How to Get a Stain Out of Quartz Countertops

Quartz countertops are popular in many homes due to their durability, aesthetics, and low maintenance. However, like any surface, quartz can get stained from spills, hot pans, chemicals, and more. Removing stains from quartz requires using the right techniques and products to avoid damaging the material. This comprehensive guide will teach you how to get a stain out of quartz countertops.

What Causes Stains on Quartz Countertops?

Quartz is resistant to scratches, heat, and stains. However, it is still possible for stains to occur under certain conditions. Common causes of stains on quartz include:

  • Food and Beverages – Spills from coffee, tea, wine, juice, and other drinks can stain quartz. Foods like tomatoes, mustard, and oils may also stain.
  • Heat – Hot pans, especially cast iron, can scorch and discolor quartz when in direct contact.
  • Chemicals – Cleaners with bleach, bathroom cleaners, nail polish remover, paint strippers, and more can all stain quartz.
  • Dyes/Pigments – Hair dye, makeup, ink, and other dye-based products may leave behind stains.
  • Hard Water – Mineral deposits in hard water can leave behind cloudy calcium stains.
  • Mold/Mildew – Moisture buildup can allow mold and mildew growth leading to stains.
  • Rust – Rust stains may occur if a metal object is left on quartz.
  • UV Damage – Long term sun exposure can cause yellowing.

By understanding common causes of stains, you can take steps to prevent them on quartz surfaces. But when a stain does occur, follow these steps to remove it.

Step 1: Try Gentle Cleaning Methods First

For fresh stains that have not had time to set in, start with mild cleaning methods before trying harsher stain removers. Here are some gentle options to try first:

  • Dish Soap & Warm Water – Mix a few drops of mild dish soap like Dawn in warm water. Use a soft sponge or cloth to gently clean the stain. Rinse thoroughly.
  • Baking Soda – Make a paste with baking soda and water. Let it sit on the stain briefly before scrubbing and rinsing. Baking soda is a mild abrasive.
  • Hydrogen Peroxide – For organic stains, apply peroxide directly and let it bubble on the stain. After 5 minutes, wipe and rinse. Be careful, as peroxide can bleach the quartz.
  • White Vinegar – Straight vinegar can help dissolve some stains. Pour it on, let it sit for a few minutes, then scrub and rinse.

If the stain comes up with gentle cleaning, you can avoid using harsher chemicals. But if it still remains, move on to stronger solutions.

Step 2: Try a Quartz Cleaner or All-Purpose Cleaner

If dish soap and other mild cleaners fail to remove the stain, the next step is to use a dedicated quartz cleaner or general all-purpose cleaner. Look for the following ingredients:

Quartz Cleaners

  • Stone Soap – Specifically designed for natural stone like quartz, contains mild surfactants.
  • Ammonia – Helps cut through stains, but use sparingly as it can dull quartz over time.

All-Purpose Cleaners

  • Citric Acid – Found in some ceramic and stainless steel cleaners. Helps remove mineral deposits.
  • Isopropyl Alcohol – Disinfects and can help loosen oil-based stains.
  • Hydrogen Peroxide – Whitens and fizzes to lift stains. Dilute to avoid bleaching.

When using a cleaner, apply a small amount directly to the stain and let it sit for 5-10 minutes. Then scrub with a soft brush or cleaning pad designed for quartz. Thoroughly rinse twice with clean water and dry with a soft cloth.

Step 3: Spot Treat Stubborn Stains

For tough, set-in stains that don’t respond to basic cleaners, you’ll need to use a targeted stain remover. Consult this list of solutions for specific stains:

  • Rust Stains – Use a rust remover like Whink or Iron-Out following label instructions.
  • Water Spots/Mineral Deposits – Use a calcium/lime remover designed for quartz.
  • Dyes from Makeup/Ink – Try rubbing alcohol or acetone nail polish remover.
  • Coffee/Tea Stains – Make a paste with bleach-free cleanser like Soft Scrub and water.
  • Oil-Based Stains – Dab some WD-40 or GooGone on the stain, let sit, then scrub.
  • Mold/Mildew – Spray with a mildew remover and let it soak in for 10-15 minutes before scrubbing.

Only use these spot treatments on the stained area, not the whole countertop. Check that they are approved for use on quartz before applying. Let them soak for 5-10 minutes, then scrub gently. Rinse very thoroughly afterwards.

