Can Quartz Countertops Be Refinished?

Quartz countertops are an increasingly popular option for kitchen and bathroom remodeling projects. Made from crushed quartz bound together with resins and pigments, quartz counters are valued for their durability, low maintenance, and customizability. However, like any frequently-used surface, quartz countertops are susceptible to wear and minor damage over time. This leads many homeowners to ask: can quartz countertops be refinished?

What is a Quartz Countertop Refinish?

A quartz countertop refinish is a process that renews and restores the surface appearance of worn quartz counters. It typically involves lightly sanding the top layer of the quartz, then applying new layers of coloring and sealant. The end result is a countertop that looks freshly installed again, with a uniform appearance and renewed shine.

Quartz refinishing provides a cost-effective alternative to replacing damaged counters. It also allows homeowners to change the color or finish of their existing quartz. Instead of a full countertop replacement, which requires removal and disposal of the original tops, refinishing provides a facelift on site.

Benefits of Refinishing Quartz Counters

There are several advantages that make refinishing an attractive option for quartz countertop renewal:

  • Cost savings – Refinishing costs a fraction of full replacement. On average, refinishing quartz costs $2-5 per square foot, compared to $60-100 per square foot for new installation.
  • Quick turnaround – The refinishing process usually takes just 1-2 days. New quartz fabrication and installation typically takes 1-2 weeks.
  • Minimal disruption – Refinishing is done on-site, allowing you to keep using your kitchen or bath during the process. New installs require demolition and removal of old countertops.
  • Customizable results – Refinishing allows you to alter the color and finish. You can go darker, lighter, add more sheen, or change hues.
  • Sustainable option – Because it reuses existing countertops, refinishing is eco-friendly compared to fabricating new tops. No old quartz goes to landfills.
  • Extends counter life – Refinishing restores worn quartz to like-new condition. It can add years of use before replacement is needed.

For many homeowners, the ability to refresh their existing quartz counters for a fraction of replacement cost makes refinishing a smart and sustainable option.

Evaluating if Your Counters Can Be Refinished

While refinishing offers clear benefits, it is not the right solution for every worn quartz countertop situation. Certain damage or wear issues may make refinishing impossible or impractical. Factors to consider include:

Type of Quartz Material

Not all quartz is created equal when it comes to refinishing viability. Countertops made from quartzite (a natural stone) or lower-quality quartz blends may not have enough workability to sand and refinish effectively. High-end engineered quartz contains abundant quartz particles that lend well to refinishing.

Condition of Existing Counters

Quartz that is extensively damaged, warped, or cracked is not a good candidate for refinishing. Likewise, countertops with failing seams or adhesives will continue to deteriorate despite refinishing. Refinishing works best on surfaces with moderate wear but overall structural integrity.

Previous Refinishing Attempts

If your counters have been refinished before, the quartz may now be too thin to safely sand again. Most quartz can only be refinished 1-2 times before reaching unsafe material thickness.

Location of Damage

Localize damage in high-wear areas, like near the stove or sink, can potentially be spot-refinished. But if wear and dullness is spread across the full surface, overall refinishing is required to get uniform, seamless results.

Desired Changes

Homeowners looking for a major color or finish change will get best results from full refinishing. Spot treatments to small areas often appear blotchy due to differences in sealing and polishing effects.

Consulting with an experienced quartz refinishing company is the best way evaluate if your existing counters are good candidates for renewal. Refinishers will examine the current state of your tops and advise you on viability for refinishing.

Process of Refinishing Quartz Countertops

Refinishing quartz involves resurfacing the top layer of the slab to remove scratches, food stains, dull spots, and other damage. The specific work performed includes:

  • Cleaning and degreasing the quartz surface
  • Lightly sanding to remove a thin amount of material, typically 1/16″ thickness across the surface
  • Rinsing and wiping clean after sanding
  • Applying new coloring, matched to your desired tone
  • Sealing with a clear polyurethane coat
  • Polishing to a uniform sheen across the surface

This refinishing process allows the beauty of the quartz particles to shine through again. It also provides stains and scratch resistance with newly applied sealants.

