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What is a quartz surface?

Quartz surfaces are also called composite stone, engineered stone or reconstituted stone. The names are used interchangeably.

Quartz surfaces are alternatives to natural stone surfaces like granite. They have become popular over recent years and have significantly affected the market share of granite for kitchen worktops as well as other surface applications like vanity tops of shower cladding.

Quartz surfaces are generally all made in the same way, most with the same machinery: 93% quartz granules, and the balance made up of resin glue which holds the stone together. It is basically nature accelerated, with stone chips being bonded together under heat and pressure.

Branded stone

Why have quartz surfaces proved so popular, and displaced granite from its time honoured place? At stone Masters, our theory is that it is because the companies producing quartz surfaces have carefully branded their products with the following implications:

1) The slabs are carefully controlled for quality from the manufacturer themselves.
2) There is recourse if the product is genuinely faulty, as the manufacturers want to protect their reputations
3) It is man-made, so any samples issued for the stone are normally very similar to the final product
4) There is a huge colour choice available, with new stones being introduced all the time to keep the brand fresh and relevant

Where should quartz surfaces be used?

Generally, quartz surfaces attempt to completely replace natural granite, and so can be used wherever granite is normally used: worktops and tiles. It is normally the heavy cost of quartz that precludes it from being used more than it is, not its suitability.

Are all quartz surface brands the same?

Stone Masters generally only sells well established brands of quartz as opposed to the deluge of cheaper imitating products that the market has experienced of late. We have imported our own cheap quartz in the past with disastrous results in terms of quality.

Within the trusted brands of quartz we sell, is there a difference between Silestone, CaesarStone and others? This is addressed in a related article in the Solution Centre.

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