Step 4: Use a Poultice for Stubborn Stains

For ingrained stains that resist all other treatments, you may need to use a poultice. A poultice is a thick paste that you apply directly to the stain, let dry, and scrape off. It draws out deep set stains.

To make a simple poultice:

  • Mix 1 part hydrogen peroxide and 2 parts baking soda into a spreadable paste.
  • Apply a 1/4 inch thick layer directly on the stain.
  • Cover it with plastic wrap and allow it to dry completely – overnight if needed.
  • Scrape off the dried poultice using a plastic scraper or putty knife.
  • Rinse the area well and check if the stain is gone.
  • Repeat as needed until the stain disappears.

There are also pre-made poultice products available to purchase. Follow package directions closely when using a commercial poultice.

Step 5: Prevent Future Stains on Quartz

Once you’ve successfully removed a stain from your quartz countertop, take steps to prevent new stains in the future:

  • Wipe up spills immediately before they have a chance to set.
  • Use cutting boards and trivets for food prep to avoid direct contact.
  • Clean quartz regularly with a quartz-safe cleaner.
  • Re-seal quartz annually with a penetrating sealer to add stain protection.
  • Avoid exposing quartz to excess moisture that could lead to mildew growth.
  • Don’t let hot pans or harsh chemicals come in contact with the surface.

With proper care and prompt cleaning, you can keep quartz countertops looking like new for years. But when stains inevitably occur, use this comprehensive guide to get them out of quartz quickly and safely.

Frequently Asked Questions About Removing Stains from Quartz Countertops

Can I use bleach to remove stains from quartz?

No, avoid using bleach or bleach-containing cleaners on quartz countertops. The harsh chemicals in bleach can damage, dissolve, and discolor the surface. Opt for bleach-free cleaners when cleaning quartz.

What is the best homemade stain remover for quartz?

A mix of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide makes an effective DIY stain remover for quartz. Form it into a paste and let it sit on the stain for 5-10 minutes before scrubbing and rinsing. The peroxide whitens while the baking soda lifts stains.

Will lemon juice remove stains from quartz?

Yes, lemon juice can help eliminate some stains from quartz thanks to the citric acid it contains. Squeeze fresh lemon juice onto the stain, let it soak for a few minutes, then scrub and rinse away. The natural acidity in lemon juice breaks down stubborn stains.

Can I use Magic Eraser on quartz countertops?

Magic Eraser cleaning pads can be used cautiously on quartz countertops. Rub gently when using them to avoid scratching or dulling the surface. Be sure to wring them out thoroughly first so they are just barely damp. Rinse and dry thoroughly after use.

What removes grease stains from quartz?

For grease stains on quartz, rub a small amount of diluted dish soap on the spot and allow it to penetrate for 5 minutes. Then sprinkle some baking soda onto the greasy area and use a soft brush and warm water to scrub. Rinse and dry completely. Repeat if needed. The soap emulsifies grease while the baking soda lifts away residues.

How do I get rid of hard water stains on my quartz countertop?

To remove stubborn hard water stains from quartz, use a cleaner made specifically for dissolving mineral deposits and soap scum, such as CLR or Lime-Away. Spray it directly on the hard water stain, wait 5-10 minutes, then wipe and rinse thoroughly with clean water. This will break down and remove the minerals.

Can vinegar damage quartz countertops?

White vinegar is generally safe to use on quartz for cleaning and removing stains. However, you’ll want to avoid soaking the countertop in vinegar or leaving it on too long, as the acidity could potentially dull the surface over time with repeated exposure. Always rinse surfaces thoroughly after cleaning with vinegar.

What kind of sponge should be used on quartz?

Always use soft, non-abrasive sponges, cloths and brushes on quartz countertops to avoid scratching. Soft microfiber cloths, dish sponges without scrubbing pads, and soft nylon brushes are best. Avoid stiff scrub brushes.

Can I use a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser on my quartz countertop?

Yes, Magic Erasers can be used sparingly on quartz if needed to remove stubborn marks and stains. But be very gentle – don’t rub vigorously or it could dull the finish. Limit Magic Eraser use on quartz to occasional spot cleaning, not daily cleaning.


Quartz countertops are prone to stains over time with regular use. But with the proper techniques, you can safely remove stains from quartz without damaging the surface. First try mild detergents, then move to stronger cleaners if needed. For set-in stains, use poultices or targeted spot treatments. And be sure to take steps to protect your quartz from future stains. With some elbow grease and the right products, you can keep quartz countertops spotless.