cwyn_gw

white quartz countertops and staining

cwyn
December 17, 2010

We absolutely want white countertops in our kitchen. We had decided on quartz because they are supposed to be the most durable and low-maintenance option. However, one of the dealers I spoke with said that even though they are not supposed to stain, in her experience the lighter colors stain anyway. So now we are not sure what to do. We aren't the kind of people who would spill red wine on the counter and then just leave it for days on end, but we won't wipe up after every single spill or drop of something on the counter, and we will have kids around the apartment, and we will have to sublet on a fairly regular basis to people who may not be super careful because we often have to travel abroad for many months at a time for work (and we can't afford to pay for an empty NYC apartment when we do that).

The color we particularly liked was Zodiaq Snow White. We're not willing to go with a darker color, but we have started to wonder if we should go with something like Caesarstone Organic white, which has a kind of pattern/texture to it, with the idea that if it does stain a little, it would be less obvious with the color irregularities. (We'd really rather have just a solid white, but on the other hand, we don't want to spend the money on a countertop just to have it look crummy as soon as it stains.)

So here are my questions:

1) Anyone out there with white quartz countertops who has had them for a while and can comment on whether or not they stain, and if so, how bad the stains look?

2) Anyone have experience with either the Zodiaq Snow White or the Caesarstone Organic White specifically, and if so, what has been your experience with the stains showing over time?

Thanks in advance for any advice or experiences shared!

Comments (173)

  • skipper328

    I am in the process of looking for quartz for our kitchen. I think Cambria Summerhill might look good but am getting nervous when I read the above comments. It's mostly white with gray/some black dots and it has some sparkle to it. Has anyone used this in their home? Does the "shine" fade away over time? Thanks for any comments.

  • PRO
    Cambria

    Hi Skipper328. We are excited to hear that you are considering Cambria Summerhill for your project. The shine does not fade away over time with Cambria because the shine you see is the natural polish of the quartz. Cambria does not use any sealers so no maintenance is necessary to keep that polished look. All you will need for every day cleaning is a soft cloth and warm water, add a mild dish soap if you’d like. If you would like to know about other options for viewing the Summerhill design, please message us your contact information and we will have our Customer Care Team reach out to you. You can also contact us at 866-226-2742.

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    I tested many samples of white quartzes from Caesarstone, Zodiaq, ColorQuartz, etc. I put mustard, ketchup, vinegar with a can of beans sitting on it, and kinds of acidic and staining products and left them on the samples for more than 12 hour. Everything washed right off leaving no hint of stains and the can sitting in the vinegar did not leave a ring. I ended up with the Caesarstone Blizzard and we love it. They are still working on the kitchen, so it has to be totally cleaned well when everything is done. New white subway tile backsplash was put in yesterday and will be sealed tomorrow. The cabinets will also be painted white. So far, everything is looking beautiful. I do not hesitate to recommend a white quartz. The only thing is to make sure not to purchase any quartz made in China or VietNam. That is my MHO.

  • skipper328

    Thank you for your help and comments!

  • misschocolatecake

    agk2003, I am glad to see you love your MSI Arctic White counters after using them for some time in the kitchen and bathroom! I am considering MSI Arctic White because I want a very solid white quartz counter without any flecks and Arctic White is one of the purest whites I have found. Can you tell me if you have had any problems with chipping around sinks edges for example, or chipping you didn't think would happen so easily (dropping a utensil on it, for example)?

    I was ready to pull the trigger on the MSI but my decision has been severely delayed because I have honestly been scared away from MSI and other Chinese manufactured quartzes due to so many comments I read on here. (I understand the whole non-Breton process issue). It's good to have a lot of information, but now I REALLY don't know what to do. Other white quartz options are considerably more expensive and I'm not sure I should pay thousands more for Cambria, Caesarstone, or LG, both of which aren't as white as the MSI, just for the chance at some peace of mind but no guarantees that I'd actually have better performance with them. Any guidance appreciated!!

  • WalnutCreek Zone 7b/8a

    I have to say that, surprisingly, the large slab of Caesarstone I needed was less expensive than the Chinese quartz that I had considered and ruled out.

