Distinguishing between the different types of stone for countertops can be confusing if you do not have any geologic knowledge. Granite is an igneous rock that is found deep in the earth’s crust which provides a base for many sedimentary stone combinations. Quartzite is a metamorphic rock that is formed from sandstone and quartz. It is found in much more abundance than granite or quartz. Quartzite is created underneath immense amounts of pressure, and because of this it is much harder than granite. So what is the difference between quartzite and granite?
Things to keep in mind with quartzite and granite:
- Quartzite is primarily found in more standard shades, unlike granite which has multiple color variations
- Quartzite tends to have patterns that are more like marble which means there is less movement in the overall slab
- Quartzite is resistant to etching from acidic substances like vinegar and lemon juice
- Quartzite is much easier to scratch than granite (this is also a way to test and see if you have an actual piece of quartzite if you are not sure)
- Quartzite has natural protection against UV rays. This makes it a great choice for outdoor kitchens
- Quartzite is NOT as heat resistant as granite. Use extra caution and always use pot holders and trivets to prevent damage
- Quartzite and granite are naturally occurring where quartz is man-made
- Quartzite and granite both require sealing for ultimate protection
- Make sure that your fabricator and/installer are aware of the hardness level of quartzite. Many of the common tools used in granite installation do not effectively cut quartzite
- Quartzite and granite will both provide you with a one of a kind look that will be unique to your home since it is not manufactured
- Due to the extreme solidity of quartzite make sure that you understand that it may not be the best choice for intricate projects that require a lot of cutting and preparation
Homeowners, contractors, and designers alike are really taking to quartzite for interior projects. Although it does not offer the color selection that granite does or the pattern variations, the marble-like designs are beautiful and sleek. You can achieve some very timeless looks when using quartzite if you contrast it against cabinetry. Currently, a common design trend that decorators are showing off is a bright white quartzite countertop with espresso or black cabinets. It can also be paired with a more textured look if something so streamline is not the way you want to go.
Quartzite and granite are similar in price, so this need not be a determining factor in picking which to use. However, as mentioned before, because quartzite is more difficult to cut, the labor can cost much more if you have a more involved countertop layout in mind.
When it comes to understanding stone and making the best choice for you project always refer to geology to answer your questions. Stones have many original characteristics which make them semi-easy to distinguish between. Take advantage of the recommended tests to assure that you are getting the stone that you want.