How Are Quartz Countertops Made?

Kitchen with quartz countertops

For anyone that is thinking about getting quartz countertops, you might be wondering how they are made. Quartz countertops are unique in that they aren’t natural like marble or granite; they are engineered with a mix of natural quartz, resins, polymers, pigments, and resins. Specifically, they are made of around 90% ground quartz, and the last 10% or so is comprised of various resins, polymers, and pigments, and even polyester resins are commonly added. 

Unlike natural stone countertops, whose natural veins and colors can’t be changed, Quartz kitchen countertops can come in various colors and patterns, with pigments and stones added to fit the desired look and all of which can be made to look uniform.

After the raw ingredients of quartz are mixed together, they begin to form a paste-like consistency similar to damp sand. They start to bond together, and the manufacturers can move on to the next step in the process.

The mix of sediment is sent into a large mold designed to shape the raw materials into long, flat, rectangular slabs. This is when the quartz begins to take shape as a slab.

After it has been put in the mold, it will be completely smoothed out to ensure that it is evenly distributed and that there are no gaps where air can get in. The mixture must be molded properly as it’s essential for the quartz slabs to be nonporous and airtight.

Once the mold is ready, the materials will be compressed with immense pressure by a large machine in order to form solid quartz slabs that are 1-inch thick. 

Special processes are used to make sure that the slab is airtight and nonporous. Process such as industrial vacuums sucking any air pockets out of the quartz material as the mixture is compressed, and vibrations that help shake out any loose stones and really solidify the construction. This is done to make the quartz slabs as solid and airtight as possible, preventing bacteria or liquids from finding air pockets or little pores.

Because quartz is a manmade stone, extra effort can be put into making the surface as practical as possible for kitchen usage. After all of the compression is done, the quartz is sent through hot machines to be ‘baked’ and dried as the machines use heat and pressure to fully solidify the quartz and ensure that the surface is smooth.

After the slabs are dried and heated, the quartz is ready for the finishing touches. This involves large machines that polish the slabs until they are perfectly shiny, and a precise cutting process to account for the different styles and uses of the individual slabs. The slabs might have a final round of hand-polishing to give them an extra shine before it makes its way to your home to give your kitchen a fresh new look.

Pros of Quartz Countertops

Over the years, Quartz countertops have become a popular inclusion in most people’s homes, whether for a bathroom countertop or in the kitchen. They tend to be popular due to their beautiful color and look, but they have many more benefits. 

Quartz is a very hard material, even harder than granite (another popular option for countertops), making it very durable and strong once installed in your home. The natural mineral quartz is also resistant to chemicals, meaning that your quartz countertops are resistant to chemicals and stains. Unlike granite or natural stone countertops, quartz countertops are not porous. Since they use resin, it results in easy maintenance and clean-up

These countertops are also extremely heat resistant, though only to a certain threshold. The quartz slabs are cured at about 180 degrees Fahrenheit during fabrication. This process allows the countertops to develop a resistance to stains, chips, and abrasions and can resist heat up to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. The resin binders within the quartz slab can change their chemical state if exposed to temperatures above this range, often impacting the color of the quartz.

One final thing that’s great about quartz is its abundance. Since the actual mineral quartz is quite common in the earth, quartz countertops have a much less environmental effect than other kitchen countertops. Certain natural stones like granite require a lot of work for mining the stone and getting it out of the quarries. By choosing quartz countertops as an option for your home, you’re making a more environmentally friendly choice as well! 

How to get Quartz Countertops for my Kitchen or Bathroom

If you’re now wanting to invest in some quartz countertops in your home, we have the perfect team to help get them installed. Whitewater has a team of trained professionals who have been installing kitchen and bathroom products for over 40 years. Our team would be more than happy to help you explore your options and give you a free quote. If you’re interested in getting a beautiful quartz countertop installed into your home, call Whitewater today! 

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