How to Tell the Quality of Quartz Countertops


Quartz countertops have become increasingly popular in recent years due to their durability, aesthetics, and low maintenance. When shopping for quartz countertops, it is important to be able to discern high-quality from low-quality materials. There are several factors to consider when evaluating the quality of quartz countertops.

This comprehensive guide will provide tips on how to tell a high-quality quartz countertop from a low-quality one. We will cover the composition, appearance, fabrication, warranty, and brand reputation of quartz countertops to help you make an informed decision. With the right knowledge, you can invest in a beautiful and long-lasting quartz countertop that will stand the test of time.


The composition of a quartz countertop will impact its quality and performance. Here’s what to look for:

Quartz Content

  • Higher quality quartz contains over 90% ground quartz aggregate mixed with polymer resins and pigments.
  • Lower quality contains less quartz, around 70-80%, and more polymer resins.
  • Higher quartz content makes the counter more scratch, stain, and heat resistant.

Polymer Resin Type

  • Better quality uses polyester resin which is durable and stain resistant.
  • Lower quality uses cheaper urethane resin which can yellow over time.


  • High quality quartz uses finer ground, purer pigments for uniform background color.
  • Lower quality has cheaper, coarser pigments with more variation in color.


  • Quality quartz contains no fillers like glass, seashells, or metal flecks that can discolor or fade over time.

Recycled Content

  • Higher priced quartz often contains recycled glass, mirror or porcelain which is environmentally friendly.
  • Cheaper varieties do not use recycled materials.

The highest quality quartz contains over 90% ground quartz, polyester resin, pure pigments and recycled content without fillers.


The appearance of a quartz countertop also reveals a lot about its quality:

Color Consistency

  • High quality quartz has uniform, consistent background color throughout the slab.
  • Lower quality can have splotchy areas with uneven color.

Pattern Consistency

  • With patterned quartz, quality is consistent in pattern, color and finish across the entire slab.
  • Lower quality has variation between different parts of the slab.

Surface Finish

  • Better quartz has a smoother, glass-like finish without pits or rough spots.
  • Lesser quality can have a noticeably grainy or uneven texture.


  • High end quartz has crisp, clean edges cut precisely to specifications.
  • Lower end can have jagged, uneven edges, especially around cutouts.


  • Higher quality fabrication results in tight seams that are hardly noticeable.
  • Poorer fabrication leads to wider, more visible seams between slabs.

Quartz with uniform background color, consistent patterns, smooth surface, clean edges and barely visible seams indicates higher quality.


The fabrication process greatly impacts the final look and quality of quartz countertops:


  • High quality fabrication makes intricate, smooth cutouts for sinks and cooktops.
  • Lower quality can have uneven, rough cutouts that don’t fit well.

Edge Profiles

  • Better fabricators can execute intricate edge profiles like ogee, bevel, eased, and more consistently.
  • Lesser skills lead to edge profiles that don’t match specifications well.

Seam Placement

  • Quality fabricators carefully plan seam placement in inconspicuous areas, not high traffic zones.
  • Poor planning can lead to highly visible seams in bad locations.

Seam Finishing

  • Top fabricators finely polish and finish quartz seams to make them barely visible.
  • Less attention to seam finishing results in more obvious, unsightly seams.


  • High quality installers properly secure and support quartz to prevent cracks and gaps.
  • Subpar installation can lead to cracks, uneven surfaces, and loose countertops over time.

Quartz fabricated and installed by highly skilled craftspeople will have flawless cutouts, edges, seams and installation.


The warranty coverage provided by quartz manufacturers also indicates quality:

  • Superior quartz usually comes with 15-year or lifetime limited warranties.
  • Lesser quartz often has shorter warranties of 5-10 years.
  • Better warranties guarantee against manufacturing defects, stains, chips and cracks.
  • Inferior warranties have more exclusions and limitations.
  • Reputable companies stand behind their warranties for full replacement or refund.
  • Shadier companies make warranty claims difficult if not impossible.

Look for quartz that provides an extensive 15-year or lifetime limited warranty from a manufacturer who honors their guarantees.