Quartz refinishing uses similar techniques as refinishing solid surface countertops or natural stone counters. However, the coating materials quartz requires are specially formulated to bond properly with engineered quartz slabs. DIY kits and methods used for other countertop types may not work on quartz.

Cost to Refinish Quartz Countertops

The cost to refinish quartz countertops ranges from $2-5 per square foot on average. This provides a significant cost savings over new quartz purchase and installation.

According to HomeAdvisor, quartz countertop refinishing costs break down as follows:

  • Low end – $2 per square foot
  • Average cost – $3.50 per square foot
  • High end – $5 per square foot

For example, the average cost to refinish a medium-sized (30 sq. ft.) quartz kitchen countertop would be approximately $105.

Factors that influence the overall investment include:

  • Countertop size – Larger tops will have higher overall project fees but lower per sq.ft. rates.
  • Color change – Jobs keeping the existing color are most affordable. Custom color changes increase cost.
  • Local labor rates – Refinishing costs more in areas with higher labor prices.
  • Extent of damage – Heavily worn quartz requiring extensive sanding or countertops with non-uniform finishes take more work and expense.
  • Spot refinishing vs whole top – Full refinishing provides better consistency versus spot repairs but has higher cost.
  • Add-ons – Additional options like gloss enhancement, grout cleaning, caulking, etc. add to the total.

Many quartz refinishing contractors offer free estimates, allowing you to obtain accurate upfront pricing options for your specific project. Be sure to get an itemized estimate accounting for square footage, color changes, and any special requested services.

DIY Quartz Countertop Refinishing

Is it possible to refinish quartz countertops yourself as a DIY home project? The short answer is yes, but it requires diligent prep work, the right supplies, and patience to achieve non-blotchy, professional-looking results.

Here is an overview of what’s involved with DIY quartz refinishing:

Step 1: Clean and Prepare the Surface

Start by deep cleaning dirt, grease, soap scum, and any waxes from the quartz using degreasing cleaners. Fill any chips or cracks with epoxy filler. Mask and protect adjacent surfaces.

Step 2: Sand the Surface

Using 200-400 grit sandpaper on a random orbital sander, sand the surface to remove top layer wear and scuffs. Vacuum frequently while sanding. Be careful not to apply too much pressure, which can create dips.

Step 3: Wipe and Rinse

Wipe away all sanding dust with water and microfiber cloths. Let the quartz dry fully.

Step 4: Apply Color Treatment

Use a quartz color enhancer, available from suppliers like Daich Countertop Coatings or Countertop Epoxy. Apply an even, thin coat using a smooth applicator. Allow to fully dry.

Step 5: Seal and Protect

Roll or brush on 2-3 thin coats of a clear quartz epoxy sealer, formulated for engineered stone. Let dry fully between coats.

Step 6: Polish

Using a variable speed polisher, polish with woven pads starting at 800 grit and increasing to 3000 grit to achieve desired sheen. Remove polishing dust.

It can take a full weekend or longer to complete a DIY refinishing project. While skills like wood refinishing help, working with quartz has unique considerations. Preparation is vital for good results. Hiring a professional will provide faster turnaround and reduced risks of blotchiness or other flaws. But with time and care, DIY refinishing of quartz can revive counters without professional help.

How Long Does a Quartz Countertop Refinish Last?

When performed properly by an experienced contractor, a refinished quartz countertop should last 3-5 years or longer before needing another renewal. Results depend heavily on homeowners properly caring for and maintaining the renewed surface.

With heightened care, a refinished quartz countertop can look pristine for years. Best practice tips include:

  • Use cutting boards, hot pads, trivets, and placemats to prevent direct food and pot contact
  • Clean spills promptly to avoid staining
  • Avoid abrasive scrubbing pads which can mar the finish
  • Rinse any cleaning products off fully
  • Consider sealant reapplication by a pro every 3-5 years

The expected lifespan of a refinished quartz counter also depends on factors such as:

  • Original quality and thickness of the slab
  • The number of times it has previously been refinished
  • How much material needed to be sanded off during the refinishing process
  • How evenly and smoothly the new finish was applied

With heavy daily use, acrylic finishes can show wear within a year or two. More durable options like polyurethane sealing provide longer-lasting protection, extending the refresh time between refinishing to 5+ years.

