Quartz, extremely hard, virtually a solid surface, non-absorbent, mold and stain resistant, harder and more durable than granite, certified for food preparation, and has the beauty of natural stone. Quartz, also known as engineered stone. It is 93% natural quartz, the hardness and durability factor and 7% resin and pigments for beauty and elegance of color and style.
Quartz is ideal for countertops in kitchen and bath areas, for tub and shower surrounds, and many other applications for offices, libraries and schools. They are the countertops of choice because they resist bacteria, stains and spills; they resist cracking and are scratch resistant and will not burn or scorch under normal cooking conditions. Quartz is the fourth hardest mineral in the world and second most abundant mineral. Using an Italian, patented process, which bonds under extreme pressure and heat, Quartz and silica with high-performance, stain and impact resistant polymers and color pigments. Quartz is practically maintenance free due to its resistance to staining, scratching, and scorching.
As with Granite, Quartz offers a wide variety of colors and designs that are sure to go with any decor. Quartz has been in the number one countertop material of choice for over ten years and continues to get recognition from Realtors, Designers, Architects and Builders for its durability and beauty. In Ocala, Florida and surrounding areas, we see an increase in Quartz countertops being installed in new home construction and being preferred by builders over laminate countertops.
Seams in quartz countertops, even granite countertops, can never be truly inconspicuous, but at N.G.I.S., we take pride in making sure the seams are concealed and almost invisible. The exposed underside of the Quartz countertop will be polished smooth for easy cleaning and to prevent any accidents or injuries. One piece construction will be used as needed with metal rod re-enforcement. With N.G.I.S.'s unique style of fabrication and installation, your new quartz countertop will give everlasting beauty to your home or office.
The term "granite" is used to cover a group of related stones, all of which have their origin deep in the earth's molten mantle. As this extremely hot liquid material rises and cools, it forms a crystalline, granular structure, hence the term granite. Granite and other granite-like stones are formed of hard minerals such as quarts, feldspar and mica, which are fused together into a very hard stone ideal for kitchen counters because its polish is resistant to household acids such as citrus and vinegar and is hard enough to resist scratching from knives and pots and pans.
Granite makes a great countertop because it's a very hard stone that's formed at very high temperatures deep in the earth, its polish is not subject to etching by household acids or scratching by knives and pots and pans. It's unaffected by typical kitchen heat such as hot pans, or spilled liquid.
Like any solid surface, high impact blows can harm granite. Because of its crystalline structure, it can chip if subjected to sharp hard objects. Unsealed, granite can absorb stains such as oil, which can ultimately cause dark spots or discoloration. Heat from pots and pans or burning liquids will not affect granite under normal circumstances.
Granite sometimes has natural fissures as well, which may look like cracks, but are not structural defects and are a naturally occurring result of the immense heat and pressure which formed the granite eons ago. These characteristics are part of the natural beauty of stone and will not impair the function or durability of the material. A product of nature cannot be expected to look manmade.
Granite is harder than your knife blades and will dull them quickly, if you use the countertop as a cutting surface. Also, if you do not seal your granite countertops as required (at least once a year; every 90 days for heavy usage), you could stain them. NEVER CHOP on your granite countertops. While it is unlikely you will damage your granite countertops, it is possible. It's a good practice to always chop on a wooden or plastic cutting board.
Is it necessary to seal stone?
Yes, depending on the area in which the stone is to be installed and the type of intended use. All stone, even granite, is porous to some degree, and will absorb stains over time if it is not sealed. Some stones are more porous than others, so it is important to use a penetrating sealer to prevent stains from oil, wine, or other liquids from soaking into the surface. Go to Stone Maintenance.
What's the best way to clean granite and other natural stones?
The rule of thumb is never to use anything you wouldn't normally use on your hands. Never use powdered cleansers or abrasive pads to clean your stone. Even "soft scrub" type cleaners contain pumice, which is powdered volcanic stone, and might damage your stone countertops or floors. Never use any product that is acidic; this includes substances like ammonia or many common liquid cleaners such as Windex.