Granite and engineered quartz countertops are easily the two most popular countertop materials for home remodels. Both countertops are desirable due to their beauty and durability, but how do they shape up against each other? In the battle of granite vs. quartz, which countertop material comes out on top?
In this post, our remodeling experts at TriFection provide insight to help you make the best decision for your kitchen remodel.
Natural Stone vs Engineered Stone
Granite and quartz can be similar in appearance, but they are completely different in makeup. Each material has its advantages.
Granite is a natural stone that offers natural beauty and character as well as excellent durability and low maintenance. The rock-to-countertop process includes mining and cutting the rock into large slabs. Every slab of granite is completely unique.
Alternatively, quartz is a manufactured product. Homeowners often confuse engineered quartz with quartzite, another natural stone option. To produce quartz, manufacturers utilize computer designs and heavy machinery. They combine small pieces of stone with various pigments and apoxy resin. This process lends the nicknames of “engineered quartz” or “compound stone”.
Many well-known brands of quartz exist, including Cambria, Silestone, Caesarstone and Zodiaq. TriFection’s preferred vendor is Cambria due to its strong focus on high-quality materials, exceptional warranty and great client service. On top of that, Cambria makes all their countertops in the USA!
Granite and Quartz Countertop Colors
Because granite is a natural stone, your countertop will have its own individual character. Take this White Spring beauty pictured, for example.
If you watch any real estate or home improvement show, you’ll quickly notice that the first thing most customers ask for is “granite countertops in the kitchen”. Most home-buyers associate granite with luxury, and we don’t see this changing any time soon.
Based on advances in technology and consumer demand, the number of quartz color options has expanded greatly in recent years. Quartz replicates many of the desirable features of granite. For many years, quartz countertops could only cheaply imitate the natural movement of granite, due to a limited color range. However, homeowners can now find quartz in a wide variety of colors with natural appearance similar to granite or marble. For this reason, homeowners who like the swirled look of marble but recognize that marble countertops are not suitable for everyday kitchen use often choose engineered quartz.
Because every quartz slab of the same color is identical, fabricators cannot bookmatch seams as effectively as they can with granite. This means that you could see some interrupted flow on long runs of countertops. However, TriFection’s highly skilled fabricators can mitigate this issue with a well-designed plan.
Regardless of whether you choose granite or quartz for your kitchen remodel, you should always choose custom fabricated countertops instead of a pre-fabricated option. While custom fabrication costs more, it produces a far more attractive, luxurious look. You will achieve the fewest number of seams possible, and those seams will be in the most inconspicuous, natural locations. Cheap fabrication will ruin even the most beautiful slabs of granite or quartz
Durability: Granite vs. Engineered Quartz
Both high-quality granite and quartz are durable and will stand up to everyday usage for a very long time.
As we mentioned, because of the binding agents found in quartz, homeowners do not need to seal it. Quartz manufacturers often promote quartz as a lower maintenance product relative to granite. While this statement can be true, we believe the difference is overstated. If you purchase a good-quality, properly sealed granite, you can expect to reseal it perhaps once every 10 to 15 years. And, the resealing process is fairly simple and not time-consuming. Your granite countertops will last forever.
The same binding agent that gives quartz its nonporous element is also the reason homeowners should not opt for quartz in areas exposed to direct sunlight, as the resin is not resistant to UV rays. Over time, this bonding agent will begin to yellow or patina if installed under direct sunlight. For instance, if you purchase white quartz countertops for an outdoor kitchen, over time, you may experience some yellowing.
Quartz vs Granite Costs
Granite and engineered quartz are relatively similar in price, although there could be some significant fluctuation based on the color you choose.
Granite prices vary based on the color and quality of the slabs. Not all granite is created equally. Like a diamond, granite is a natural stone that gets graded based on the number and visibility of imperfections, such as pits and dry veins, as well as the beauty and scarcity of its color. These quality variations result in a wide price range for granite materials.
In contrast, the price range for quartz is much narrower. Quartz colors are generally manufactured in the same manner, so you can expect to pay close to the same price for one slab of quartz as opposed to any other. Typically, homeowners can expect to pay a little more for quartz compared to most granite options.
Reasons to Consider Granite For Your Remodel
The distinct, natural beauty of granite countertops represents their most attractive feature and biggest selling point.
One can easily understand other reasons why granite remains the most popular countertop material for remodeling projects over the years. It’s one of the hardest materials on earth. It’s durable, easy to maintain, and has the ability to complement any design style. Each piece of your countertop will be completely unique and have its own particular aesthetic appeal.
Reasons to Consider Engineered Quartz
Engineered quartz offers many of the same benefits as granite. Advances in technology and manufacturing processes have created a product with a more color options and natural appearance than earlier versions. The lack or porosity and the associated low maintenance are the biggest selling points for quartz. If you choose quartz, just make sure you purchase a good-quality product from a reputable vendor with a strong track record of client service and warranty support.
Granite vs. Engineered Quartz…Which Is The Winner?
Between granite and quartz, the type of countertop you choose really boils down to your aesthetic preference. In most respects, quartz and granite are extremely comparable. After considering the previously described factors, pick the color and degree of movement you like best, regardless of whether it’s granite or quartz.
Call TriFection For All of Your Remodeling Needs!
With over 30 years of experience and a widely known reputation for excellence, TriFection is a company you can trust to manage all of your home remodeling needs. Let us design the perfect custom kitchen, bathroom or any room for your family’s needs! Call us at 281-KITCHEN, or send us a message to get your project started.