Finding Quartz Countertop Refinishing Services

If you decide refinishing is the right option for renewing your worn quartz countertops, the next step is finding reputable services. Be sure to seek out specialists with experience working specifically with engineered quartz materials.

Options to find quality countertop refinishing services include:

  • Online searches – Search “[your city] quartz countertop refinishing” to find local providers. Read reviews and compare pricing.
  • Kitchen remodelers – Many firms that handle countertop installation also provide refinishing services. Ask for quartz-specific references.
  • Material suppliers – Quartz manufacturers like Silestone, Cambria, Caesarstone, etc. may list accredited refinishers on their websites.
  • Home shows – Look for countertop refinishers exhibiting at local home and remodeling shows. Discuss your project.
  • Referrals – Friends, neighbors, realtors etc. who have had counters refinished can suggest companies they worked with.

When selecting a provider:

  • Review sample refinishing projects to evaluate quality
  • Ask about their specific quartz refinishing experience
  • Request local references from past clients
  • Verify they carry liability insurance
  • Get a written estimate outlining services, costs, timeline etc.

Is Refinishing Right for Your Quartz Countertops?

Refinishing can breathe new life into worn quartz countertops. It offers an affordable, quick, and customizable way to restore the beauty of your existing counters without a full replacement. However, refinishing has limitations and will not effectively remedy all damage situations. Assess the condition of your countertops, goals for appearance changes, and budget to decide if refinishing is your best move. An experienced refinishing company can help you determine if your quartz tops are candidates for renewal. With a thoughtful evaluation of your options, you can make the optimal choice to enjoy beautiful countertops for years to come.

FAQ about Refinishing Quartz Countertops

What are the benefits of refinishing quartz countertops?

Refinishing quartz countertops provides cost savings compared to replacement, quick turnaround time, minimal disruption to your home, and customizable color/finish changes. It extends the life of your existing counters.

Does refinishing quartz counters require special materials?

Yes, engineered quartz has a unique composition that requires specialized coloring agents, sealants and techniques. DIY kits for other surfaces like solid surface acrylics may not bond properly or deliver quality results on quartz.

Can you change the color when refinishing quartz?

Yes, one of the benefits of refinishing is that it allows you to alter the color and finish. Within certain parameters, you can go darker or lighter. Adding more grey tones, for example, is quite common.

Is it possible to refinish just sections of a quartz countertop?

Spot refinishing of high wear areas is possible. However, this often appears blotchy next to unrefinished sections. Whole counter refinishing provides the most seamless, uniform appearance.

How long does it take to refinish quartz counters?

The refinishing process takes 1-2 days in most cases. New quartz fabrication and installation typically takes 1-2 weeks, by comparison.

Can you refinish quartz countertops yourself?

It is possible to DIY refinish quartz counters with the right supplies, equipment, and techniques. However, hiring a pro ensures a seamless finish and reduces blotchy risks.

How long does a refinished quartz countertop last?

With proper care and maintenance, a refinished quartz counter should last 3-5 years or longer before needing another refinishing. Harsh cleaning and lack of protective practices shorten the lifespan.

How do you find a good quartz countertop refinishing company?

Search online for local providers, check with kitchen remodelers, ask material suppliers for accredited refinishers, get referrals, and compare experience, sample projects, insurance status, and customer reviews.


Quartz countertop refinishing provides a cost-effective way to restore the appearance of engineered quartz surfaces showing signs of wear and damage. For homeowners looking to renew their counters without undertaking full replacement, refinishing offers an affordable facelift. With proper evaluation of your existing counters, selection of an experienced quartz refinishing provider, and appropriate care after refinishing, you can enjoy restored counters with like-new beauty and longevity. Refinishing delivers a fresh yet sustainable facelift for worn quartz countertops.