How to Disinfect Quartz Countertops During the COVID-19 Pandemic


The COVID-19 pandemic has made disinfecting high-touch surfaces more important than ever. Quartz countertops are durable and non-porous, making them an ideal choice for kitchens and bathrooms. However, they still require proper cleaning and disinfection to prevent the spread of illnesses.

This comprehensive guide will provide tips and recommendations for effectively disinfecting quartz countertops without damaging the material. We will cover quartz-safe disinfectants, application methods, cleaning frequency, and best practices to keep your countertops hygienic. With proper techniques, you can eliminate germs and feel confident your quartz surfaces are safe for food prep and other uses.

How to Choose COVID-19 Disinfectants Safe for Quartz

Not all disinfectants and cleaning products are safe to use on quartz. It’s important to select an EPA-approved disinfectant specifically labeled as quartz-safe. Here are some things to look for when choosing a disinfectant:

Approved by the EPA for Use Against COVID-19

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has compiled a list of disinfectants that meet their criteria to be effective against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Choose a product from this EPA list to ensure it can eliminate coronavirus on surfaces.

Specifies Quartz or Engineered Stone on Label

Read the product label to confirm it lists quartz, engineered stone, or solid surface materials as safe to use on. Do not make assumptions that a disinfectant is quartz-safe unless explicitly stated.

Avoid Bleach and Acidic Cleaners

Bleach, vinegar, citrus, and acidic cleaners should be avoided on quartz counters. They can erode or etch the sealant over time. Stick to pH-neutral disinfectants specifically designed for stone surfaces.

Non-Oxidizing Formula

Oxidizing cleaners contain harsh chemicals like hydrogen peroxide that can discolor quartz. Opt for non-oxidizing, non-bleaching disinfectant products without these reactive elements.

Child and Pet Safe

Many EPA-approved disinfectants for COVID-19 are harsh and require safety precautions. For kitchen and bathroom areas, choose a non-toxic formula safe to use around children and pets.

Recommended Products for Disinfecting Quartz Countertops

Here are some top EPA-approved disinfectants that are specifically labeled as safe for use on quartz:

  • Lysol Daily Cleanser – Kills 99.9% of viruses and bacteria. Non-bleach, pH-neutral.
  • Clorox Disinfecting Wipes – Kills coronavirus in 30 seconds. Also safe for granite, marble, and other stone.
  • ZEP Advanced Disinfectant Cleaner – Hospital-grade disinfectant. Leaves no chemical residue.
  • Purell Professional Surface Disinfectant – Food-contact surface approved. Kills norovirus in 45 seconds.
  • Benefect Botanical Disinfectant Spray – Plant-based and non-toxic. Kills COVID-19 in 1 minute.

Always spot test a new disinfectant in an inconspicuous area first to ensure it does not stain or damage the quartz.

Disinfecting Methods and Frequency

Cleaning quartz regularly is just as important as using the right disinfectant. Follow these best practices:

Daily Cleaning

Use a soft sponge or microfiber cloth with warm water and mild soap. Avoid abrasive pads or scrubbing to prevent etching the surface. Rinse thoroughly and dry with a clean towel.

Disinfect 1-3 Times Weekly

Disinfect higher traffic areas like kitchen counters and bathroom vanities at least every few days. Use a non-abrasive applicator and let the disinfectant sit for the contact time listed on the label.

Deep Clean Monthly

Do a thorough deep clean at least once a month in your kitchen and bathrooms. Remove all items from counters to access the entire surface area.

After Potential Contamination

Immediately disinfect areas that may have been contaminated by raw meat juices, household chemicals, or sick individuals.

Before/After Guests Visit

Make sure to sanitize counters before and after entertaining guests, especially during the pandemic. Let disinfectant fully dry to avoid residue transfer.

Step-by-Step Disinfection Process

Follow these steps for an effective disinfecting routine on your quartz surfaces:

Supplies Needed

  • EPA-approved disinfectant for quartz
  • Microfiber cloths
  • Soft-bristle brush (optional)
  • Bucket or spray bottle for disinfectant

Mix Disinfectant

If using a concentrated formula, dilute properly with water according to label directions. Improper mixing can damage quartz.

Remove Surface Items

Clear countertops completely so the disinfectant can reach the entire surface. Store any food items away.

Clean Surface

Use a microfiber cloth and warm, soapy water to clean dirt, grease, and debris. Avoid abrasive scrubbing.

Apply Disinfectant

Spray or wipe disinfectant liberally over entire surface. Ensure ample coverage and wet contact.

Let Sit

Allow disinfectant to sit for the manufacturer recommended contact time, usually 5-10 minutes. This kills maximum germs.

