White concrete countertops are a popular choice for modern, minimalist kitchens and bathrooms. Combining white concrete with quartz aggregates creates a beautiful, durable, and easy-to-maintain surface. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to make stunning white concrete countertops with quartz yourself.
Gather the Necessary Materials
Making concrete countertops requires some specialized materials. Here is what you will need:
- White cement
- Quartz aggregates
- Acrylic concrete additive
- Mold release agent
- Mixing buckets, stir sticks, and mixing drill
- Forms for casting the concrete
- Vibrating screed
- Orbital sander and sandpaper
Be sure to use a high-quality white cement and quartz aggregates to achieve the best results. The acrylic additive will improve the workability and strength of the concrete.
Calculate How Much Concrete You Need
Before mixing up a batch, you need to calculate how much concrete you will require for your countertop project. Measure the surface area and height of each countertop section. Calculate the volume by multiplying length x width x height. Then, refer to the supplier’s coverage rate for the volume yield per bag of concrete. It’s better to mix up a little extra than to run short.
Build the Forms
Construct sturdy forms using melamine-coated particle board or plastic laminate. The forms contain the concrete while it sets and determine the final shape and edges of your countertops. Make sure the forms are level, square, and sealed to prevent leaks. Use removable braces to reinforce the forms. Apply multiple coats of mold release agent so the concrete won’t stick.
Mix and Pour the Concrete
For each batch, start by mixing the dry ingredients – white cement, quartz aggregates, and acrylic additive. Then gradually add water while mixing until the concrete reaches the proper wet, flowable consistency. Pour the concrete into the forms, slightly overfilling them. Use a vibrating screed to consolidate the concrete and remove excess. Smooth and level the surface with a trowel. Allow concrete to cure for 24-48 hours before removing forms.
Finish and Seal the Concrete
Once cured, sand the concrete surfaces using progressively finer grit sandpaper to achieve the desired smoothness. Carefully clean and vacuum up all concrete dust. Apply penetrating concrete sealer in multiple coats, allowing it to fully dry between applications. Finally, buff the countertops with abrasive pads to polish them to a sheen.
Installation and Maintenance
Have countertops professionally installed, taking care to properly support their weight. Avoid placing very hot items directly on the concrete. Reseal every 1-2 years. Clean with pH-neutral cleaner and avoid abrasive acidic cleaners which can etch the surface. Properly cared for, your concrete and quartz countertops will stay beautiful for decades.
Frequently Asked Questions
What color quartz should I use?
White, crystal, silver, light grey or translucent quartz aggregates will maintain the clean white aesthetic. Stay away from colored quartz.
Is making concrete countertops difficult?
It takes some practice and special materials, but is a DIY-friendly project for a committed novice. Having an experienced helper is useful.
How thick should the countertop be?
Aim for 1.5 inches thick minimum, increasing to 2 inches for longer spans or overhangs. This provides adequate strength.
Can quartz surfaces get stained?
Quartz is less porous than natural stone, making it stain-resistant. But acidic substances like wine or tomato sauce can etch the surface over time. Promptly clean up spills.
Is sealing necessary?
Yes, sealing is highly recommended. It makes the concrete more impervious to stains and damages from moisture and everyday use. Reapply sealer every 1-2 years.
What edge profiles work well?
A simple eased edge is contemporary and seamless. Bullnose and ogee edges are also good choices that minimize chipping. Avoid very thin fragile edges.
With the right materials and techniques, you can achieve stunning white concrete countertops with quartz aggregates in your own home. Take your time mixing, pouring and finishing the concrete for professional-quality results. Your new handcrafted concrete and quartz countertops will be uniquely yours and enhance your space with their crisp, contemporary beauty. With proper care and maintenance, they will stay looking like new for many years.