What is a quartz countertop, and how is it made? Glad you asked! Quartz countertops are man-made, engineered stone slabs created with the natural mineral quartz, which happens to be one of the hardest minerals found in the Earth. In fact, it ranks as a 7 on the Moh’s Hardness Scale, which measures scratch-resistance. To compare, diamonds rank a 10 on this scale.
Quartz is a non-porous material that does not allow bacteria to grow. It isn’t necessary to seal or polish and can be cleaned easily with soap and water.
Quartz countertops are created by combining about 90 percent ground quartz with 8 to 10 percent resins, polymers, and pigments. A vacuum process compacts the crushed stone mix, and a water jet cutter or diamond blade is used to cut the countertop.
Finely ground quartz creates a smoother look to the countertop, while coarsely ground quartz creates more of a speckled appearance. Due to the strength of the material, it is naturally resistant to scratches and dents without the need for sealants.
While quartz is tough, you do have to be careful with heat. Make sure to always use a hot pad or metal trivet when taking pots out of the oven and setting them on your counter.
Let’s explore the main brands that design and manufacture quartz countertops.
Cambria is family-owned and made in America, with more than 140 designs. Some of its designs have the look and feel of granite, marble, or other stones, but are stronger due to the natural quartz material.
Cambria also is certified by Greenguard as a low-emitting product for indoor air quality. The company offers a transferable full lifetime warranty. You can view their collection online, and use the dealer locator to find a retail location near you.
Caesarstone was founded in 1987 and considers itself the pioneer of the natural quartz surfaces market, protecting its title with continual research and investment. The company has its head office in Israel but has a plant in Richmond Hill, Georgia.
Caesarstone boasts a commitment to protecting the environment with its practices. The company offers two recycled colors that contain up to 42 percent reclaimed quartz. Caesarstone offers a Supernatural, Classico, Metropolitan, and Concetto collection, highlighting a range of design interests.
On its website, you can view all the colors in the collection and search for a distributor near you. Caesarstone also has a lifetime warranty for all residential purchases.
Cosentino, a producer and distributor of natural stone, quartz, and architectural surfaces, created Silestone in 1990. Silestone was made to highlight the beauty of natural stone and is available in more than 90 colors and three textures: polished, suede, and volcano.
You also can choose from the styles plain, veined, fine grain, and coarse grain. Silestone offers a certified 25-year transferrable warranty. You can search for the nearest store, fabricator, or Cosentino Center through the online store locator.
4. Santamargherita Quartz
Santamargherita is proudly headquartered in Italy and exports to more than 70 countries. The company produces quartz and marble surfaces. Its quartz complies with the strict food and indoor safety requirements and is crafted from quartz sands and resins.
SM Quartz offers a wide variety of colors, textures, and finishes, and customizations. Waterjet cutting and sublimation printing also are available. Quartz colors include deep reds and blues as well as more classic shades of gray and white.
You can search for Santamargherita dealers near you on the company’s website.
5. Daltile ONE Quartz
Daltile is the largest ceramic tile manufacturer in the U.S. and one of the largest tile manufacturers in the world. The company has four series in ONE Quartz: Geo Flecks, Micro Flecks, Nature, and West Village.
It also is introducing American Reserve, which is made in the U.S. and will include a Historic Series, Monumental Marble Series, Industrialized Series, and Landmark Series. The Historic Series can be viewed on Daltile’s website.
Its quartz warranty is a 10-to-15-year limited warranty that covers manufacturer defects, but the American Reserve warranties are a lifetime for residential and 25 years for commercial. You can find a store nearest you through the online locator.
6. LG Viatera
The brand behind the familiar LG cell phones is behind LG Viatera. Viatera was created by LG Hausys America, which has the main business in the surface material. Viatera has seven collections: Musica, Legacy, Terracota, the Builder Collection, Woodlands, Urban Chic, and International. Four of the collections are inspired by Earth. Viatera offers a 15-year transferable warranty.
The company uses sustainable materials and an eco-friendly manufacturing process, boasting certifications in both the National Sanitary Foundation and Greenguard. Viatera can be found at Home Depot and Lowe’s, or you can search for a dealer nearest you online.
Okite slabs are made in Italy, not far from the Amalfi Coast. The company offers a wide range of colors and collections that can be viewed on its website. You also can request free samples online.
Okite is covered by a 15-year limited warranty. You can contact Okite through its website to be connected with a local representative.
8. PentalQuartz & Vicostone
FYI, PentalQuartz and Vicostone are one and the same. PentalQuartz is actually Vicostone quartz counters sold under a separate brand name in the Northeast and Western USA.
Vicostone was established in Vietnam in 2002 and is globally distributed in more than 40 countries. It has more than 100 designs and includes an Exotic, Natural, Thunder, and Classic Collection. Vicostone’s website has detailed descriptions of each design along with photos. A Concrete Series is coming soon, inspired by modern urban cities.
Vicostone is Greenguard and Greenguard Gold certified for environmental safety. You can search online to find an authorized dealer near you. The company offers a limited 15-year residential warranty and a limited 10-year commercial warranty.
PentalQuartz Surfaces is one of the largest wholesale tile and stone distributors in the Western U.S. It started in 1999 with a few granite slab selections, but now carries natural stone, PentalQuartz, PentalTek slabs, and more.
