Granite vs. Quartz: Which is the Better Countertop Material?
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Modern property owners benefit from the many options for construction materials and home improvement products in the market today. As such, kitchen finishes, such as floor tiles, countertops, and cabinetries, come in a wide range of selections—each with their pros and cons. These include concrete, ceramic tile, solid surface, granite, marble, and engineered quartz for kitchen counters.
Nowadays, both granite and engineered quartz are the two most popular countertop materials used everywhere. Both stones are known for their beauty, elegance, versatility, and durability. Likewise, each has its advantages and disadvantages.
We all have different considerations when choosing the right material for our home. For some, the product’s visual appeal weighs more than any of its other features. Others, on the other hand, prioritize functionality and performance. The more practical homeowners look for ease of maintenance, while for others, the cost means everything. Let’s compare granite and engineered quartz so you can make an informed decision for your next kitchen upgrade.
Granite is a natural stone primarily composed of feldspar and quartz. As a naturally-occurring material, granites have an infinite number of color and pattern combinations. These colors can range from gray, white, pink, red, gold, green, blue, and black. As such, no two slabs will ever look the same. Even when quarried from the same location, one slab’s mineral composition will vary slightly from another. Ultimately, this natural variation gives granite its unique charm and visual appeal to many.
Unlike granite, Engineered Quartz is a human-made material, formed from ground quartz minerals and polyester resin. Sometimes, manufacturers add pigments, recycled glass, or even metal to enhance the stone’s color and add some flare. There are some slabs, too, that imitate the appearance of marble. Lastly, engineered quartz offers a consistent appearance that you won’t find in any natural stone. Hence, you can buy two or more quartz slabs that have the same look.
Granite has unrivaled durability that makes it a wise investment for your home. It outlasts many other countertop materials, like ceramic or porcelain tiles. It will even outlive your entire house. The minerals found in granite, like feldspar, mica, and quartz, make it an adamant stone.
With a hardness of 6-7 on the Mohs scale, granite highly resists scratching and chipping. Thus, you need not worry about damaging your countertop while cutting or chopping your veggies during meal preps. Additionally, granite countertops can endure extreme heat from hot pots and pans. As such, it will undoubtedly handle day-to-day kitchen activities at home.
Likewise, quartz is durable and long-lasting. It also resists scratching and chipping. But, unlike natural granite, it is impervious to staining. This combination of properties makes engineered quartz the obvious choice for many homeowners. Not only is the material nearly indestructible, but it also requires minimal upkeep at the same time.
Range of Applications
Both granite and engineered quartz share many common applications in the construction industry. These two stones serve as countertops, tabletops, vanity tops, floor tiles, and wall cladding for residential and commercial spaces.
Additionally, granite finds other uses as an outdoor application. Its ability to withstand various elements allows us to utilize it as stair treads, pool coping, pavers, and even historical markers.
Granite costs between Php1,500 per sqm. to Php6,500 per sqm., depending on the stones’ origin, rarity, grade, size, and thickness. Engineered Quartz, on the other hand, ranges between Php4,500 per sqm. and Php9,000 per sqm.
If you can’t DIY, fabrication and installation could cost you up to Php500 per linear meter separately. If you lack the skill, experience, and proper tools for the job, we recommend hiring a stone expert to do it for you. Countertop installation is a highly-critical task that requires careful planning and execution.
If you’re curious to know how much it would cost you, visit your nearest local stone supplier to get a quote. You can also email us a detailed plan for your project so we can give you a proposal. Our email address is saintmarkcs [at] yahoo.com. If you live either in the Visayas or Mindanao, you can also check out our affiliate, Stone Depot.
Light-colored granites are inherently porous. Should you choose a granite like “Salt and Pepper” or “Viscon White,” you need to seal it regularly. Always keep a dry cloth handy to wipe up stains immediately. Also, avoid pouring wine and juice over your granite counter. Don’t leave wet or dirty dishes on it directly, as well. These simple habits will help you maintain the natural beauty of your granite countertop.
Like granite, quartz requires regular cleaning and disinfection to preserve its beauty and maintain its function. However, it doesn’t require the level of care you need for granite, especially sealing. Also, you need to avoid exposing it to extreme heat and direct sunlight, as these two elements can damage your counter. Always use a trivet or a hot pad all the time.
In terms of characteristics and performance, both granite and engineered quartz match almost equally. But which of the two materials suits your project?
If you enjoy having natural materials in your home, choose granite. Its inherent beauty will surely complement all the other elements in your house. You just need to be willing to commit to the upkeep it requires, especially sealing. After all, nothing beats the real thing, right?
If, on the other hand, you prefer a worry-free kitchen surface, get a quartz counter instead. It’s durable, non-porous, and modern-looking. It’s a beautiful material that you won’t need to wipe up or think about from time to time.
The key is to understand both natural granite and engineered quartz before making a decision. Weigh which one suits your preference and purposes best. Understand the advantages and disadvantages of one over the other. Ultimately, an informed decision will help you pick which countertop material has the best-balanced benefits that are right for you.