Quartz countertops are an increasingly popular choice for kitchens and bathrooms due to their durability, aesthetics, and low maintenance. However, quartz still requires regular cleaning to keep it looking its best. Here is a comprehensive guide on how to properly clean quartz countertops.
Quartz countertops, sometimes referred to as engineered stone, are made from ground quartz crystals combined with resins and pigments. This creates a very hard, non-porous surface that is resistant to scratches, stains, and heat. However, quartz is not impervious. With regular use, quartz counters can collect dirt, dust, grime, and spills that will require cleaning.
Benefits of Quartz Countertops
Before diving into cleaning, it’s helpful to understand why quartz has become such a popular countertop choice:
- Extremely durable – Quartz is nearly indestructible under normal use. It does not easily scratch, scorch or stain. This makes it ideal for busy kitchens.
- Low maintenance – Routinely cleaning quartz is quick and hassle-free. It does not require sealing or polishing like natural stone.
- Stylish aesthetics – Quartz comes in a wide array of colors and patterns that resemble natural stone and concrete. The look is very modern and elegant.
- Non-porous – Unlike granite and marble, quartz won’t absorb spills and stains. Bacteria also cannot penetrate the surface.
Keeping quartz clean allows you to enjoy these benefits for many years.
Supplies for Cleaning Quartz Countertops
Cleaning quartz does not require harsh chemicals or specialized tools. All you need is:
- Mild liquid dish soap or stone soap
- Soft cloth, sponge or microfiber towels
- Non-abrasive scrub pad (optional)
Avoid abrasive cleaners, pads or steel wool as these can dull the surface over time. Acids like bleach or vinegar are also too harsh for routine cleaning.
To remove light soil and maintain the shine, simply wipe down quartz daily with a soft, damp cloth or sponge and water. Going over the surface with a microfiber towel will prevent spotting. Immediately wipe up any spills as they occur, especially oils, juices and wines which can stain if left for prolonged periods.
For best results:
- Use a stone cleaner or mild soap and warm water.
- Wipe the entire surface with circular motions.
- Rinse well and dry with a clean towel.
This quick daily regimen prevents buildup of dirt and residues that can become more stubborn to remove. It also reduces the risk of etching and staining that can occur from accidental spills.
Weekly Deep Cleaning
In addition to daily cleaning, quartz should receive a thorough deep cleaning session at least once a week. This removes stuck-on dirt, soap scum, grease and grime that accumulate over time.
- Combine a small amount of mild soap with warm water in a bucket or spray bottle. Avoid using excessive water that can seep into seams and undercountertop joints.
- Use a soft scrub pad, sponge or cloth soaked in the soapy water to gently scrub the entire surface. Apply light pressure as needed for stuck-on messes.
- For textured quartz, scrub along the direction of the grain lines. This prevents dirt buildup in the grooves.
- As you scrub, dip the scrub pad in clean water to prevent redepositing grime. Change the water as needed.
- Thoroughly rinse off all soap residues and dry the surface completely.
This weekly cleaning routine removes embedded dirt and restores shine and beauty to your quartz countertops.
Removing Stains and Dried Spills
Accidental spills can sometimes stain or etch quartz if left for too long before cleaning. For dried-on messes or stains:
- Try soaking the area with a damp cloth and stone cleaner or hot, soapy water. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes so the grime can soften and lift.
- For stubborn spots, use a non-abrasive scrub pad and scrub gently in a circular motion. Apply more soap and let it penetrate as needed.
- Thoroughly rinse with clean water and dry the area to inspect that the stain has lifted.
- For extremely stubborn stains like dye transfer or permanent marker, use a non-abrasive cleaner designed for quartz. Always test cleaner on a small, inconspicuous area first.
- Avoid scraping at stains aggressively as this can damage the surface.
With patience and persistence, most stains can be removed from quartz countertops. But preventing them with timely cleaning is ideal.
Cleaning Other Quartz Surfaces
The same cleaning methods used for quartz counters work great on other quartz surfaces:
Backsplashes – Use a soft sponge and mild soap and water solution. Rinse thoroughly.
Bathroom vanities – Wipe down daily with a microfiber cloth. Use a non-abrasive scrub pad for weekly deep cleaning.
Showers and tub surrounds – A squeegee prevents soap scum and water spots from developing. Use a soap-filled scrub brush for weekly cleaning.
Floors – Vacuum or sweep regularly to prevent gritty abrasives on the surface. Mop with stone cleaner and damp mop weekly.
Tabletops and furniture – Wipe with a soft cloth and mild cleaner. For textured quartz furniture, use a toothbrush to clean grout lines.
What to Avoid on Quartz Surfaces
Certain cleaners and substances can damage quartz and should be avoided:
- Abrasive cleaners or scrub pads
- Vinegar, bleach, ammonia or other acids
- Harsh alkaline cleaners like oven cleaner
- Solvents like paint removers, nail polish remover
- Thinners, turpentine or drain cleaner
These substances can all etch or discolor the surface. Avoid exposing quartz to very high heat from pots and pans directly out of the oven or burner. Always use trivets and hot pads.
With the proper supplies and regular cleaning regimen, quartz countertops will stay looking pristine and beautiful for many years. Daily wiping and weekly deep cleaning removes grime buildup that can lead to stubborn stains. Immediately cleaning spills prevents permanent etching. By providing routine maintenance, you can enjoy quartz surfaces that always appear like new.
Frequently Asked Questions About Cleaning Quartz Countertops
How often should I clean my quartz countertops?
- It’s recommended to wipe quartz counters daily and do a thorough deep cleaning weekly. This prevents buildup of dirt that makes stain removal more difficult.
What is the best cleaner for quartz?
- A mild pH-neutral stone soap, dish soap and warm water work very well. Avoid acidic or alkaline cleaners which can etch quartz.
Can I use rubbing alcohol to clean quartz?
- No, don’t use any solvents like alcohol, nail polish remover or paint thinner on quartz. These can damage the finish. Stick to gentle, water-based cleaners only.
My quartz has a matte finish. How should I clean it?
- Matte finish quartz can show marks and smudges more readily. Use a soft microfiber cloth and mild soap and water, being careful not to apply pressure in any one spot.
Are magic erasers safe on quartz?
- Magic erasers are mildly abrasive and should be avoided. Their abrasives can wear down the finish over time, making quartz look dull and scratched. Use a non-abrasive scrub pad instead.
How do I sanitize my quartz countertops?
- Quartz surfaces can be sanitized using a disinfecting cleaner or wiping with a 70% isopropyl alcohol solution. This kills germs without damaging quartz. Rinse surface thoroughly after sanitizing.
Can you use lemon juice to clean quartz?
- No. Acidic cleaners like lemon juice, vinegar or other citrus can damage, dull and etch quartz surfaces. Stick to gentle pH-neutral cleaners only.
What removes dried food and grease from quartz?
- For dried-on messes, let a damp cloth or paper towel soaked in hot, soapy water sit on the area for 5-10 minutes to soften. Then use a non-abrasive scrub pad to gently remove. Rinse well.