Quartz countertops are engineered stone surfaces known for their durability, but they can still get scratched over time. Fortunately, there are several effective methods for repairing scratches on quartz. With a little effort, you can make those unpleasant marks disappear.
What Causes Scratches on Quartz?
Quartz is resistant to scratches and stains, but it is not completely scratch-proof. The main causes of scratches include:
- Dragging cookware, appliances, or other objects across the surface
- Not using a cutting board
- Spills of acidic foods and liquids like lemon juice or tomato sauce
- Cleaning with abrasive pads or powders
- Diamond rings or other jewelry rubbing against the surface
Scratches damage the top layer of the quartz leaving white marks, but typically do not penetrate deep into the material.
Best Methods for Repairing Quartz Scratches
Clean and Prepare the Surface
Before repairing scratches, clean the countertop thoroughly with a non-abrasive cleaner. This removes any dirt or debris that could hinder the repair process.
Make sure the surface is completely dry before moving onto the next steps. It’s also a good idea to cover any nearby areas to prevent excess powder or liquids from causing additional mess.
Use a Color-Matched Filler
For shallow, surface-level scratches, a colored filler specifically designed for quartz offers the easiest, most effective solution. These fillers contain polymers and binding agents that allow the compound to firmly adhere inside the scratches.
- Choose a filler that matches your quartz color and finish.
- Apply a small amount directly into the scratch, then wipe away any excess.
- Allow the filler to dry completely, usually 5-10 minutes.
The scratch should become nearly invisible after the filler cures. This quick fix works for minor marks up to 1 mm deep.
Try a Quartz Color Stain
For deeper scratches or large areas of damage, liquid stains provide longer-lasting repairs. Micro-pigments in the stain soak into the porous scratches and permanently color the damaged spots.
- Select a stain matching your countertop’s color and finish. Multiple colors can be blended for a custom match.
- Use an applicator brush to dab stain directly into the scratch. Apply thin coats and allow each layer to dry.
- When the stained area matches the surrounding quartz, wipe away any excess residue.
- Allow the stain to fully cure for 24 hours before excessive use.
Stains offer a more heavy-duty fix for scratches up to 2 mm deep.
Sand and Re-polish Severe Scratches
If deep scratches cannot be filled with stain alone, light sanding followed by re-polishing may be required. This abrades away the damaged layer of quartz, taking the scratch with it.
- Use 100-200 grit sandpaper to gently smooth the scratched area. Take care not to sand too aggressively.
- Follow by hand rubbing the sanded spot with 400 and then 800 grit sandpaper.
- Apply quartz-specific polishing cream with a soft cloth. Rub in a circular motion until glossy.
- Clean and buff the countertop to finish the polishing process.
Sanding should only be done for particularly stubborn scratches where the other methods are ineffective. Take precautions to contain the mess produced.
Know When to Call a Professional
If you have extensive scratching or other significant damage like chips or cracks, it’s best to contact a professional quartz restoration company. They have specialized tools and materials to perform more dramatic repairs. Their services may include:
- Filling large scratched areas with color-matched epoxy
- Grinding down severe scratches for a smooth finish
- Sealing significant cracks or gaps
- Partial or full resurfacing of the damaged quartz
Though DIY methods work for minor scratches, don’t try to tackle major repairs yourself. Hire experts when damage exceeds your repair abilities.
Tips for Preventing Scratches
While occasional scratches are nearly unavoidable, you can take steps to protect your quartz and minimize damage:
- Always use cutting boards, trivets, and pads under hot pans or appliances. Never cut or place hot items directly on the quartz.
- Clean with a soft sponge or cloth. Avoid abrasive pads or powders.
- Rinse spills like wine, juice, or oil immediately to prevent stains.
- Lift objects instead of sliding them across the surface.
- Apply a quartz sealant every 6-12 months for added scratch protection.
- Handle the countertop gently during daily use and when cleaning.
By being careful and proactive, you can keep your quartz looking like new for many years.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the best home remedies for fixing quartz scratches?
The most effective DIY remedies are quartz-specific fillers and color stains. Apply them directly into shallow scratches for an easy, inexpensive repair. They are available online or at most home improvement stores.
How deep of scratches can be repaired at home?
Minor scratches up to about 2 mm deep can typically be fixed using filler, stain, or light sanding techniques. Anything deeper than that may require professional help.
Does toothpaste work to remove scratches from quartz?
No, avoid using toothpaste. It can create more visibility problems. Only use repair products designed for engineered stone.
Can you buff out scratches in quartz countertops?
Very shallow surface scratches may be gently buffed out using extra fine (800+ grit) sandpaper and a quartz polishing compound. But be cautious not to create deeper damage.
Should you try to sand and polish quartz yourself?
Only if you have experience with resurfacing techniques. Aggressive DIY sanding can worsen the appearance. Consult a pro if unsure.
Quartz countertops develop scratches over time, but don’t despair. In most cases, they can be repaired effectively. Colored fillers, stains, and polishing provide affordable options to remove light scratches at home. For best results addressing deeper damage, hire a professional quartz restoration contractor. With the right methods and care, your scratched quartz can look bright, glossy, and scratch-free once again.