Quartz countertops are engineered stone surfaces made from ground quartz particles combined with resins and pigments. Their durability, stain resistance, and wide range of colors and patterns make them a popular choice for kitchen and bathroom countertops. But sometimes you may wish to change the color of your existing quartz countertop rather than replace it entirely. So can you dye quartz countertops?
The short answer is yes, it is possible to dye quartz countertops, but the process is complicated and results may vary. Proper preparation, using the right dye products, and applying color correctly are key to getting good results when dyeing quartz.
Below we’ll explore everything you need to know about dyeing quartz countertops, including:
Click to expand table of contents
- [Can You Successfully Dye Quartz?]
- [The Challenges of Dyeing Quartz Countertops]
- [How to Prepare Quartz Countertops for Dyeing]
- [Cleaning and Deglossing]
- [Etching the Surface]
- [Choosing a Dye for Quartz Countertops]
- [Liquid Dyes vs. Penetrating Stains]
- [Color Considerations]
- [Applying Dye to Quartz Countertops]
- [Protecting Surrounding Areas]
- [Using Applicators and Removing Excess]
- [Achieving Even Color]
- [Caring for Dyed Quartz Countertops]
- [Hiring a Professional to Dye Quartz Countertops]
- [Quartz Countertop Dyeing FAQs]
- [Can you dye over an existing quartz color?]
- [What about patterns in quartz?]
- [Will dye adhere as well to polished vs. matte quartz?]
- [How long does the new color last?]
- [Does dyeing quartz void the warranty?]
Can You Successfully Dye Quartz?
While it is possible to change the color of your quartz countertops with dye, how successful this process will be depends on several factors:
- Type of quartz – Some quartz formulations accept dye better than others. Solid colored quartz usually dyes more evenly than those with elaborate patterns.
- Original color – Dye adheres and shows up better on light to medium colored quartz than darker surfaces. White, beige, and lighter quartz colors give the best dyeing results.
- Desired color – Deep, dark dye colors are more difficult to achieve evenly on quartz compared to lighter dye shades.
- Application process – Properly preparing the surface, choosing the right dye, and carefully applying it makes a difference in how the color turns out.
While achieving an even, seamless color change on quartz is tricky, with the right approach you can successfully alter the tone or lighten/darken the existing color of your countertops. Test samples are recommended to assess potential results.
The Challenges of Dyeing Quartz Countertops
There are a few reasons why dyeing quartz countertops presents challenges:
- Non-porous surface – Unlike natural stone, the resin coat on quartz repels stains and liquids. Dye has difficulty penetrating and bonding properly.
- Patterning – Many quartz slabs have veins, speckles or swirls. These make it hard to achieve a uniform colored surface when dyeing.
- Previously sealed – Most installed quartz is sealed, which creates an extra barrier for dye absorption. The sealant must be stripped for best results.
- Prone to blotchiness – Applying dye evenly on quartz is tricky. Brush strokes and overlapped areas can appear splotchy after drying.
- Retaining texture – The quartz maintains its smooth, glossy finish after dyeing. The color rests on top rather than absorbing for a stained look.
With extra preparation and care when applying, these challenges can be managed to get the best possible dyeing results. Testing is key to assessing if your particular quartz counters will achieve the look you want.
How to Prepare Quartz Countertops for Dyeing
To ensure proper dye adhesion and absorption, the quartz surface needs to be prepped before applying color:
Cleaning and Deglossing
Quartz should be thoroughly cleaned with an alkaline degreaser to remove any waxes, oils or dirt. A deglossing chemical etchant is then used to strip off the top gloss layer and give the dye something to grip.
Etching the Surface
Lightly etching opens up microscopic pores in the quartz resin coating so dye can penetrate better. This is done with an etching cream specifically designed for quartz and applied evenly across the surface.
Proper prep opens the quartz to accept dye while retaining the structural durability and texture. Test samples help dial in the right etch strength for your particular quartz material.
Choosing a Dye for Quartz Countertops
Liquid penetrating stains generally work better than surface dyes on quartz:
Liquid Dyes vs. Penetrating Stains
- Liquid dyes sit on top of the quartz. They lack longevity and are prone to showing unevenness.
- Penetrating stains chemically react with the quartz material to produce more color consistency and permanence.
- Light to medium dye shades cover and absorb better than darker colors.
- Tones similar to the original quartz color overlay best. Dramatically different shades are difficult.
- Color tests on samples help determine compatibility with your specific quartz color and finish.
A professional quartz dye formulated for maximum penetration, even coverage and color stability is recommended for optimal results.
Applying Dye to Quartz Countertops
With the right products and preparation, application technique impacts the finished look:
Protecting Surrounding Areas
Cover walls, cabinets, and flooring around the counters during dyeing to prevent splatters and drips discoloring those surfaces.
Using Applicators and Removing Excess
Foam rollers, sponges, and rags help spread the dye smoothly and evenly across the surface. Wipe off any excess carrier that hasn’t absorbed into the quartz.
Achieving Even Color
Applying in small sections with overlap to blend provides the most seamless, uniform color. Work quickly to keep sections wet and the dye consistent.
Patience, preparation, and controlled application allows the new color to develop evenly across the entire quartz surface.
Caring for Dyed Quartz Countertops
Once dyed, quartz counters should be sealed to protect and preserve the new color:
- Use an impregnating sealer specific for quartz surfaces. This penetrates to prevent dye leaching.
- Reapply sealer periodically to maintain protection against spills, staining, and fading.
- Avoid abrasive cleaners. Use a soft sponge or cloth with mild soap and water to gently clean.
- Blot spills quickly to avoid prolonged exposure that may leach dye color.
Proper care and maintenance helps your newly colored quartz counters stay vibrant for years to come.
Hiring a Professional to Dye Quartz Countertops
While an ambitious DIYer can tackle quartz dyeing with proper precautions, hiring a professional technician is advisable for best results.
Benefits of pro dyeing include:
- Knowledge of products and processes specifically for quartz surfaces.
- Proper preparation experience for maximum dye bonding.
- Skills for most seamless, even application and color blending.
- Ability to match a wider range of colors.
- Access to commercial grade etching tools and protective gear.
Quartz dye jobs require expertise and precision dye work. Consult a professional fabricator or refinishing company to evaluate your counters and determine if your desired color change is achievable.
Quartz Countertop Dyeing FAQs
Some common questions about changing the color of quartz countertops include:
Can you dye over an existing quartz color?
Yes, you can apply dye over an existing quartz color. But lighter original tones give the best base for new dye to show true and even.
What about patterns in quartz?
Natural-looking patterns make complete, uniform coverage more challenging. Solid colors are best for dyeing quartz.
Will dye adhere as well to polished vs. matte quartz?
Penetrating dyes bond better overall to a matte or honed quartz finish vs. polished. But a polished etchable surface can be prepped to accept dye.
How long does the new color last?
With proper application and sealing, the dyed color should retain well for years with careful use and maintenance. Avoid abrasion or harsh cleaners.
Does dyeing quartz void the warranty?
Always check your manufacturer’s warranty. Most allow superficial changes like dyeing that don’t damage the underlying material. But confirm before chemically altering your quartz.
While dyeing quartz countertops presents challenges, with the proper approach and professional help, you can successfully change the color of your existing quartz counters. If considering a dye project, start by assessing if your particular quartz will readily accept color for the look you want to achieve.