Are you searching for a stone finish for your countertops? If yes, then you might be confused between quartzite and quartz countertops. While both of these surfaces contain quartz, there are several differences between them that may not be apparent to the average homeowner. We’re here to fill you in on those differences and help you select the surface that suits your needs best.
The parameters to consider when choosing between quartzite and quartz include formation, appearance, cost, effort for installation and maintenance, placement, durability, and resale value. Let’s look at each one in detail so that you can make an informed decision.
Formation and Appearance
Quartzite is a natural stone which begins as sandstone and naturally transforms into the final material we see due to prolonged exposure to heat and pressure. Quartz, however, is human-made and is formed by the same natural crystals in quartzite. It is then combined with other materials such as resin, glass and pigments in a controlled process to achieve the final product.
Since quartzite is formed naturally, the appearance of the final stone can’t be controlled. That being said, it might be the ideal choice for you if you incline towards a natural finish but want a more durable material for your countertop. Quartz, on the other hand, can be made in any color as it is engineered. It gives you more liberty to choose what design would fit your home better but does have limitations in patterns. Those will be relatively consistent throughout the slab for quartz.
Although both of these materials have overlaps in cost, different factors can influence which one ends up costing you more. Quartzite can be more costly because the process of extraction and cutting requires more effort. Also, if you choose a slab of quartzite that is rarer than others, you’ll be in for a heftier investment.
Quartz is the more affordable choice, but keep in mind that customization will come at a premium. The more specific you get regarding the color, design and pattern, the more it will cost you per square foot.
Installation and Maintenance
It is recommended that you hire a professional to help you install these countertops. Both quartzite and quartz are heavy materials, and the chances of your injuring yourself or damaging your property are quite high, even if you have prior experience in countertop installations.
Concerning maintenance, there’s a clear winner amongst the two surfaces: quartz. Since quartzite is a natural stone, it’s more prone to staining and chipping. Those who choose quartz need less maintenance since the material is not as porous and, therefore, less likely to get stained or chip. The surface can just be wiped down if there are any spills.
Placement and Durability
Both quartz and quartzite are versatile and can be used as tiles for flooring, walls, and kitchen countertops. Quartz is produced in a much larger quantity since it is handmade. As such, quartz is often the better choice for large surfaces. It is also a great option if you wish to stick to a certain color palette for your home since it can be customized to match your requirements.
Quartzite is more durable when it comes to heat resistance as it’s a natural stone. It can also withstand hot kitchen utensils. If you attempt to place hot pots and pans on quartz, on the other hand, you will most likely end up with burn marks on the surface.
When it comes to moisture resistance, quartz, as mentioned previously, doesn’t stain easily because it’s less likely to absorb any spills. However, quartzite is more porous, and unless you add a good sealant to the surface, it will easily stain. Plus, you’ll need to replace the sealant regularly.
Since quartz requires less maintenance, it is more valuable to potential buyers. If you do plan on selling your property in the future, this is something you should take into account. However, if you intend to keep your dream home, feel free to choose between quartz and quartzite without factoring resale value into your buying decision.
Overall, both quartz and quartzite are terrific additions from a design perspective for your home. To summarize, some questions you can ask yourself if you’re still struggling to make a choice are:
- Do I want a natural stone appearance with varied patterns, or do I want a material that will fit my custom requirements?
- Am I more concerned about resistance to heat or resistance to staining from spills?
- Do I intend on selling this home, and should I keep resale value in mind?
- Can I afford to splurge?
- Will I have enough time for maintenance?
Hopefully, this checklist will make it easier for you to choose between quartzite and quartz. Call our countertop experts at (303) 835-9745 if you need more guidance. We know countertops are a critical investment, and we’re here to help you get the most bang for your buck.