Everything You Need To Know About Natural Quartzite Countertops

Natural Quartzite Countertops

Natural Quartzite Countertops

Many homeowners and professionals use the terms quartz and quartzite interchangeably when discussing countertops.  They are in fact two completely different materials. Unfortunately, as word of mouth about one or the other passes around, quartzite is often shortened to quartz and as a result, people are confused and think they are the same material.

The fact is, quartz is a man-made engineered product created by combining natural quartz crystals with resin which is then cast into countertops.  Quartzite is a beautiful naturally occurring stone that is quickly gaining popularity with homeowners. Natural quartzite offers unsurpassed durability and a refined elegance in both the kitchen and bath.

Let's try to clear up the confusion by answering some frequently asked questions we hear from homeowners who are shopping for new countertops and are considering quartzite.

What exactly is quartzite?

Quartzite is a hard metamorphic rock that is formed in two steps. Quartzite begins as sandstone. Over years and years of intense pressure and heat sandstone gradually fuses together into a single rock called quartzite. While sandstone is relatively fragile, quartzite is extremely hard and the perfect countertop option for busy homes.

What colors are available?

Quartzite is generally found in white or gray with hints of brown and black. Naturally colored quartzite can also be found with hints of pink, red, yellow, blue or green. These colors result from imperfections and minerals that were present as the stone was formed. For example, iron oxide can give quartzite pink or red hues.

Natural quartzite combines the look of marble with the durability of granite. Like both of these stones, each slab of quartzite is unique giving your kitchen or bathroom a customized elegant look. The neutral colors complement any décor and the veining creates a subtle and elegant movement. It is a luxurious surface unlike any other stone countertop.

Does quartzite etch or scratch and is it heat resistant?

Quartzite is a fairly hard stone and resists scratching and etching. If it is sealed properly and spills are cleaned up quickly etching shouldn't be an issue. Most stone countertops can handle some heat, natural quartzite is harder than granite and withstands heat. While you can place hot items on it with no danger, it's always a good idea to use a pad or trivet for safety.

Is quartzite difficult to maintain?

Even though quartzite is a hard stone, it does require some ongoing maintenance. All natural stone countertops should be periodically sealed to prevent staining and etching because of their porous composition. Quartzite should be resealed annually. Always use cleaners that are specifically made for stone countertops or pH neutral soap, then dry it thoroughly. Even though it is difficult to scratch quartzite, avoid using abrasive cleaners to keep your countertops looking like new.

Is quartzite more durable than granite?

Granite is an igneous rock and quartzite is metamorphic which means that each has unique features. Granite has been a favorite countertop material for many years and quartzite is just starting to gain in popularity. Both offer excellent durability. While granite is durable, quartzite looks like marble and acts like granite, so you get the best of both worlds!

How much does quartzite cost?

The big question for many homeowners! Natural quartzite is on the higher end of options when it comes to countertops. Comparable in price to other stone countertop materials, it can be costly but the quality and look is unequalled. The configuration and size of your countertop can influence the cost. Natural quartzite is extremely hard and must be cut with a diamond saw blade by an experienced professional and this can increase the cost. Rare natural white quartzite contains few impurities, is harder than regular quartzite and as a result is more expensive.

Quartzite is an up and coming countertop surface that rivals granite's durability and offers the luxurious, elegant look of marble. If you are looking to make a unique statement in your kitchen or bathroom, Speak with your designer or design-build contractor to learn more and see samples of this amazing luxurious stone!

About Toulmin Kitchen & Bath Design - We're West Alabama's award-winning, premier kitchen and bath showroom. We're experts who are known for a design-build process that makes the construction process stress-free. Contact us to schedule an appointment for a design consultation.