How to Drill into Quartz Countertop


Quartz countertops are popular options for kitchen and bathroom remodeling projects due to their durability, attractive appearance, and low maintenance. However, many homeowners wonder if it is possible to drill into a quartz countertop for installing additional fixtures or making modifications. With proper tools and techniques, drilling into quartz is certainly achievable.

In this comprehensive guide, we will walk through the entire process of how to safely and effectively drill into quartz countertops without damaging the material. We will cover the basic supplies you need, critical factors to consider before drilling, step-by-step instructions for the drilling process, tips for achieving clean holes, and how to finish off the quartz surface around the cuts.

Equipped with the information in this guide, you will have the knowledge and confidence to drill into your quartz countertop and complete your project successfully. Let’s get started!

Why Drill into Quartz Countertops?

Before we dive into the how-to, let’s first go over some of the main reasons you may need to drill into a quartz countertop:

  • Installing new fixtures – For example, drilling to accommodate a soap dispenser, spout, or taps for a bathroom vanity top or installing a new faucet on a kitchen island.
  • Making plumbing modifications – Cutting holes for plumbing improvements like installing a new sink or adding supply lines.
  • Electrical installations – Cutting openings to feed electrical cords to power small appliances or install outlets.
  • Securing countertop – Drilling pilot holes to drive screws into the cabinet or wall for added support.
  • Fitting countertop cutouts – Adjusting holes around sinks, cooktops, or other appliances if the pre-cut measurements are slightly off.
  • Creating drainage – Drilling into the countertop backsplash to install a drainage groove.

With the proper approach, quartz can be drilled into without sustaining damage for any of these types of home improvement projects. The keys are using the right tools, proper techniques, and patience.

How to Drill into Quartz Countertop

Now, let’s get into the nitty gritty of how to successfully drill into quartz. Follow these steps to achieve clean, precise holes without cracking or chipping the material:

Gather the Right Supplies

You don’t need any fancy tools to drill into quartz. The following basic supplies are all you need:

  • Electric drill – A cordless drill is the most convenient option. You’ll want a compact but powerful drill that operates between 600-2000 RPM.
  • Diamond-tipped drill bit – Diamond drill bits are a must for cutting through the durable quartz material without causing damage. Choose the size needed for your holes.
  • Masking tape – Helpful for marking the drill points and reducing splintering.
  • Scrap wood – Place under the quartz when drilling to prevent chipping if the drill break through.
  • Water source – Have a spray bottle filled with water to keep the drill bit and quartz cool.
  • Ruler or tape measure – For precisely measuring and marking where to drill.
  • Pencil – To mark the holes. Pens may stain the quartz.
  • Safety glasses – For protecting your eyes from debris when drilling.

Check Your Quartz Thickness

The thickness of your quartz has implications for what size drill bit to use and how deep you can drill. Most quartz countertops are between 2 to 2.25 inches thick. Thinner quartz around 1.25 inches can also be found.

Use a ruler to check the exact thickness before drilling. This will also help you determine if you can drill all the way through the slab for holes needed for plumbing or electrical work.

Mark the Drill Locations

Decide on where you need to drill the holes based on your project plans. When you have the spots selected, take the masking tape and tape over where you will drill. Use a pencil to mark the center of the holes on the tape.

Apply firm pressure when marking the center so you can see the impression through the tape. This gives you a precise drill target and helps prevent the drill bit from slipping around.

Start with Pilot Holes

To reduce the risk of cracking the quartz, it is highly recommended to start with a smaller pilot hole before going to the full-size hole needed. Use a 1/8-inch diamond drill bit for the pilots.

Set your drill to run at a lower speed – around 600 RPM. Place the pilot bit at your tape marker and drill slowly through the quartz. Let the drill do the work – don’t force it. Apply gentle, even pressure.

Enlarge the Holes

After drilling pilot holes, you can now use a larger-sized diamond drill bit to complete the holes to the required diameter. Go slowly and drill in increments, starting with 1/4-inch size and going up as needed.

Make sure to pull the drill out periodically to remove any debris buildup in the flutes of the bit. Spraying water helps keep the drilling site cool and eliminates dust. Take your time to let the diamond grit work through the quartz.

Drill from Both Sides

If you need to drill all the way through the countertop, avoid blowout by drilling from both sides. Drill partially through from the top. Then flip the countertop over and finish drilling from the underside to meet the first hole.

The scrap wood placed under the quartz will prevent damaging the surface below if you break through.

