How to Grind Quartz Countertops

Assessing the Surface

Before beginning any grinding work, carefully inspect the quartz to determine the extent of damage or wear. Look for scratches, etching, stains, and areas that have lost their polish. This will help you understand how much material needs to be removed to restore the countertop’s appearance.

Gathering Supplies

You will need:

  • Variable speed angle grinder
  • Diamond grinding pads in 50, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1500 grits
  • Water source
  • Profile gauge to check levelness
  • Respirator mask and safety goggles
  • Shop vacuum

High quality diamond pads are essential for effective grinding and polishing. Pads should be in the recommended grit range from very coarse (50 grit) to extra fine (1500 grit).

Prepping the Workspace

Clear the countertop of any items or debris. Cover nearby surfaces with plastic sheeting to contain dust. Plug in and setup your grinder, vacuum, and water supply. Put on your protective gear. The workspace should be clean and clutter-free.

Leveling Out Damage

Use a profile gauge to identify any uneven spots or lippage between adjacent countertop pieces. Mark low areas. Start grinding with a coarse 50 grit pad to level out significant damage, lippage, or protrusions. Apply steady even pressure as you work the grinder in a back-and-forth motion.

Grinding Steps

Continue grinding with progressively finer grit pads, thoroughly cleaning away scratches left by the prior pad before moving to the next. Follow this sequence:

  • 100 grit
  • 200 grit
  • 400 grit
  • 800 grit
  • 1500 grit

Check for smoothness between each pad change. Keep the surface wet while grinding to control dust and prevent overheating. Completely dry the surface before switching pads. Vacuum up slurry regularly.

Polishing Technique

With the 1500 grit pad, work in a consistent pattern to cut a unidirectional finish. Overlap passes by 2/3 and keep the grinder moving constantly. Apply firm pressure. Check for swirl marks under raking light and repolish where needed.

Alternative polishing compounds, such as cerium oxide, can also be used with felt pads after the finest grit pad. This fills in microscopic scratches for an ultra refined finish.

Completing the Job

Wipe away all remaining slurry or residues. Use a razor blade to carefully scrape corners or tight areas that the grinder could not reach. Check for missed swirl marks. Do a final vacuum and clean-up. Avoid cleaning or using harsh chemicals on the quartz surface for at least 24 hours after grinding.

Tips for Grinding Quartz

  • Always keep pads wet for proper cutting action and to minimize dust.
  • Change direction with each grit level to ensure scratches are removed.
  • Thoroughly clean and dry between pad grits.
  • Apply consistent steady pressure and keep grinder moving.
  • Frequently vacuum slurry to maintain cutting efficiency.
  • Work methodically in small sections for best results.

Properly grinding quartz requires patience and attention to detail. Following these techniques will restore the polished finish of your countertops. Avoid over-grinding that can damage the surface. Hire a professional if you are uncomfortable with operating a grinder. With care and the right process, DIY quartz renewal is achievable.

Frequently Asked Questions About Grinding Quartz Countertops

Can I grind quartz myself or do I need to hire a professional?

With the right tools and careful technique, grinding quartz is a DIY-friendly process. However, it does require some experience using an angle grinder. If you are comfortable operating a grinder safely, it can be done as a DIY project. Otherwise, hiring a professional provides experience and saves labor.

What grit pads do I need for grinding quartz?

Start with a 50 grit diamond pad for heavy grinding. Progress through 100, 200, 400, 800, and 1500 grits to smoothen the surface. Adhere to this sequence for proper scratch removal. Some kits also include a 3000 or 4000 grit burnishing pad.

How can I get rid of stubborn stains in my quartz?

Deep stains may require using 40-60 grit diamond pads to grind them out. But take care not to over-grind the surrounding area. Light stains can often be removed with hydrogen peroxide or baking soda scrub.

What’s the best way to polish the surface after grinding?

Use a 1500 grit pad in consistent overlapping passes for the initial polish. Follow with a felt pad and cerium oxide polish compound. Buff thoroughly to fill microscopic scratches and create a clear glossy finish.

How do I restore the finish around edges or corners?

Use a razor blade or specialized scrapers to carefully shave off material around tight corners that the grinder cannot reach. Avoid applying too much pressure or grinding too aggressively near edges.

Can I use a hand-held sander instead of an angle grinder?

For best control and efficiency, an adjustable speed angle grinder is highly recommended. Orbital hand sanders lack the power to effectively smooth quartz. Stick to grinder tools designed for countertop use.

How soon can I use the countertop after grinding?

Avoid any cleaning or use for 24 hours after grinding and polishing. This allows the quartz surface to fully cure and seals the pores. Early exposure to liquids or chemicals can damage the renewed finish.


Grinding is an effective process to remove scratches, stains, and dulled areas from quartz surfaces. With diamond grinding pads, proper grit sequence, and technique, countertops can be restored to a like-new condition. Always assess the existing damage before starting. Work safely with attention to detail. The investment of time and care will bring damaged quartz back to its original beauty and luster.