Homeowners have to make an incredible amount of decisions during a kitchen remodel. You want to make selections that will fit your lifestyle now but will also last for years to come. When it comes to kitchen countertops, most homeowners choose between two great options quartz or granite.
While granite, a natural material, is incredibly durable and heat resistant, quartz is also durable and comes in a broader array of colors and patterns. Learn the difference in the materials and see how quartz and granite stack up against each other in five categories.
Both quartz and granite are derived from natural sources, however, granite is 100% natural stone, and quartz is a mix of 90% natural and 10% human-made materials. Granite is mined from all over the globe, then cut and polished to a shiny finish. Quartz is made by grinding down natural quartz and combining it with resins, polymers, and pigments to create a surface similar to granite.
Because it is a human-made material, quartz comes in a more extensive array of colors and patterns than granite. Many homeowners find it easier to choose quartz from a sample, since it has a uniform look. When choosing granite, you will likely want to pick your actual slab as there are many irregularities in the natural stone. However, even though quartz can mimic real stone, granite usually has a more natural appearance with smooth waves and veining. And granite can still be found in colors ranging from earthy blacks and browns to striking blues and greens. When it comes to appearance, consider the aesthetic you are going for in your kitchen and what will match with your backsplash, cabinets, and flooring.
Homeowners choose both quartz and granite for their durability, but each has different strengths and weaknesses. Quartz is virtually impossible to stain as it is not porous. Whereas granite is porous, and if spilled liquids are left sitting, they will stain the surface. However, granite is resistant to heat, while quartz is not. If you go with a quartz countertop, take extra care to use heating pads for your pots and pans.
Both materials should be cleaned regularly with soap and water. However, due to the porous nature of granite, extra care should be taken to disinfect the surface regularly, so it does not harbor bacteria. A human-made material, quartz will never need to be resealed. But it is a good idea to reseal granite every few years.
Many homeowners assume that because granite is a natural material, it must be more eco-friendly. However, the carbon footprint created through transport and the chemicals required to seal the stone offset the fact that it is naturally sourced. On the other hand, quartz contains polymers and can also be imported. You can, however, find eco-friendly quartz that is made in the USA from manufacturers like Cambria, which significantly reduces the impact of transporting the materials.
According to HomeAdvisor, quartz will cost between $15-$70 per square foot on average while granite has a wider range in price from $15-$150 per square foot. However, quartz is heavier, and the installation cost will also raise the price. With either material, make sure you are purchasing from a reputable source. For example, some warehouses will sell inferior granite slabs at a much lower price point. They seem like a good deal at the time, but they may not be as durable. Additionally, make sure you hire a professional kitchen remodeler that you trust to do the install. That way, you can be sure the kitchen is structurally sound, and the quality workmanship will help your countertops last through the wear and tear of everyday use.
If you’re still not sure which countertop material is best for you, schedule a consultation with one of Brothers’ kitchen experts. Not only will our professional designers walk you through the different materials, but they will also help you choose the rest of your design elements to ensure a cohesive style that perfectly fits your vision.