Which is Better – Quartz or Granite Countertops?
Deciding between quartz or granite custom countertops can be a little overwhelming, especially when you don’t fully understand the strengths and weaknesses of each stone. This topic sparks many debates because each of these have very unique qualities. When choosing between quartz and granite for your upcoming countertop project, you should consider the following five important criteria:
There are major and subtle differences between quartz and granite that will likely skew which one you decide to go with. The following discussion will help you work through the factors listed above to ensure you make the right decision for your specific needs.
What Purpose Will Your Quartz or Granite Serve?
The purpose for your quartz or granite slab will play a major role in deciding which material is best. Where do you plan to install your stone and what will be its main use or function? Popular spaces where we see these stones include:
- Powder or laundry rooms
- Fireplace surrounds
- Shower or tub surrounds
The usage for your stone application plays a key role in making your decision. One difference between quartz and granite is that quartz is an engineered stone and is nonporous. This means it is resistant to liquids and bacteria, making it ideal for bathroom countertops, shower surrounds or powder rooms. Quartz can also be a great choice for kitchen countertops, offering easy maintenance and upkeep.
However, one thing to keep in mind is that quartz does not repel heat as well as granite does. This factor makes granite a strong and popular choice for kitchen countertops. In addition, granite is a natural stone acquired from sedimented minerals that formed over hundreds of years. This makes granite an extremely hard and durable option that is ideal for kitchen countertops.
With a strong enough sealant, you can set hot pots and pans directly on your granite kitchen counter. Cutting on granite countertops, however, is not recommended because its hardness will easily dull blades and knives. Granite is also a perfect choice for a fireplace surrounds because of its intense resistance to heat.
Since granite is a pure natural stone, it does have porous characteristics — meaning liquid could penetrate the surface, causing staining or etching if left for too long. It is also more susceptible to bacteria than quartz, so granite does require regular cleaning.
Will Quartz or Granite Be More Practical?
The purpose your quartz or granite slab will serve and the space it’s in will contribute to how well it performs. As we discussed, quartz performs best and is most practical in wet areas such as bathrooms, powder rooms, showers or tub surrounds. Since it is nonporous, liquids and bacteria do not seep into the surface.
Don’t be deterred from using quartz for kitchen countertops either. Custom quartz countertops are a perfect surface for preparing culinary dishes and raw foods. They can also stand up to messy crafts and everyday wear-and-tear. Quartz is becoming the most popular stone for kitchen applications, offering durability and modernity.
Granite has revolutionized the world of design and continues to be a popular stone option that is practical nearly anywhere. It is one of the most heat resistant and hardest surfaces available. It can last decades when properly maintained. Its durability, heat resistance and beauty work well for any space or room, especially the kitchen. Granite is perfect for all applications including countertops, inlays, and flooring. Practicality depends on the use and space intended for your stone application.
How Much Maintenance Does Quartz and Granite Require?
Aside from the purpose and performance that your stone will serve, maintenance could be a deciding factor. While one is easier to maintain than the other, they are both relatively low-maintenance. Granite will require more care and regular upkeep, particularly due to its porosity.
Granite countertops should be cleaned with a stone-intended cleaner or antibacterial cleaner, such as soap and water, to prevent bacteria and remove debris. Applying sealants routinely will also improve the longevity of your granite stone.
Quartz requires less upkeep because it’s less susceptible to liquids, bacteria and even staining. Quartz can also be cleaned with a stone-intended cleaner, or soap and water. One element to be aware of is heat — quartz is not as heat resistant as granite is and should also be sealed periodically. Overall, quartz countertops will stay as pristine as the day you had them installed!
How Will Your Quartz or Granite Look?
If someone came to you insisting they didn’t care what their stone looked like, would you believe them? Of course not! We’d all be lying if we said the aesthetic didn’t play an important factor in our decision making. Stone is an important part of the design element we can’t overlook. It will either complement, contrast, or clash with your overall design.
Quartz and granite slabs can be very different in terms of looks. Quartz is an engineered stone, so it can resemble just about any other stone or natural material such as concrete. If you have a vision for your stone, it is likely you can find it in a quartz slab. It can come in just about any natural color such as:
- Pure white
- Deep blue
In addition, you have a variety of choices regarding the use of veining and patterns with quartz slabs.
Granite, on the other hand, has a more common appearance and is popularly known for its speckle and veining. These speckles are from sediments and minerals forming together in its natural state before being carved and formed into stone slabs.
In general, granite slabs come in neutral colors such as beige, taupe, brown, gray, and black. Colors such as blue and red are extremely rare and difficult to find. Since granite is completely natural and cannot be altered in any way, each and every slab is different from the next. For this reason, it’s extremely important to pick your granite slab out by hand and in-person.
Is Price a Dealbreaker?
Generally speaking, quartz slabs cost more than granite slabs. Quartz and granite each come in multiple variations and colors. Quartz or granite slabs that are more rare to come by tend to be more expensive, as you might expect. Demand and availability may also result in different price points.
Granite and Marble Designs Can Help You Find the Right Stone Slab
Granite and Marble Designs is the best custom stone installer and fabricator company in Denver, sourcing only top-grade stone and using the most high-tech equipment to produce excellent results. We have years of experience and knowledge in many stone applications, and work often with quartz and granite in particular.
Granite and Marble Designs keeps dozens of quartz and granite slabs in stock and works with many high end suppliers that offer an abundance of inventory. Regardless of your price point, we are confident that we can find a quartz or granite stone slab that fits your ideas and expectations.
Contact us today or visit our showroom to find the right slab for your next project.