What is Quartz?
Quartz countertops are made from ground quartz stone combined with polymer resins and pigments. The quartz provides strength and durability, while the resins bind the material together into a solid, non-porous surface.
The result is a man-made engineered stone that mimics the look of natural stone but requires less maintenance. Brands like Caesarstone, Cambria, and Silestone are some of the major manufacturers of quartz countertops.
The Benefits of Quartz Countertops
There are many reasons why quartz has become such a popular countertop choice:
- Durability – Quartz is extremely hard and scratch resistant. It can withstand heavy daily use without showing signs of wear and tear.
- Low Maintenance – Since quartz is non-porous, it does not need to be sealed. It resists stains, etching, and heat damage better than natural stone.
- Appearance – With a wide variety of colors and patterns, quartz offers the aesthetic appeal of natural stone with more consistency.
- Non-Porous – Liquids and spills cannot penetrate the surface, making quartz very sanitary.
Do Quartz Countertops Need To Be Sealed?
The simple answer is no. Unlike granite, marble, and other natural stone countertops, quartz does NOT need to be regularly sealed.
The resin binders make quartz non-porous, so it will not absorb stains and liquids. Sealing is unnecessary for protection or sanitation purposes.
In fact, the manufacturers of quartz countertops recommend that you do NOT seal them. Applying a sealer to quartz can create a film on the surface that attracts more dirt. It can also make the countertop appear blotchy.
Quartz Countertop Maintenance
Without the need for sealing, quartz requires very little maintenance:
- Clean with soap and water – For routine cleaning, a mild soap and warm water is all that is needed. Avoid abrasive cleaners.
- Disinfect occasionally – Use a disinfectant cleaner weekly or monthly to sanitize the surface.
- Avoid excessive heat – While quartz is heat resistant, prolonged direct heat exposure can cause damage. Use trivets for hot pans.
- Re-polish minor scratches – Light scratches can be buffed out with a polishing kit. Natural stone polish should not be used.
- Professional deep cleaning – For a more thorough clean, have your countertop professionally cleaned every few years.
Can Quartz Be Sealed?
While sealing is not required, applying a food-safe sealer made specifically for quartz countertops can provide some benefits:
- Adds a layer of protection from stains and etching.
- Allows for easier cleaning and prevents buildup.
- Helps minimize damage from accidental spills.
- Improves resistance to abrasions and minor scratches.
However, sealing may also change the appearance of your quartz countertop and must be reapplied over time. Check with your countertop manufacturer before using any sealers.
FAQs About Sealing Quartz Countertops
Should I seal my new quartz countertop?
Sealing a brand new quartz countertop is not necessary but can add protection. Consult your fabricator to see if they recommend applying an initial sealer.
How often does quartz need to be sealed?
Quartz does not need any sealing. If you do opt to seal, reapplication may be needed every 1-2 years depending on usage.
What is the best sealer for quartz?
Look for a sealer specifically formulated for quartz rather than natural stone sealers. Popular options include Miracle Sealants 511 and Dry Treat Premium Impregnating Sealer.
Can I use wax on quartz countertops?
No, wax should not be used. It can build up and cause a hazy, blotchy appearance. It also makes the countertop harder to keep clean.
Will sealing quartz change the look?
Sealers can slightly alter the appearance, sometimes creating a darker or wetter look. Test the sealer in an inconspicuous spot first.
One of the many advantages of quartz countertops is that they do not require regular sealing like natural stone. Their non-porous nature makes them stain, scratch, and heat resistant.
While sealing is not necessary, applying a food-safe sealer can offer added protection for quartz surfaces. Be sure to consult with manufacturers to choose the best sealer and application method. With minimal care, quartz countertops will stay beautiful and functional for many years.