Quartz countertops are an increasingly popular choice for kitchen and bathroom remodeling projects. Made from ground quartz crystals combined with resins and pigments, quartz offers an attractive, durable, and low-maintenance surface. But one question that often comes up is whether you need to seal quartz countertops. Here is a detailed look at whether sealing is necessary for quartz.
What is a Sealer and Why Use It?
A sealer is a liquid product that is applied to the surface of natural stone countertops like granite, marble, and slate to fill in pores and create a protective barrier. This prevents stains from sinking into the stone and makes the counters easier to clean and maintain.
Sealers are necessary for porous natural stones because liquids can soak in and stain them. But quartz is non-porous, so liquids stay on the surface rather than absorbing in.
The Non-Porous Nature of Quartz
Quartz counters are made from ground quartz crystals combined with pigments and resins. The resins fill in spaces between the quartz particles to create a dense, non-porous material. This differs from natural stone which has minute pores that allow stains to penetrate.
With a quartz countertop, spills and stains stay on the surface rather than soak in. This makes quartz resistant to staining without the need for a sealer.
Why Quartz Counters Don’t Need Sealing
There are a few key reasons why sealing is not necessary for quartz counters:
- Quartz lacks pores – Without pores there are no entry points for stains to soak into the material. This makes quartz impervious to staining.
- Resins create a non-porous surface – The polymer resins used to make quartz counters fill in space between quartz particles to make an impermeable, stain-resistant surface.
- Quartz repels liquids – The sleek, glossy surface causes liquids to bead up rather than penetrate or soak in. This allows spills to be easily wiped away.
- Sealers can’t bond effectively – Even if applied, sealers don’t properly bond with quartz’s non-porous surface. This makes application pointless.
- Manufacturers advise against sealing – Quartz makers like Caesarstone and Cambria provide care & maintenance guidelines that explicitly advise against sealing their counters.
Quartz Countertop Maintenance
Though sealing is unnecessary, simple maintenance is recommended to keep quartz counters looking like new:
- Clean spills promptly to prevent staining
- Use mild soap and water for routine cleaning
- Blot up acidic spills like wine or fruit juice
- Avoid abrasive cleaners that could dull the surface
- Don’t use countertop as a cutting board to prevent scratches
- Reseal natural stone seam gaps if needed
With proper care, quartz countertops will stay beautiful and stain-free for many years without sealing required. The non-porous surface prevents absorption of stains and spills for low maintenance.
Frequently Asked Questions About Sealing Quartz Countertops
Should I seal my quartz counters before or after installation?
Sealing is not necessary before, during, or after installation. Quartz lacks pores so sealers have no surface to bond with.
How often should I seal a quartz countertop?
You do not need to seal a quartz countertop at all. Quartz counters never need sealing due to their non-porous, stain-resistant surface.
What happens if I do seal my quartz countertop?
Sealers are unable to bond effectively with quartz’s non-porous surface. At best the sealer will sit on top before wearing off. Sealing is pointless and a waste of time and money with a quartz counter.
Is there any downside to sealing quartz?
Sealers are not recommended because they lack the ability to properly cure and bond with quartz. The main downside is wasted time and effort since sealing provides no benefits.
Should I reseal the quartz seams?
Quartz does not require sealing. However, natural stone used for seams between quartz slabs can optionally be resealed as needed (1-2 times per year) to prevent moisture absorption.
Unlike natural stone counters that need sealing, quartz counters should never be sealed. The non-porous surface repels stains while resisting damage without a sealer. Save your time and money – follow the manufacturer’s advice and avoid pointless sealing of quartz countertops. Proper cleaning is all that is needed to keep them looking pristine for years.