Granite Vs Quartz Countertops: Which is the Best?

granite countertops vs quartz countertops

The internet is swamped with searches on which countertop material is the best between granite and quartz. The answer may vary from person to person. However, granite and quartz are unquestionably two of the most demanded stones used in creating both stylish and sustainable interiors. 

When it comes to choosing the ideal material for kitchen and bathroom countertops, granite and quartz have been giving each other tough competition, owing to their incredible durability, ease of maintenance, and variety of colors and patterns.

Granite, being a natural stone, and quartz, being an engineered stone, come with advantages and limitations that you must be aware of when deciding which type of stone would best suit your décor and lifestyle.

In this blog, we are doing an honest comparison of granite and quartz countertops based on key factors. So, stay tuned!

Composition

  • Granite countertops are composed of natural granite rock extracted from the Earth’s crust. Granite is mostly made up of quartz, feldspar, and mica. Its deposits can be found in abundance all over the world, including China, India, Italy, Brazil, Canada, and the US. 
  • Quartz countertops are not entirely natural; rather, they are created using engineered quartz slabs. These slabs are manufactured by combining 93% natural quartz crystals with 7% additives such as resin and pigments. The mixture undergoes intense heat and compression to produce a dense, smooth quartz surface.

If you want to add a token of nature’s bounty to your kitchen or bathroom, granite countertops might be the ideal choice for you. Quartz countertops, on the contrary, are perfect for those who want to explore trendy man-made materials.

Appearance

The main difference between granite and quartz countertops is that no two granite slabs will look precisely the same, whereas every quartz slab will seem exactly the same in terms of color and pattern.  

  • Granite, being formed naturally, comes with a diverse range of spectacular hues. While black granite is the most common countertop color, there are other shades like white, beige, grey, blue, green, brown, and gold available to match your interiors. 
White granite countertops with grey veins

Granite countertops are regarded for their dazzling appearance, which brightens up any setting, thanks to their distinct grainy texture. As we have mentioned earlier that every granite slab looks unique. Therefore, having granite countertops in your kitchen can definitely add versatility to its overall design.

  • Quartz countertops, on the other hand, provide a uniform appearance throughout any setting. Quartz slabs, as an engineered material, are developed and made with exceptional precision to prevent color variations and pattern inconsistency. As a result, quartz countertops are an excellent alternative for people looking to create a harmonious atmosphere in their homes.

Durability

The durability of your kitchen countertop is probably one of the major factors to consider. Your countertops should be able to withstand daily wear and tear without getting damaged. 

  • Granite is one of the world’s hardest natural stones, ranking 6 to 7 on the Mohs scale of hardness. It does not scratch as easily as marble or dolomite. Granite countertops are generally resistant to stains because of their non-porous structure; nevertheless, only a few, rare granites might have porosity to them. The stone can also withstand high temperatures, thereby putting hot pans or pots directly on your granite surface will not damage it. Overall, we can state that granite is a very durable stone, ideal for surfacing in busy kitchens.
  • Quartz was created to address consumer concerns about scratching, etching, and staining on natural stone surfaces. Since its inception in the 1960s, quartz countertops have dominated the countertop market with their outstanding durability. 
White quartz countertops with blue veins

Engineered quartz slabs are very resistant to scratches, stains, and etching. Quartz countertops are extremely heat resistant, although they are not completely heatproof.

They can withstand temperatures as high as 150°C to 200°C. As a result, when placing hot things on the quartz countertop, trivets and pads are required because extremely high temperatures can create a thermal shock, resulting in discoloration or cracks in the surface.

Maintenance

Modern fast-paced lifestyle does not allow us to put extra time and effort into cleaning and maintaining countertops. As a result, most homeowners prefer low-maintenance countertop materials.

  • Granite surfaces are fairly low maintenance. You can clean the stone with a simple solution of mild soap and water, which will surely take care of the stains. Nonetheless, sealing your granite countertop once a year is essential to ensuring its longevity and protecting it against staining and etchings from acidic substances.
  • Quartz, being a non-porous stone, is immune to staining as it does not absorb liquids. You can use soap water with less than 7 pH level to remove any spills or splashes from your cooking. Best of all, quartz countertops do not need to be resealed. 

Price

Granite and quartz prices, like those of other stone surfaces, vary depending on a variety of factors such as material availability, quality, and demand. Therefore, it is not true that quartz is less expensive than granite. 

  • Granite: Granite surfaces fall into three different categories: basic colors, mid-exotic colors, and super exotic or rare colors and their price differ accordingly. Basic granites, for instance, are readily available and widely used for surfacing in commercial and residential spaces, making them the most affordable choice when compared to the other two categories. Mid-exotic and super-exotic granites, on the other hand, are distinguished by their exclusive features and rarity. Super-exotic colors are the most premium and are priced higher than mid-exotic colors.  At Ultra Stones, we stock over 250 granite colors to provide you with additional options when designing your decor.
  • Quartz: We also have three distinct varieties of quartz, each priced differently. Builder-grade or basic color quartz is used mostly for constructing commercial spaces and, thus, is less expensive. Whereas exotic quartz with the Carrara marble look or thin veins cost slightly more. The super exotic or cristobalite quartz is the most expensive variety, owing to its refined appearance and superior quality. 

Therefore, it is not true that quartz is less expensive than granite because cristobalite quartz is more expensive than basic and mid-exotic granite.

Since quartz was invented as an economical alternative to natural stones, we strive to provide the best quality Ultra Quartz countertop slabs at a reasonable price to make them more accessible to homeowners.

Hygiene and Application Limitations

Hygiene

  • When it comes to hygiene, quartz surfaces outperform granite. Quartz surfaces are water-resistant. As a result, they prevent mold or bacterial growth, making quartz countertops a superior choice for moist or wet areas like washrooms.

Application Limitations

  • Granite is ideal for both indoor and outdoor countertops. Quartz, on the other hand, is unsuitable for outdoor applications due to its susceptibility to UV radiation, which causes surface discoloration and warping.

Installation and Repair 

Installation

  • Granite and quartz countertops should only be installed by specialists due to their density and weight. Professional equipment is required for creating different countertop edge profiles or cutting holes for sinks for both materials.

Repair

  • Minor scratches in granite countertops can be repaired with color-matching epoxy filler. Repairing severe fractures or chips on the surface might require the assistance of a specialist. Likewise, it is possible to fix minor scratches in quartz countertops. But, major cracks or breaks cannot be fixed. Make sure to reach out to professional installers if you face any issues with your quartz surfaces. 

In the world of stone surfaces, the perfect stone is a myth and it does not exist. Every stone comes with some advantages and disadvantages and we want to make our readers aware of it. There is no denying that both granite and quartz are excellent countertop materials.

However, the answer to which stone is best for you depends on your preferences, budget, and lifestyle. If you prefer using only premium natural stones and do not mind a little upkeep, granite is surely the winner. But, If you want to explore the best colors in marble and quartz in New York and Pennsylvania, visit Ultra Stones.

We hope you’re finding our blogs insightful! Write to us at [email protected] and let us know which stone you would like to learn more about.

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