Are Quartz Countertops Heat Safe?

Quartz countertops have become an incredibly popular option for kitchen and bathroom remodeling projects in recent years. Made from engineered stone composed of quartz particles and resin, quartz counters are praised for their durability, low maintenance, and sleek appearance. However, one common question that arises is: are quartz countertops heat resistant? Can quartz withstand hot pans from the stove or heat from other kitchen appliances?

What is Quartz?

Before diving into the heat resistance of quartz, it’s helpful to understand exactly what quartz countertops are made of.

Quartz countertops, sometimes referred to as engineered stone, are composed of approximately 90% ground quartz particles combined with approximately 10% resin and pigments. The quartz particles come from natural quartz crystals mined from the earth. These quartz pieces are ground into a fine powder before being combined with resin and pigments.

The resin binds the quartz particles together and gives the material its hardness and structure. Pigments are added to achieve the desired colors and patterns. The mixture is poured into molds and allowed to harden under intense vibrations and pressure to form slabs. It is then polished into the finished countertop slabs.

Unlike natural stone countertops such as granite and marble, which are cut directly from solid stone, quartz slabs are engineered in factories. This allows much more control over the final product’s consistency, durability, and aesthetics.

Heat Tolerance of Quartz

So how does this engineered composition affect quartz’s ability to withstand heat? Here is a closer look at the heat tolerance of quartz:

  • Resistant to brief contact: Quartz countertops can withstand brief contact with hot pans, pots, and dishes straight from the oven or stove. However, it is not indestructible.
  • Prolonged heat exposure can damage: While quartz is more heat resistant than many other countertop materials, prolonged direct heat exposure can eventually cause damage. Allowing a hot pan to sit for an extended time or placing extremely hot appliances directly on the surface without protection could lead to discoloration, cracks, or burns.
  • ** Higher heat tolerance than other natural stones:** Quartz has a higher heat tolerance than natural stone countertops like marble or granite. Those materials are more prone to scorching, discoloration, and cracking when exposed to hot items from the kitchen.
  • Less heat tolerant than solid surface: Materials like Corian solid surface counters can typically handle slightly higher heat levels than quartz before signs of damage occur.
  • Won’t melt or combust: Unlike some synthetic countertop materials, quartz is non-combustible and has a very high melting point. Hot pans or other typical heat sources in the kitchen will not cause quartz to melt, combust, or release toxic fumes.
  • Internal heating: While quartz can handle brief contact with hot items, exposure to prolonged internal heating from appliances such as crockpots may cause damage over time. Use a trivet or hot pad between the heat source and the counter.

Overall, quartz offers medium-high heat resistance among countertop materials. While it can’t withstand the highest levels of heat indefintely like some industrial materials, it offers significantly better heat tolerance than natural stone. With some basic precautions, quartz provides an extremely durable surface that can meet the demands of any home kitchen.

Recommended Safe Heat Exposure Guidelines

To prevent damage and ensure the longevity of your quartz countertops, follow these recommended guidelines:

Hot Pans and Dishes

  • Briefly placing hot pans, pots, baking sheets, etc. directly from the oven or stove is okay. But do not leave them for more than a few minutes.
  • Use trivets or hot pads when setting down extremely hot cookware.
  • Allow pans to cool for at least 5-10 minutes before direct contact with the quartz.
  • Avoid any cookware that may have a very concentrated hot spot on the bottom.

Appliances and Electronics

  • Always use hot pads or trivets under any small electronics like coffee makers, instant pots, or mixers when in use or immediately after use.
  • For larger appliances like crockpots and rice cookers, only use on a quartz countertop for the minimum time needed—do not allow prolonged heat exposure.
  • Never place flat griddles, like panini presses, directly on quartz—use a trivet underneath.

Candles and Hot Objects

  • Never place lit candles directly on quartz. Use a candleholder.
  • Do not set any extremely hot object, like a flat iron, directly on the quartz.
  • Allow curling irons or hot hair tools to cool significantly before setting down.
  • Use a trivet under ceramic or clay decorative objects that may retain heat, like a planter or pottery.

