When considering investing in flooring or kitchen countertops in homes, it may be confusing to choose one. Gone are the days when the decision should be made between wood and plastic laminate.
The contemporary methods of building countertops include natural stones (granite, marble, soapstone, slate, and limestone), engineered stones like quartz, plastic laminates, and even concrete. Let’s examine the most common materials used in recent years; quartz and natural stones.
Origin of Natural Stones and Quartz
As the name suggests, natural stones are organic rocks excavated from the earth and used for decorative and building purposes. They are made of one or more minerals.
After being extracted from the earth, the stones are shaped and molded for numerous applications like decorative or wall stones, paving, and flooring. Each natural stone is unique, and deviations occur according to color, shade, texture, etc. Types of natural stones include granite, limestone, marble, slate, quartzite, and sandstone.
Is quartz a natural stone?
Quartz is a chemical compound that is found on the earth’s surface. It is generally found in mountains, rivers, beaches, and deserts. Quartz, however, is a crystalline mineral composed primarily of silicon and oxygen. Throughout history, it has been used for a variety of purposes.
Despite its durability and unique properties, it is one of the most useful and versatile natural substances.
Due to its translucent nature, quartz is also used in the glass-making industry for many uses.
Comparison between Natural stone Vs. Quartz
The main difference between the both is that natural stone is 100% natural, and quartz is man-made stone ( engineered stone). Natural stone is unique from slab to slab, making it challenging to coordinate two slabs because of the uneven color and pattern. However, with quartz, as it is versatile, the countertop can be consistent in color and design, with no irregularities or mismatches
Durability and Maintenance
In terms of durability, Natural stones have the characteristics of rocks; they are more prone to staining as they can absorb liquid when something spills, whereas quartz having resins are waterproof.
The spills in natural stones should be cleaned immediately to protect them from permanent damage. There is no maintenance cost related to quartz, as spills or dirt can be fixed with a sponge or water. Maintenance is free for quartz as there is no sealer needed. In contrast, Natural stones need to be sealed every 1-2 years.
Strength and Installation
Quartz is flexible as it a less likely to crack and easy to install. Due to 93% quartz and 7% resin composition, quartz is stronger than natural stones like granite or marble.
Design Variety and Affordability
When considering the style and design of the countertops, It is challenging to maintain a consistent style in natural stones as each of them is unique, but quartz can be customized according to the color and style of the countertops. And has a variety of colors, patterns, and styles to choose from.
Engineered quartz is also more affordable when compared to natural stones.
Choosing quartz is a wise investment as it will last a lifetime with less or no maintenance cost. And no complications in selecting a colour as it has a variety of options.
Should you require any help in making the right decision that matches your personality, speak to us. Call us on (919) 596-2325 or get a free estimate here.