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Pride and Prejudice the Truth Revealed about Marble, Granite and Quartz Kitchen Countertops 2019-10-11

Pride and Prejudice the Truth Revealed about Marble, Granite and Quartz Kitchen Countertops

 

Some readers of this article may find the content controversial in terms of how to choose between natural stone kitchen countertops and an engineered kitchen countertop such as quartz.

However, the content provides factual information which should allow the reader to make an informed choice based on the properties of each kitchen countertop.

The article will unravel some of the misconceptions regarding granite, marble and quartz kitchen countertops.
 

Marble

marble countertops
 

Marble is associated with the finer things in life and offers a feeling of luxury and expense when used as a kitchen countertop.

Marble from a geologist perspective is a metamorphic rock; its main component is limestone. We consider limestone to be soft and porous but, when limestone is formed under immense pressure and heat like that of the earth’s core it changes its composition and becomes a beautiful hard rock, known as marble.

Marble is quarried and found in huge seams, it is cut into slabs that can be easily transported and manufactured into kitchen countertops or other products.

Although marble has been used for millennia as the perfect hard-wearing surface for many applications it does have some limitations in performance and functionality.

The marble kitchen countertop is undoubtedly known for its opulent appearance. However, the reality is that marble despite its appearance and reputation is softer than other natural stone kitchen countertops.

Care has to be taken when cutting and chopping on a marble kitchen countertop, chopping board must be used to avoid surface damage.

Marble does not conduct heat very well and a hot pan or dish from the oven placed directly onto a marble surface could stain the marble or worse cause a thermal crack. Thermal cracks happen when the surface suddenly becomes hot but the base of the surface is cool, the contradicting expansion rates make a clean break in the kitchen countertop.

Marble can also chip and crack from inadvertent impacts on the surface, such as a falling heavy utensil or a piece of crockery falling from an overhead cabinet.

Precise edging is essential to avoid chipping and cracks that will ultimately affect the appearance of the countertop.

Marble is porous and needs to be professionally sealed every two years to avoid staining from spills. Marble requires maintenance and should be cleaned daily with warm soapy water; marble will not tolerate aggressive detergents and chemicals.

Installation can be a little tricky particular if the marble has been cut for countertop right angles, perfect seamless jointing is difficult to achieve with marble kitchen countertops.
 

Granite

granite countertops

 

Granite is a crystalline rock that forms below the earth’s surface; it is renowned for its hard surface and has been the choice for monuments and building facades across the world.

Like marble granite is quarried and can be found across the world, granite is cut with diamond tip blades into sheets and then transported to the kitchen countertop manufacturer. Like marble, the granite is cut and polished and buffed to a luster that any homeowner would be proud to have in their kitchen.

Granite is the perfect choice for a kitchen countertop, it is hard it durable and will give the homeowner years of practical use while making a statement in the homeowner's kitchen.

However, granite has limitations and can be prone to chipping on the edges and if exposed to impact can crack due to the stone being brittle and lacking in tensile strength.

Like marble, granite needs to be sealed every two years to maintain its properties and appearance. Also like marble granite is porous and spills need to be removed quickly to avoid staining.

Because of the chemical makeup of both marble and granite, some commercial-grade cleaners cannot be used for removing stains. If these cleaners came into contact with a bare surface it is possible for staining and some dissolving of the rock surface.

Installation of the granite kitchen countertop should only be carried out by a professional with the correct lifting gear and technique for handling such a heavy piece of natural stone.

Joints should be seamless with granite.
 

Quartz

quartz countertops
 

Is an engineered kitchen countertop, when I say engineered it is man-made in a factory. However, the quartz kitchen countertop is made from 93% natural quartz stone and 7% special polymer resin and some pigment for color.

Quartz stone is one of the hardest minerals found on earth and is abundant.  To manufacture a quartz kitchen countertop the quartz stone is pulverized and graded to meet the manufacturing specifications.

The polymer resin is mixed with the pigment to achieve the desired color and then the pulverized quartz stone is added and molded.