Account for Drilled Holes in Your Project Plans

Remember to account for the diameter of the drilled holes in your project measurements. For example, if you are cutting out a hole for a sink, adjust the dimensions so that your cutout is aligned with the drilled holes.

This prevents having misaligned holes that miss the sink altogether once installed. Planning ahead eliminates headaches later.

Clean Up Drilled Holes and Surrounding Quartz

Once your holes are drilled, carefully remove any tape residue from the quartz using mineral spirits. Give the countertop a good cleaning to remove all dust and debris. Examine the holes for any rough edges or scuffing and sand smooth.

If desired, apply a sealant around the cut edges to minimize moisture entering the exposed quartz material. Let the sealant fully cure before using the countertop again.

And that covers the essential process for how to drill into quartz countertops. Just remember to take it slowly, use diamond drill bits, keep the quartz cool with water, and drill from both sides when going all the way through. Follow these tips and you will have smooth, clean holes.

Tips for Drilling Clean Holes in Quartz

Drilling perfect openings in quartz does take some finesse. Here are some additional pointers to help you drill clean, professional holes:

  • Go slowly – The slower you drill, the cleaner the results. Let the drill do the work.
  • Use a drill press for precision – A fixed drill press ensures straight, accurate holes.
  • Lubricate the bits – Dip bits in water or lubricant so they glide smoothly through quartz.
  • Reduce speed on breakthrough – Slow your drill speed right as the bit cuts through to prevent blowout damage.
  • Back out bits frequently – Regularly back the bit out to clear away quartz dust.
  • Use a punch for pilot indents – A center punch helps guide drill bits and prevents wandering.
  • Clamp a guide jig – Guiding attachments keep the drill perfectly perpendicular.
  • Apply painter’s tape around holes – Helps minimize chipping of the quartz edges.
  • Use a vacuum attachment – Catches debris and keeps drill sites clean.
  • Inspect frequently – Check for signs of cracking or overheating.
  • Take your time – Rushing the process usually causes errors and damage.

How to Finish Quartz Surfaces Around Drilled Holes

Once your holes are drilled, the last step is refinishing the quartz surface. Here are some quick tips for finishing:

  • Smooth rough edges with a file or sandpaper.
  • Use caulk or putty sticks to fill any pits or unevenness around holes.
  • A clear tub and tile sealant helps create a watertight seal.
  • For a factory finish, apply color-matched caulk.
  • Buff away dried caulk or putty with a soft cloth.
  • If needed, polish with a compound to restore sheen around holes.
  • Make sure to thoroughly clean the countertop when finished.

With careful finishing work, you can create drilled openings in quartz that look professionally cut and installed.

Frequently Asked Questions about Drilling into Quartz Countertops

Many homeowners have additional questions about successfully drilling into quartz. Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions.

What size diamond drill bit do I need for quartz?

For pilot holes, use a 1/8-inch diamond bit. For standard holes, 1/4 to 1/2-inch bits work for most projects. Match the size to the fixtures or hardware you are installing.

Can I drill through 2-inch thick quartz?

Yes, most quartz slabs are around 2 inches thick. Use sharp diamond bits and drill slowly from both sides to cut through. Pilot indents help guide the drill.

How do I drill a large hole in quartz for a sink?

Use a hole saw drill attachment for larger holes over an inch wide. Take your time cutting through the quartz and keep the hole saw lubricated. You can also have your countertop fabricator cut the sink opening.

What rpm should I drill quartz at?

Ideal drill speeds for quartz are between 600-2000 rpm. Start on the slower end (600 rpm) for pilot holes before increasing speed for larger bit sizes. Slow down again as you cut through.

Can I crack my quartz countertop when drilling?

Cracks are possible but can be avoided. Always drill pilot holes first. Keep the quartz cool and drill at an appropriate speed. Ease up on pressure as you break through. Residual stresses in the slab can also cause cracking.

Is it better to drill quartz wet or dry?

Drilling wet helps cool the drilling site, eliminates dust buildup, and improves cutting precision. Either mist the drill area with water or dip the bits in water as you drill.

Do I need to seal around quartz holes?

Sealing around holes helps prevent moisture from seeping into the quartz material and causing damage over time. Use a tub and tile caulk or sealant recommended for quartz.


Drilling openings into quartz countertops is doable with the right diamond drill bits, proper precautions, and careful techniques. By following this guide, you can successfully drill into quartz to accommodate plumbing and electrical improvements, install new fixtures, make cutout adjustments, and other applications. Just remember to go slowly and be cautious to avoid cracks. Your custom holes will provide a clean, professional look and allow you to transform your quartz countertop during remodeling projects.