Quartz countertops are a popular choice for modern kitchens and bathrooms due to their durability, aesthetic appeal, and low maintenance. However, quartz still requires regular cleaning to keep it looking its best. Here are some of the top options for cleaning quartz countertops effectively.
Mild Soap and Water
For day-to-day cleaning, a mild soap diluted in warm water is usually sufficient. Dish soap or a stone soap work well. Use a soft cloth or sponge to gently wash the quartz. Avoid abrasive scrubbing as this can dull the surface over time. Rinse thoroughly after washing. This helps remove dirt, grease, and residue from food prep and cooking.
Vinegar and Water Solution
A 50/50 mixture of distilled white vinegar and water makes an effective cleaner for quartz. The vinegar helps dissolve stuck-on grime and grease, while the water dilutes it so it is not too harsh on the countertop. Spray or wipe the solution onto the quartz and let it sit briefly before wiping clean with a soft cloth. Vinegar is safe for quartz but avoid using it on marble or granite.
As a mild bleach, hydrogen peroxide can help clean and disinfect quartz countertops. Mix a solution of 3% hydrogen peroxide and water. Wipe it onto the quartz and allow to sit for a few minutes before rinsing clean. This kills germs and brightens the quartz. Be sure to dilute the hydrogen peroxide as full-strength application can damage some quartz surfaces.
For stubborn stains, use a small amount of isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol) applied to a microfiber cloth. Rub gently on the stain and wipe clean. The alcohol breaks down residues and disinfects the surface. Avoid excessive scrubbing as rubbing alcohol can dull quartz over time with repeated use.
Commercial Quartz Cleaners
There are specialized cleaners formulated for quartz countertops. These contain ingredients tailored to dissolve grime on quartz without damaging the surface. Some popular options include Method Daily Granite & Stone Cleaner, StoneTech Revitalizer Cleaner and Protector, and GranQuartz Stone Clean & Shine. Always follow the product instructions carefully.
Stay Away from Bleach and Abrasives
Never use harsh chemicals like bleach, oven cleaners, or alkaline cleansers on quartz counters. These can damage and discolor the quartz sealant. Avoid using abrasive pads, scrubbing brushes, or polishing compounds which can scratch the surface.
Tips for Daily Quartz Care
- Wipe up spills immediately to prevent stains.
- Rinse quartz after using acidic foods like citrus or tomatoes.
- Use cutting boards instead of chopping directly on the quartz.
- Apply a granite or quartz sealant regularly for added protection.
- For dried residues, let water or cleaner soak for a few minutes before scrubbing.
Can You Use Magic Eraser on Quartz?
Magic Erasers contain melamine foam which is a very fine abrasive. This makes them great for scrubbing off dirt and grime. However, with repeated use, Magic Erasers can potentially dull and scratch quartz counters. It’s best to avoid using them routinely. For occasional use, wet the Magic Eraser first and rub very gently on stubborn spots. Test first in an inconspicuous area to ensure it does not damage the quartz.
How to Sanitize and Disinfect Quartz Countertops
Disinfecting quartz periodically helps kill germs and bacteria that can build up from food residue and use. Here are some safe ways to sanitize quartz:
- Bleach solutions: Mix 1/4 cup of bleach per gallon of water. Apply sparingly with a clean cloth. Avoid excessive bleach exposure.
- Hydrogen peroxide: Use a 3% solution diluted with water at a 1:1 ratio. Spray and let sit for 5 minutes before rinsing.
- Vinegar: Undiluted white vinegar is a natural disinfectant. Spray vinegar and let sit for 5-10 minutes then wipe clean with water.
- 70% isopropyl alcohol: Use disinfectant wipes or spray a 70% IPA solution. Allow to dry completely after disinfecting.
Always thoroughly rinse and dry quartz after sanitizing to prevent damage from cleaning residue buildup.