Make your quartz kitchen countertops bespoke and have that extra wow factor, other materials can be added to the initial stone mix like glass, steel, crystal. These additions can make the countertops sparkle and exude the homeowner’s personality and style.

quartz island tops
 

Depending on the specification of the stone mix the results can be nothing less than stunning. It is known that quartz kitchen countertops are virtually indestructible and this makes the quartz kitchen countertop a winning proposition for many homeowners.

It's worth noting that quartz kitchen countertops are so dense and hard that they are not prone to chipping or cracking once installed.

Quartz kitchen countertops are impervious to liquids and the maintenance is low, once the quartz kitchen countertop is installed there is no need to consider sealing again. The quartz countertop surface will provide decades of maintenance and eye-appealing countertops.

In terms of performance, the quartz kitchen countertops are perfect for any kitchen and the homeowner will find the quartz countertop functional beautiful in appearance.

There are not many limitations when cleaning a quartz kitchen countertop, most commercial kitchen cleaning materials can be used to keep the countertop looking in great condition.

Installation of the quartz kitchen countertop is strictly for the professional installer. The dense construction makes the quartz countertop heavy, the countertop is extremely hard and any alterations when installing will need specialist equipment like diamond-tipped drills and cutters.
 

Other considerations when choosing between marble, granite, and quartz for your countertop

Something we hear about on regularly is global warming, and as such we all have a duty to reduce our carbon footprint.

When choosing natural rock as a kitchen countertop you may think this is an environmentally friendly option.  The truth is that marble and granite kitchen countertops are the least environmentally friendly options to choose.

 The very best marble and granite originate from Italy. Quarrying marble and granite requires the use of carbon-emitting machines such as diesel engine power saws.

The story gets worse if you have chosen marble or granite from Italy or a location in another country there will be extensive shipping. Shipping is a major contributor to global warming and the environmental impact is significant.

However, quartz kitchen countertops are likely to be manufactured in-country which will alleviate the environmental impact.
 

Marble Vs Granite Vs Quartz results

On the surface, it looks as if quartz kitchen countertops are the clear winner in all areas. Quartz is super hard and impermeable. Quartz kitchen countertops will provide decades of functional performance and keep their eye-appealing appearance.

Because quartz countertops are manufactured to a specification matching colors and patterns are easy to achieve. Unlike marble and granite, no two slabs are the same making continuity of color and pattern difficult to match.

Overall the quartz kitchen countertop is the best option when taking all of the considerations into account.
 

Added value to the home

Invariably remodeling your remodeled kitchen with stone kitchen countertops will add value to your home. It is critical to understand the market place and where your home fits into the buying demographic.

If you live in a modern home then marble would not be your natural choice. Modern homes require contemporary solutions to enhance their appearance and value. Quartz would be the perfect option.

If you have a traditional home you can consider all three options of kitchen countertops. It’s not unusual for homeowners to mistake a quartz kitchen countertop with marble or granite.

Traditional homes deserve natural stone, marble and granite can make all the difference to the sale of your traditional home. Natural materials complement each other and natural stone will provide the prospective buyer with tradition, quality, and beauty.
 

What has this article revealed about marble, granite and quartz kitchen countertops?

Choosing your new kitchen countertop is subjective and a very personal decision. Although quartz kitchen countertops can provide the performance and functionality that we seek there is sometimes more behind the decision to buy natural stone.

Although quartz kitchen countertops are extremely hard and almost indestructible that provide beauty and elegance in their own right, to the homeowner there can be an element that always standout on these engineered stone

Natural stone kitchen countertops offer the homeowner traditional and timeless appeal when using these minerals for kitchen countertops.

I guess it's not controversial what choice of kitchen countertop you will choose, it's all about personal preferences and which countertop fits your home, budget and your aspirations.

Copyright © 2019 TOP QUARTZ SPECIALIST SDN. BHD.
Top Quartz Specialist is a professional quartz stone distributor and manufacturer. As a well-respected, trusted company with an experienced team, we don’t just supply quartz slab, but also cut-to-size projects, always ensure in-time delivery with premium quality.

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