Is it Safe to Use Vinegar on Quartz Countertops?

Quartz countertops are popular in many homes today due to their durability, appearance, and low maintenance. However, like any countertop material, quartz requires proper cleaning and care to keep it looking its best. Some homeowners opt to use vinegar as a natural cleaner for quartz. But is vinegar actually safe for quartz countertops? Here is a detailed look at whether vinegar is safe for cleaning and maintaining quartz counters.

What is Quartz?

Before exploring vinegar and quartz, it helps to understand exactly what quartz countertops are made of. Quartz countertops are engineered stone surfaces containing natural quartz crystals blended with resins and pigments. The exact composition varies by brand, but quartz typically contains:

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

The combination creates a hard, non-porous material that is resistant to stains, scratches, and heat. It does not require sealing like natural stone. This makes quartz an ideal low-maintenance countertop for busy kitchens.

Is Vinegar Safe for Cleaning Quartz?

When it comes to safely cleaning quartz countertops, vinegar has a bit of a mixed reputation. Here are the key pros and cons of using vinegar to clean quartz:

Pros of Using Vinegar on Quartz

  • Natural acidity – The acidic nature of vinegar can help dissolve some dirt and stains on the countertop. This makes it a potentially useful cleaning agent.
  • Antibacterial properties – Vinegar is a mild antibacterial, which can sanitize quartz surfaces.
  • Streak-free shine – When used properly, vinegar can leave behind a nice, streak-free shine on quartz.
  • Economical – Vinegar is very affordable compared to many commercial cleaners.

Cons of Using Vinegar on Quartz

  • Acidity can damage sealant – The acid in vinegar can damage or erode the resin sealant over time with frequent use. This could lead to increased staining and damage.
  • Etching possible – Vinegar’s acidic pH makes quartz etching possible if the vinegar is highly concentrated or left to sit too long. Etching damages the smooth surface.
  • Residue buildup – Vinegar can leave behind a stubborn film that builds up over time leaving cloudy streaks.

Best Practices for Using Vinegar on Quartz

Overall, vinegar is moderately safe for occasional use on quartz counters if used properly. Follow these best practices to clean quartz safely with vinegar:

  • Always dilute vinegar with water at a ratio of 1:3 (25% vinegar, 75% water). Never use vinegar full-strength.
  • Mix vinegar with a small amount of dish soap to help cut through grease and enhance cleaning power.
  • Only use white distilled vinegar, not cider or flavored vinegars.
  • Apply the vinegar solution sparingly with a soft sponge or microfiber cloth. Avoid excessive rubbing.
  • Rinse thoroughly after cleaning and dry with a soft towel to prevent buildup.
  • Limit vinegar use to once weekly or less to avoid damaging the sealant.
  • Clean up spills immediately to prevent the need for heavy-duty cleaning later.
  • Buff occasionally with a polishing pad designed for quartz to remove residue buildup.

What to Avoid Using on Quartz

While diluted vinegar is moderately safe for quartz countertops, some cleaners should always be avoided. These include:

  • Undiluted vinegar at higher concentrations
  • Vinegar-based cleaners like CLR that are too acidic
  • Abrasive cleansers with gritty textures
  • Alkaline cleaners like bleach, oven cleaners, etc.
  • Ammonia-based cleaners
  • Citrus or lemon cleansers that contain acids
  • Solvent-based chemicals like paint removers

Using any of the above aggressively or frequently can damage quartz, causing etching, discoloration, and loss of shine. Always stick to pH-neutral cleaners or mild, dilute solutions.

Maintaining Your Quartz Countertops

To keep quartz counters looking like new, follow these additional care tips:

  • Wipe up spills quickly, especially oils, wines, and acidic substances.
  • Use cutting boards and trivets to protect from hot pans or abrasive pots/dishes.
  • Avoid using quartz as a cutting surface to prevent deep scratches.
  • Clean quartz 1-2 times weekly using a soft sponge or microfiber cloth.
  • Consider resealing quartz every 2-3 years by a pro to renew stain resistance.

The Bottom Line

Vinegar can be used safely on quartz counters occasionally if diluted properly, but frequent use or misuse can damage seals and etch the surface. For routine cleaning, a mild dish soap and water is best. Vinegar should be used sparingly for deep cleaning jobs 1-2 times per month. With proper care, your beautiful quartz countertops will maintain their elegant, like-new appearance for years.

Frequently Asked Questions About Using Vinegar on Quartz Countertops

Is white vinegar safe for quartz countertops?

Yes, white distilled vinegar is safe for quartz countertops when diluted with water at a 1:3 ratio. The mild acidity helps cut through dirt and stains without being so harsh that it damages the quartz. Never use vinegar full strength.

What ratio of vinegar to water should be used on quartz?

Always dilute white distilled vinegar at a 1:3 ratio – 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water. This creates a solution with about 25% vinegar acidity, which is safe for occasional use on quartz when paired with gentle scrubbing.

Can I use apple cider vinegar to clean quartz counters?

No, avoid using cider vinegars or other flavored vinegars on quartz. The additional acids, sugars, and additives create more potential for etching or damaging the sealant. Stick to plain white distilled vinegar only.

Why does vinegar leave a film on my quartz countertop?

The acetic acid in vinegar can leave behind a stubborn, visibility film on quartz if not thoroughly rinsed. Always rinse several times after cleaning with vinegar. Occasionally buff with a soft pad to remove any built-up vinegar residue.

How do I remove vinegar stains from my quartz countertop?

If vinegar sat too long and created whitish stains, make a baking soda and water paste and gently rub it over the stains with a soft cloth. Rinse thoroughly. Repeat if needed. Avoid harsh scrubbing.

Can I mix vinegar and bleach to clean quartz counters?

Never mix vinegar and bleach – this creates a toxic chlorine gas. Stick to cleaning quartz with diluted vinegar and soapy water only. Never use bleach or alkaline cleaners which can damage the quartz.

Why does vinegar dull the shine of my quartz countertop?

Vinegar residues can leave behind a cloudy, dulling film if left to sit too long or not rinsed fully. For best results, add a bit of dish soap to the vinegar solution, rinse thoroughly, and buff occasionally with a soft pad to maintain the quartz shine.

Is it safe to use vinegar daily on my quartz countertops?

No, daily use of even diluted vinegar is not recommended for quartz counters. The acidity can slowly erode the sealant, causing etching and stains over time. Limit vinegar to once weekly or just occasional deep cleaning to be safe.

What’s the best homemade quartz cleaner using vinegar?

The best homemade quartz cleaner is a solution of 1 part white distilled vinegar diluted with 3 parts water, plus a squirt of mild dish soap. The soap boosts grease-cutting power. Apply sparingly, rinse thoroughly, and follow with a water and microfiber cloth buffing.


While vinegar can be an economical and effective option for deep cleaning quartz countertops occasionally, it does come with some risks. Using too much vinegar too often can etch the surface and wear away the protective sealant over time. To play it safe, vinegar should be used in moderation mixed with water and soap. For routine cleaning, a pH-neutral cleaner like dish soap and water is best to safely maintain the beauty of your quartz countertops. With the proper care, your quartz counters can stay looking like new for many years.