Have you ever seen a beautiful kitchen worktop in a home and wondered what it was made of? It might just have been quartzite! Quartzite is a type of stone that is becoming increasingly popular for use in worktops, floors, and other surfaces. But what is quartzite, exactly? And why is it so popular?
In this guide, we will answer all of your questions about quartzite and show you why it is such a great choice for your next home project!
Quartzite is a natural metamorphic rock transformed from one type of rock into another over many years. Sandstone, under a natural process of heat and pressure, is fused with quartz crystals to form quartzite. The sandstone recrystallises, fusing itself together and becoming a strong, granular rock formation. Empty grains of sandstone meld with quartz, making it a hard, durable rock due to the interlocking crystalline structure.
The quartz content of quartzite gives it a hardness of about seven on the Mohs Hardness Scale.
Quartzite typically comes in shades of white or light grey. However, minerals in the stone often lend pink, gold, or reddish-brown hues. Shades of blue, green, yellow and black are also available, depending on the presence of other minerals or substances in the ground. These unique colours and patterns make Quartzite an excellent premium option for kitchen countertops.
Often mistaken for marble, quartzite has the delicate veining of marble and similar colouration and patterning to some granites. Those seeking a natural look with lots of movement should look towards a quartzite worktop to ensure a premium feel and create a strong kitchen focal point.
As a natural product with natural capillaries, it must be sealed before use and will more than likely need to be resealed a few times in its lifetime. Some variations will need to be sealed more often than others with some needing to be sealed annually.
Heavy use, particularly with acids such as lemons, colas, and tomato ketchup, can cause etching in quartzite. This is a form of acid erosion that results in dull white spots. Dark liquids, such as coffee and red wine, can also result in staining.
As far as natural stones go, quartzite stands up to heat, but prolonged heat exposure can cause problems. We’d recommend always using a trivet to protect the worktop if you’re likely to have direct heat on the surface. Despite being one of the harder stone types, it can be damaged by sharp objectives such as knives. So be mindful of always using chopping boards with Quartzite worktops rather than chopping directly on the worktop itself.
However, Quartzite is highly resistant to sunlight and UV rays, making it a fantastic option for worktops that get a high level of sunlight as worktops will not fade over time.