Granite vs. Quartzite vs. Quartz Countertops
In a recently finished kitchen remodel, we installed some gorgeous quartzite countertops that the client picked out. If you aren't familiar with quartzite we've put together a list that compares quartz, quartzite and granite. There are pros and cons to each so it's really up to the homeowner to decide which material to go with.
Granite is a very hard stone material that is 100% natural and is mined from quarries all over the world.
Quartzite is also a natural stone that begins as sandstone and over time through the process of heat and pressure is fused with sparkly crystals.
Quartz is not 100% natural, it is manufactured using the same crystals found in quartzite but is bound together with resins, pigments, and other materials such as glass in a man-made process. This process results in an incredibly durable, non-porous countertop that comes in a wide variety of colors and designs.
- Granite can come in many different colors and patterns because of the way it is formed naturally by the cooling and solidifying of molten rock. There is almost a limitless selection of different granite to choose from and no two selections look the same.
- Quartzite typically comes in shades of white and light grey, but minerals within the stone can lend pink, gold, or reddish-brown hues. Quartzite is often mistaken for marble or granite because of the delicate veining of marble and similar coloration and patterns of granite.
- Quartz can be manufactured to look like any stone and gives homeowners the ability to customize the color and patterns, making it easier to match other selections, such as backsplash, flooring and paint.
- Environmentally - Friendly
- The only way to obtain granite is to have it quarried, which requires an immense amount of energy, and depending on the location of WHERE the granite comes from, there could also be considerable transportation involved. You can also consider native stone for a greener option.
- Quartzite is also a natural stone and must be quarried and transported.
- Quartz is engineered so it can be more environmentally - friendly, especially if you use regionally manufactured stone and local fabricators. This also cuts down on the transportation distance of materials.
- Granite countertops should be cleaned daily with soap and water or a mild household cleaner. There are some oils and acids that can stain granite so be sure to research to avoid stains. Also, resealing granite countertops from time to time can increase the longevity of the stone.
- Quartzite should be cleaned daily with soap and water and also requires resealing to maintain.
- Quartz does require cleaning any spills with soap and water or a mild household cleaner, but it is also very low maintenance and the solid surface does not require countertops to be resealed.
- Granite is very durable and heat resistant. However, due to its porous nature, there can be some staining if liquids are spilled and left to sit, as well as damage from a high impact blow.
- Quartzite is a fairly hard stone also, but is susceptible to staining and does require resealing.
- Quartz is actually harder than granite and quartzite. In fact, quartz is very nearly indestructible and less porous than granite making it much easier to keep bacteria-free and prevent chipping. Quartz is susceptible to heat damage, so always use heating pads to avoid damage by excessive heat.
If you want a variety of choice and a consistent look to your countertops, or a durable material quartz may be just what you are looking for.
If you don't mind a little upkeep in exchange for a beautiful, one-of-a-kind natural appearance then granite and quartzite are the way to go!