Cooking and Baking

  • Use reasonable caution with typical stovetop cooking at normal temperatures—quartz can handle brief contact with pots and pans.
  • For handling pans straight from a very hot oven, allow a few minutes of cooling first when possible.
  • When removing items from the oven, consider placing hot baking sheets, pans, and dishes on racks or trivets prior to transferring to the counter.
  • Never place hot cookware or bakeware directly into the sink or on wet quartz, which can lead to thermal shock.

Signs of Heat Damage on Quartz

With responsible use, quartz counters should never show signs of damage from typical household cooking. But improper heat exposure can lead to permanent marks. Here is what to look out for:


  • Scorch marks, whitish marks, or darkened areas indicate overexposure to heat.
  • These occur most often under appliances/electronics or from direct contact with an extremely hot pan.
  • Discoloration is possible from prolonged heat; brief contact with typical cookware should not discolor the surface.

Cracks and Crazing

  • Cracks around the immediate point of contact signify concentrated high heat.
  • Crazing, a network of hairline cracks in a localized area, can also indicate excessive heat exposure.
  • These problems are uncommon and suggest improper direct heat without protection.

Bubbling, Pitting, and Melting

  • Bubbling, pitting, depressions, or melting/blistering are signs of extreme overheating.
  • This level of damage would require unsafe practices like directly exposing the surface to an open flame.
  • These issues are highly uncommon on quartz countertops with normal household use.

Improving Heat Resistance

Quartz counters are already engineered to be more heat resistant than natural stone surfaces. But you can take steps to enhance their thermal performance even further:

Select Darker Colors

  • Darker quartz colors, especially blacks and browns, do not show heat marks as readily as light colors.
  • Lighter quartz is still safe to use; just take extra care and allow longer cool-down times after heat exposure.

Add an Epoxy Coating

  • Special epoxy coatings applied by a professional can improve heat resistance.
  • This adds an extra protective layer while preserving the look of the quartz.

Use Pot Holders/Trivets

  • Get in the habit of using trivets, racks, and hot pads when setting hot items on any countertop.
  • Trivets with rubber feet are helpful since they allow air circulation underneath.
  • Maintain a supply of trivets in your kitchen and near the table for easy use.

Allow Proper Cool-Down Time

  • Always allow cookware, dishes, and electronics to cool significantly before direct contact with quartz counters.
  • A general rule of thumb is allowing 10-15 minutes of cooling after removing from a heat source.
  • Brief contact with items cooled for 5-10 minutes is generally safe.

How to Clean Heat Marks on Quartz

If heat damage does occur, follow these steps to remove or minimize heat marks on quartz:

For Minor Discoloration:

  • First clean with a non-abrasive cleaner and soft cloth or sponge. Avoid scrubbing.
  • Try a baking soda and water paste. Apply to the mark and allow to sit for 5-10 minutes before rinsing.
  • Mix hydrogen peroxide and baking soda into a spreadable paste. Allow it to sit for an hour before wiping away.

For Stubborn Marks:

  • Use a NO-Scrub cleanser designed for quartz and apply with a soft cloth or plastic scraper.
  • Try Bar Keeper’s Friend powder – make into paste with water and allow to sit for 5-10 minutes before gently wiping clean.
  • Mr. Clean Magic Eraser sponges can help scrub away stubborn heat discoloration. Use light pressure.

For Severe Damage:

  • Severe marks may require professional resurfacing or polish. Consult a countertop specialist.
  • For deep burns or pitting, replacement of that section of the countertop may be necessary.

Best Practices to Prevent Heat Damage

By following some simple practices, you can prevent heat damage and enjoy the durability and convenience of quartz countertops for decades:

  • Always use pot holders, trivets, or hot pads under hot items. Never place directly.
  • Add a trivet pad underneath small appliances like coffee makers when in use.
  • Allow cookware to cool for 10-15 minutes after cooking before setting down.
  • Never leave a hot pan idle for more than a few minutes.
  • Take extra care with darker nonstick pans which can concentrate heat at the bottom.
  • Keep candles in stable holders and away from edges.
  • Avoid prolonged placement of heat-retaining decorative objects like planters.
  • Clean spills immediately to prevent hot liquids from penetrating cracks in the surface.
  • If any damage occurs, address it quickly to prevent it from worsening over time.

