Quartz countertops are an increasingly popular choice for modern kitchens and bathrooms due to their durability, aesthetics, and low maintenance. However, proper cleaning is still required to keep quartz counters looking their best. Here is a detailed guide on how to clean quartz countertops and what products to use for different types of messes.
Quartz countertops, often referred to by brand names like Silestone, Caesarstone, and Cambria, are engineered stone surfaces made from quartz particles bonded with resins and pigments. The result is a non-porous, stain-resistant material that is harder and more durable than natural stone.
However, quartz is not completely stain-proof, and accumulated dirt, grime, and spills can start to detract from its appearance over time. Regular cleaning with the right products is key to keeping quartz counters spotless. Abiding by the manufacturer’s care recommendations will also help preserve the countertops’ warranty and longevity.
Daily Cleaning of Quartz Countertops
For day-to-day cleaning, quartz tolerates most mild cleaner solutions. Here are some easy options:
- Soap and Water – A basic solution of warm water and mild dish soap can be used to wipe down quartz and remove most light messes. Avoid abrasive soaps.
- Glass Cleaner – Spraying the counters with a typical household glass cleaner containing ammonia and wiping down also works well for quick daily upkeep.
- Vinegar – A 50/50 mixture of warm water and white vinegar makes a simple DIY cleaning solution for quartz. The mild acidity of vinegar cuts through grime.
- pH-Neutral Cleaners – Look for cleaners specifically formulated to be pH-neutral if you want a store-bought option. Stone and quartz cleaners that are non-abrasive and non-acidic are ideal.
The key is to use a soft cloth, sponge, or paper towel to gently wipe the counters when using any cleaning solution. Avoid scrubbing aggressively. Then rinse with clean water and dry with a soft towel to prevent spotting.
Removing Specific Messes on Quartz
In addition to routine cleaning, quartz may occasionally need targeted treatment for certain sticky spills and stains:
Oil and Grease Stains
- Degreasing dish soap, orange oil cleaners, or mix baking soda and vinegar into a paste to break down oils. Rinse thoroughly after scrubbing.
Dried Food and Grime
- Spray with a degreasing cleaner and let sit for 5 minutes before scrubbing and rinsing. Baking soda or a mild abrasive sponge can help remove stubborn buildup.
Wine, Coffee, and Other Drink Stains
- Immediately blot the spill then clean with soap and water. For dried stains, spray with either hydrogen peroxide or chlorine bleach-based cleaner, let sit, then wipe.
Hard Water Marks and Mineral Deposits
- Wipe on some white vinegar and let it sit for a few minutes to dissolve the deposits before scrubbing and rinsing.
Mold and Mildew Stains
- Make a baking soda and water paste and scrub. Or use a household bathroom cleaner containing bleach.
Ink, Paint, and Dye Stains
- Gently scrape off what you can with a plastic putty knife. Use either isopropyl alcohol, acetone, or a mix of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide and scrub to lift out the stain, then rinse.
Always spot test cleaning solutions first on an inconspicuous area to check for any adverse effects on the finish. Avoid abrasive cleaners and scouring pads that could scratch the surface.
Maintenance Tips for Quartz Countertops
Implementing some simple care habits can prevent the need for heavy-duty cleaning of quartz counters:
- Wipe up spills immediately to prevent stains.
- Use coasters for hot pans and trivets under appliances.
- Clean counters after food prep, especially when handling oils, wine, coffee, etc.
- Avoid direct food contact with counters for extended time.
- Reseal quartz annually with a specialist sealer made for engineered stone.
- Inspect sealant around edges and seams and reapply as needed.
- Avoid placing extremely hot items from oven/stovetop directly on counters.
With proper regular care and cleaning, quartz countertops can stay looking like new for many years before needing professional restoration or refinishing. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s specific care instructions as well.
Frequently Asked Questions About Cleaning Quartz Countertops
Can I use bleach to clean my quartz counters?
Most quartz manufacturers advise against prolonged exposure to bleach or leaving it to sit on the surface. A mildly diluted bleach cleaner wiped on and rinsed off quickly is generally considered safe for periodic disinfecting.
Will vinegar damage my quartz countertops?
No, vinegar is fine for cleaning quartz counters. Its acidity breaks up grime and hard water deposits that can build up on the surface. Just avoid leaving straight concentrated vinegar on the countertop for extended time.
What kind of sponge should I use on quartz?
Avoid abrasive scrubbing pads and instead use soft cloth, sponges, or paper towels to gently wipe the quartz clean. Soft nylon or microfiber cloths also work well and help avoid streaks.
Can I use mineral oil to maintain my quartz countertops?
Mineral oil is not needed or recommended. Quartz is non-porous and will not absorb conditioning oils the way natural stone does. Stick to the manufacturer’s advised cleaners instead.
How can I get rid of hard water stains on my quartz?
Hard water deposits can be lifted by spraying white vinegar directly on the stains, allowing to sit briefly, then scrubbing and rinsing. A quartz-safe limescale remover may also be used occasionally.
Regular cleaning and prompt mess removal will keep quartz looking like new with minimal effort. Daily wipe downs with mild soapy water or pH-balanced cleaners paired with targeted stain removal provides optimal care. Avoid abrasives or harsh chemicals. With the right maintenance approach, quartz countertops offer unparalleled durability with a polished, sophisticated look. Implementing smart cleaning habits allows you to enjoy their longevity and beauty.