What do I need to worry about with quartz countertops?

Staining and Etching

While quartz is non-porous and resistant to most stains, it can be susceptible to etching from acidic foods and chemicals. Things like citrus, vinegar, wine, and cleaners with acids can dull the surface over time. Be sure to wipe up spills quickly and use a sealant to protect the countertops.

Scratching and Chipping

Quartz is very hard and durable, but not impervious to damage. Dropping heavy or sharp objects can chip or scratch the surface. Using a cutting board and being cautious about what comes in contact with the counter can help prevent this. Minor scratches can be buffed out, but deep ones are permanent.


Quartz countertops are created from slabs that are joined together. The seams between slabs are visible and while some brands aim to make them less noticeable, they will always be there to some degree. Proper installation and positioning can minimize the appearance.

Heat Tolerance

While quartz is resistant to heat better than natural stone, the resins used make it susceptible to damage from extreme heat. Using trivets for hot pans and being careful with appliances like curling irons is important to prevent burning or discoloration.

Non-Uniform Appearance

Variation in quartz color and pattern can occur between slabs. Being aware of this and inspecting all slabs before installation can help manage expectations. Some brands are more uniform than others.

Radon Gas

Quartz is a natural stone product mined from the earth. Trace amounts of radon gas can be emitted through quartz particles. This is usually only a concern in poorly ventilated spaces. Proper ventilation can alleviate this issue.


Quartz is pricier than options like laminate. The average cost of quartz is $40-$100 per square foot installed. This premium price is worth it for many homeowners for the look and performance.


Simple maintenance is required to keep quartz looking its best. Daily wiping with a soft cloth, avoiding abrasive cleaners, and periodic reapplication of sealant is advised. This is low maintenance compared to natural stone.

Difficult Repairs

Seamless repairs are not possible with quartz. Chips, cracks, and other damage can only be minimized, not made invisible. Living with or replacing the slab are the only options.

FAQs about Potential Issues with Quartz Countertops

Can quartz countertops stain?

Quartz is non-porous, so it resists most stains. However, prolonged exposure to acidic substances like wine, citrus, and tomato sauce can etch the surface over time. Quick cleanup of spills prevents stains.

Do quartz countertops scratch easily?

Quartz is very hard and durable, but not impervious to damage. Dropping heavy pots or pans or dragging appliances across the surface can scratch quartz. Using cutting boards and being careful about impact can help avoid scratches.

How noticeable are the seams on quartz countertops?

Quartz countertops are made of slabs joined together, so there will be seams to some degree. Proper installation and positioning can minimize the visibility of seams. Some brands are better at tight seamless joins than others.

Can you place hot pans on quartz countertops?

Sudden extreme heat can damage quartz surfaces. Always use trivets or hot pads when placing hot cookware on quartz. High sustained heat can also cause discoloration or burns. Quartz has better heat tolerance than natural stone but still requires caution.

Does quartz change color over time?

When properly sealed and cared for, quartz color will remain consistent over many years of use. Exposure to excessive UV light can cause subtle lightening over time. Otherwise, quartz will retain its original vibrancy with simple maintenance.

Is radon gas a risk with quartz countertops?

Since quartz contains trace natural stone elements, minuscule amounts of radon gas can be emitted through the material. Proper kitchen ventilation alleviates this minor concern. Radon is only problematic in poorly ventilated interior spaces.

How can I get rid of scratches on my quartz countertops?

Very light surface scratches can be minimized by buffing with fine-grit sandpaper followed by a quartz polish compound. Deeper scratches are permanent, but can be made less noticeable through this buffing process. Completely eliminating scratches is not possible.


Quartz counters are low-maintenance, stylish, and resist most daily wear and tear. Being mindful of staining, etching, impact, and heat exposure allows you to enjoy durable, pristine-looking quartz surfaces for many years. Simple care goes a long way in maintaining the original beauty of quartz over time. With proper maintenance factored in, quartz makes an excellent choice for kitchen and bath design.