Are Quartz or Granite Countertops Better?

When choosing between quartz and granite countertops, there are several factors to consider to determine which material is the better option for your home. Here is an in-depth comparison of quartz vs granite countertops to help you make the right decision.

Durability and Longevity

Granite Countertops

Granite is one of the most durable natural stone materials available for countertops. It is extremely hard and scratch resistant. Granite countertops can last for decades with proper care and maintenance. Some key points regarding granite’s durability:

  • Extremely hard and scratch resistant surface. Resists cuts and abrasions from knives and other kitchen tools.
  • Can withstand heat up to 212°F. Hot pans and bakeware will not damage granite.
  • Stain resistant to liquids like wine, vinegar, tea, lemon juice etc. But oils can stain if left for prolonged time.
  • Chips and cracks are rare but can occur if subjected to sharp hard objects.
  • Can develop small cracks and fissures over time but they rarely affect structural integrity.

Quartz Countertops

Quartz countertops are made from crushed quartz blended with resin and pigments. The resin binds the material together making it exceptionally hard and durable. Key durability factors:

  • Quartz has incredible hardness and scratch resistance, even more than natural granite.
  • Completely non-porous. Resists stains from all foods and liquids.
  • Heat tolerant to temperatures of up to 300°F. No risk of burns from hot pans.
  • Impact resistant. Won’t chip or crack under normal use and maintenance.
  • Seamless installation makes the countertop surface hygienic with no crevices to trap dirt or germs.

Winner: Quartz edges out granite in durability due to its stain-proof properties and extreme resistance to scratches, chips and cracks. It doesn’t need to be sealed periodically like granite.

Appearance and Styles

Granite Countertops

With its natural beauty and unique patterns, granite brings elegance to kitchens and bathrooms. Some appearance factors:

  • Available in a vast array of colors from bold to neutral. Patterns are completely unique.
  • Natural stone with an organic, timeless look. Each granite slab is one-of-a-kind.
  • Matte to glossy finishes can be achieved through polishing and sealing. Glossy finish needs more maintenance.
  • Can be cut and installed for seamless appearance. Visible seams are inevitable on larger countertops.

Quartz Countertops

Quartz offers a wide selection of colors and patterns to complement any style of decor. Some appearance considerations:

  • Modern styles and colors including solid hues not found in natural stone.
  • Consistent non-porous pattern without natural stone’s variation.
  • Mimics look of granite and marble with quartz aggregates and swirls in the pattern.
  • Glossy or matte uniform finish not susceptible to etching or scratching.
  • Seamless installation achieves sleek, contemporary look.

Winner: Personal preference. Both offer broad style choices. Granite brings natural beauty. Quartz delivers modern uniformity.

Maintenance and Cleaning

Granite Countertops

Though durable, granite requires periodic sealing and careful cleaning.

  • Needs to be sealed once a year to prevent stains from penetrating porous surface.
  • Spills should be cleaned quickly before they absorb into the granite.
  • Avoid abrasive cleaners that can damage the finish. Use mild soap and water.
  • Avoid placing very hot items directly on the surface. Use trivets.
  • Re-polishing may be needed to remove etch marks from acidic liquids.

Quartz Countertops

The non-porous composition of quartz makes maintenance simple.

  • Requires no sealing, polishing or special cleaners.
  • Easy cleanup with soap and water. Resists all stains so no need to wipe away spills quickly.
  • High heat tolerance eliminates need for trivets.
  • Virtually no maintenance except basic cleaning. Doesn’t need re-polishing.

Winner: Quartz is practically maintenance-free. No sealing required and it cleans up easily.

Cost Comparison

In general, expect to pay:

  • Granite: $80 – $150 per square foot installed
  • Quartz: $100 – $250 per square foot installed

The Takeaway: Quartz costs more upfront but saves long-term with easier maintenance. Granite is very affordable, but re-sealing and repairs add to costs over its lifespan. Get free estimates to compare precise costs for materials and installation in your area.

Are Quartz or Granite Countertops Better?

For most homeowners, quartz provides the best value and benefits in terms of exceptional durability, maintenance-free cleaning, and modern styles. But granite remains a popular option for those preferring natural stone beauty at an affordable upfront cost.

Carefully weigh the pros and cons of each material based on your priorities. Quartz’s stain-proof, heat-proof, and scratch-proof nature makes it the lowest maintenance option that can better withstand years of heavy use. Get samples of each material to evaluate appearance. And be sure to get installation quotes tailored to your specific kitchen or bath layout. With either of these countertop materials properly installed and cared for, you can enjoy beauty and functionality for decades to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is quartz more expensive than granite?

Yes, quartz countertops are generally more expensive than granite. But quartz costs can vary widely by style and color. Simple solid colors start around $100 per square foot while exotic patterns and colors can range up to $250 per square foot installed.

How durable is quartz?

Quartz is extremely hard and durable. It’s resistant to scratches, stains, cracks and high temperatures. The resin binding makes it stronger than natural stone. Quartz can last for decades with minimal signs of wear.

Does quartz stain easily?

No, quartz does not stain easily. It is non-porous so spills cannot penetrate the surface. All common kitchen stains like wine, coffee, oil and tomatoes can be quickly wiped away without leaving a trace.

Is quartz high maintenance?

Quartz requires virtually no maintenance. It never needs to be sealed or re-polished. Soap and water is all that is needed to clean quartz countertops. This makes it lower maintenance than granite or marble.

Can you cut on quartz countertops?

Yes, quartz is safe for cutting on. It is extremely hard and scratch resistant. Use a cutting board to protect knives from being dulled. Avoid chopping hard bones directly on the quartz.

Is quartz healthier than granite?

Quartz offers some health advantages over granite. Its non-porous surface resists bacteria growth and avoids issues with sealing chemicals leaching into food. But granite remains safe for food prep when properly sealed and maintained.


When choosing between quartz and granite, think about your priorities in terms of appearance, maintenance, and cost. For most buyers today, quartz proves the better overall option with its superior durability, easy care, long lifespan and wide array of styles. But granite remains unmatched for natural unique beauty at an affordable price point. Carefully weigh the pros and cons and make sure to view physical samples before finalizing your quartz vs granite decision. With some smart planning upfront, you’re sure to end up with a beautiful, functional countertop you’ll enjoy for decades.