Choosing new countertops for your kitchen or bathroom remodel? Quartz and granite are two of the most popular options on the market today. But which material is right for your home and lifestyle? We’ll compare quartz vs granite countertops to help you decide.
Quartz countertops, also known as engineered stone, have risen in popularity over the past decade. Here’s an overview of some key facts about quartz:
What is Quartz?
- Quartz countertops are made from ground natural quartz crystals blended with polymer resins and pigments.
- The result is a manmade material that is non-porous, stain resistant, and highly durable.
Quartz Countertop Benefits
- Extremely low maintenance – quartz requires no sealing and is easy to clean.
- Resistant to scratches, stains, heat, and bacteria.
- Non-porous surface won’t harbor bacteria.
- Wide variety of colors and patterns to choose from.
- Can mimic look of natural stone or solid colors.
- Not as heat resistant as granite – hot pans can damage the surface.
- Repairs and replacements are difficult – seams are hard to match.
- Some quartz lacks the natural pattern and depth of granite.
- More expensive than laminate but can be comparable to some granite.
Granite is a popular natural stone option known for its elegance and timeless beauty. Here are some key granite counter considerations:
What is Granite?
- Granite is an igneous rock formed from cooled magma or lava.
- Available in a wide range of natural colors, patterns, and surface finishes.
- Durable, scratch-resistant, and naturally stain-resistant.
Granite Countertop Benefits
- Each slab has a unique natural pattern giving a one-of-a-kind look.
- Adds value and aesthetic appeal to kitchens and bathrooms.
- Resistant to heat, scratches, and moisture.
- Can last a lifetime with proper care and maintenance.
- Porous surface requires yearly sealing to prevent stains and bacteria.
- Natural stone can chip or crack if subjected to impact.
- Can have minor repairs, but replacement is difficult if extensively damaged.
- Higher cost than engineered stone or laminate options.
Comparing Quartz vs Granite
| Category | Quartz | Granite |
| Composition | Ground quartz blended with resin | Natural mined stone |
| Appearance | Consistent solid colors or patterns | Natural unique veining and speckles |
| Heat Resistance | Moderate, can crack/burn at very high temps | Excellent, resists high heat |
| Scratch Resistance | Excellent, resists scratches | Very good, can scratch from knives/abrasion |
| Stain Resistance | Excellent, non-porous | Very good with yearly sealing |
| Maintenance | Low, requires no sealing | Moderate, requires annual sealing |
| Durability | Very good | Excellent, highest durability |
| Cost | $80-150 per square foot installed | $100-200 per square foot installed |
Which is Best for Your Home?
When choosing between quartz and granite, consider:
Your budget – Granite is often more expensive than quartz.
Your lifestyle – Busy families may prefer low maintenance quartz. Granite works well for those who don’t mind annual sealing.
Your decor – Quartz offers modern solid colors. Granite provides a natural stone aesthetic.
Your location – Granite is better for hot climates as it resists heat transfer.
Quartz and granite each have their pros and cons. For many homeowners, the decision comes down to personal preference on appearance, lifestyle fit, and budget. If elegance and natural beauty are your top priorities, granite may be your best bet. For maximum durability with minimal maintenance, quartz often wins out. Consult with a kitchen designer to pick the right material for your home renovation.
FAQs about Quartz and Granite Countertops
Is quartz or granite better?
There is no definitive “better” option – each material has advantages and disadvantages. Quartz is lower maintenance, while granite offers a natural look. Choose based on your priorities.
Is quartz or granite more durable?
Granite is slightly more durable overall. However, quartz is highly durable for everyday wear and tear. Both can last many years with proper care.
Is quartz worth the extra cost over granite?
That depends on your budget and desire for low maintenance. Quartz often costs $20-50 more per square foot but requires no sealing. Granite is an excellent value for those who don’t mind annual sealing.
Can quartz get stained like granite?
No, quartz is non-porous so it does not easily stain. Granite can absorb stains if not properly sealed. Quartz makes stain removal much easier.
Does quartz look fake compared to granite?
Some quartz has an artificial appearance. However, technology improvements allow many quartz options to closely mimic granite and natural stone. High-end quartz is difficult to distinguish from real granite.
Is quartz or granite better for resale value?
Granite is still more preferred by many buyers, but quartz is gaining popularity. Both are seen as premium options that add value for resale. The trend toward quartz may increase its resale appeal in the future.
The Bottom Line
Quartz and granite offer the look and performance of natural stone with more durability and lower maintenance. While granite is a classic choice valued for its elegance, quartz provides more flexibility and practicality for busy homes. Carefully weigh your own needs and style when choosing between these two excellent countertop materials. With proper installation and care, you’re sure to enjoy either quartz or granite counters for decades to come.