The Difference Between Granite & Quartz Countertops
Suppose you’re talking to kitchen remodeling companies about your kitchen project. In that case, one thing you’re probably looking at is a counter upgrade. This is especially true if the home you’ve just bought has an older countertop or one made with a cheaper material, such as laminate. When you’re making a kitchen that’s truly for you and your family, you want to ensure that the countertop will look good, and weather the years of use you’ll be putting that kitchen through.
For many people, the choice of surface comes down to granite or quartz, but what makes these two materials so popular and differentiates them from each other?
The Enduring Popularity Of Granite
Granite is the older of the two materials for countertops. But, of course, the reason granite is so popular for countertops is that it’s one of the most popular materials of all time in construction. Granite has been used in building for centuries and is just as likely to make up the walls of an ancient cathedral in Europe as it is to be part of a modern office building in Manhattan. In other words, granite has passed the test of time, with many buildings around the world, centuries-old, as proof of the strength granite has to resist both time and elements.
This means that for everyday kitchen use, granite is more than up to the task. Granite countertops are still created traditionally. That is to say, a granite countertop is often a large, single slab of granite stone that was mined out of a quarry somewhere. Aside from some polishing and treatment against wear and tear, a granite countertop looks much like it did when it was still in the quarry.
The Quartz Difference
Quartz, however, is considered an “engineered stone” compared to granite. This is because quartz countertops are composed of natural stones, but they are not naturally occurring. Instead, quartz countertops are manufactured through a process that combines many other quartz crystals into a single slab. So these countertops are artificially created instead of being cut out of a quarry and then cut to size for the needs of a specific kitchen counter.
Of course, the biggest difference between quartz and granite is that the engineered nature of quartz means a greater visual range. The look of quartz can be designed according to specific needs. In contrast, granite is a 100% natural look that is a roll of the dice on whatever came up out of the ground.
Quartz, being manufactured, is also slightly more resistant. Both materials are rugged and incredibly durable, but quartz is more resistant to both staining and chips and cracks compared to granite.
Making The Choice
Which surface you go with varies depending on your needs. Prices vary, and some granite countertops can be cheaper than a quartz countertop with more processes applied to protect it. However, if you want less maintenance, quartz doesn’t require occasional resealing the way granite does because granite, being a natural material, is porous, while quartz, being engineered, is built without this vulnerability. Whatever kitchen remodeling companies you talk to can help you make this decision.