How to Clean Tough Stains on Quartz
Quartz is less prone to staining than marble or granite. But some spills can still leave discoloration if not cleaned promptly. Here are some tips for removing common quartz stains:
Grease and oil: Spray with degreaser and let sit for 5 minutes. Scrub gently with a soft cloth or brush. Rinse thoroughly.
Food and drinks: Stain remover spray or baking soda paste. Allow to sit then scrub and rinse.
Rust: Apply cream of tartar paste. Allow to sit for an hour before scrubbing and rinsing.
Dried spills: Soak with hot water to soften then scrub gently. Repeat process as needed.
Hard water marks: White vinegar or lemon juice. Spray and let sit before scrubbing.
For really stubborn stains, you may need to use a poultice applied overnight. Consult a countertop installation company for best results.
Deep Cleaning Quartz Countertops
For a periodic deep clean, use these steps:
- Remove everything from countertops and clear the surrounding area.
- Mix a degreasing cleaner solution per product instructions. Spray over the entire surface.
- Allow cleaner to sit for 5-10 minutes. This gives it time to break up grime and grease buildup.
- Scrub the quartz using a soft brush or Dobie scrub pad, applying moderate pressure.
- Rinse thoroughly with clean water, changing rinse water frequently.
- Use a clean microfiber cloth to dry the quartz surface completely.
- Finish by applying a quartz polish or sealant to renew protection.
Avoid using excessive pressure or abrasive pads during deep cleaning. Schedule deep cleaning every 3-6 months for high use areas.
How Often Should You Clean Quartz Countertops?
- Everyday light cleaning: Quick wipe down with mild soap and water or disinfecting wipes.
- Weekly cleaning: Thorough wash with diluted vinegar, quartz cleaner, or hydrogen peroxide mix.
- Monthly deep clean: Degrease, scrub, and disinfect.
- Periodic as needed: Intensive stain removal and poultice treatments for stubborn stains.
More frequent cleaning may be needed in busy kitchens. Make sure to rinse thoroughly after each cleaning to avoid residue buildup. A routine cleaning regimen prevents stubborn stains from setting and keeps quartz counters shining.
Quartz Countertop FAQs
Can you use Windex on quartz?
Yes, Windex is generally safe for cleaning quartz counters. Ensure you use the standard Windex formula, not a harsh scrubbing version. Spray a light amount onto a soft cloth and wipe the quartz gently. Avoid excessive Windex use to prevent buildup.
Should you seal quartz counters?
Sealing is not strictly necessary for quartz since it is non-porous. However, applying a quartz sealer every 6-12 months can add extra protection and create easier clean up by causing liquids to bead up on the surface. Use a product designed for quartz instead of stone sealers.
How do you get dried food off quartz?
Soften dried food by soaking the area with hot water for several minutes. Gently scrape residue with a plastic scraper. Apply some diluted vinegar and let sit briefly before scrubbing with a Dobie pad. Avoid metal scrapers or scouring pads which can scratch.
Can lemon juice damage quartz?
No, being an acidic fruit juice lemon juice will not harm quartz counters with routine use. Its mild citric acid makes it effective for cleaning and removing hard water stains. Avoid leaving pure lemon juice sitting for prolonged periods and rinse afterwards. Heavy scrubbing is not needed.
What should you not put on quartz?
Avoid exposing quartz counters to strong chemicals like paint removers, nail polish remover, furniture strippers, oil soaps, drain cleaners, etc. Also refrain from using abrasive pads, scouring powders, alkaline cleaners, and oven cleaners which can all damage the quartz surface.
Regular cleaning and prompt stain removal are key to keeping quartz countertops looking like new over years of use. For routine maintenance, mild soap and water or ready-to-use quartz cleaners make the job easy. Periodic deep cleaning and disinfecting also helps refresh quartz and remove grime buildup. While durable, quartz still requires proper care. Avoid harsh chemicals and abrasives. With the right gentle cleaning methods, quartz countertops will maintain their beautiful shine and appearance for the lifetime of your kitchen or bath.