How to Remove Rust Stain on Quartz Countertop

Rust stains on quartz countertops can be unsightly and difficult to remove. However, with the right techniques and products, these stains can be eliminated. Here is a comprehensive guide on how to remove rust stains from quartz countertops.

What Causes Rust Stains on Quartz?

Quartz countertops contain natural quartz crystals combined with resins and pigments. While quartz is non-porous, if given enough time, liquids can seep into tiny crevices in the surface and cause stains. Rust stains occur when metal objects like cookware, utensils, or hardware come into contact with moisture on the countertop. As the metal rusts, it leaves behind a residue that stains the surface.

Removing Light Rust Stains

For light surface stains that have not had time to set in, these simple steps may remove the rust:

  • Wipe the stain with a soft cloth dampened with warm water. This helps lift surface rust from the countertop.
  • Mix a solution of mild dish soap and warm water. Use a soft cloth to gently scrub the rust stain with the soapy water.
  • Rinse the area thoroughly with clean water and dry with a soft towel.
  • If needed, repeat the process using a baking soda and water paste. The abrasive but gentle baking soda can help lift more stubborn stains.
  • Rinse and dry the countertop. The light rust stain should be gone.

Eliminating Stubborn Rust Stains

For deeper set or stubborn rust stains, more aggressive cleaning is required:

Supplies Needed

  • White vinegar
  • Dish soap
  • Clean cloth
  • Bowl of warm water
  • Spray bottle filled with warm water

Step-by-Step Process

  1. Mix a solution of equal parts white vinegar and warm water in a spray bottle. Liberally spray the rust stain, allowing the solution to soak for 5-10 minutes. The acetic acid in the vinegar will help dissolve the rust.
  2. Add a couple drops of dish soap to a bowl of warm water. Dip a soft clean cloth in the soapy water.
  3. Gently rub the rust stained area with the soapy cloth, rinsing frequently. The soap helps lift the stain from the textured quartz surface.
  4. Spray more vinegar solution and continue cleaning with soapy water until the rust stain has disappeared.
  5. Rinse thoroughly with clean water and dry with a soft towel.
  6. If any shadow remains, repeat the process. Persistent scrubbing with the vinegar and soap should remove even stubborn rust stains.

Prevention Tips

Preventing future rust stains on quartz countertops only requires a little care:

  • Always use trivets or mats under hot pans and cookware. Allow cookware to cool completely before setting directly on the quartz.
  • Clean up food or liquid spills immediately to prevent staining.
  • For wet items like houseplants or cleaning buckets, place a towel under them to keep moisture off the counter.
  • Frequently wipe down your quartz countertop to keep the surface clean and dry.

Following these simple practices will help keep your quartz counters stain-free. But if stains do occur, use the effective techniques outlined to safely remove rust stains without damaging the quartz. With some persistence, you can restore the countertop to its original pristine condition.

Frequently Asked Questions About Removing Rust Stains from Quartz Countertops

Can I use bleach to remove rust stains from quartz?

No, avoid using bleach or other harsh chemicals on quartz countertops. The chlorine in bleach can damage and discolor the quartz surface. For safe rust removal, stick to gentle solutions like vinegar, dish soap, and baking soda.

What about hydrogen peroxide?

Hydrogen peroxide can be used in moderation to lift rust stains from quartz. Mix it with baking soda and warm water to form a paste. Gently scrub and rinse. But test first, as prolonged exposure to peroxide may whiten or discolor the surface.

Will a rust remover gel work?

Yes, a commercial rust stain remover gel formulated for stone surfaces can be effective. Look for a gel without acids or bleach. Apply a thin layer, allowing it to sit for 1-2 hours before rinsing clean. Check that it is safe for quartz before using.

How can I get rust out of etching or scratches in my quartz?

For light scratches, use a soft cloth and toothpaste to gently rub out the rust. For deeper etching, apply a poultice made with flour, hydrogen peroxide, and warm water. Let it sit overnight, then scrape and rinse away. This should lift stuck rust from damaged areas of quartz.

Why is my entire quartz countertop stained pink?

A pinkish stain on the entire surface likely indicates the quartz reacted with cleaning chemicals containing hydrofluoric acid. Unfortunately, this causes permanent damage. The only remedy is a professional resurfacing or replacing the countertop. Always avoid products with HF on quartz.


Rust stains can quickly develop on quartz countertops from metal objects but don’t have to be permanent. With prompt cleaning using ingredients like dish soap, vinegar, and baking soda, you can often remove light rust stains easily. For stubborn stains that have set into the surface, vigorous scrubbing with vinegar and soapy water should eliminate the problem. With the proper care, your beautiful quartz countertops can remain stunning rust-free for many years.