Quartz countertops are an incredibly popular choice for kitchens and bathrooms due to their durability, aesthetics, and low maintenance. However, like any surface, quartz can become damaged over time, especially by hot pots and pans. Burn marks are one of the most common issues that homeowners deal with on quartz countertops. Thankfully, there are some simple techniques you can use to remove burn marks and restore your quartz to its original beauty.
What Causes Burn Marks on Quartz?
Quartz countertops are resistant to scratches, stains, and heat damage. However, they are not completely impervious. Prolonged direct contact with extremely hot cookware can result in discoloration or burns. This happens when the sudden change in temperature from very hot cookware causes the resin in the quartz to break down.
Common causes of burn marks include:
- Leaving hot pans, pots, kettles, or baking sheets directly on the surface
- Sliding hot pots and pans across the quartz
- Setting down hot hair tools like curling irons or straighteners
The severity of the burn depends on the temperature of the object and the length of contact. The hotter the item and the longer it sits on the quartz, the worse the damage will be.
How to Remove Light Burn Marks
If you have noticed a slight discoloration or light mark from heat, don’t panic. There are a few DIY methods you can try to remove light burns:
Baking Soda and Water Paste
One of the simplest and most effective approaches is making a paste with baking soda and water. Here is how to do it:
- Take 2-3 tablespoons of baking soda and mix it with a few drops of water to form a spreadable paste.
- Use a soft cloth or sponge to gently rub the paste onto the burn mark in a circular motion.
- Let it sit for 5-10 minutes so the baking soda can work to lift the stain.
- Wipe clean with a damp cloth and dry the area thoroughly.
- Repeat as needed until the burn is gone.
Baking soda is a mild abrasive that will help scrub the stain away without damaging the quartz surface.
Hydrogen peroxide is another household item that can remove mild discoloration on quartz countertops. Follow these steps:
- Pour a small amount of 3% hydrogen peroxide directly onto the burn mark.
- Let it fizzle and bubble on the quartz for 2-3 minutes. This reaction helps lift the stain.
- Blot thoroughly with a paper towel.
- For stubborn spots, leave the peroxide on for 5+ minutes before blotting.
- Rinse with clean water and wipe dry with a soft cloth.
The oxidizing bubbles in hydrogen peroxide work to break down the bonds of the burn stain.
Mr. Clean Magic Eraser
Magic Eraser cleaning pads are lightly abrasive and can rub away light burns or marks. Gently scrub the affected area with a damp Magic Eraser using light, circular motions. Rinse and dry completely when finished. This can be done a few times if needed.
How to Remove Moderate to Severe Burn Marks
If you are dealing with a noticeable burn or a dark, etched-in mark, try these methods:
Baking Soda and Hydrogen Peroxide Paste
For more stubborn stains, combine the power of baking soda and peroxide into one treatment:
- Make a paste with 2-3 tablespoons of baking soda and just enough 3% hydrogen peroxide to form a thick paste.
- Use a soft cloth, sponge, or Magic Eraser to spread the paste onto the burn.
- Allow it to bubble and fizz on the mark for 5-10 minutes.
- Wipe clean and rinse thoroughly.
- Dry the area completely.
This duo works together to provide abrasion and oxidation to lift challenging stains. Reapply if needed.
Bar Keeper’s Friend
Bar Keeper’s Friend is a popular cleaning powder that contains oxalic acid designed to remove mineral deposits, rust, and stubborn stains. To use it:
- Make a thick paste with Bar Keeper’s Friend and water.
- Apply the paste to the burn with a damp sponge or soft cloth.
- Let it sit for 5-10 minutes before rinsing clean.
- For tougher marks, leave the paste on for up to 30 minutes before rinsing.
- Thoroughly dry the area afterwards.
Repeat as necessary for severely burned areas. The oxalic acid will help dissolve the top layer of the quartz to reveal fresh surface underneath.
Mr. Clean Magic Eraser Original Pads
The original Magic Eraser pads are more abrasive than the lighter ones and can scrub away stubborn burn stains with some elbow grease. Dampen the pad and gently rub the mark in a circular motion, applying moderate pressure. Rinse and wipe dry. Repeat if needed.
If you have access to automotive buffing or polishing compounds, these can also be effective for removing burn marks from quartz surfaces. Look for a compound designed for clear coats. Apply a small amount to a soft cloth and gently rub the burn mark. Use caution not to polish too aggressively on a small space.
Preventing Future Damage
Once you have restored your quartz countertop’s pristine appearance, be mindful going forward to avoid new burn marks:
- Always use trivets and hot pads when placing hot pans or baking sheets on quartz.
- Don’t leave flat irons or curling irons directly on the surface.
- Avoid sliding pots or pans across the quartz. Lift and place carefully.
- Clean spills promptly to avoid staining.
- Use cutting boards for food prep to protect from knives.
Your quartz countertops should stay beautiful for years to come by using caution and care! With a little time and elbow grease, even the most stubborn burn marks and stains can be removed.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does it take to remove burn marks from quartz?
Most DIY removal methods take 5-10 minutes per application. Light burns may come out with just 1-2 treatments. More stubborn stains could require several repeat applications over a longer period. Allow your chosen cleaning method to sit for a while before wiping away.
Can I use bleach to remove burns from quartz?
No, bleach is too harsh for quartz and can actually damage or discolor the surface further. Stick to more gentle cleaners like baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, and liquid dish soap.
Will burns come out completely or will light marks remain?
It’s possible to completely remove and erase most burn marks from quartz countertops. However, very severe burns that etch or scorch the surface may still leave faint light marks even after cleaning. But the marks will be significantly less noticeable.
Should I call in a professional for deep burns and stains?
For the most challenging burn stains that don’t respond to DIY methods, calling in a professional quartz restoration company is advisable. They have specialized tools and compounds to polish out even severe discoloration and damage.
Does preventative sealing help protect quartz from burns?
Sealing quartz countertops is not generally required or recommended. Quartz is non-porous, so sealers don’t soak in or add much protection. Just be sure to wipe up spills and use trivets to prevent burns.