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 countertops?

What are the best products for cleaning and polishing quartz countertops?

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

ANSWER:

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

Quartz countertops are 90% natural stone after, so the best performing and safest products to clean and polish quartz are those made for use on granite and marble.

Using granite and marble cleaners on quartz kitchen countertops will guarantee that you'll never discolor or damage your quartz (well from cleaners anyway). It's the smart tip.

Quartz countertop stains can also occur from some foods like tea or coffee. White quartz is particularly vulnerable to food stains.

For cleaning quartz countertops, the Granite & Marble Cleaning Spray is very effective and dries streak-free.

To polish quartz a Topical Polish can be used to enhance the shine of your kitchen countertops so it really pops... But... The topical polish will not repair discoloration, dullness, or any other damage.

That requires a different process. A different kind of "polishing" discussed below under "repairing quartz countertops".

Cleaning Quartz vs. Granite and Marble


Basically, quartz countertops and tile slabs (used in showers) should be cleaned just like granite. Or even better... like marble.

The idea behind this is that any product made safe for cleaning marble is also safe for cleaning granite or quartz countertops or Corian or glass, etc.

Marble is immediately damaged by many household cleaners.

Quartz can be damaged by cleaners too.

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

When it comes to regular cleaning, you don't really need to treat granite and quartz countertops differently.

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

General care, do's and don'ts 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.

It's mainly cleaners and other household products that you have to be careful with. Products (including brand-name cleaners) like oven cleaners, lime scale removers, bleach, and acetone can damage quartz by discoloring or bleaching out the resin binding the quartz materials together into a slab.

Often this discoloration is permanent.

So common cleaners are a gamble on quartz. Quartz is not nearly as sensitive as marble, but not quite as resistant to chemical damage as granite.

You simply don't know which cleaner may be the one to stain your quartz so sticking to granite cleaners and other products formulated for use around natural stone is the safe bet.

Quartz Countertop Repair & Polishing


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 repair difference is that natural stone kitchen countertops can almost always be repaired or restored by repolishing, but damage to a quartz countertop is often 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 (dull chalky spots), but cannot be repaired in the same way as marble or at all in most cases.

We get asked a lot about this... can a marble polish be used to polish quartz? Unfortunately, no.

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 a relatively soft countertop material, 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) or scratches on marble.

Granite, on the other hand, is too hard and professional re-polishing is best. You can do-it-yourself with the correct tools and knowledge. Also, severe damage to marble is best repaired by a marble cleaning and maintenance pro. The trick is always getting an even finish and shine.

Again, the Marble 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 countertops.

Polishing quartz countertops to repair damage is possible and is basically done in the same fashion as granite using diamond polishing pads on a power tool.

BUT it is not exactly the same as polishing granite. It is more difficult.

Matching the original factory finish when repolishing quartz kitchen countertops is a challenge. It requires several steps, special quartz polishing compounds, and using the polishing pads in the correct order.

Polishing quartz countertops can be a DIY project, but really it is best left to a person experienced with re-polishing quartz. It's even trickier than polishing marble or granite.

One thing though... repolishing quartz may not remove or repair bleached out chemical damage. It depends on how deep into the resin the chemical damage is.

Pits or chips is a quartz countertop can be repaired just like on granite using the Pit & Chip Repair Kit. Easy.

Cleaning Quartz Shower Tiles


Most people don't know that quartz wall slabs and tiles are also available for showers and tub-surrounds, etc.

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 soap film buildup off the quartz tiles so they don't ever look dull.

Conclusion


Quartz countertops are very durable and low-maintenance with performance qualities similar to granite.

Makes sense since quartz is manufactured from natural stone.

So, when it comes to cleaning and polishing quartz it also makes sense to use products made for quartz & natural stone.

Granite and marble care products are the most effective and safest on quartz countertops providing the best performance.

The main reason is that many common cleaners and household chemicals can permanently stain quartz by discoloring or bleaching the resins.

Using granite and marble products to clean and polish quartz countertops will eliminate the risk of cleaner damage.

Quartz kitchen countertops can also be refinished or repolished like granite or marble but the process is trickier requiring specific quartz polishing compounds used with diamond polishing pads in sequence.

Pits and chips in quartz can also be repaired just like granite pits by filling with a clear acrylic.

All considered, if you follow the general protocols for cleaning granite when polishing and cleaning quartz countertops, you'll maintain your quartz in pristine condition without any problems.

Comments for Quartz Cleaning and Polishing Products

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I messed up!
by: Anonymous

I have made a terrible error and used a cleaner on our quartz countertops that dulled the finish and lightened them.

I'm absolutely sick and desperate to see if something will work to fix them. Any suggestions you have will be greatly appreciated.

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

It may be permanent if the cleaner discolored the resin used when making quartz countertops,

But try Bar Keeper’s Friend. It has proven to be the most successful removing various stains in quartz. But again... not if the resin is bleached out.

Used a Grinder on Quartz Countertop
by: Anonymous

Hi! I recently installed a light pink quartz countertop for my kitchen. The hired labour in order to smoothen the edges, used a angle grinder on the edges.

Now it looks a bit rough on the surface. Any way to fix this? The colour looks normal otherwise but the grinder kind of faded the edges which are even more highlighted in sunlight.

What would you suggest to fix this?

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

Not sure why the quartz countertop edges would need smoothing. They should have come ready to install with all surfaces polished smooth.

Using the grinder was a bad idea. If you can locate a pro in your area with a lot of quartz experience you may be able to polish the edges a bit smoother, but generally trying to re-polish quartz doesn't work.

It can be done in some cases, but you need the correct tools specific for repolishing quartz countertops.

Thank You
by: Suzanne

This information is very helpful. I've had my black quartz countertops for a year now, and have noticed a slight dulling.

I do have a comment about using Magic Eraser. It does leave a lighter coloration on the quartz.

I have two spots where I used it thinking it would help remove hard water stains. The damage seems permanent, however after reading this, I'll try bar keepers friend to see if it will help.

Has anyone tried removing discoloration from Magic Eraser?

I did a terrible mistake
by: Anonymous

My kitchen countertop is black quartz. It looks dull so I sanded it. Looks worse. What will I do to repair it and become shiny again?

What brand and product I will use to make my quartz look brand-new?

Badly needed your suggestion regarding on this. I'm hoping that you read my comment and give me some idea about it. Thank you so much.

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

Unfortunately, that type of damage to quartz is likely permanent.

On granite you could have it polished out. You may be able to do this on quartz too, but you need someone who has repolished quartz countertops many times before.

There is no product you can use to restore this type of physical damage to the surface.

Hard water stains
by: Anonymous

I've had my white Viatera Rococo countertops for a little over a year now and both sinks have hard water stains/yellow rings around the faucets and yellowish stains along the edge cut to fit the sink.

I've tried several of the suggested products without luck. I'm scared to scrub with anything abrasive because I don't want to scratch it. Any suggestions would be great!!! Thank you! I was so excited for my countertops and now I'm just embarrassed!

===== Countertop Specialty comment:

The "Hard Water / Soap Film Remover" mentioned in the article should clean up those deposits no problem. If not, then some other issue is happening.

Barkeeper's Friend liquid on cabinets
by: Anonymous

Just wanted to say here that I used liquid Barkeeper's Friend on my sink then accidentally dropped the bottle & it splashed onto my cabinet door which is painted with the professional stain resistant heavy duty paint - not latex - & it did actually bleach it in spots permanently - so if you are using Barkeeper's Friend seems like it had bleaching properties.

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.

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.

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.

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.


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.


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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