Quartz and quartzite are two high-quality countertop materials that are often mistaken for each other. However, quartz and quartzite are two different materials with unique characteristics and varying levels of durability.
Continue reading to learn more about the major qualities and differences between the two materials.
Quartz countertops are man-made or engineered, and they’re made from synthetic materials. Typically, their composition is made up of 90% to 94% loose quartz and 6% to 10% resins and pigments – which turn into durable, non-porous slabs when combined.
Here are some of the other qualities of quartz countertops:
- Pattern Variety
Quartz pigments are manufactured, so they’re available in a wide range of colors and patterns. Homeowners can choose from shades of pink to orange. Quartz countertops can be veined or flecked to create unique patterns across the slab.
- Moisture Resistance
Quartz countertops are moisture- and water-resistant, thanks to their non-porous surface. The binding process does not let moisture seep into the material and prevents microbes from invading. Homeowners need only to wipe up spills or use surface cleaners to keep quartz countertops clean and sanitized.
Quartz is more affordable than quartzite because the former is easier to process and manufacture into countertop slabs. Once bound with resins and pigments, they can be baked into standard 120 by 55-inch slabs that are ready for use.
Quartzite is a naturally occurring material. It is the result when sandstone is exposed to extreme heat and pressure from the tectonic plate compression in the earth’s crust. This metamorphic rock is mined and sawn into slabs, which are later cut so they can be used as countertops.
Here are some of the characteristics of quartzite countertops:
- Limited Colors
Quartzite is usually white or gray and has gorgeous striations. Its streaking is caused by varying degrees of pressure during its formation as well as the random presence of iron oxide or other minerals.
- Earthy and Organic Feel
Quartzite slabs have a sugar-like texture because of their sandstone granulation. This coarse texture often appeals to those who prefer an organic vibe.
- Scratch Resistance
Quartzite is more scratch-resistant and slightly harder than quartz. Both materials can survive an errant stroke of a knife blade without being chipped. However, you should avoid chopping directly on quartz since the interaction of food acids and resins will cause etching. Quartzite is not prone to etching.
Granite Works provides top-quality countertop materials for various kitchens. Call (301) 640-5010, or fill out our contact form to schedule a consultation.