How to Remove Silicone from Quartz Countertop

Silicone is a common material used to seal joints and gaps in quartz countertops during installation. Over time, old or discolored silicone can detract from the appearance of your countertop. Removing silicone residue can be tedious, but with the right techniques and products, you can get your quartz countertop looking like new again.

Understanding Silicone and Quartz Countertops

Silicone has many useful properties that make it ideal for sealing quartz countertops:

  • Flexibility – It can stretch and compress to accommodate movement between countertop slabs.
  • Adhesion – It sticks very well to materials like quartz, metal, glass, and plastic.
  • Water resistance – It creates a watertight barrier to prevent leaks.
  • Durability – It holds up well over time without cracking or crumbling.

Quartz countertops are engineered stone made from ground quartz aggregate held together with resin and pigments. The quartz material is non-porous and resistant to scratches, stains, and heat. However, quartz can be prone to damage at the seams and joints where countertop slabs meet. The silicone seals these vulnerable spots.

How to Remove Old Silicone from a Quartz Countertop

Removing old silicone residue requires breaking down the adhesive properties. Here are the basic steps:

Gather the Right Tools

You’ll need:

  • Silicone sealant remover chemical
  • Plastic putty knife or scraper
  • Old credit card or gift card
  • Paper towels or rags
  • Safety gear like gloves and eye protection

Avoid metal scrapers or razor blades that could scratch the quartz surface.

Apply Silicone Remover

Apply a silicone remover product liberally to the affected areas and let it soak in for 5-10 minutes. This helps soften and dissolve the silicone.

Popular silicone remover products include Goo Gone, WD-40, and acetone nail polish remover.

Scrape Away the Silicone

Use your plastic scraper to gently lift and scrape away the softened silicone. Apply more remover as needed to really break down the adhesive.

You can also use an old gift card or credit card to get under the silicone and scrape it off. The flexibility helps remove the silicone without scratching the quartz.

Wipe Away Residue

Use paper towels or rags to wipe away any remaining silicone residue after scraping. Reapply remover and scrape again if there is still leftover silicone.

Pro Tip: Use a razor blade to gently scrape off any extremely stubborn leftover specks of silicone. Just be very careful not to scratch the quartz surface.

Clean and Reseal the Surface

Once all traces of old silicone are removed, wash the countertop area with soapy water or quartz cleaner to eliminate any remaining remover residue.

Allow the surface to fully dry, then apply fresh silicone sealant to reseal any gaps or seams. Allow the new silicone to fully cure for 24-48 hours before exposing it to water.

Tips for Removing Silicone from Quartz

  • Test removers in an inconspicuous spot first to ensure it doesn’t damage the quartz.
  • Avoid overscraping or pushing too hard, which can gouge the quartz surface. Take your time and gently lift the silicone.
  • Use mineral spirits for final cleanup to remove oily silicone remover residues.
  • If dealing with colored silicone, it may stain the quartz upon removal.
  • Work in a well-ventilated area and wear gloves when handling silicone removers.

Common Questions about Removing Silicone from Quartz

What kind of silicone is best for resealing quartz countertops?

Look for 100% silicone caulk designed for kitchen and bath applications. Avoid latex or acrylic caulks. Go with a clear silicone unless matching a colored caulk already in use.

What’s the easiest way to remove old silicone?

A silicone remover chemical helps soften the silicone to make scraping easier. Goo Gone is a popular and effective option. Allowing the remover to soak helps lift the silicone.

Can I use a metal scraper or razor to remove silicone?

It’s best to use plastic scrapers and cards to avoid scratching. Only use a razor blade as a last resort for final speck cleanup, using extreme care.

How do I prevent silicone stains on my quartz?

Test removers first and wipe up excess promptly to prevent staining. Use mineral spirits afterward if needed to remove oily residue. Colored silicone is more prone to staining.

Is there an alternative to silicone for sealing quartz countertops?

Silicone is the most common and effective option. Some alternatives include polyurethane caulk or sealants like Epoxy or urethane. Talk to your countertop installer for best recommendations.


Removing old silicone from quartz countertops takes a bit of time and elbow grease, but the results are worth it. With the proper tools and technique, you can eliminate unsightly silicone residue and have your countertop looking fresh and flawless again. Just be sure to take care not to scratch or stain the quartz surface in the process. Proper cleaning and resealing will keep your countertop seals intact for years to come.