Quartz countertops have become an increasingly popular option for kitchen and bathroom renovations in recent years. Made from engineered stone, quartz combines natural quartz crystals with resins and pigments to create a durable, low-maintenance, and stylish surface. If you’re considering quartz for your next remodeling project, here is an in-depth guide on where to shop for quartz countertops near you.
What is Quartz?
Quartz countertops, also known as engineered stone, are made from approximately 90% ground natural quartz blended with polymer resins and pigments. This combination creates a durable, non-porous surface that resists scratches, stains, and heat.
Some key benefits of quartz countertops include:
- Extremely durable and scratch-resistant
- Requires very little maintenance
- Resists stains, mold, mildew, and bacteria growth
- Heat resistant
- Available in a wide variety of colors and patterns
- Non-porous so liquids don’t penetrate the surface
- Seamless appearance
Quartz provides the beauty of natural stone with increased durability and decreased maintenance needs compared to alternatives like granite or marble. This makes it an excellent choice for busy kitchens and baths.
Where to Shop for Quartz Countertops
When you’ve decided on quartz for your home, it’s time to find retailers and fabricators near you to browse slabs and get quotes. Here are some of the best places to shop for quartz countertops:
Big Box Stores
Major home improvement stores like Home Depot and Lowes offer a selection of popular quartz brands to choose from. While the inventory may be limited compared to a specialty showroom, these retailers provide a convenient way to view and order affordable quartz options.
Pros: Convenient, affordable, easy ordering and installation
Cons: Limited selection, lower quality quartz material
Kitchen and Bath Showrooms
Showrooms catering specifically to kitchen and bath remodeling projects have an extensive selection of high-end quartz slabs from the top brands. Stores like Bedrosians, Kitchen and Bath Depot, and Floor & Decor are places to view top-tier quartz in the latest colors and patterns.
Pros: Massive selection, specialty kitchen and bath focus, quality brands
Cons: More expensive, limited installers
Stone Yards and Fabricators
Stone yards and fabricators offer a middle ground – better prices than showrooms with a focus on stone and quartz materials. Check stone supply stores and fabricators to browse quartz slabs and get quotes for your project.
Pros: Specialized in stone products, better prices than showrooms
Cons: Harder to compare different quartz brands side-by-side
A final option is to shop for quartz online through retailers offering virtual browsing of slabs, ordering, and coordinating local installation. Some popular online stores include Custom Surfaces, QPremium Natural Quartz, MSI Quartz, and BuildDirect.
Pros: Virtual browsing, affordable prices, turnkey ordering and install
Cons: Can’t see slabs in-person, more DIY coordinating installers
How to Choose the Right Quartz
With so many color, pattern, and finish options available, selecting your quartz can be overwhelming. Keep these tips in mind when shopping around:
- Pick a color and pattern that complements your overall design scheme. Colors like crisp white or soft greys are versatile choices that pair well with any style. Go bold with a vibrant tone or natural patterns if you want a statement surface.
- Consider your kitchen style. Quartz with more veining and movement works well for traditional spaces, while modern designs look sharp with a solid, uniform quartz surface.
- Examine the finish. Quartz comes in matte, polished, or slightly textured finishes. Satin or polished finishes shine but show more marks and scratches. A finely textured surface helps disguise everyday wear and tear.
- Factor in durability. Darker colored quartz hides scratches and stains better than light and solid white choices. Also look for quality grades like 93% or higher natural quartz content.
- View actual slabs in person. If possible, see the exact slab in-person before purchase to ensure the aesthetics are just how you envisioned. Pictures and samples alone make it hard to judge movement and consistency.
How Much Does Installed Quartz Cost?
Quartz costs between $50 to over $140 per square foot installed. Exact quartz countertop prices depend on:
- Quartz type: Basic solids and minimal veining vs dramatic designs cost more due to increased material costs.
- Color: White and light quartz trends cheaper than bold dark colors which hide flaws better.
- Brand: Premium manufacturers like Caesarstone and Cambria come with a higher price tag.
- Fabrication: Simple countertop layouts and edges are most affordable vs specialty cut-outs and edge details.
- Installer rates: Prices range based on your geographic location and individual contractor rates.
Be sure to get 4-5 itemized quotes before selecting a quartz and installation pro. Many fabricators also offer quartz remnants and discounted pre-fabricated pieces for even greater value.
Popular Brands of Quartz Countertops
The quartz brand you select impacts price, quality, selection, and reputation. Some of the most popular national brands include:
- Caesarstone: One of the pioneers of engineered quartz manufacturing, Caesarstone leads the industry in style, quality, and innovation. Prices start around $54 per square foot.
- Cambria: Focusing on natural beauty and stone-like aesthetics, Cambria offers a vast array of premium designer quartz made in the USA. Cambria quartz starts around $65 per square foot installed.
- Silestone: Providing over 90 colors and well-known for durability, Silestone provides quality and style often at more affordable prices than competitors. Starts around $55 per square foot installed.
- LG Viatera: High-performing and lustrous, Viatera by LG is the high-end, luxury brand desired for its unique aesthetics and reputation. Ranges from $90 to $140 per square foot installed.
- Dupont Zodiaq: The original maker of quartz surfaces, Zodiaq still produces a solid, mid-range product with consistent quality and reasonable pricing. Starts around $45 per square foot.
Hiring a Pro to Install Your Quartz
Because quartz requires precise fabrication and installation, it’s recommended to hire a professional rather than DIY. Find installers by:
- Checking reviews and referrals for quartz fabricators in your area. Focus on contractors that specialize in quartz.
- Asking the quartz supplier or showroom for recommended pros that they partner with.
- Searching for terms like “quartz countertop installation near me” or “quartz fabricators in [your city]”.
When comparing bids, look for licensed, insured fabricators that provide detailed invoices including materials, fabrication, and installation services. Be wary of quotes that seem drastically lower than competitors. Read reviews to verify quality of workmanship.
FAQ About Purchasing Quartz Countertops:
How long does quartz last?
With proper care, quartz countertops last upwards of 15-20 years or more before needing replacement.
What’s better, quartz or granite?
Quartz is lower maintenance, more durable, and available in more colors and styles. Granite offers a more natural stone look but requires more sealing and care.
Is quartz worth the extra cost over materials like laminate?
With longevity and durability, quartz offers a great return on investment over cheaper countertop options that need frequent replacing.
What thickness quartz should I choose?
Standard thickness is 3 cm, but opt for 3.2 cm thickness if long spans between supports or heavy use expected.
Can quartz chip or crack?
Chips and cracks are rare, but drops of heavy objects directly on edges can damage quartz. Take care to avoid direct force.
With an unbeatable combination of quality, durability, and beauty, quartz makes a worthwhile investment for countertops that will last for years. Take time to view slabs in-person, get quotes, and carefully select an experienced fabricator. If done right, you can enjoy maintenance-free, stunning quartz counters that add value and elegance to any kitchen or bath.