Brand Reputation

The reputation of the quartz brand is another good indicator of quality:

  • Widely recognized brands like Caesarstone, Cambria, Silestone and Viatera are known for making higher grade quartz.
  • Lesser known, generic brands are more likely to cut corners on quality.
  • Established brands have decades of expertise crafting quality quartz slabs.
  • New companies may lack experience consistently producing good quartz.
  • Prominent brands invest in rigorous quality control and testing procedures.
  • Obscure brands often lack standardized quality control measures.

Stick with industry leading quartz brands like Caesarstone, Cambria, Silestone or Viatera for the highest quality and durability.

Things to Check Physically

When evaluating quartz slabs in person, here are some quality checks to perform:

The Scratch Test

  • Try scratching the surface with your fingernail or a coin. High quality quartz should be very scratch resistant.

The Stain Test

  • Pour some red wine, oil or vinegar on a small area for 10 minutes then wipe clean. Superior quartz should show minimal staining.

The Heat Test

  • Place a hot pan from the stove on the quartz for 1 minute. Quality material should tolerate the heat well without damage.

The Edge Test

  • Run your fingers slowly along the edges. Properly fabricated edges should feel smooth without any pits or nicks.

The Seam Test

  • Look and feel along seams. Seams on better quartz are tightly bonded and hardly noticeable.

Performing these simple physical tests helps confirm the overall quality and durability of the quartz.

Ask the Fabricator

Speaking directly with the fabricator can also shed light on quartz quality:

  • What percentage of quartz vs. polymer resins is used? Higher quartz percentage indicates better quality.
  • What brand of resin do you use? Polyester and epoxy resins are best.
  • Do you use recycled content? Using recycled glass, porcelain or mirror is a sign of quality.
  • Where are your quartz slabs manufactured? Slabs made in Germany, Israel and USA tend to be higher grade.
  • Do you fabricate the quartz yourself? In-house fabrication generally yields better results.
  • How long have you been fabricating quartz? Companies with 10+ years experience tend to produce better work.

A fabricator who knows the product well and takes pride in their workmanship is a good sign of high quality quartz fabrication.

6 Key Considerations When Buying Quartz

  1. Quartz Content – Look for over 90% quartz content for durability.
  2. Resin Type – Polyester and epoxy resins indicate better quality.
  3. Color Consistency – Even, uniform color without blotchiness.
  4. Fabrication – Smooth edges and barely visible seams.
  5. Warranty – At least 15 years of good coverage.
  6. Brand Reputation – Buy from an established, reputable brand.

Frequently Asked Questions about Quartz Quality

How thick should quality quartz be?

High quality quartz slabs range from 2 to 2.5 cm (0.75-1 inch) thick. Thicker slabs 3 cm or more can indicate higher grade materials.

Are whiter quartz varieties harder to keep clean?

Yes, lighter quartz requires more routine cleaning to keep it free of marks and stains. Darker varieties hide signs of use better.

Does quality quartz need to be sealed?

No, quartz is non-porous so it never needs sealing. High quality fabricators will advise against using any sealers which can damage the surface.

Can you cut on quartz countertops?

While it’s better to use a cutting board, quality quartz stands up well to incidental cuts and scratches from knives. The surface resists damage.

How often should I clean my quartz countertops?

For quality quartz, a quick daily wipe down plus thorough weekly cleaning with soap and water is sufficient maintenance. Avoid abrasive cleaners that can dull the surface.

Will neutral cleaners damage quartz?

No, high quality quartz is impervious to damage from pH-neutral cleaners. In fact, some manufacturers recommend mild dish soap for routine cleaning. Harsh alkaline or acidic cleaners should still be avoided though.


Evaluating the composition, appearance, fabrication, warranty and brand of quartz countertops allows you to discern high-quality materials that will perform well for many years. Seeking out quartz with over 90% ground quartz, uniform patterns, top-tier fabrication, and backing from reputable brands ensures you get excellent durability and aesthetics for your investment. With this guide’s tips in mind, you can shop for quartz countertops with confidence and enjoy their beauty and longevity in your home.