Quartz Cleaning and Polishing Products

Avoid Quartz Countertop Damage with Proper Product Choice

Avoid Quartz Countertop Damage with Proper Product Choice

QUESTION:

I know it's recommended to use dedicated stone cleaners on granite & marble.


But what about Quartz surfaces?

What are the best products for cleaning and polishing quartz countertops? And what about quartz shower tiles?

Do I use the same products on quartz as on granite or marble?

For instance: Will your Etch Removing Marble Polisher product be effective to restore etching on Quartz shower tiles due to using a strong cleaning chemical?

Will the Soap Film & Hard Water cleaner and the Mold and Mildew Remover be safe for Quartz shower tiles?

And it is important that you treat quartz differently from a cleaning and restoration perspective?

ANSWER:

Good question. Quartz countertops can be permanently discolored by some cleaners and household chemicals, so product choice is an important decision.

All the products we recommend for cleaning marble & granite are safe for all natural stone and for quartz surfaces, except for one product you mentioned which if for use on marble, travertine or limestone only.

Basically, quartz countertops and tile should be cleaned just like a granite. Quartz countertops are 90% natural stone after all, so the best performing and safest products for use on quartz are those made for use on natural stone.

Since marble, travertine, limestone and onyx are immediately damaged by most household cleaners, we always make a point of noting that a particular product is safe for such surfaces.

Granite is much less sensitive to chemicals. It can still etch when exposed to very strong chemicals or from repeated use, so stone-specific cleaners should still be used.

As noted, quartz countertops can be damaged and discolored by some chemicals and cleaners as well. There's a major difference regarding repair, however, as we'll see below.

Cleaning Quartz vs. Granite & Marble


The idea behind our recommendations is that any product made safe for cleaning marble is also safe for cleaning granite or quartz countertops or Corian or glass, etc. Thus, you don't really treat marble and granite or quartz differently when it comes to regular cleaning.

The proper, non-damaging cleaners are required for all stone or man-made stone-based surfaces like quartz countertops.

For regular cleaning of quartz countertops use the Granite & Marble Spray Cleaner. General care, do's and don'ts, however, do vary a bit between marble, granite and quartz.

With marble, you have to be much more particular about avoiding acidic foods and drinks than on granite or quartz which won't readily etch.

Acidic foods, drinks, and most chemicals etch marble, which is why marble is not the best choice for a kitchen countertop.

Common cleaners are a gamble. Quartz is not nearly as sensitive as marble, but not quite as resistant to chemical damage as granite, which is why using common household cleaners (including brand name) is risky. You simply don't know which cleaner may be the one to discolor your quartz.

Quartz Repair


Repair and restoration, however, is a different ball game than cleaning. Marble repair can be somewhat different than granite repair and quartz repair can be a lot different.

The main difference is that stone can almost always be repaired or restored, but damage to a quartz countertop is almost always permanent.

Chemical damage results in lighter-colored areas where the color looks like it was bleached out. It's the coloring dyes within the resins used to make quartz tiles and countertops that are affected.... usually permanently.

Such spots can resemble marble etching, but cannot be repaired in the same way as marble or at all in most cases.

The spots you have on your quartz shower tiles are not etching in the traditional sense. The spots are almost certainly chemical discoloration.

The ETCH REMOVER / Marble Polishing Powder is made for use on calcareous stones like marble. It won't work on quartz... or granite for that matter.

Since marble is relatively soft, the above DIY product works very well and can be easily used by an unskilled person to restore mild to moderate etching (which is the most common).

Granite, on the other hand, is too hard and must be professionally re-polished. Also, severe damage to marble requires professional marble cleaning and maintenance as well.

Again, the Etch Remover won't do a thing to restore the quartz. When marble is etched it's simply a matter of re-polishing the rougher surface back to a smooth, glossy surface.

There is no damage or discoloring of dyes or resins with marble, which is the case with quartz.

However, the Soap Film / Hard Water Remover and the Mold & Mildew Stain Remover are safe and will work excellent on quartz shower tiles as well.

The Soap Film Remover is best used as your "regular" shower cleaner. It will keep all normal shower buildup off the quartz tiles so they don't ever look dull.

Another helpful product is the Topical Granite Polish which will work well to enhance the shine on quartz countertops and tiles too.

To try and repair the spots on your quartz, you may consider calling the quartz manufacturer with the exact chemical that did the damage and see what they suggest, but most likely they will tell you it's permanent and such chemicals should not be used.

Comments for Quartz Cleaning and Polishing Products

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Quartz questions
by: Diana Newell

Hi Ryan,

Your explanation was very clear and concise. I really appreciate your expertise on this matter and being so honest that the etch remover will not work on quartz.

I will be ordering your Mold and Mildew Remover and Soap Film/Hard Water and Grout Remover. Thanks again for your professional advice!