Are Quartz Countertops Heat Safe? The Bottom Line

Quartz delivers exceptional performance for kitchen countertops, offering style, durability, and convenience. While not impervious to heat damage, quartz can withstand typical household use, including temporarily setting down hot pans and briefly placing appliances. With some basic precautions like using trivets and allowing cookware to cool before contact, quartz countertops will retain their sleek, flawless look for many years. For most homeowners, the medium-high heat resistance of quartz offers the perfect balance of beauty and practicality.

FAQ about Heat Resistance of Quartz Countertops

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about the heat tolerance of quartz countertops:

Can you put hot pans on quartz countertops?

Yes, you can place hot pans briefly on quartz counters directly from the stove or oven. However, it’s best to use a trivet or allow the pan to cool for 5-10 minutes first to prevent the risk of discoloration or minor surface damage over time. Never leave a hot pan sitting idle for more than a few minutes.

Do quartz countertops burn or scorch?

Quartz can burn or scorch if exposed to extreme direct heat like an open flame or very hot pan for a prolonged time. But brief contact with typical cookware or accidentally spilling a hot liquid should not scorch or burn quartz counters under normal circumstances.

What happens if you put a hot pan on quartz?

If you put a hot pan directly on quartz, it may potentially lead to localized discoloration or minor surface marks over time. The quartz itself will not melt or combust. Avoid leaving a hot pan for extended periods, and use a trivet for very hot cookware fresh from the oven or stove.

Can quartz counters withstand heat from an instant pot or crock pot?

Using an instant pot, crock pot, or other heating appliance directly on quartz is possible for brief periods, but prolonged heat exposure or high temperatures could eventually damage the surface. Always place a hot pad or trivet underneath when using these appliances on a quartz countertop.

Are quartz counters better for high heat than granite or marble?

Yes, quartz has a higher heat tolerance than natural stone counters like granite and especially marble. Granite and marble are more prone to cracking, crazing, discoloration, and burns when exposed to heat sources. Quartz offers better thermal resilience.

Is quartz or granite better for baking?

Quartz is generally a better choice than granite if you frequently bake or cook and need to place hot pans on the countertop. Granite can chip, crack, or scorch more readily from high heat exposure like baking sheets fresh out of the oven. Quartz offers superior thermal performance.

Does quartz melt if a pan is too hot?

No, quartz countertops will not melt or combust from contact with hot cookware. The resin and quartz particles can eventually scorch or discolor with extreme heat exposure, but typical stovetop cooking will not cause quartz to melt or burn. However, taking basic precautions is still advised.

Should I get a quartz color darker or lighter for heat resistance?

Darker quartz colors like black, brown, and dark grey tend to show heat marks and discoloration less noticeably than lighter colors. However, all quartz colors offer similar levels of heat tolerance. Lighter quartz just requires a bit more care and caution with hot items.

Can you crack quartz counters from heat?

It is possible but very rare for quartz counters to crack from thermal shock if exposed to extreme temperature swings. Cracks are more likely from impact damage. Do not place hot cookware directly into a sink filled with cold water, as this rapid contraction could potentially crack quartz.


Quartz delivers an exceptional balance of beauty, convenience, and durability for kitchen countertops. While not impervious, it offers medium-high heat resistance that accommodates typical cooking tasks. With some basic precautions like using trivets and allowing pans to cool after cooking, quartz countertops can remain in pristine condition for many years of regular use. For most homeowners, the thermal properties of quartz provide an ideal sweet spot between high performance and effortless maintenance. By following the guidance provided, you can confidently use quartz counters to their full potential while keeping them damage-free. With its stylish appearance and thermal resilience, quartz remains one of the most popular and practical options for kitchen and bath remodels.