Are quartz worktops worth the money? Top 5 benefits of quartz worktops:
Choosing the right worktop is always a big challenge. Kitchen is a place where cabinet tops are constantly exposed to water, hot dishes and sharp objects. When searching for suitable materials, it’s worth using modern raw materials, created via latest technologies. One of the most recommended proposals are kitchen worktops from quartz. A carefully selected mixture of minerals and binders turns them into durable and resistant to damage materials, which never disappoint.
What is quartz conglomerate? What’s the 1 key benefit?
Conglomerate is a synthetic stone aggregate bonded with polyester resins. This engineered stone consists of more than 90% of a mixture of natural materials (mostly granite, marble and quartz), bonding agents and colour pigments, which give the surface a uniform appearance and ensure colour stability. Quartz worktops resemble traditional kitchen worktops in many respects. However, they are lighter, which means that they can be installed even on unreinforced cupboards. Quartz is ideal for finishing large areas. The joints of individual panels are practically invisible and can easily be given a rounded or slightly corrugated shape.
Is it worth buying quartz worktops?
Quartz countertops – pros and cons
Do you know the pros and cons of quartz countertops? Quartz countertops are characterized by quite high strength, scratch, and stain resistance. They are resistant to moisture, acids (e.g. lemon juice) and strong cleaning agents. Unlike natural stone products, they are not cold – they adapt to ambient temperature and do not absorb odours. Quartz worktops are lighter (by almost 20%) than natural stones, so they do not require reinforced cabinets. Moreover, on their basis of conglomerate, we can create quartz countertops of a high thickness (while a granite and marble worktop cannot be thicker than 3 cm). The advantage of this type of kitchen worktops is also the possibility of joining elements without joints. This means that the quartz worktops connected together form a uniform surface with no visible gaps. Thanks to this, a natural stone worktop looks modern and aesthetically pleasing. It is also possible to seamlessly join the worktop with a sink or window sill.
Quartz countertops can be coloured to achieve a uniform colour. This is not possible with a natural stone worktop, because the pattern and colour of the worktop depends on where the natural stone was mined and the two pieces of stone will never be identical. Quartz countertop is also easy to process, so we can easily adjust the shape and finish of the worktop to individual needs.
Quartz worktops, however, cannot be used for cutting, because they are very easy to scratch. Most of the mixtures of natural stone materials used in their manufacture do not tolerate temperatures exceeding 1600°C, therefore it is not recommended to put hot dishes on them.
Cons of quartz countertops
However, like any worktop, quartz countertops are not without their cons. What draws attention are two important issues:
Relatively high price per square foot. Compared to other materials used for kitchen countertops, conglomerate turns out to be quite an expensive solution. However, taking into consideration the fact that non-porous quartz countertops are an investment for years, it is worth considering this material nonetheless.
Necessity of installation by a professional. Quartz countertops cannot be installed by yourself as it is difficult and requires appropriate machining. When deciding on this type of countertop you should look for a professional renovation team.
Quartz worktops in the kitchen – low maintenance
You should keep quartz countertops clean every day. In this case, hygiene is extremely important, because it is there that the food is prepared and often comes into direct contact with the products. Quartz countertops, however, do not require complicated care. A smooth and non-porous surface is very easy to keep clean just because it is not sensitive to most detergents.
On a daily basis, it is enough to wipe them with warm water. You can also reach for the milk, cleaning powder, or detergents used in bathrooms. After a few years, special detergents for cleaning quartz countertops may also be useful. They will allow you to get rid of anaesthetic tarnishing and stains. Quartz worktops can also be easily repaired by filling in small cavities or sanding down the surface of the cooktop.
What to pay attention to when buying a quartz countertop?
Quality. Growing popularity of this natural stone material causes the creation of more and more companies with similar products in their offer. An increase in price competitiveness often results from a decrease in the quality of the final product. It may also be related to the sale of second-grade goods, unfortunately without the buyer’s knowledge. A proven and reliable manufacturer very rarely offers such a product, because the experience and expertise gained guarantee that the broken material constitutes only a small percentage of the conglomerate it has at its disposal.
Colour and structure. Many manufacturers offer a wide range of colours. It is worthwhile to follow these offers in detail, as the differences in prices per square foot can be significant, while the shade will be close to our ideal.
Attestations and certificates. They testify to hygiene and safety of use. Quartz worktops are environmentally friendly. A lot of suppliers provide very long warranties for a selection of their products.
Warning. Quartz countertops are predominantly intended for use in closed spaces. If used outdoors and exposed to constant sunlight, there is chance of fade in the original colour. This is an important tip when purchasing, as faded colour can be an indication of improper storage of the material.
Usage. Dark quartz countertops are slightly more demanding. It is imperative to use hot pot holders to prevent the so-called thermal shock. A sudden temperature difference can lead to matting of the material in a given place. Don’t forget about cutting boards. Although the top itself is durable, even small scratches will be visible on dark colours and any scratches are not very aesthetic.
Quartz countertops are ideal for everyday kitchen work. Thanks to a wide range of quartz countertops’ colours and easy processing, we can easily adapt their appearance to any arrangement.