Granite Vs Quartz Counter Tops
Stoneworld Seattle provides Granite Quartz & Marble Countertop fabrication and installation.
LOOKING FOR NEW COUNTERTOPS AND CAN’T DECIDE BETWEEN GRANITE AND QUARTZ
GRANITE Vs QUARTZ
Just like many other decisions in life, we are faced with a choice when it comes to choosing between granite and quartz. Which one should I use?
It may seem like a challenging and impossible choice. Both come in a gorgeous selection of colors and patterns and both make an incredibly durable work surfaces. However, if you talk to the real experts, which are the fabricators and the installers, most will be quick to tell you Quartz is a better choice. Our staff of experts at Stoneworld Seattle are always available to help you in deciding what is the best option for you.
Here is an outline of some of the differences between quartz and granite.
1)WHAT IS YOUR COUNTERTOP USED FOR?
Granite and quartz are both very durable, but it depends on the kind of abuse you throw at the two materials.
It depends on whether you cook or bake?
When working in the kitchen, we are cutting, handling hot pots and pans, moving heavy mixing bowls, and using small appliances like stand mixers and crockpots. One of the things you need to compare, is how each material holds up to accidents and flat out abuse. It is best for you to talk to one of our experts at our store to determine which product will fit your specific situation.
2 ) On the other hand, Granite is formed in intense heat and is naturally impervious to high temperatures. Hot pots and pans won’t damage the surface, though they may damage any sealant on them.
Quartz, on the other hand, isn’t nearly as heat resistant. Even Silestone, the best selling engineered stone manufacturer in the world tells you to never place hot objects on their product. Most quartz installers will always recommended to use a hot pad or trivet when placing hot objects on the surface. You will find this on most pamphlets selling quartz.
The resins used to give it flexibility and shape will warp and melt under high temperatures. Low quality brands have been known to discolor under crock pots and electric skillets, so if you want put hot pans directly on the counter, cross quartz off your list.
3)Quartz and Granite Scratches
While quartz is not easily scratched under normal use, it’s definitely more likely than granite to see scratches from dropped pans or slipping knives. In either case, one has to be careful around quartz and granite.
Granite is a rugged stone just like quartz and can handle you cutting vegetable directly on its’ surface. Both are so durable that it will actually dull your knives, so invest in a wood cutting block.
4)Quartz vs Granite damage
Accidents happen–dishes fall out of cabinets, kids drop things on countertops, adults aren’t much better.
If you drop a heavy pot on granite or whack a corner with a heavy ceramic bowl, it’s more likely to chip than quartz. The problem is that those chips are notoriously hard to repair. Both are fairly easy to fix and you can probably do it yourself.
It’s so simple to do, they sell granite and quartz repair kits at nearly every big box home improvement store.
5)Granite Can Stain more easily
If granite has a weakness, it’s the fact that it is susceptible to stains because of its composition. Because it’s a natural stone some varieties can be porous, and stains can be a real possibility unless you take 10 minutes out of your day to seal it once or twice a year. As an example, just leaving a cut orange on a granite countertop can cause it to leave a imprinted stain.
This modern kitchen is shows a pental-granite counter top. The white wood on these cabinets combined with this color countertop is an interesting visual combination.
Because of the man-made resin that is used to glue quartz together. it is non-porous, so it’s stain resistant (not stain proof)
Before you assume that this makes quartz superior to granite, consider the very reason it’s non-porous. Remember how it’s made of a resin-stone mix? The same resin that makes it low maintenance also increases its risk of damage and discoloration from the heat of your pots and pans.
The manufacturers claim their slabs contain about 7% resin. What they gloss over is that the ratio is by weight. The actual volume of resin makes up about 30% to 40% of the finished product. It's almost appropriate to call them resin countertops instead of quartz.
Sure, sealing stone a couple of times per year is a hassle, but a melted countertop from forgetting to use a trivet under a hot pan is a nightmare.
6)GRANITE IS CHEAPER THAN QUARTZ (Myth)
This is probably the first thing most people consider when choosing their countertop.
The final cost of countertops will depend on several factors, but generally, granite countertops costs will parallel the same cost per square foot including installation as granite. Quartz ranges from $50-75 per square foot installed.
7)GRANITE CAN BE MORE ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY
At first glance, quartz may seem more environmentally friendly because it can be engineered and manufactured close to where it will be sold. The manufacturing plants also love to boast about how they use recycled materials as well as how they conserve water.
However, both have to be quarried from somewhere–sometimes in the US, but usually abroad–so they’re both using the same energy and resources for that.
Beyond this, quartz requires extra energy and resources since the stone is crushed and non-organic resins are added to basically glue the crushed pieces of stone together.
Granite is literally formed by Mother Nature, cut out of the ground in big blocks, sawn into slabs, and then polished to a shiny surface. It doesn’t get more natural than that.
This kitchen with cherry wood cabinetry coordinates nicely with the colors in the quartz countertops.
8)QUARTZ GIVES OFF LESS RADON
In case you may have heard that granite is dangerous to use in countertops because it emits radon gas. The facts are that radon is a colorless and odorless radioactive gas that is produced by the breakdown of decaying uranium.
Why do people think radon is in their countertop?
Because it has trace amounts of radioactive materials in it–but so does the soil your home sits on and many other naturally occurring objects (like sand and stone).
The fact is that there is such a minute amount of radioactive material that it poses no threat to people. Even if radon gas is released as the radioactive materials in the stone decay, the released gas mixes with the regular air and is diluted to such weak levels that it poses no threat to people.
Of course, that’s not to say that radon gas isn’t a real problem–it can be, especially if you have cracks in your home’s foundation and holes in your home’s structure that are near the ground. However, radon from granite? There’s just not enough to worry about it.
9)QUARTZ FADES IN THE SUn (Myth) Only if it outside in direct sun.
Very few shades of granite will fade when left in direct sunlight for extended periods of time. This is why stone slabs are often stored outdoors in direct sunlight.
Quartz, however, fades noticeably in as little as a few weeks of direct sunlight, especially the darker colors. If you have a lot of direct sunlight in your kitchen, you should avoid it.
WHICH ONE HAS MORE COLORS TO CHOOSE FROM
Don’t be fooled by the many different options available at Home Depot and Lowes. Head to Stoneworld Seattle store and showroom. We are an upscale stone and tile store and we directly import most of our tile and stone, so we can be very competitive and offer much better quality at discounted prices for.
For granite, you’ll find lots of full slabs to choose from and you can see exactly how your countertops will look because you choose the exact slab and not just a sample. You’ll be able to compare the intricate patterns and subtle color differences before you ever have your countertops designed.
One of the most popular brand of quartz is Silestone. It does offer some benefits over granite that other brands of quartz do not.
Stoneworld Seattle, one of the oldest tile and stone stores in Seattle, Washington offers many selections for you to choose from.
Corian makes a decent product for kitchen countertops.
If you’re goal isn’t to spend as little as possible on countertops and want to be sure you have a great looking kitchen work surface that’s easy to maintain, butcher block is another option. Depending on which species of wood you choose it costs about the same as stone but can be much more impressive looking.
Click here to learn how to use our kitchen visualizer and design an elegant kitchen that fits your budget.