often as necessary without ruining them.

For a more thorough clean, use a glass cleaner or a quartz-specific cleaning product once a week to maintain its shine and prevent buildup. The best way to clean quartz counters with glass cleaner is to spray it on the surface, let it sit for a few minutes, and then wipe it off with a paper towel or microfiber cloth.

Avoid harsh chemicals and use gentle cleaners, such as a gentle liquid cleaner, to remove sticky or greasy food residue and prevent damaging kitchen countertops.

Unlike granite, quartz stains. They are stain-resistant but not stain-proof. That's why it's best to clean spills immediately, especially those that are acidic or colored because they can ruin the surface.

Wipe the surface with a damp cloth and a drop of mild dish soap. Rinse with clean water and dry with a soft cloth. Scrub gently until the surface is free from any spills, grime, and soapy residue.

Dealing with Hard Water Stains

Use a mild dish soap solution applied with a non-abrasive sponge. Vinegar solutions should be avoided, as their acidity can damage the surface. Mixing baking soda and warm water to create a paste will also clean quartz countertops. The mixture is gentle enough not to wear away at the protective coating over the smooth surface but strong enough to lift hard water stains.

Heavy-Duty Cleaning

For stuck-on messes, use a plastic putty knife to gently scrape away debris from the quartz surface. Avoid harsh cleaners and abrasive pads, which can dull the surface. This includes oven cleaners, floor strippers, and other heavy-duty cleaners you might use around the house. Even the toughest stains will come out with gentle cleansers and warm water or a putty knife.

Opt for a degreaser instead of an abrasive cleaner to thoroughly clean a countertop that's accumulated more dirt. Select a product free of bleach to avoid permanent damage and staining of your quartz surfaces. Similarly, if you use disinfectant wipes, verify they are bleach-free. After cleaning, it's crucial to go over the countertops again with a gentle soap and a soft cloth to ensure they're spotless.

How to Prevent Quartz Countertop Stains

Preventing stains on quartz countertops is also key to maintaining their pristine appearance. Follow these steps to prevent staining.

Use Coasters and Mats

Protect your countertop from potential stains by using coasters under glasses and mats under hot dishes or cookware. Removing tough stains from any surface can be challenging, even when they don't stain easily. Water condensation doesn't typically stain quartz counters, but it's possible, especially if the drink or dish is made with citrus. The acid can leave tough stains or, even worse, erode the surface if you don't get to it in time with a soft cloth and warm water.

Immediate Spill Response

Time is of the essence with tough stains. Sure, most spills won't leave a permanent mark, but having a clean quartz countertop is more aesthetically pleasing. That's why you should wipe up spills immediately, especially from liquids like wine, coffee, tea, and oil, to prevent them from penetrating the surface and eroding the surface.

Avoid Using Permanent Markers

The resins used to manufacture quartz countertops can react with the solvents found in permanent markers. These reactions can lead to discoloration, dulling of the surface finish, or even etching, especially if the marker is left on the surface for an extended period. Markers are designed to be indelible on most surfaces, including paper, wood, and even some plastics. 

While quartz is non-porous and resistant to many types of stains, the chemicals in permanent marker ink can adhere to the surface, making them challenging to remove and potentially leaving permanent stains.

How to Prevent Damaging Your Quartz Countertops

Quartz countertops are tough, but they're not indestructible. Here are the best tips to avoid damage.

Avoid Direct Contact with Harsh Chemicals

Household cleaners, paint removers, and other chemicals can damage the surface. Keep them away from your countertop. Although quartz surfaces are strong, avoid using abrasive cleansers and scouring pads for stubborn stains. Harsh chemicals can damage or dull quartz surfaces by disintegrating the resin. This includes bleach, drain cleaners, cleaners that contain bleach, and nail polish remover. Again, opt for a mild cleaner, like a mild detergent or approved quartz cleaner, if you need something stronger than a soft cloth or sponge with water and soap.

Avoid High Heat

Abrasive cleaning pads and cleaners aren't the only way to damage your quartz countertops. Direct heat from household items such as hot pans can cause discoloration cracking. Quartz is heat resistant, but prolonged heat exposure or high temperatures can cause unsightly damage. 

Heat resistant is not the same as heatproof. So always put a barrier between hot pots, pans, and the countertop to prevent wearing down the protective layer. Always use trivets or mats under hot pots, crock pots, electric skillets, and other appliances.

Avoid Cutting Directly on the Surface

Always use a cutting board to prevent scratches and protect the surface integrity. Although you can add scratch-resistant to the benefits of owning a quartz countertop, they are also not scratch-proof. Scratch-resistant means knives and other sharp objects cannot easily scratch the surface, though repeated scratching can damage the resin. You should also avoid cutting directly on your countertops to prevent ruining or dulling your kitchen knives.

Minimize Direct Sunlight

The most significant impact of direct sunlight on quartz countertops is the potential for discoloration and fading. The UV rays in sunlight can break down the chemical bonds in the pigments used to color quartz countertops, leading to a noticeable lightening or fading of the color over time. This effect can be especially pronounced in darker colors or patterns.

UV rays can also affect the resin components within the quartz material. Over time, UV exposure can lead to the degradation of these resins, affecting the countertop's structural integrity and appearance. This can make the surface more susceptible to staining, cracking, and other forms of damage. To prevent sun damage, use window coverings to protect your quartz counters.

Follow Our Tips to Keep Your Quartz Countertops in Shape

Maintaining quartz countertops, whether new or old, is the key to keeping your beautiful kitchen centerpiece in shape. At Fox Granite, we believe that with the right care, your quartz countertops can remain a stunning feature of your home for decades. By following these simple steps, you can enjoy the beauty and durability of quartz without worry. Remember, the key to longevity is regular maintenance and prompt attention to spills and stains.

If you have any questions about caring for your quartz countertops or if you're considering installing quartz in your home, contact us and our team will guide you through every step of the process.

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