Cleaning soap scum off quartz countertops can seem daunting, but with the right techniques and products, you can get them looking like new again. Here are some tips for effectively removing soap scum from quartz.
Why Soap Scum Builds Up on Quartz
Quartz countertops are made from crushed quartz blended with resins and pigments, making an incredibly durable surface. However, the resin makes quartz less porous than natural stone, so spills and grime tend to stick on the surface rather than absorbing in.
Over time, soap scum accumulates from regular handwashing and cleaning. Soap scum is a filmy residue left behind when mineral salts in hard water react with soap. This buildup can make quartz look dingy and dated.
Supplies Needed for Removing Soap Scum
- Microfiber cloths
- Soft nylon scrubbing pad
- Glass cleaner or counterspray
- Razor blade scraper
- Magic eraser
- Non-abrasive cleanser like Soft Scrub® without bleach
Avoid using anything too abrasive when cleaning quartz. Acids, alkaline cleaners, wire brushes or scouring pads can damage the finish. Test any new cleaners on a small, inconspicuous area first.
Step-by-Step Process for Removing Soap Scum
Follow these steps for best results removing soap scum from quartz:
1. Prepare the Surface
Clear everything off the countertops so you can access the entire surface area. Remove any stuck-on grime or debris with a plastic scraper, being careful not to scratch the quartz.
2. Try Glass Cleaner First
Spray on an even coat of glass cleaner and let it sit for 2-3 minutes. This helps loosen up some of the soap scum. Wipe down with a damp microfiber cloth, applying light pressure.
For tougher buildup, use a soft nylon scrubbing pad and a bit more muscle. Just avoid excessive scrubbing or you may damage the finish.
3. Use a Magic Eraser
Dampen a magic eraser and rub problem areas using light, circular motions. Magic erasers work well to remove soap scum without damaging the quartz. Rinse thoroughly after scrubbing.
4. Make a Baking Soda Paste
For more stubborn soap scum that won’t budge, make a paste with 3 parts baking soda and 1 part water. Apply the paste to problem areas and let sit for 5 minutes before scrubbing with a soft cloth or sponge. Rinse thoroughly.
5. Use a Non-Abrasive Cleanser
For a deeper clean, apply a non-abrasive cleanser designed for stone surfaces, like Soft Scrub®, Ajax®, or Bar Keepers Friend®. Use a damp microfiber cloth to gently rub the cleanser over the entire surface. Rinse thoroughly.
Avoid using anything too gritty or harsh. Stick to soft scrubbing pads and minimal pressure.
6. Dry Completely
After cleaning, make sure to dry the countertops thoroughly with a clean microfiber cloth. Any residual moisture left behind can lead to new soap scum buildup.
Maintain Quartz Countertops
- Wipe up spills as soon as they happen. Don’t let liquids sit.
- Rinse dishes and wipe off excess water before setting them in the sink.
- Use a rinse agent in your dishwasher to minimize spots.
- Clean quartz regularly with a pH-neutral stone cleaner.
- Re-seal quartz countertops every 1-2 years with a penetrating sealer made for stone.
- Avoid using harsh chemicals like bleach, ammonia or alkaline cleaners.
With proper care and regular cleaning, you can keep quartz counters glistening for years to come. Be patient, take your time with cleaning, and avoid anything too abrasive. With the right techniques, you can banish soap scum for good.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I prevent soap scum from building up again?
- Dry quartz thoroughly after cleaning
- Use a squeegee to remove excess water
- Rinse sinks and wipe dry after use
- Use a rinse agent in dishwashers
- Clean quartz regularly with a pH-neutral stone cleaner
What’s the best way to clean quartz daily?
Use a microfiber cloth with a mild soap and warm water. Avoid harsh cleaners. Wipe spills immediately to prevent buildup.
Can I use vinegar to clean quartz counters?
Yes, you can use a diluted vinegar solution. Mix 1 part vinegar with 3 parts water. Wipe down counters with a soft cloth dipped in the solution. Avoid prolonged exposure to acids.
How can I make quartz shine again?
Use a polish made for quartz or stone surfaces. Apply with a soft cloth using circular motions. Avoid wax-based polishes. For dull areas, use a magic eraser.
What damage can happen from scrubbing too hard?
Excessive scrubbing or scouring can damage the resin finish. This can lead to etched marks, loss of shine, and make quartz more vulnerable to staining. Always use minimal pressure when cleaning.
Removing soap scum from quartz counters may take some elbow grease, but is definitely doable with non-abrasive cleaners and soft scrubbing pads. The key is staying persistent, using the right products, and cleaning quartz regularly before buildup gets out of hand. Follow these tips to restore the beautiful, glistening shine of your quartz countertops.