  • agk2003

    hi misschocolatecake, sorry for the late response. yes we still love the MSI arctic white and it's been a year and a half in use now. we have had zero issues as far as staining. like i said above, if there are any stains or scuffs, they come out with bar keepers friend, but really those are rare. there are so many times where we will see a wine stain or turmeric stain, or we are making guac or drinks and spritzing lime and i will comment to hubby, can you imagine if we'd gone with marble- we'd have all sorts of staining and etching on this right now. i can't imagine what people do when they use lemon or lime in food on a marble counter. imo, staining and etching works on a counter for a farmhouse kitchen but it just didn't work for us. we had a slightly more sleek look going that's gone more transitional with an mcm bent. anyhoo, to address your chipping question. we have two tiny chips. one is right by the dishwasher where i smacked a pot against the edge. honestly i thought i would have cracked the counter with the force and noise it made but it made the tiniest chip that i freaked out about and hubby could not even find it when i was freaking out! another little chip was when i was removing our vent hood baffles- they don't have a nice way of being removed and every time i take them out i run the risk of them crashing down. anyway, one did come down and smashed right on the counter to the side of the stove top and again i would have thought i would have cracked the counter- this is a heavy metal baffle, but it made a tiny chip, again super tiny non visible unless you are really feeling for it or searching it out. i can't imagine another surface would not have had a chip from the type of impacts i am describing above. but as to chips around the sink or general on edges- none. we have been very pleased with our choice and say it all the time. in the bathroom we've had no chips. and i know i mentioned above that my makeup stains the quartz and i have to use bkf. well i have been using clorox wipes (they don't have bleach in them) to wipe them down and the makeup comes right off. easy peasy.

    btw i know you mentioned you wanted stark white, but for others looking for marble like veining, i saw a caesarstone product on someone's instagram recently and wow. i don't know the name of the pattern they chose but it was gorgeous.

  • C D

    I know this thread is a few months old...I am leaning toward LG Viaterra porcelain white quartz in a satin finish...it is a pure bright white. I left coffee, spaghetti sauce, red wine, butter, mustard, lemon juice on the sample for greater than 24 hours. I didn't think to try sharpie and turmeric before I read this thread :) I'll do that now. All of the other stains came up with plain water or dish soap and water. I left wet glasses on it overnight also, no marks at all. I also had dekton sample, in bright white, that I hung over the cabinet edge and literally banged on with a hammer...husband said "WHAT are you doing??" LOL It didn't chip, nor did it stain with the same attempt at staining the quartz. The satin white quartz is simply beautiful, so I am leaning toward that. I haven't been able to find anyone who has used this particular quartz. Does anyone have this?

  • Jen LyLe

    We just had LG Viaterra muse with satin finish installed and have used for 5 days. So far it has been stained by tomato sauce, berries and rust (from a soap dispenser which has now been garbaged). The installer said try barkeepers friend, which is also a recommended cleaner on the LG website. This is interesting since many on here say not to use it. Haven't tried it yet, I was able to fade the stains with baking soda but not completely remove (no visible scratches from this but we don't have direct sunlight on our counters).

  • Chessie

    Jen LyLe, that's amazing. I also have LG Viatera, and honestly I can't get the stuff to stain. Tomato, rust, and berry juice, all 3 of those things have sat on my counter. And wiped off. I won't try a Sharpie, but other than that, so far, nothing stains it.

  • C D

    Thank you Jen Lyle and Chess for your responses, Jen Lyle did you test a sample beforehand?

  • mtnmom9

    We also have a white LG quartz installed since this summer and nothing stains it so far. I wonder if Jen Lyle's "satin finish" has something to do with her stains?

  • Chessie

    mtnmom9, I was thinking the same thing. Mine is the standard glossy finish.

  • mtnmom9

    Chess, the only thing that has left a faint mark was when my husband left a rusty tool on the counter, but we got the stain out. We've found Greased Lightning cleaner & degreaser (on our "approved" list from LG/Viatera) to be about the best for stain/scuff removal for marks that don't come off with simple soap & water.

  • Chessie

    So far, this has worked better than anything, even better than BKF (which does not etch or dull my quartz at all but some say it does theirs). But this stuff is faster, it's my first choice now. I expect it is a similar product to the Greased Lightning.

    https://www.amazon.com/Scrubbing-Bubbles-Grease-Cleaner-Kitchen/dp/B00QHGN8YQ

  • misschocolatecake

    Thanks, agk2003, for giving your experience with MSI Artic White. It gave me the confidence to take the plunge.

