Quartz countertops are popular in many homes due to their durability, aesthetic appeal, and low maintenance. However, like any surface, quartz can get scuffed and scratched over time. Scuff marks on a quartz countertop can really detract from its appearance. Fortunately, there are several effective methods for removing scuff marks from quartz.
What Causes Scuff Marks on Quartz?
Quartz is remarkably scratch and scuff resistant, but it is not impervious. Scuff marks on quartz are usually caused by:
- Pots, pans, or cooking utensils scraping across the surface
- Appliances like mixers or blenders vibrated across the countertop
- Bottles, cans, or other objects dragged across the quartz
- Sand, dirt, or grime ground into the surface over time
Quartz is made from natural stone and resin. While very durable, under enough pressure or abrasion, the surface can get scratched. Dull, whitish scuff marks are the most common.
Cleaning vs. Polishing for Scuff Removal
Cleaning refers to using chemicals and cleaners to break up and dissolve the residue causing a mark. This works well for stains and etching.
Polishing uses mild abrasives to literally buff out and grind down superficial marks and nicks in the quartz. This is effective for scuffs and surface scratches.
Cleaning can get rid of discoloration, while polishing smooths the texture. For scuff mark removal, polishing is usually the most effective solution.
How to Remove Mild Scuff Marks from Quartz
For light surface scuffs, these DIY methods often work:
- Baking soda – Make a paste with baking soda and water. Gently rub over the scuff with a soft cloth or sponge. Rinse and dry thoroughly. The mild abrasive action can erase scuffs.
- White vinegar – Dip a soft cloth in undiluted white vinegar and rub over the scuff mark. Rinse with water and dry the surface completely. Vinegar can dissolve some light markings.
- Hydrogen peroxide – Apply hydrogen peroxide directly to the scuff with a cotton pad or ball. Let it fizz and work for a minute or two, then rinse. The bubbling action can lift residues.
- Bar keepers friend – This cleaning powder contains oxalic acid and feldspar to cut through stains. Make a paste, apply to the scuff, let sit briefly, and wipe clean. Rinse thoroughly.
- Mr. Clean Magic Eraser – These melamine foam blocks are slightly abrasive. Rub gently over scuffs to remove them, rinsing after. Do not apply too much pressure, which can itself leave marks.
- Automotive polishes – Like toothpaste, car polish contains mild abrasives that can buff out scuffs. Apply a small dab, rub with a soft cloth, then rinse. Swirl mark remover products work well.
Always use a soft cloth or sponge when trying these homemade scuff removers. Rub gently to avoid creating more scratches. Rinse thoroughly after cleaning.
Removing Stubborn Scuff Marks from Quartz
For more stubborn scuff marks that resist DIY efforts, you may need to use more powerful polishing methods:
Scuff Removal Paste
Specialty pastes are made to polish out scuffs from quartz. Look for ones made just for quartz rather than marble or granite. Apply to the scuffed area, allow to dry per product instructions, and buff clean.
Popular commercial scuff removal pastes include:
- Bellinzoni Quartz Scuff Remover Paste
- GranQuartz Scratch Be Gone
- KleenQuartz Scuff Remover
- Cambria Magic Cleaner
Power Drill with Buffing Pad
Using a power drill with a buffing pad attachment can provide the mechanical abrasion needed to smooth and shine up scuffed quartz. Always start gently and work up to higher speeds/pressure only if needed.
- Use a soft buffing pad made for the purpose – white is ideal. Avoid stiff scrub pads.
- Work in a small area first as a test patch before treating the entire scuffed surface.
- Apply light pressure and buff with a polishing cream or paste.
- Rinse and dry thoroughly when complete.
This mechanically polishes off the top layer to reveal the smooth quartz underneath. Exercise care not to over buff which can leave swirl marks.
Professional Polishing Service
For damaged quartz or scuffs that cover a large area, consider hiring a professional countertop re-finishing service. They have commercial grade polishers and compounds to buff out scratches and make quartz look freshly installed again. This option provides the most thorough scuff removal but comes with a higher cost than DIY efforts.
How to Avoid Scuffs on Quartz Later On
To minimize scuffs and scratches occurring in the future:
- Use cutting boards, hot pads, trivets and appliance pads to protect the surface.
- Avoid dragging pots, pans or appliances across the quartz. Lift and set down.
- Don’t apply too much pressure when scrubbing. Use soft cleaners and sponges.
- Routinely clean quartz to prevent buildup of grime that acts as an abrasive.
- Immediately clean spills, especially oils that can stain if left for long.
- Consider a professional sealant which can enhance the scratch resistance of quartz.
With proper care and prompt treatment, most scuffs on quartz countertops can be removed. Try gentler homemade solutions first but don’t hesitate to use stronger polishing methods for stubborn marks and scratches that won’t budge easily. With the right techniques, you can restore the original beauty of your quartz countertops.
Frequently Asked Questions About Removing Scuff Marks from Quartz Countertops
How can I remove a deep gouge in my quartz countertop?
Deep gouges need professional repair as they impact the actual stone quartz material, not just the surface. A pro can sand and refinish the damaged section to make gouges virtually disappear.
What natural scuff removers work best for quartz?
Baking soda, vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, and lemon juice work well due to their chemical compositions that dissolve residues and also provide a little gentle abrasion when rubbed. Always test on a small area first.
Will scouring powders damage my quartz?
Scouring powders are too abrasive for quartz. They can create swirl marks and actually leave more scuffs. Use a baking soda paste or specialty quartz polish instead for gentle cleaning.
How can I make future scuffs less likely?
Use hot pads, trivets, cutting boards, and appliances pads to prevent direct contact. Clean spills quickly. Avoid dragging objects across the surface. Consider applying a professional sealant for added protection.
Why avoid stiff scrub brushes and pads on quartz?
Stiff bristles and scrub pads are too abrasive for quartz which can cause scratches. Soft cloths, sponges, and brushes are gentler options.