Quartz countertops are popular in many homes for their durability, low maintenance, and beautiful appearance. However, like any surface, quartz can become scratched from daily wear and tear. The good news is that minor scratches can often be repaired at home without having to replace the entire countertop. Here is an in-depth guide on how to get scratches out of quartz countertops.
Clean and Inspect the Scratch
Before attempting to repair a scratch, thoroughly clean the countertop with a gentle cleaner or mild soap and water to remove any dirt or debris that may interfere with the repair process. Carefully inspect the scratch and try to determine how deep it is. Light surface scratches may be able to be buffed out, while deeper scratches may require filling with a specialty repair product.
Buffing Out Light Scratches
If the scratch is minor and only affects the top glossy layer of the quartz, you may be able to simply buff it out:
- Use a smooth buffing pad or extremely fine sandpaper around 200 grit. Go over the scratch using gentle, circular motions.
- Make sure to buff in the direction of the grain and keep the pad/paper flat against the surface. Buff until the scratch becomes less noticeable.
- Follow up by buffing the entire countertop with a polishing compound or automotive wax to restore an even shine.
- Avoid pressing too hard or you may create deeper scratches. This method works best for hairline scratches.
Filling Deeper Scratches
For scratches that are deeper and catch your fingernail, a filler product specifically designed for quartz or stone countertops should be used:
- Clean and dry the scratched area thoroughly before applying any filler.
- Choose an acrylic based filler stick that matches the color of your countertop. The manufacturer may recommend a specific filler product.
- Follow all label directions. Fillers often require gently melting the filler into the scratch using a heat gun.
- Allow the filler to fully cure overnight before polishing or using the countertop.
- Buff with a soft cloth and polishing cream to blend the repaired area.
For very deep gouges or extensive damage, it may be best to hire a professional quartz fabricator or countertop refinisher. They have specialized tools and materials to seamlessly repair blemishes. This route may be quicker and yield better results than DIY methods for severe scratches.
Preventing Future Scratches
While quartz is incredibly durable, some basic precautions can help prevent scratches:
- Use cutting boards and trivets when preparing food. Never cut directly on the counter.
- Clean spills promptly to avoid residue etching the surface.
- Don’t drag cookware or appliances across the quartz. Lift items when moving them.
- Use a soft sponge or cloth for cleaning. Avoid abrasive pads.
- Rinse wipedown the countertop after using harsh cleaners.
- Apply a penetrating sealant annually to increase scratch resistance.
With proper care and these repair tips, it is possible to minimize scratches and keep quartz countertops looking like new for many years. But if damage does occur, know that there are effective options available to remove scratches and restore your countertop’s flawless finish.
Frequently Asked Questions About Repairing Scratches in Quartz Countertops
Can I use automotive buffing or polishing compounds on my quartz countertop?
Yes, you can use specially formulated automotive polishing compounds to help remove light scratches and restore shine to quartz countertops. Use a buffing pad and work in circular motions, cleaning the surface thoroughly after buffing. Avoid wax products as they can create a film.
How can I determine the depth of a scratch on my quartz?
Use your fingernail to feel if the scratch catches as you run it across the mark. If you can feel the scratch it typically needs a filler, while very fine hairline scratches may buff out. Scratches deep enough to catch with a fingernail are below the top gloss layer and require filling.
What homemade remedies safely remove scratches from quartz?
Baking soda mixed with lemon juice or hydrogen peroxide can be used to lightly buff very minor marks. Use a soft cloth and minimal pressure. Vinegar and olive oil is another homemade option. However, commercial buffing pads and filler sticks are best for deeper scratches.
Can I use a scratch repair kit made for glass on my quartz countertops?
No, do not use glass scratch removers or polishes on quartz. The formulations are different and may damage the quartz surface. Purchase a filler and buffing kit specifically designed for use on quartz and natural stone surfaces.
Is there a limit to how many times I can repair scratches in the same spot?
It’s best to limit repairs on any one area to 2-3 times. The quartz can become uneven or discolored with repeated repairs. If an area is very prone to damage, it may be time to consult a professional about replacement.
How long does quartz countertop scratch filler last before needing reapplication?
With proper care, a scratch repair should last several years or more. To extend its durability, use trivets and cutting boards, avoid dragging objects across the quartz, and reapply sealant yearly. Avoid using harsh cleaners which can break down filler over time.
Minor scratches in quartz countertops can often be repaired successfully without replacing the entire countertop. First determine if the scratch can be smoothed by buffing or if filler is needed for deeper marks. Take care when buffing to avoid making the problem worse. For best results with deeper repairs, use a specialty filler and allow adequate curing time. Preventative measures such as trivets and cutting boards can also help minimize the appearance of scratches over time. With some effort, the beauty and seamless look of quartz countertops can be restored and maintained for many years.