    I wanted to provide an update about my counters. I did finally chose to save money and go with the MSI Arctic White and am pleased so far. Quality-wise, I don't see much difference at all between this and the much more expensive Cambria quartz I had in a previous kitchen. It's only been about two weeks so time will tell if the MSI, a Chinese made quartz, is not up to par with other more expensive quartz choices. Ultimately, I had to make choices in our whole house remodel to save money, and the counter top was one of those places.

    The MSI Artic White is a super bright plain white, no flecks or swirls. The only thing that has remotely "stained" it so far is a ring of black coffee left on the counter top overnight. I scrubbed it out with a magic eraser and it's all gone. For daily clean up, I just use a microfiber cloth and an all purpose cleaner like Method.

    I hope this helps others that are trying to decide.

  • Jen LyLe

    C D no we didn't. The installer seemed surprised that it had stained when we called to ask about it. I'll be trying some of the cleaners on the website to see if I can get them out completely.

  • C D

    Ok I just squirted ceramabryte directly on my sample, rubbed it around really hard and completely eradicated the turmeric and black sharpie. I then hacked at the top of it with a steak knife, which left black marks that wiped off. Last night I took a dish out of the 350 degree oven and left it on my sample to cool for over an hour ...left black marks which wiped off with dish soap and water. This sample seems to be some kind of miracle material. In a final fit of "take this, quartz!" I just sprayed a blob of easy off oven cleaner on it. I won't be doing any of that on any counter, but now I'm curious as to what WILL hurt this thing.

    Jen Lyle I hope you get some resolution. I wonder if they have changed how they make their satin finish. I'll post a picture of my sample.

  • C D

    this is the lg viaterra quartz in porcelain with satin finish, see the sharpie on the side that I didn't attempt to remove, as I had also marked the top surface directly above that

  • Chessie

    C D, I would just be careful about the hot pots. I tested mine as well, as you did, and did not experience any scorching. But quartz WILL scorch, far more quickly than granite, and this is due to the resin that is used in the making of the material.

    http://www.cosmosgranite.com/blog/is-quartz-heat-resistant


    https://www.houzz.com/discussions/help-with-burnt-quartz-counter-top-dsvw-vd~3288835

  • C D

    thank you Chess! I have read about that, and I don't intend to put hot pots on my countertop, I was just curious.

  • emmastacy

    I may never convince my old-fashioned engineer husband to change out our 30-year old tile countertops with all of this very valuable info. We have never had the first stain, chip, heat mar, Sharpie pen mishap, grout issue, or any cleaning product issue with the old-fashioned tile. I put an iron skillet from a 450 degree oven on it at least weekly. Oh, how I wanted quartz to update my otherwise beautiful kitchen. Solid walnut paneled cabinets, travertine floor, but we don't throw around thousands of dollars easily.

  • Chessie

    Tile with no chips? Then you are far more careful than I. I assure you I would have that tile chipped to hell. LOL.

  • emmastacy

    NO CHIPS... never careful... thousands of meals prepared in here. I have raised 4 children on same counters and now very involved with 7 grandchildren. Dated maybe but still hard to justify changing when the potential is definitely there for problems of which I have never had. Quality of the construction job of 1989 probably has something to do with the installer... that engineer husband of mine.

  • Chessie

    I don’t think an installer can improve much on the chip-tendencies of tile Itself. You must have picked a great tile. I do believe any tile will be far less chip-resistant than quartz though. Around sinks seem to be where most people have issues, and that seems to be due to the edge profile. Could be your edges were done in a manner that helps too. Ah....you have a drop in sink so that is one reason you have no issues there.

  • Lcoaster

    I just decided the Caesarstone frosty carrina looks perfect with the dark maple cabinet i’ve selected. Then I come here to see what folks have said about staining and white quartz. The above responses are making me wonder if I need to ignore my long desired white countertop color and go with something else. I hate my current dark granite — I often find food stuff on it by touch or when I see it via an angle while seated at the dining table. I want food to show more so others in the family have no excuse about not seeing them when it is their turn to clean. I’ve been dreaming about a white countertop for years. I should have done my research earlier. I guess I just bought in on the advertised superior stain resistant nature of quartz and didn’t think the color would make a difference.

  • Susan

    Hey guys, I know this subject is all about white quartz & staining issues, but, what about issues with burning your quartz? That's the one "ding" that I'm seeing & it worries me a lot. Pictures that you see on pintrest ect...they don't really reflect real life kitchens, so, does anyone have any experience/thoughts with issues on your quartz getting burnt & if so, has it been permanent or have you found a way to fix it? Thanks in advance. The staining, yes, I've read a lot of what all of you are saying, so it's given me more confidence to go ahead & get white quartz.