Pental currently has over 75 colors, split into a Natural Collection, Classic Collection, Inspire Collection, and Bookmatched, which means the colors are matched in a mirror image. It also offers Splash, a ceramic wall tile series created to match the quartz countertops.
Pental offers a 15-year residential warranty and 10-year commercial warranty. It has both Greenguard and Greenguard Gold certifications for indoor air quality. You can enter your zip code online to find a distributor near you.
9. Corian Quartz (formerly Zodiaq)
Corian Quartz is produced by the company DuPont, which has been around for more than 200 years. Corian, formerly known as Zodiaq Quartz, was one of the first quartz surfaces on the market in 2000. The quartz and its adhesives and sealants are low-emitting, non-toxic, and non-allergenic for humans.
Corian is offering six new high-gloss aesthetics and four with a leathered texture, in colors ranging from pure white to deep gray.
It comes with a 10-year transferable residential limited warranty. On Corian’s website, you can find a home design partner or contact a distributor that serves your area.
10. Hanstone Quartz
Hanstone Quartz is made in North American and is available in more than 60 colors and patterns. Its colors are inspired by the textures and shades of natural stone.
Hanstone offers a Boutique, Cascina, and Leather Collection, as well as a new Unearthed Collection. Unearthed features a new finish called River Washed, which has a natural texture.
It offers a 10-year limited warranty. Enter your zip code on the Hanstone website to find a dealer near you. Hanstone is certified by Greenguard to ensure safe indoor air quality.
Wilsonart’s founder, Ralph Wilson Sr., was in the laminate industry and led the company until 1972. Today, the company provides a wide variety of engineered surfaces for all industries, including its quartz countertops.
Wilsonart’s 2019 quartz designs focus on the authenticity of natural stone in neutral colors like warm and cool whites, grays, and black. Its online design library features 52 colors.
The company provides a limited 10-year warranty and has the Greenguard Gold Certificate for low chemical emissions. You can search online for a dealer near you.
12. Granite Transformations
Granite Transformations began in Italy and today is a global franchise. Its quartz countertops aim to combine quality and durability with colors and styles to match its customers’ wide range of design preferences. Granite Transformations offers a lifetime limited warranty on its countertops. It especially recommends its product for bathroom surfaces due to quartz being resistant to mold and mildew.
Granite Transformations has a Natural Series with lighter, elegant shades that will match most cabinets or backsplashes. You can enter your zip code online to find a location near you, or call them to schedule a free in-home design consultation.
13. MSI Q Quartz
MSI began in 1975 in Fort Wayne, Indiana, by Manu and Rika Shah. In 2008, the company introduced quartz countertops to its product line, which initially was focused on natural stone. The company now has more than 25 distribution centers across the country.
MSI’s Q Quartz countertops include realistic marble, modern concrete, and nature-inspired patterns. The colors range from bright white to black tones. MSI has a residential lifetime warranty and a 10-year commercial warranty. The company is committed to sustainable manufacturing practices and recycling technologies.
Enter your location on the company’s website to find a dealer or showroom near you. Home Depot carries MSI Q Quartz.
IceStone started in 2003 with the goal of turning waste glass into beautiful surfaces. Its focus is on sustainable, responsible practices at its Brooklyn, New York, facility. QuartzStone by IceStone contains quartz from crushed waste stone left in quarries or natural stone beds.
QuartzStone’s palette includes a range of vivid whites to blackest blacks, and the colors are aptly named: Winter White, Dawn, Snowflake, Dusk, Sundown, and Eclipse.
IceStone’s goal is to become a zero-waste facility, and currently, it recycles more than 90 percent of its waste. The facility is lit with skylights, it uses a water recycling system, and any unusable glass or cement is recycled.
QuartzStone has a 10-year residential warranty and a 10-year commercial warranty.
Compac was founded in Spain in 1975 and was the first Spanish company to specialize in the manufacture and distribution of marble and quartz surface coverings. Compac’s Technological Quartz is made of 93-95 percent natural quartz.
Compac’s color offerings include shades of pure whites and deep blacks and plenty of in-between choices with unique veining and textures.
Compac offers a lifetime warranty on its products.
16. Quartz Primary
Quartz Primary’s headquarters is located in Bayonne, New Jersey. Its collection has more than 60 colors and patterns, which includes unique and bold styles not found in nature.
The company offers a residential lifetime warranty. Distributors are located across the U.S. and Canada. You can order samples, contact the company, and search its Kitchen and Bath Directory online.
Italian company Q.R.B.G. S.r.l. owns Quarella, which has produced and marketed quartz and marble since 1965. The quartz collection features 38 colors in classic shades.
You can contact the company through its website.
18. Radianz Quartz
Radianz came on the market in 2009 from the company LOTTE Advanced Materials, which is based in Asia. There are offices on six continents with about 180 distribution locations.
More than 70 colors are available, in collections such as Cirrus, inspired by clouds, Coastal, inspired by the coastline, and Noble, with rich depth and golden hues.
Radianz has a 15-year limited residential warranty. You can find a dealer online by searching via zip code.
TechniStone’s headquarters is in the Czech Republic, where the installation of the original BretonStone technology started in 1991. It is made from natural raw materials like quartz and granite, mirror and glass granulate, and a small number of color pigments and polyester resin.
Collections include Noble, with luxurious shades, Starlight, which adds shine, and Rustic, which has a classic elegance. TechniStone offers a residential 25-year warranty and commercial 5-year warranty.
To see if there is a distributor in your area, you can search on TechniStone’s website.