Stone Countertops: Should You Choose Granite or Quartz?
Stone countertops have become quite popular in Utah homes, and most modern houses will have either a quartz or granite countertop. But is there a real difference between the two, and what kind of stone countertop is more suitable for you and your family?
If you’re not into cleaning, you need quartz countertops. Granite is porous, making it more vulnerable to bacteria and other contaminants. Just wipe your quartz countertop with soap and water, and you’re good to go. Quartz also makes an excellent base for kneading dough when baking. Its non-porous surface ensures that dust and other particles won’t get mixed into your dough. The porous nature of granite makes it accumulate dust and other particulates, as well as bacteria. You’ll need to do a little more cleaning to keep your kitchen safe.
Granite surfaces can handle quite a bit of heat. If you’re prone to placing your hot pans over the countertop, then you’ll need to use granite. While heat won’t easily damage your granite countertop, your pots and pans can leave stains that could seep into the granite. Quartz doesn’t perform as well as granite when it comes to heat. It can get damaged by temperatures higher than 400°F, so you’ll need to use a hot pad or some other surface to keep your pans and pots from damaging your countertop.
Wine spills, ink blots, or whatever mishap won’t stain a quartz countertop. It has a solid non-porous structure, and you can wipe off any substance off your countertop. However, quartz reacts to ultraviolet radiation, and Utah’s elevation exposes it to higher concentrations of UV. If only a part of your countertop is exposed to the sun, you might observe slight discolorations after a few years. Discoloration probably won’t be noticeable within 5 to 10 years, and you can use UV filtering film on your windows if you want to keep the UV out. UV has little effect on granite, but granite is porous, and it will stain if you don’t take care of those spills.
Cost and Maintenance
Quartz costs a bit more than granite, but those few extra dollars mean you won’t need to have further maintenance costs on your countertop. Granite countertops require yearly maintenance, usually done by sealing the granite surface. You can do it yourself as granite-sealing products can generally be purchased in hardware stores or you can have professionals do it for you if you want a safer and cleaner job.
Aesthetics is subjective, and some people prefer quartz over granite and the other way around. Granite tends to be more uniform, and most granite surfaces can look a bit similar. On the other hand, Quartz can be made to appear in several shades and colors depending on your preferences. Though most people associate quartz with the pure white colors, you can get quartz countertops with vibrant hues of red and blue.