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A Tough, Super-Hard Surface for Countertops

Kithcen-Work-Surface-WithQuartz-Countertop

Courtesy of Cambria

The superman of stone, quartz surfacing provides a nearly indestructible material, ideal for homeowners who want a beautiful countertop that they might occasionally spill wine on. Providing the look of natural stone with a mettle that laughs in the face of coffee, lemon juice, and high-maintenance care, its non-porous nature protects against more than just stains; it's also extremely hygienic, making it a food-safe choice.

Though quartz surfacing is sometimes referred to as "engineered" quartz, don't be fooled into thinking that you'll end up with a synthetic countertop. Expect pure natural quartz (generally upwards of 90 percent) mixed with epoxy resin binders. The care-free surface doesn't require sealants. Boasting the look of natural stone, quartz surfacing has a consistent color; its color should be very close to what you saw in the showroom.

Quick tip: Quartz surfacing is available in colors not found in nature, as the crushed stone is generally mixed with pigment. Take advantage, and choose a color that dazzles while still looking like stone.

Pros

  • Does not require sealants

  • Scratch-resistant with diamond-like hardness, you can cut on quartz (excessive force can damage it, however)

  • Consistent color

  • Its non-porous nature makes it virtually stain-free

  • Can be worked into a decorative edge


Cons

  • Though it can briefly tolerate moderate temperatures for a brief time, you'll want to use a hot pad or trivet when placing a hot pan on it

  • Integrated sinks are not available, as with solid surfacing


Maintenance

Though it's important to always follow your manufacturer's specific instructions, quartz surfacing producer Cambria recommends washing with warm water and a pH neutral, non-abrasive cleaner.


Cost

Similar to natural stone, depending on distribution in your area. Expect to pay $45-$125 per square foot.

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