Are you stuck for which way to go with your kitchen?
Have you already looked through various websites and still finding no definitive answer?
Is a professional guide the solid piece of advice you need to make a decision?
If you answered yes to any of the above you must read the following 5 facts before purchasing worktops for your dream kitchen.
- Fact 1: The actual difference between granite and quartz.
Granite is formed from the crystallisation of magma just below the earth’s surface, its mineral composition can vary a lot which is why the pattern and colour can be so different from region. This Granite is then processed into slabs which are polished with diamond tipped tools to give it sheen.
In a similar manner to granite, quartz also forms from the crystallisation of magma, this quartz crystal is mined from the ground then reduced to fine sand and combined with a resin that will bind the particles together; this fills the gaps in the worktop surface which leads to its anti bacterial properties.
Despite sharing many similarities such as glossy feel and resilience their differences are detectable, granite is slightly more susceptible to scratches and requires sealing every decade whereas quartz requires no such maintenance.
Also quartz has the added advantage of being anti bacterial allowing the user to prepare food directly on the surface without hesitation.
- Fact 2: Durability matters.
Durability is more than the strength of the worktop; it includes stain resistance, resistance to cutting or scratches, heat, abrasion and impacts.
This is why you need to think about how you use your kitchen, on a daily basis, to decide which material will be the best fit for your needs.
Quartz worktops have the advantage of being the more durable worktop overall due to quartz worktops being an engineered material. This means it will always have the benefit of not relying on nature to become stronger, however granite is not to be taken lightly considering how closely they both ranked for best worktops (see table below).
- Fact 3: You get what you pay for.
Whilst materials like laminate can be seen as a cheaper alternative when compared to the cost of granite and quartz, they have a much shorter lifespan. Putting quartz or granite in your house is a long term investment, as with proper care, they can last over 25 years. However, this does depend on the material you choose. Darker granites tend to be more durable than lighter variants, so you will need to consider this when making your choice. Although this is not the case for the more durable quartz where all quartz colours are equally durable because of the way they are engineered.
Although, even with quartz, you need to make sure you don’t just go for the cheapest as some lesser known brands are known, within the industry, for being susceptible to marking and damage much easier than their more expensive genuine European Breton S.p.A quartz counterparts.
- Fact 4: You only have to please yourself.
The answer to this question is definitely one of personal choice. However, if you are looking for consistency then quartz is for you. There is little variation in tone and shade in quartz slabs, whereas with granite slabs there is a much greater margin meaning no two pieces of worktop in your kitchen will be identical.
In my opinion however, if you want a timeless or even classic feel then granite is for you. With its wonderful veining and natural swirls our granite worktops really feel like magnificent masterpieces. Although for sleek modern looks, quartz is king. With its smooth and consistent colours, it will add that finishing touch to your contemporary kitchen area.
But as always there are exceptions as there are some dark granite installations that look just as suave as any quartz and there are new quartz designs being made to imitate the character of granites. This is why I leave that decision to the customer.
- Fact 5: Not every fitter will do a good job.
With most industries there is an art to perfect whether it is perfectly seasoned food, the reliability of an algorithm, the efficiency of an athlete in physical sports and in the granite/quartz industry this can be difficult to notice which will often be a costly error; however we can provide some good points to note when choosing a supplier.
- Cutting corners by using hand held tools and manufacturing the worktops on site allows more margins for human error.
- Off cuts are the remains of slabs that were not used by previous customers, therefore colours may be mismatched in your kitchen.
- Quartz that does not come from genuine producers will be inferior in most regards in comparison to the real stuff sold by the few suppliers in the UK.
You can check whether your potential supplier will be doing things the right way by checking their reviews online.