Diana

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Smudgy surface
by: Jane Frick

Everything I read here says quartz is very similar to granite, but my experience is that my quartz countertop etches with just a drop of lemon juice or pickle juice.

It does not keep its shiny surface and always looks somewhat smudgy.

Any suggestions that really work would be greatly appreciated. It is white with blue streaks running through it.

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

Well, etching on quartz countertops from lemon juice is unusual. Quartz can be discolored by some chemicals and white quartz countertops are the most prone to damage and discoloration, but fruit juices won't typically do it.

Are you sure you don't have marble countertops?

Regarding the smudgy surface... well this can be true of just about any countertop material. It will only look shiny and clean when not in use.

Of course, fingers will leave oily smudges as will cooking oils and just food and drinks in general.

Perhaps you need to use a better Quartz Countertop Cleaner that is formulated specifically for cleaning natural stone (quartz is mostly natural stone) and leaving a streak-free surface.


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Yellowed quartz countertop
by: Alan

My quartz countertops have yellowed. I saw no instructions for renewing the quartz. Could you help me please? Thanks for your consideration.

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

Well, it would require determining why the countertop has turned yellow. Quartz is sensitive to UV rays / sunlight and can be discolored with significant sun exposure.

Typically, this is not at all a problem when installed indoors.

Another possible cause is chemical discoloring. The resins in the quartz countertop can be affected by some household products.

It may be permanent, but you could have an experienced quartz fabricator or stone repair pro take a look and see if anything can be done. Also, contact the manufacturer for guidance.


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DuPont Zodiaq Gravel Grey Quartz Stone Discoloration
by: Anonymous

Hello and thank you for the extremely well explained answers.

I have a DuPont Zodiaq Gravel Grey quartz stone kitchen countertop.

A low pH solution bottle was placed on it and made the color around it lighter. I have read that you said it is in most cases permanent, but is there any product i can use to try to restore the color in any way? Thanks a lot!

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

The one product that has the most success on quartz countertops with problematic spots is Bar Keeper's Friend.

The acidic solution likely discolored the resin used to bind the quartz into a countertop. Typically, this is permanent damage.

Magic Erasers can sometimes remove stains, but CAUTION.... they are abrasive and have also been known to dull or damage quartz countertops. It's a gamble and not really recommended, but may be worth a test in your case.

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What Not To Use on Quartz Countertops
by: Anonymous

Yo make recommendations on products you can use for cleaning Quartz.... but please name those you know that are bad.

Planning to install Calcutta natura by zodiac in the kitchen.

Can you use soapy cloth with dawn soap?

Dish detergent with some Clorox in it?

Would hate to spend money on it and know if I or guest used these products it could ruin the appearance!!

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

Good question, but very difficult to answer completely.

With so many products on the market, I can't give a complete list of what not to use.

It is far easier to recommend what is best to use... and then you should just use that and nothing else. That eliminates the risk of damage and gives you the best cleaning results... problem solved.

But since you asked about Clorox... NO... BLEACH IS BAD for quartz countertops. It can permanently discolor quartz.

Dish soap... this won't harm it but not the best choice for a regular cleaner. No problem using dish soap around the sink, but using dish soap as your regular cleaner will eventually create a dull soap scum build up.

As the article above suggests... using products made for granite is best for quartz countertops.

Definitely don't experiment with random products or you may just permanently ruin your quartz countertop.

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What about quartz floor tiles in the kitchen?
by: Anonymous

I had some heavy-duty cleaning to do on my quartz kitchen floor, but because I have pets I did not want to use chemicals -- so I used a 50% white vinegar / 50% water mix.

Once the floor was cleaned, I noticed it was no longer shiny but instead appears to have a dull film that nothing I've tried will remove.

I have only now read that vinegar shouldn't be used on quartz. Have I ruined my beautiful and expensive quartz floor permanently?? ~ Thanks

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

Vinegar has some many beneficial uses and is a simple, cheap and environmentally- friendly cleaning product that people often overlook (or just never knew) that it is also highly acidic.

Acids can damage many surfaces. Non-toxic or environmentally-friendly does not mean "completely harmless" or non-damaging.

Acidic products typically are not damaging to quartz countertops or (quartz floor tiles... same material), however, quartz is sensitive to some chemicals and/or the degree of exposure.

So, if the vinegar happened to remain in contact with the quartz surface long enough, then yes, it may damage and the result would likely be a washed out dullness.

If you noticed this immediately after cleaning with the vinegar, then this is what happened.

Unfortunately, chemical damage to quartz countertops and tile is usually not repairable.

I'd try using Bar Keeper's Friend and a non-abrasive nylon brush to scrub the tiles and see if that improves the situation. Just test this on a small area.

If not, then the damage is likely permanent.

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