How to Get Stain Out of Quartz Countertops

Quartz countertops are an increasingly popular choice for kitchen and bathroom remodeling projects thanks to their durability, low maintenance, and stylish appearance. However, like any surface, quartz can be susceptible to staining from spills and residues if not properly cared for. The good news is that quartz is non-porous, so stains tend to sit on top of the surface rather than absorbing in. With the right techniques and cleaning solutions, even stubborn stains can be removed from quartz.

What Causes Stains on Quartz?

Quartz is resistant to most household spills and residues. However, substances like wine, coffee, tea, juice, and oil-based products can leave stains if left to sit. Prolonged exposure to hair dye, ink, paint or metalmarks from pans can also discolor quartz. The non-porous nature of quartz prevents stains from soaking in deeply, but surface stains still need to be cleaned for aesthetic reasons.

Best Practices to Prevent Staining

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure when it comes to quartz countertop stains. Following best practices can help minimize the occurrence of stains:

  • Wipe up spills immediately before residue dries on the surface
  • Use coasters under glasses and cups
  • Don’t let soap or cleaning products dry on the quartz
  • Use cutting boards for food prep to prevent metal marks
  • Clean quartz regularly with a gentle cleaner

Regular cleaning and prompt spill cleanup will prevent most stains on quartz surfaces.

Supplies for Removing Dried Stains

If a stain has dried or set on quartz, specific supplies will be needed to remove it:

  • Mild nonabrasive cleaner or dish soap
  • Non-abrasive scrub pad or sponge
  • Paper towels, soft cloths
  • White vinegar or ammonia (for tougher stains)
  • Plastic scraper (optional)
  • Eye protection, gloves and mask (for harsher chemicals)

Avoid using abrasive cleansers or powders that could scratch the quartz finish.

Steps to Remove Dried Stains from Quartz

Follow these steps using a gentle approach to lift stains without damaging quartz:

Step 1: Try Dish Soap and Warm Water

For light stains that are fresh, mix a few drops of dish soap like Dawn with warm water. Use a soft sponge or cloth to gently scrub the stained area in circles. Rinse thoroughly afterwards. This may lift fresh stains.

Step 2: Use a Granite Cleaner

For tougher stains, spray a specially formulated quartz or granite cleaner onto the stain according to label directions. Gently scrub with a soft cleaning pad. Avoid using too much pressure. Rinse thoroughly after cleaning.

Step 3: Make a Baking Soda Paste

To break down stubborn stains, make a paste with baking soda and water. Spread onto the stain and let sit for 5-10 minutes. Scrub gently with a soft scrub pad or sponge afterwards. Rinse thoroughly. Baking soda has natural deodorizing and cleaning abilities.

Step 4: Use Mild Acids like Vinegar

For hard water marks or extremely stubborn stains, use a mild acid like white vinegar or ammonia. Test first on an inconspicuous spot to ensure it doesn’t etch the finish. Pour a small amount onto the stain and let soak in for 10-15 minutes before scrubbing. Rinse very thoroughly afterwards. This can help break down some mineral deposits and residue. Avoid this step for metal marks.

Step 5: Use a Plastic Scraper

If a plastic spatula can remove dried or crusted material without scratching quartz, gently scrape the residue off the surface. Avoid scraping too vigorously. Follow up by cleaning the area afterwards.

Step 6: Consider Calling a Professional

For stains that don’t respond to home treatment, consider hiring a professional quartz cleaning service. They have access to more aggressive cleaning solutions that can safely lift difficult stains without harming quartz. This is recommended for ink, paint or significant discoloration issues.

Tips for Stain Removal Success

Keep these tips in mind when tackling quartz stain removal:

  • Always use a soft, non-abrasive scrubbing pad or sponge
  • Never use harsh chemicals like bleach, alkaline cleaners or abrasive powders
  • Limit pressure to avoid damaging the surface
  • Rinse thoroughly after applying any cleaning solutions
  • Blot dry with soft towels to prevent water spots
  • Repeat treatments for stubborn stains if needed
  • Test cleaners in inconspicuous areas first

With some elbow grease and the proper techniques, you can successfully remove dried stains from quartz countertops without professional help in most cases. The key is being gentle yet thorough in lifting the residue.

Frequently Asked Questions About Removing Stains from Quartz

Can I use bleach or alkaline cleaners on quartz stains?

No, avoid bleach, alkaline cleaners, or acidic solutions like lemon juice, as these can etch and damage the quartz surface over time. Milder solutions are recommended.

How can I prevent metal marks on my quartz countertop?

Use cutting boards for food prep instead of cutting directly on quartz, and lift pots and pans when moving them. Promptly clean any metal marks that occur with a granite cleaner.

What about tough stains like permanent marker or ink?

Hairspray or hand sanitizer can help lift permanent marker. For stubborn ink stains, try ammonia or acetone with extreme care to prevent damage. Seeking professional help is recommended for these extreme stains.

Why avoid abrasive cleansers on quartz?

The abrasives in products like Comet or Ajax can scratch the surface of quartz over time. Use exclusively non-abrasive cleaners and scrub pads.

How often should I seal my quartz countertops?

Quartz does not require sealing like natural stone. At most, a quartz sealer can be applied once a year for added protection, but consult your manufacturer.


Quartz offers durability and low maintenance, but stains can happen over time. By following a gentle cleaning approach using non-abrasive solutions safe for quartz, most stains can be removed successfully at home. For best results preventing stains, promptly clean up spills, use trivets and cutting boards, and clean quartz regularly. With some perseverance and the right supplies, you can keep your quartz counters looking like new.