  • Chessie

    "Burning" only is an issue if you do not exercise normal care. I know many people do sit hot pots on their granite counters, but in fact that is not recommended, and can cause damage. It is always recommended to use trivets.

    That said, I did a test with my own quartz. I used a sample, and took a pot of boiling water and sat it on the sample and left it until it cooled. There was no impact/damage at all. Still, I use trivets or a towel to be safe. Cookie sheets are not an issue - I sit them down right on the counter as the heat is more dispersed. I use my appliances directly on my counter - toaster oven, coffee maker, crock pot - with zero issues. I have read that many people put something under their crockpots - but I don't. It might depend on the type of pot you have. There are many threads there on this issue, and there has been at least one example where the quartz was scorched. But I have had no issues, and generally try to put things on a towel.

    If you take a blowtorch to quartz, you will definitely scorch it.

  • PRO
    Joseph Corlett, LLC

    Sometimes grinding a drainboard into a quartz top or installing a sink with a drainboard will be the only cure for a burn outside replacement.

  • Marla V

    listening

  • Susan

    Thanks for your input chess, yes, I practice always putting something down, a towel, an oven glove, something always to protect even my granite that I have now, even though I've been told by both home owners & professionals that it's not necessary with granite, I still "yell at the kids & hubby" lol, that's just me. But, unfortunately, kids are kids & forget or think they can put something down hot...just for a second, then, we all know a second is not a second, so...

    I think we all can agree, we don't want to pay such a high price for something that's going to get ruined, even by accident. I do appreciate your response so much. :) I wish I could find a true white granite :/

  • tackykat

    I put a wooden cutting board under my slow cooker on my quartz countertop just to be safe. I also don't put hot pans right on the counter. It is not that hard.

  • Chessie

    "I think we all can agree, we don't want to pay such a high price for something that's going to get ruined, even by accident. I do appreciate your response so much. :) I wish I could find a true white granite "

    My quartz is mostly white, and quite honestly, I can't imagine a situation where my son would have done something to put a burn mark on the quartz, that would not have had a similar effect on my old laminate counter. As I said, I did test a boiling hot pot, with no issues. I really do believe that in 25 years, my quartz will look far better than the 25 year old counter I replaced. :-)

    Good luck on the search for a white granite though. I find the busy "spotty" look of granite very unappealing. You might want to take home some samples of the quartz and try some tests yourself.

  • Susan

    Good to know & good idea. :) The only "granite" that I've found that I like is one called Silver Cloud & it's black & white. The "white" on it IS a true white, but depending on the time they get it from the quarry, it can be more or less of the blacks/grays running through it. It's a very pretty granite though, but, I really want a white quartz. :) Thanks for the advice

  • cailgirl123

    Jennifer Lindsey What brand is your quartz?

  • cailgirl123

    Nevermind, I found that reply above. Thanks.

  • PRO
    DELORENZO Marble & Stone Surfaces

    I have been in the counter top business for 15 years. There is a very big difference in brands of quartz in terms of quality and resistance to etching and staining. You may be tempted to purchase a design that works well with your style but try to resist. There are over 500 factories making quartz, typically as a private label product. Most of them not very good and likely to etch or stain. There is no governing body that determines what can and can't be called quartz yet it is all marketed the same way even though they don't perform. You can also test the product by bringing home a piece and subjecting to the rigors found in a working kitchen. Good luck.

  • Michelle Velazquez

    anyone have any comments of Natura quartz company. Its been over a year with calls and emails on the best way to remove stains and to no avail. I have white quartz counter tops as well and my issues seems to be with metal pots gently being moved and it leaves a residue mark that is hard to remove by barskeeper, soap and water, and other products.

    I am going to try to essential oil lemon grass I believe. I also used a butterknife to cut something and it cut through the quartz. Like was the quality at this company horrible? Its definitely not low maintenance

  • misschocolatecake

    I don't have your brand of quartz, but my counter is also super white quartz and I use a small spritz of Clorox Cleanup only on the stain/mark in question. My kids do homework at the island and they often get pen/pencil marks on the counter. If I can't get the pen/pencil off with a simple microfiber cloth and all purpose spray cleaner, I use the Clorox Cleanup, leave it on for a minute, and wipe away. I also have to do this method if ink or dye transfers from wet paper and soaks into the counter. If a stain is really hard to remove, I'll scrub gently with a tiny bit of Kohler cast iron cleaner (which I usually use on my cast iron sink to get out metal pot marks). Good luck!

