Quartz countertops are an increasingly popular option for kitchen and bathroom remodels due to their durability, low maintenance, and stylish appearance. If you already have quartz countertops installed but wish they were a bit thicker for added durability or aesthetic appeal, there are a few ways to achieve this goal. With some careful planning and expert installation, you can give your existing quartz countertop a more substantial and seamless look.
Assess Your Current Countertop
The first step is to assess the thickness of your existing quartz countertop. Standard thickness is about 1.25 inches, but some quartz countertops can be as thin as 0.75 inches or over 2 inches thick for a more robust slab. Measure the thickness in a few spots to get an average. Knowing the current thickness will help determine how much extra quartz you need to achieve your ideal thickness.
You’ll also need to examine the countertop edges and seams. Clean edges and tight seams will make adding thickness much easier than if edges are damaged or countertops are poorly joined. Take note of any problem areas so they can be addressed during the thickening process.
Choose the Desired Thickness
Once you know your starting thickness, decide how much thicker you want the finished countertop to be. While you can technically add as much thickness as you want, going up by 0.5 to 1 inch is often ideal for a noticeable yet manageable increase in depth. Adding 1.5 to 2 inches of thickness creates a very bold, chunky look.
Consider how the added thickness will impact functionality. Thicker countertops add weight, requiring sturdier cabinetry underneath. More thickness also reduces the clearance between the counter edge and wall cabinets. Make sure items can still open and close.
Thicker countertops can also limit the installation of sinks and faucets, especially for undermount sinks. Check clearances to ensure fixtures will still fit properly.
Purchase the Additional Quartz Material
Contact your original quartz manufacturer or supplier to order new slabs that match your existing material. Provide them with the pattern name, color, and dimensions needed. Request slabs from the same lot as your originals to ensure the closest color match.
Order enough material to cover your counters with a little extra for contingencies. Also order any edging strips, backsplashes, or matching caulking for a coordinated finish. Store materials properly before installation.
Hire a Professional for Installation
Installing additional thickness on existing quartz countertops is not a DIY project. Seamlessly joining the new quartz and achieving perfectly level surfaces requires special tools and expertise. Hire an experienced professional quartz fabricator/installer.
Be sure to explain your goals for adding thickness and show them the existing installation. A reputable pro can advise you on the best way to achieve a smooth, durable finished product. Expect to pay around $100 per linear foot for the installation.
Add Support Structures as Needed
Depending on how much extra thickness you add, the countertop may now exceed the weight capacity of the original under-cabinet supports. The installer will determine if additional bracing or legs are required, especially for overhangs.
Minor reinforcement is relatively quick and inexpensive. Major additions involve extensive carpentry and could add significantly to the total project cost. Discuss options for enhanced support prior to installation if back span bracing appears necessary.
Join the New Quartz to Existing Counters
The installer will use adhesive and density clips to seamlessly bond the new quartz slabs to your existing counters. The edge seams are carefully sanded and polished to create even, continuous surfaces. The end result should appear like a single thick slab rather than two separate layers.
If aligned properly, the finished product will have virtually invisible seams between the old and new sections. The installer may need to adjust adjoining backsplashes, walls, sinks, or other areas affected by the increased countertop thickness.
Finish and Seal the Countertop
Once the new quartz is integrally joined to the original slabs, the installer can complete the job by adding any final edging, caulking, backsplashing, and fittings. All seams and junctions with walls are sealed against moisture and debris.
The entire surface is polished to an even sheen. Minor variations between the old and new quartz are normal due to age and patina. With proper care and maintenance, your thicker quartz countertops will last for many years. Enjoy the enhanced durability and luxury!
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the benefits of thicker quartz countertops?
Thicker quartz countertops are more durable, resistant to damage, and can support heavier items. The thicker profile also provides a richer, more high-end look.
What issues might prevent thickening existing quartz counters?
Badly damaged edges, poor original seams, inadequate under-cabinet support, and sink/faucet clearances could make thickening difficult or impossible.
Can you install new thicker quartz instead of adding to existing?
Yes, but this involves removing and disposing of the original countertops. It’s often more cost effective to simply add thickness.
Does added thickness affect the quartz warranty?
If done by a certified pro, your warranty will likely still be valid. But check with the manufacturer to be sure.
Should you thickening quartz countertops yourself?
No, you should always hire a professional quartz fabricator/installer. Proper tools and skills are needed to achieve a seamless finish.
How much does it cost to add thickness to quartz counters?
On average, expect to pay around $100 per linear foot for materials and professional installation of added quartz thickness.
Adding extra thickness to existing quartz counters is an appealing upgrade that boosts durability and enhances the high-end look of this popular surface. With careful planning and hiring an experienced quartz pro, you can achieve beautiful, seamless results. Investigate the thickness options to find your ideal quartz heft and elegance.