Scrub With Brush

For stuck-on messes, use a soft brush to gently scrub the area with disinfectant. Avoid excessive scrubbing.

Rinse and Dry

Wipe away all disinfectant thoroughly with a clean, damp microfiber cloth. Ensure no residue is left behind.

Replace Items

Once fully dry, replace any items that were removed from the counters. Avoid placing anything until completely dry.

Tips for Proper Disinfection

Follow these guidelines to ensure safe and effective disinfection of quartz surfaces:

  • Always ventilate the area during and after disinfecting. Open windows, turn on fans.
  • Check product labels for any special handling instructions, like wearing gloves or eye protection.
  • Reseal spray bottles and wipe containers to prevent disinfectant evaporation.
  • Follow all contact times and rinsing requirements listed on the disinfectant label.
  • Change microfiber cloths frequently to prevent cross-contamination. Wash after use.
  • Buff out any streaks or film left behind using a clean, dry microfiber cloth.
  • Replace disinfectant bottle regularly instead of refilling to maintain effectiveness.
  • Work in sections for large countertop areas so disinfectant stays wet on surface.
  • Avoid applying disinfectants directly to quartz fixtures like sinks to prevent etching.

Precautions When Using Disinfectants on Quartz

While quartz is highly durable, improper use of disinfecting chemicals can damage the material. Keep these precautions in mind:

  • Test new disinfectants on inconspicuous areas first before full use.
  • Blot up spills immediately to avoid extended exposure in one area.
  • Do not allow disinfectants to pool, puddle, or dry on the surface.
  • Rinse off residue thoroughly, especially in crevices, to prevent etching.
  • Avoid harsh scrubbing, abrasive pads, knives, or other utensils to clean.
  • Never mix cleaning agents like bleach and vinegar – toxic fumes can result.
  • Check bottles for expiration dates and discard expired disinfectant properly.
  • Keep corrosive items like oven cleaner and drain openers off quartz counters.

Following product guidelines and using the gentlest application methods possible will keep quartz counters safe from disinfecting damage.

Maintaining a Hygienic Kitchen

The kitchen requires extra attention as hygiene is critical in food preparation areas. Here are some extra tips for keeping your quartz kitchen counters germ-free:

  • Place dish rags, sponges, and hand towels in the dishwasher daily to disinfect with hot water. Replace frequently.
  • Avoid using cutting boards and utensils directly on the counter. Use sanitizable boards and wash utensils after each use.
  • Disinfect sinks, faucets, soap dispensers, and backsplashes whenever cleaning counters.
  • Wash fruits, vegetables, and packaging immediately when bringing items home from the grocery store.
  • Clean up all food spills right away to discourage germ growth.
  • Take out the garbage frequently to limit odor-causing bacteria. Disinfect bins regularly.
  • Ensure kitchen appliances like coffee makers, toasters, and blenders are kept clean of grime.

Following comprehensive kitchen cleaning along with frequent quartz disinfection will help protect your family’s health.

Maintaining a Hygienic Bathroom

Bathroom countertops also need diligent disinfecting. Follow these tips:

  • Disinfect sinks, faucets, soap dispensers, handles, and switches when cleaning counters.
  • Clean bathroom exhaust fan covers to remove moisture that breeds germs.
  • Prevent mold and mildew growth by wiping down walls, tiles, shower curtains.
  • Use a toilet brush cleaner to sanitize bowl and base. Avoid placing on counter.
  • Replace toilet paper rolls, tissues, and towels frequently. Discard immediately if contaminated.
  • Store away personal items like toothbrushes in closed containers to avoid germ spread.
  • Take out trash cans daily to limit bacteria growth. Disinfect bins weekly.
  • Clean makeup brushes and organize supplies away from counter when not in use.

Proper bathroom hygiene prevents the spread of many illnesses like norovirus, flu, and COVID-19.

Disinfecting Counters If Someone is Sick

It is critical to thoroughly disinfect all high-touch surfaces if someone in your household becomes ill. Here are some tips:

  • Use disinfectant products that specifically claim to kill the virus your household member has contracted. Coronavirus disinfectants can’t kill all germs.
  • Focus on disinfecting commonly touched spots like faucets, appliance handles, light switches, phones, remote controls, and toilets.
  • Increase disinfecting frequency to at least 2 times daily when ill individuals are present.
  • Wash all dishes, utensils, towels, and bedding used by sick individuals in hot water cycles then dry fully. Avoid cross contamination.
  • Have the ill person wear a mask and gloves if they cannot fully isolate while convalescing.
  • Ensure proper ventilation while using disinfectants if the sick person cannot leave the room.

