Can Quartz Countertop be Placed Over an Old Granite Countertop?


Installing a new quartz countertop over an existing granite countertop is a project many homeowners consider to refresh their kitchen or bathroom without undergoing a full renovation. Quartz is an engineered stone that has gained popularity in recent years as an attractive, durable, and low-maintenance alternative to natural stone countertops like granite.

While it is possible to install a new quartz countertop over old granite, there are some important factors to consider before taking on this project. Careful planning and preparation are needed to ensure proper installation and avoid potential issues down the road.

Below is an in-depth look at the viability, benefits, risks, and steps involved in placing quartz over existing granite countertops. With proper precautions, quartz can be successfully installed over granite to give your space a beautiful facelift.

Is It Possible to Install Quartz Over Granite?

The short answer is yes, it is possible to install a quartz countertop over existing granite. However, there are some caveats to keep in mind.

The key requirements for installing quartz over granite are:

  • The existing granite is in good condition with no cracks or damages.
  • The existing countertop is properly secured and stable.
  • The granite surface is smooth and level with no significant height differences.
  • The existing countertop overhang for the granite is sufficient to support the new quartz.

As long as these conditions are met, quartz can generally be installed over granite by a professional fabricator. The new quartz countertop can be securely adhered over the old granite surface.

However, this project involves more labor and preparation than a standard quartz installation. The cost is also higher to accommodate the extra steps involved. Careful planning is required to ensure success.

The Benefits of Installing Quartz Over Granite

There are a few potential advantages to placing quartz over existing granite countertops:

Refresh the Look – Installing new quartz countertops is a less expensive and simpler way to update the look of your kitchen or bath than a full replacement. Going from granite to quartz allows you to enjoy a fresh, contemporary look.

Quartz is Lower Maintenance – Quartz requires very little regular maintenance compared to natural stone. It does not need yearly sealing and is less prone to etching and staining. This can be a bonus for busy homeowners.

Enjoy New Colors and Patterns – Putting new quartz over granite allows you to enjoy new colors, patterns, and designs not available in your existing granite. Quartz offers limitless options for creating a unique look.

Keep Existing Cabinets and Sink – With an overlay installation, you can avoid the hassle of removing and replacing cabinets and sinks. The new quartz countertop can be fabricated to match your existing cutouts.

Retain Functioning Granite – If your current granite countertops are in good condition functionally, keeping them as a base saves the environment and your money. The new quartz overlay renews the look without waste.

Quartz is Easier to Clean – Quartz’s non-porous properties mean spills and messes can be quickly wiped away without sealing or special cleaners required. Granite is more vulnerable to staining.

Increased Home Value – Updating to sleek new quartz countertops can potentially boost your home’s resale value. Quartz is a highly desirable feature for many home buyers.

The Potential Risks of Placing Quartz Over Granite

While overlaying quartz on granite can save time and money compared to replacing the countertops, there are some downsides to consider:

Granite Cracks Not Visible – Any existing hairline cracks or fractures in the granite may eventually telegraph through the new quartz as cracks. These flaws are hard to predict.

Moisture Can Be Trapped – If the overlay is not done properly, moisture can become trapped between the layers and compromise adhesion. Lifting or delamination could occur over time.

Overhang May Be Insufficient – Existing granite countertops, especially older ones, may not have enough overhang support for thick quartz material. The quartz could crack or break without adequate support.

Height Difference at Seams – Even slight height differences where granite counters meet could result in uneven seams after the overlay. Perfect seams are hard to guarantee.

Quartz Can Crack During Installation – There is a risk of damaging the new quartz during installation, as it will need to be bent and manipulated to account for any substrate imperfections.

Installation Challenges – Significantly more labor and specialized fabrication skills are required compared to a new build quartz install. There is a learning curve.

Cost – Due to the specialized skills involved, installing a quartz overlay will typically cost 50-75% more than new quartz countertops on their own frame.

Limited Color/Finish Options – Overlays require quartz products with more flexible resins to bend over existing counters. Some colors and finishes can’t be used.

