How to Get the Shine Back on Quartz Countertops

Quartz countertops are a popular choice for many homeowners due to their durability, low maintenance, and sleek appearance. However, over time even quartz can lose its luster and appear dull. Don’t worry – with a little effort you can get the shine back on your quartz countertops.

Why Quartz Countertops Lose Their Shine

Quartz is an engineered stone made from crushed quartz particles combined with resin and pigments. The resin gives it a glossy, polished look when new. Here are some of the main reasons quartz countertops become dull over time:

  • Accumulation of dirt, grime, and soap scum from regular use
  • Etching from acidic foods and liquids like citrus, vinegar, wine etc.
  • Hard water spotting
  • Exposure to direct sunlight causing UV damage
  • Normal wear and tear from cutting and prepping foods

Cleaning vs Polishing to Restore Shine

Deep cleaning is the first step to reviving the luster, but may not remove all dullness. Polishing is key to restoring that “like-new” glossy shine.

Supplies Needed

For Cleaning:

  • pH-neutral stone cleaner or dish soap
  • Soft cloths and scrub pads
  • Bucket of warm water
  • Microfiber towels

For Polishing:

  • Quartz polishing compound or automotive polishing compound
  • Soft polishing pad or microfiber cloths
  • Clean cloths for buffing

How to Get the Shine Back on Quartz Countertops

Follow these steps to clean and polish your quartz:

1. Clear Countertops and Clean Surface

Remove everything from the countertops. Use a pH-neutral stone cleaner or mild dish soap with warm water to wash away surface dirt and grime. Rinse well and dry completely.

2. Deep Clean with Baking Soda

Make a paste of baking soda and water. Spread onto quartz and let sit for 5 minutes. Scrub using a soft cloth, pad or old toothbrush. Rinse and dry thoroughly. This will help remove stains and etched spots.

3. Polishing Compound Treatment

Apply a small amount of quartz polishing compound to a soft cloth or buffing pad. Rub the polish in a circular motion over a small section. Buff until shine is restored. Repeat across all dull areas. Remove residue with a clean cloth.

4. Clean Up Polishing Residue

Use a pH-neutral stone cleaner to wash away any leftover polishing compound residue. Rinse several times. Dry completely with microfiber towels.

5. Re-seal (Optional)

Applying quartz sealer every 1-2 years will help protect shine. Follow product instructions to apply a thin even coat, allow to dry completely.

Tips for Maintaining Quartz Shine

  • Use coasters under glasses and wipe up spills quickly
  • Avoid using acidic cleaners on the surface
  • Reapply sealer yearly
  • Routine cleaning with pH-neutral stone cleaner
  • Occasional polishing as needed

With the proper care and polishing, you can keep your quartz counters gleaming for years to come. Be sure to polish out etching or dull spots as soon as they appear to prevent permanent damage. With a little elbow grease, you can make dull quartz shine like new again.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to polish quartz countertops?

It should take about 30-60 minutes to polish an average sized kitchen countertop area. Work in small sections for best results. The polishing compound treatment itself takes just a few minutes per section.

What is the best polish or compound to use on quartz?

Look for a polish specifically formulated for engineered quartz. Automotive polishing compounds also work well. Avoid polishes with abrasives. Choose a high-quality polish from reputable brands.

Can I use a buffing wheel or orbital polisher?

Yes, you can use power tools for polishing quartz countertops, but only if you are highly experienced. They make the job faster, but also increase the risk of damage in inexperienced hands. For most DIYers, manual hand polishing is recommended.

How often should you polish quartz countertops?

For high traffic kitchens, a thorough polish once or twice per year is ideal. For low maintenance quartz, you may only need to polish once every 2-3 years. But polish right away if you notice dull or etched spots.

Will polishing remove scratches from quartz?

No, polishing helps restore the glossy shine but does not repair deep scratches or damage in quartz. For scratches, you may need professional refinishing.

In summary, maintaining the glossy shine on your quartz countertops comes down to regular gentle cleaning and polishing whenever dullness occurs. With proper care, you can enjoy lustrous quartz counters for many years before needing professional resurfacing. Be diligent, work in sections, and take your time polishing to reveal the original radiant shine.