What is Quartz?
Quartz countertops, sometimes called engineered stone, are made from ground natural quartz crystals combined with resins and pigments. The quartz content typically ranges from 90-94%. The rest is polymer resins that bind the quartz particles together.
The resins make quartz non-porous, resistant to scratches and stains, and tolerant of heat, acids, and impact. While not completely indestructible, quartz is one of the most durable countertop materials available today.
Can You Put Hot Pots and Pans on Quartz?
The short answer is yes. Quartz countertops can withstand brief contact with very hot pots and pans without any damage.
However, it’s important to use trivets or hot pads to prevent prolonged direct heat exposure. The extreme temperature of pots and pans straight from the stove or oven can potentially scorch, discolor, or crack quartz surfaces over time.
Here are some tips for using hot pots and pans on quartz:
- Use trivets or hot pads – Always set hot cookware on trivets, hot pads, or plates instead of directly on the quartz surface. Trivets raise pots and pans above the counter, allowing air circulation to dissipate heat.
- Don’t let cookware simmer – Avoid leaving hot pots and pans sitting on quartz without a heat barrier for more than a few minutes. The sustained high heat can be problematic.
- Give it time to cool – Before placing cookware on quartz, allow pots/pans to cool for at least 5-10 minutes after cooking. This prevents excessive heat transfer to the countertop.
- Avoid burns and scorch marks – Burn marks or discoloration may occur if very hot pans are left on quartz for too long. Trivets prevent these unsightly marks.
- No direct flames – Never put open flames from gas burners or lighters in direct contact with quartz. This can severely damage the surface.
- Wipe up spills – Quickly wipe any liquids or foods that spill on quartz while still hot. Heat accelerates staining from spills.
- Inspect regularly – Check quartz periodically for any signs of discoloration or damage from hot cookware. Address issues immediately to prevent permanent marks.
Is There a Heat Limit for Quartz?
Most quartz countertop manufacturers indicate their products can withstand intermittent exposure to temperatures up to 212°F and brief contact with pots up to about 450°F.
However, prolonged direct heat above 150°F is not recommended, as it can compromise the resin binders in quartz. Trivets serve as an important buffer against transferring excess heat into quartz surfaces.
Options for High Heat Areas
For areas that will experience substantial hot cookware use, natural stone countertops like granite may be preferable. Granite is generally not affected by temperatures up to 850°F.
There are also high heat-resistant quartz options designed for placement beside stoves. These specialty quartz products incorporate materials like crushed lava rock for improved thermal performance.
Protecting Your Investment
With proper care, quartz countertops can remain in great condition for many years of daily use. Following the tips above will help prevent hot cookware from damaging your beautiful quartz surfaces.
The small habit of using trivets is a simple way to protect your investment and allow you to safely enjoy cooking on durable, easy-care quartz countertops. Just be sure to give extremely hot pots and pans adequate time to cool down before placing directly on quartz.
Frequently Asked Questions About Using Hot Pots on Quartz Countertops
Can quartz counters withstand heat from pots and pans?
Yes, quartz has good heat tolerance and can handle normal cooking temperatures for brief periods when using trivets. However, sustained direct heat above 150°F may damage quartz over time.
How long can a hot pot sit on a quartz counter?
Pots fresh off the stove should not remain on quartz for more than a few minutes without a trivet. Allow cookware to cool for 5-10 minutes first. Extended contact transfers excess heat that can damage quartz.
Does quartz melt from hot pans?
No, quartz won’t melt from typical cooking temperatures. Its resin will eventually fail under extreme prolonged heat above 450°F. But quartz won’t actually melt or burn like solid surfacing materials can.
Will quartz crack from hot cookware?
Thermal shock from sudden temperature changes can potentially crack quartz. This is prevented by using trivets and allowing hot pans to cool before direct contact with the quartz surface. Gradual heating/cooling won’t crack quartz.
Can you crack a quartz counter by setting something hot on it?
Yes, it’s possible to crack quartz by placing extremely hot cookware directly on the surface. The abrupt temperature change generates thermal shock. Always use trivets and let pots/pans cool first.
Does quartz discolor with heat?
Excessive heat can discolor quartz and create yellow or white marks across the surface. Trivets prevent these unsightly heat stamps by avoiding prolonged direct contact with extremely hot cookware.
Can you put a griddle on a quartz countertop?
Using an electric griddle directly on quartz is not recommended, even with models claiming “low heat.” Griddles can heat up to 400°F. Use a hot pad or trivet underneath the griddle to avoid potential damage.
Quartz offers homeowners an attractive, low-maintenance countertop – as long as you take some basic precautions with hot cookware. Allow pots and pans to cool after cooking, use trivets consistently, and avoid leaving simmering pots on bare quartz surfaces for more than a few minutes. With proper care, your quartz counters can stay looking beautiful for many years. The small habit of using trivets provides important protection for this popular kitchen investment.