Is it safe to use car polish on quartz countertops?

An Overview of Quartz Countertops

Before diving into the specifics of using car polish on quartz, it helps to understand what these countertops are made of.

Quartz countertops are engineered stone, meaning they are made from crushed quartz combined with resins and pigments. The exact composition varies by brand and color, but a typical quartz slab contains:

  • 90-94% ground quartz
  • 6-10% polymer resins
  • Pigments for color

Unlike natural stone countertops like marble or granite, quartz is non-porous, so liquids don’t penetrate the surface. The resin binds the crushed stone particles together into a durable, flexible material.

The result is a countertop that offers several benefits:

  • Scratch resistant
  • Stain resistant
  • Heat resistant
  • Non-porous
  • Low maintenance
  • Durable

With proper care, quartz countertops can maintain their beauty for many years. But using the wrong cleaning products can damage the surface over time.

Is Car Polish Safe for Quartz?

The short answer is no – car polish should not be used to clean or shine quartz countertops. Here’s why:

The abrasives in car polish can damage the surface. Most car polishes contain mild abrasives designed to remove oxidation and scratches from car paint. While fine for automotive clearcoats, these abrasives may micro-scratch and dull natural stone or engineered quartz.

Quartz countertops have a different finish than cars. The glossy sheen on quartz comes from the manufacturing process. Unlike car paint, you don’t need polishing compounds to restore shine to quartz.

Car polish can leave behind greasy residue. The creamy formulations in car wax and polish contain oils, silicones, and other conditioners. These can build up on quartz, attracting dirt and requiring frequent re-cleaning.

Polishing removes the top protective layer. Quartz countertops are sealed at the factory for stain protection. Using car polish to “buff out” stains also buffs away this sealant layer over time.

Instead of car polish, it’s safer to clean and care for quartz countertops using specialized stone-safe products.

Best Practices for Cleaning Quartz Countertops

Here are some tips for keeping quartz counters looking like new:

  • For routine cleaning, use a mild soap and water or a specially formulated quartz cleaner. Avoid anything acidic or abrasive.
  • Blot up spills immediately to prevent staining. For dried-on messes, use a non-abrasive scrubbing pad.
  • Reseal quartz every 1-2 years using a stone sealant made for engineered stone. This fills microscopic pores and prevents staining.
  • Avoid chemical cleaners like bleach, oven cleaners, etc. Check cleaner labels and do not use anything that says “not for natural stone.”
  • For stubborn stains like dried food, use a non-abrasive poultice designed for quartz. This pulls the stain out without damaging the surface.
  • Cutting directly on the countertop dulls knives and can scratch. Always use a cutting board.
  • Don’t place hot pans directly on quartz. Use trivets and hot pads to prevent thermal shock.

With proper care, quartz countertops will stay beautiful and functional for many years. Skip the car polish and stick to gentle, stone-safe cleaners and sealants. Consistent maintenance is the key to lasting quartz countertop beauty.

FAQ About Using Car Polish on Quartz Countertops

Is it okay to use car polish on quartz every once in a while?

No, it’s best to avoid car polish entirely on quartz countertops. Even occasional use can gradually damage the surface over time. Quartz requires different cleaning and maintenance products than automotive finishes.

Can I use car polish just on stubborn stains or etch marks?

Again, it’s not advisable to use car polish on quartz countertops, even for spot cleaning. The mild abrasives in car polish can make stains or etching worse. Use a quartz-safe poultice instead to gently lift stains without scratching the surface.

What if I already used car polish on my quartz counters?

If you’ve applied car polish to quartz only once or twice, inspect closely for any dulling or swirl marks in the finish. You may need to reseal the counters with an engineered stone sealer to refresh the protective layer. Avoid car polish going forward, and stick to pH-neutral quartz cleaners.

Is it okay to use car polish on the edges or backsplash?

Nope! Avoid car polish on any part of your quartz countertops. The abrasives can damage the factory finish anywhere on the slab. Use suitable quartz cleaners everywhere and be gentle around seams and edges.

Can I use metal polish or jewelry cleaner on my quartz counters?

Metal polishes, jewelers rouge, and jewelry cleaner contain abrasives and chemicals that can etch or stain quartz. Do not use these products on quartz countertops. Stick to cleaners specifically formulated to be gentle on engineered stone.


While car polish may produce a satisfying shine on worn paint, it has no place in a quartz countertop care regimen. The mild abrasives damage quartz, and the oils leave behind a residue that attracts dirt. For safe, effective cleaning, always reach for pH-balanced cleaners designed specifically for engineered stone. With proper maintenance, your beautiful quartz counters will retain their factory finish for many years.