Quartz worktops are a popular choice for homes aiming for elegance. Since quartz is an engineered material, the worktops will overcome most of the problems you may face with natural stone materials. It is seen as a low-maintenance material for countertops because it is non-porous.
So, there are less chances of staining quartz kitchen worktops when you spill juice, oil, or wine on it. Since it does not allow liquids to pass through its layers very easily, quartz is also less likely to become a home for harmful microorganisms.
While they are popularly used in kitchens, quartz also works well for your bathroom countertop and for vanity tops.
How are quartz worktops manufactured?
Quartz worktops are engineered while marble and granite worktops are made of solid stone. This is the biggest difference when you compare quartz with other natural stone worktops. To make quartz slabs, the manufacturer takes quartz, which is found naturally in the Earth’s crust.
This quartz is crushed and then mixed with a polyester resin binder. Manufacturers may add pigments or small particles of glass and reflective materials to add to the texture and beauty of the slabs. The slab consists of about 93% quartz and 7% dyes and pigments.
Since they are engineered, quartz slabs can be built for strength and durability. They can also be custom designed and are available in far more options than natural stones.
Cost of Quartz worktops
Quartz can cost you between £50 and £100 per square foot. Prices will vary based on the quality, from whom you acquire it, the installation cost, the area which has to be covered in quartz, and your residential location. In recent years, the thickness of the slab is also being factored in for calculating the costs. While 30mm is the thickness commonly used for slabs on countertops, some modern installations may use quartz of 20mm thickness.
When you calculate the cost of quartz worktops, your estimates should include:
- The total price of the quartz countertop
- Cost of installation, which should include the seaming, leveling, cutting, and polishing of the worktops. Fabricators should also include the cost of attaching the sink to the top and making any additional cutouts if required.
- You should also check for the cost of using a sealer on the quartz worktops to increase their life.
Anyone buying quartz worktops should be able to provide you an all-inclusive estimate. This will help you plan the purchase and installation without worrying about hidden costs or surprise bills in the middle of the job.
Some of the things that the cost will not include which you will have to account for when planning to install a worktop are:
- The cost of removing an old worktop
- Handling the installation or removal of plumbing lines
- Fixing scuffs on the wall which may have occurred when the top is being installed between two walls
Always ask for the store to provide you an end price, which includes installation, and everything involved in getting your quartz worktop ready for you to use it. Let us look at how prices change based on different factors.
- Grade of quartz you purchase
You will find your vendor or supplier using different terms to describe the quality of quartz slabs. You can choose from clearance stocks which tend to be of the lowest grade, standard grade slabs which are most commonly used in homes, premium grade slab used by homeowners who are willing to pay more for better designs or to pick slabs that match the rest of their home’s design philosophies, lastly, you get designer slabs which are of the highest grade.
Based on your budget and requirements, you can pick from any of these grades. The higher you go, the more elegant stuff you will find in the slab designs. Standard grade slabs are available with most outlets in your local area, but premium and designer grade slabs may be custom made for specific requirements. This is also the reason why they are priced on the higher side.How complex is the installation process
- How complex is the installation process
If you are installing an island kitchen top with quartz that does not require special cutouts or sinkhole, then the job is easy and requires less time and effort. As a result, you will be paying less for it.
Complex projects will be expensive where the fabricators will be installing the quartz countertop with upstands, tap hole, sinkhole, window sills, backsplash, socket cutouts, drainer grooves, and curved corners. The more work involved in the installation, the higher your price.
- Who will be installing your quartz worktops?
There are lots of people in the market who can install the worktop. Some homeowners even feel that they can do it by themselves. But this job requires experience, precision, and knowledge of handling the material properly for less waste. Since the material costs considerable money installation errors can be difficult to fix. So, it is best to hire a professional to do the work instead of doing it yourself – unless you are a professional and experienced in handling such installations.
This is also the reason why we feel that you should not try to get the job done by inexperienced handymen who may end up doing a shabby work. It is important to find someone who can handle the installation expertly. If you decide to employ a handyman for this work, ask around about the work that person has handled before. Hire them only if you are confident about their skills and experience.
Your supplier or local vendor of quartz will also be able to provide you with professional installation services. Cost of using their services will be higher than the cost of hiring a handyman. They will have experienced professionals and will take better responsibility for handling the product to avoid damage during installation.
Interior designers in your area may also know installers and can supply one for the job. These installers have a lot of experience dealing with premium products. They have a lot of expertise in handling the installation properly. You will notice their work involves more symmetry in the sinkholes, drainers, tap holes, and other cutouts.
Whether you choose a handyman, installation service from your material supplier, or an installer from an interior designer, make sure that they are licensed and insured to carry out the work. This will reduce hassles if the material is damaged or if the installation is not done properly.
- Where you get the quartz from
Lastly, the cost of quartz worktops will also vary based on the place you buy your quartz slabs from. If you buy it from local home improvement stores, they are more likely to stock stand grade to mid-grade quartz. These are good and cost-efficient. The only problem with standard quartz is that they are common and you may not find these slabs to offer bespoke solutions.
Your local countertop company will be able to provide you with premium-grade quartz that may have fewer veins and a rich range of colors. Many premium slabs are made of recycled materials, and may even be more eco-friendly than the standard quartz.
Designers can source quartz slabs of very high quality, which may be unavailable with local companies or the home-improvement stores. These have a rich texture and are used by homeowners looking for exquisite designs in the quartz worktops.