  • Marla V

    I also have a different brand of quartz, but I use Soft Scrub with bleach. Leave it on the stain for 15-30 mins, then wipe with a microfiber cloth. Repeat if necessary.

  • Chessie

    Michelle Velazquez "my issues seems to be with metal pots gently being moved and it leaves a residue mark "

    I can make similar marks on the edge of my counter, if I try. I can rub a razor blade against it, or the bottom of an old pan/pot. But I have never had a problem removing the marks. I use Krud Krutter spray cleaner. My old fave, Scrubbing Bubbles MAX kitchen cleaner - I have not been able to find lately - but they both do an excellent job. I spray and let it sit for a minute, and then wipe off. Nothing has ever permanently stained my quartz.

  • ziashaider

    Hi All, I am getting my kitchen renovated and have been looking into getting the Silestone ET Calacatta Gold quartz countertop. I got a few samples from them and poured lemon juice, tea, vinegar, and turmeric. Left it for 24 hrs. Today when I cleaned the sample tiles, all cleaned away but the turmeric left a stain. Its not dark yellow, but a light yellow stain. Silestone has N Boost coating on the counters to repel liquids I guess that works for liquids only. I tried cleaning with baking soda, organic dish washing liquid and the stain is still there. I put some turmeric this morning for an hour and it stained the tile as well. I thought an hour would be more realistic.

    Will I be better off getting a white quartzite and apply sealant every 6 months? Need some suggestions please. Thank you

  • Chessie

    You need to contact Silestone and ask THEM this question.

  • John Franz

    Motsenbacher Liftoff Pen, Ink & Marker Remover has done well with tumeric, black Sharpie Permanent Marker and a few other stains that don't come off with Ceramabrite or Cooktop Cleaner on white Eternia Quartz, Camberwell Industries, Ohio. There are some scattered black designs in the quartz. Two years of constant cooking. A solid, white Corian countertop with a flat, matte finish lasted well for 30 years. A spray of bleach took out any stains. After about 20 years with two boys we had it resurfaced with a special sanding machine and company, Blume Fabrication, Freeport, Pa. The technician brought the Corian countertop back to new. I await our long term experience with the quartzite.

  • Chris

    I’ve had Silestone Blanco Zeus for the past 10years. In terms of durability, they are superb and it takes a lot of beating. So far, no heat damage and no stains that can’t be removed. Only a couple of small chips caused by dropping a cast iron pot on it. But the entire piece is completely yellow / cream now, totally discolored by UV due to large windows in the kitchen area, so am looking for replacement options now.

  • L P

    Hi, in the fall of 2017 we had beautiful cream quartz countertops installed which I love to this day. However my husband and I are both avid newspaper readers in the morning and have since acquired what I would describe as a greenish cast where the two of us read leaning on the newspaper with arms. I have tried many products, some remove some, yet this green cast remains when a person looks at the island as one unit. Any advice? The manufacturer/installer only recommended a product called “Kenny’s” but I am unable to find it. I would like to get this stain out.....is it possible it may need sanding or buffing? Any advice out there?

  • agk2003

    have you tried barkeepers friend (the powder is better than the cream)? gets out everything for me

  • misschocolatecake

    @L P We occasionally get stains on our super white quartz from things like markers, pen ink, pencil lead, and dye that bleeds through from wet construction paper left on the counter too long, for example (my kids use the island a lot for homework, crafting, etc.). I have safely used Clorox Cleanup spritzed onto the stain, left for a minute, then very gently scrubbed to remove stain. I wouldn't use bleach on a daily basis, but I think it's OK for occasional tough stains. What I do use daily to clean and sanitize my counter is plain hydrogen peroxide. It does remove berry and wine stains, but I need the bleach for tougher stains. Whatever you use, test a small area first. Good luck!

  • L P

    Thank you both. I did try barkeepers as that has been my go to for most things, but feel it dulls the surface. It says on the can not to use on stone so I don’t want to do permanent damage, it did remove it. I also wonder if I am pushing this color in the stone by rubbing and wiping all the time. 8>). Thanks for the input. I am going to try the store once again.....they are not good at advising me, after the sale of course.

  • Chessie

    I use BKF and it has never dulled the surface of my quartz. But I don't use the powder, only the liquid.

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