“And the Winner Is!” Granite vs. Quartz Countertops
There are really only two benefits to installing Granite over Quartz. Granite is currently less expensive and it has a more natural beauty IF you like the look of the veins, striations, and color variations.
Quartz is a combination of a manmade and natural product. Here is a case where nature is not always better. Quartz is one of the hardest minerals making the surface virtually scratch resistant (Granite is softer and scratches). Quartz countertops are dense and non-porous. Granite on the other hand is porous and requires some yearly maintenance. Even with the maintenance, spills need to be cleaned up as they occur especially with wine, olive oil and even liquid soap. I have seen all three penetrate the surface of Granite and leave a noticeable “stain”. Due to Granite being porous it is susceptible to mildew and bacteria adhering to it. Some Quartz products have a antimicrobial, product added in during the manufacturing process to help eliminate the adherence of mildew and bacteria to the surface. The overall Quartz product is stronger allowing for larger overhangs without supports needed beneath it (consult with the installer).
Quartz has a brilliant shine similar to Granite.
Due to Quartz countertops being manmade they have a consistent pattern and colors throughout the entire product. This could be considered a drawback if you like the veins, striations, and color variations that are natural to Granite. If purchasing Granite, it is imperative that you select your countertop from the stone yard so you know exactly what you are getting. With Quartz, you can easily select your countertop color from a small sample piece knowing it will be the color that you will receive.
There has also recently been the Radon scare with Granite. Radon, which is a radioactive gas, can be trapped in the granite which can be emitted into your house once installed.
I recommend all of my Clients to use the Quartz in all of their Countertop needs.
Here are some additional usages: Kitchen- Countertop, entire backsplash between countertop and upper cabinets and any kitchen window sills. Bathroom- Countertop, knee wall cap, window sill, shower seat/shelf, shower curb (entry).
Installation: The quartz installation is similar to granite. The installer will come out and create a template based on the cabinet layout and additional overhangs. The installers will usually require having the sink (I recommend a undermount sink) on site at the time of creating a template. Back at their shop, they will cut the countertop the size of the template, cut any holes for the sink and attach the sink to the countertop. They will also add any edging and will usually offer a variety of profiles. They will usually drill the holes for the faucet on the job site. Once the countertops are installed, they will clean and buff them.
You will need to hire a plumber, to hook up the plumbing drain lines for the sink and to install the faucet.
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