With vigilant counter disinfection and household cleaning, illnesses can be contained and prevented from spreading further.

Disinfecting Counters After Illness

Once all household members have recovered, take these additional steps:

  • Do a deep clean scrub of all countertops, scrubbing grout and caulking with a soft brush.
  • Wash any removable counter décor and non-machine washable items left out during illness in disinfectant.
  • Remove and wash all linens, pillows, curtains that were out during illness and dry on the hottest setting items can handle.
  • Empty all trash bins and disinfect the empty bin before replacing a new bag. Take out recycling.
  • Replace all cleaning tools that were used when cleaning up after sick individuals. Throw out old sponges, towels, mop heads etc.
  • Shampoo upholstered furniture and carpets that the ill person was in contact with. Steam cleaning also disinfects.
  • Continue diligent hand hygiene and counter disinfection even after recovery to prevent reinfection.

A deep clean after illness can help eliminate germs left behind and create a sanitary home environment again.

When to Seek Professional Disinfection Services

In some cases, professional disinfection services may be recommended after illness or COVID-19 exposure:

  • If a household member had a serious contagious disease like hepatitis A.
  • If multiple members were very ill for an extended period.
  • If a household includes immunocompromised individuals.
  • If your home had multiple COVID-19 positive individuals isolating.
  • If the home does not have easy to clean surfaces, like carpeting.
  • If there are no healthy individuals left to properly disinfect after illness.
  • If the illness was extremely prolonged with excessive contamination.

Seeking professional disinfection services can help relieve the burden of sanitizing the home after significant exposure to an infectious disease.

Disinfecting Tips for Other Quartz Surfaces

While countertops are the most common, quartz can make up other surfaces that also need disinfecting.


Quartz tile needs grout cleaned frequently. Scrub with a soft brush and cleaner safe for stone. Disinfect tile surfaces using the same methods as countertops.


Spray or wipe quartz dining tables with disinfectant. Allow the proper wet contact time before wiping dry. Wash tablecloths on hot water cycles.


Use a non-abrasive sponge or soft cloth with disinfectant on solid quartz bathroom vanity tops. Avoid spraying cleaners directly on mirrors or hardware fixtures.


Backsplashes get easily overlooked but need cleaning. Scrub gently with a soft bristle brush and quartz-safe cleaner. Avoid using too much pressure.

Anywhere quartz is installed in your home needs added to the disinfecting routine, especially high touch spots like tables and backsplashes.

Maintaining Quartz Long-Term

With proper care, quartz countertops can stay looking like new for over a decade. Here are some longevity tips:

  • Reapply sealant annually to protect from stains and etching. Hire a pro for best results.
  • Avoid placing hot pans, trays, and heat-generating appliances directly on counters. Always use trivets and hot pads.
  • Rinse off spills like wine, coffee, and juice immediately to avoid permanent discoloration. Blot, don’t wipe.
  • Cut only on designated cutting boards, not directly on the counter. Never cut meat or hard items on quartz.
  • Lift heavy, rough, or sharp objects instead of sliding across the surface to prevent scratches.
  • Check manufacturer care instructions for maintenance methods safe for your quartz variety.
  • Avoid using abrasive polish or cleaning compounds made for granite on quartz surfaces.

With diligent disinfecting and proper care, quartz countertops can stay looking pristine and last for decades to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best homemade disinfectant for quartz?

Avoid DIY disinfectants on quartz, as improper mixing or ingredients can damage surfaces. Stick to commercial products designed specifically for use on quartz and stone.

How do you remove hard water stains from quartz?

Use a pH-neutral quartz cleaner and a soft cloth to gently clean the area. Avoid scrubbing. For stubborn buildup, apply poultice made for engineered stone and let sit for 24 hours before rinsing clean.

Can you use rubbing alcohol to disinfect quartz?

Rubbing alcohol can discolor and dull quartz surfaces. Check that any disinfectant you use specifically lists quartz as a safe surface before applying.

What removes sticky residue from quartz countertops?

Ammonia-based glass cleaner or 70% isopropyl alcohol can remove sticky residue. Test on small area first. Rinse surface immediately using a clean, damp microfiber cloth to avoid damage.

How do you strip and disinfectquartz countertops?

There is no need to strip quartz countertops. Simply use a soft scrub brush and EPA-approved disinfectant safe for use on quartz and let sit according to label directions before rinsing thoroughly.


Regular disinfection of quartz surfaces using proper methods can help protect your family’s health during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. Always check that disinfectants are EPA-approved for use against coronavirus and specifically labeled as quartz-safe before use. With the right sanitizing techniques, you can keep your beautiful quartz counters clean and germ-free for years of safe food prep and enjoyment.