What You May Not Know about Engineered Quartz Countertops

What You May Not Know about Engineered Quartz Countertops

As you probably know, there are many different manufacturers of quartz countertops on the market. Although the various choices in quartz may be overwhelming, ultimately, the quality of the work by the fabricator such as DTK Stone Works, is a more important determinant of the overall quality and success of the project than the brand of quartz.  Here are a few facts about what you may not know about engineered quartz countertops.

Quartz countertops aren’t solid quartz. Engineered quartz (don’t be confused with quartzite, another appealing natural stone used as counters) is a manmade product created mostly from natural materials. More accurately, a quartz countertop should probably be called engineered stone or compound stone—terms that more describe the way these products are created.  It’s made of 80 to 93 percent ground quartz and 7 to 20 percent resins and pigments that are combined into durable and nonporous slabs. It is impossible to tell from looking at a slab or sample, whether high or low quality resin was used, however an experienced fabricator such as DTK Stone Works, knows the difference. Low quality resins are often found in no name imported slabs that can make the fabrication process more difficult and lead to bleached or burned edges during polishing.  Also, the less resin is used by the manufacturer, the better the quality of the stone. Manufacturer’s warranty is another factor consumers should consider when choosing their quartz. At DTK Stone Works, we only sell quartz manufactured by major brands known for consistent quality and stand behind their products.

Quartz countertops are green.  The environmental impact of manufactured quartz is low because it is an abundant material. The 90 to 97 percent of stone-like materials that form the base of quartz countertops are all waste by-products of other quarrying or manufacturing processes. Natural stone is not quarried solely for use in quartz countertops.  

One of the appealing features of engineered quartz is its wide variety of colors, patterns, and textures.  The color and texture of engineered quartz are more consistent than natural stone. The surface of manufactured quartz depends on how the quartz is ground.  Coarsely ground stone produces a flecked appearance, while finely ground has a smooth look. Manufacturers have also created colors and patterns that mimic natural stone, such as marble and granite, and have even created cement lookalikes (an appealing option, since cement is prone to cracking, chipping, and staining). The options include polished, honed/matte, and textured surfaces.

Quartz countertops are easy to clean and maintain.  Warm water and soap are recommended for day-to-day cleaning. The polished finish will stay intact with no need for ongoing maintenance other than avoiding abrasive cleaners that could dull the surface. Unlike marble and granite, engineered quartz is nonporous and doesn’t require sealing.