How to Install Quartz Countertops Over Granite Successfully

Installing quartz over existing granite can be accomplished with proper planning and care. Here are the key steps involved:

1. Inspect and Prepare the Existing Granite

The condition of the existing granite will determine if it’s suitable for overlay. Ensure it is level, securely fastened, structurally sound, and free of cracks. Any necessary repairs should be made.

The granite surface must be thoroughly cleaned and sanded to ensure proper adhesion. All waxes, sealants, and residues need removal with an appropriate cleaner and granite abrasive pads. Avoid polishing the granite prior to overlay.

2. Check That Overhangs Are Sufficient

Test that overhangs can support the weight of thicker 2-3 cm quartz material. For overhangs exceeding 6”, steel reinforcement brackets may be needed underneath for support.

3. Select a Flexible Quartz Material

Consult your fabricator on best quartz products for overlays. Softer, more flexible quartz blends are best to bend over existing counters without cracking. Natural quartz content should be under 90%.

4. Make Templates and Measurements

The fabricator will create a template of the existing countertops and sinks/stovetops to match seam locations and cutouts in the new quartz. Precision is vital, so all measurements must be exact.

5. Fabricate and Install the New Quartz Countertops

Fabricating the quartz involves flexible techniques like undermount cuts and fold-forming edges to properly contour the quartz over the original counters.
The quartz is installed using specialty adhesive and carefully secured to the granite backing. Weight should not be applied for 24 hours after install.

6. Finish With New Sink/Faucet as Needed

If desired, this is the time to replace your existing sink and faucet to match your fresh quartz countertops. Precision sink/faucet cutouts will be made by your fabricator.

7. Seal Seams and Finalize Installation

Once installed, the seams between quartz slabs are sealed to create an invisible look. The countertops are cleaned, polished, and ready to enjoy your kitchen’s new look!

FAQs about Placing Quartz Over Granite

Can you put quartz straight over granite?

Yes, with proper preparation, flexible quartz material, and professional installation, quartz countertops can be successfully installed directly over existing granite.

Do you have to take granite countertops off to reface with quartz?

No, you do not have to completely remove and replace the granite to put new quartz countertops on top. The quartz can be overlaid if the granite is intact, level, and structurally sound.

Is it cheaper to put quartz over granite?

Overlaying quartz is typically 50-75% less expensive than fully replacing granite countertops. Exact cost savings depend on the size of the project. Overlay involves less demolition but more fabrication labor.

Should I get granite or quartz countertops?

Quartz and granite both have their pros and cons. Quartz is lower maintenance and offers greater design flexibility but cannot quite match natural granite patterns. Get quartz if you want a worry-free, contemporary look. Go for granite if you prefer natural beauty.

How much does it cost to overlay quartz on granite?

On average, expect to pay $75-100 per square foot for quartz countertop overlay installation. Total costs depend on the size of the project, quartz material selected, and your location. Get quotes from experienced local fabricators.

What are the downsides of putting quartz on top of granite?

Potential issues include existing granite cracks showing through, trapped moisture due to poor adhesion, overhangs breaking from excess weight, uneven seams, quartz cracking during install, and higher cost than new installs.

Can you put quartz over granite yourself?

It is not advisable for DIYers to attempt overlaying quartz on granite. This is a job for professional countertop fabricators with the specialized tools, adhesives, and techniques to account for the intricacies of overlay on an existing substrate.


Installing new quartz countertops over existing granite can allow you to refresh the look of your kitchen or bath without undergoing a much more expensive and time-consuming full replacement. With careful evaluation of your existing granite and hiring experienced professionals for the overlay installation, quartz can successfully be added on top of granite countertops.

While overlaying does come with some potential risks like existing cracks telegraphing through or improper bonding, proper preparation by a qualified fabricator minimizes these risks. Quartz on granite provides a beautiful, functional, and cost-effective upgrade. With some planning and expert help, you can safely realize the benefits of enhanced aesthetics, easier maintenance, and increased home value.