Marble, granite, and quartz are the common choices when making or renovating kitchen countertops. These stones are similar in many ways, making it difficult for homeowners to pick the best one.
Interestingly, all three are excellent choices with maximum sturdiness and durability. However, they also differ in many aspects. Let’s check out the comparisons between the three in detail.
Comparison of Key Differences – Marble Vs. Granite Vs. Quartz
The price depends on the quality of the stone you are buying. You can find marble, granite, and quartz as low as $60, $40, and $50 for lower quality. The higher quality pieces can go up to $200 or above per square foot.
You must consider your budget, as the final price for a countertop depends on various factors. You’ll need to factor in stone type, installation complexity, and labor prices. Labor prices vary based on location, cost of living, and job complexity.
Here is the comparison of the average prices of marble vs. granite vs. quartz.
|Marble||$60 to $300 Per square foot|
|Granite||$40 to $175 Per square foot|
|Quartz||$50 to $200|
Heat & Water Resisting Ability
Marble: Marble is extremely heat resistant. It can withstand up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. You will rarely need to place stainless steel stands or heat-absorbing pads while placing hot pots on marble. Marble is porous and readily absorbs liquids. You’ll have to seal marble countertops to ensure durability and a clean look.
Granite: Granite tops the list with its heat resistance of up to 1,650 degrees Fahrenheit. Granite is also porous and must be sealed.
Quartz: Quartz has the lowest heat resistance. When placing extremely hot items on a quartz countertop, you will need heat-absorbing pads or stainless steel stands. Quartz has the higher water resistance among the three. It is made with resin that ensures minimum absorption. You don’t have to seal it like marble and granite.
Sturdiness & Durability
Marble: Marble countertops scratch and rarely break if you place something heavy or use e heavy tool like mortar& pestle without placing a rubber pad below it. However, the broken pieces can be repaired easily and aren’t too costly.
Granite: Granite is the hardest and most durable material of the three. You have to seal your granite countertops yearly to avoid moisture absorption. You don’t have to worry about granite breaking or scratching. Granite is often used as protection against knives. You can estimate how strong it is.
Quartz: Quartz is the least durable of the three. It may break if you drop a heavy pan on it. Quartz is the least favorite option if you have a big family and cook daily.
Ease of Installation
The installation process itself is easy. The difficult part is cutting. Here is where you’ll need skill and safety tools. Many homeowners get the pieces cut from shops and then go for a DIY installation.
Marble: Marble is easier to cut and requires a wet cut. There is less dust but you must still take safety precautions like goggles, and dust mask.
Granite: Granite is the hardest of all and difficult to cut. However, it is lighter than marble and easier to move.
Quartz: Quartz makes a lot of dust when cut. So, wear goggles and safety mask when cutting. You’ll need a diamond plate for all three rocks.
Environmental Impact & Sustainability
Marble, granite, and quartz are all rocks mined from the earth. The rock-mining process has damaged the ecosystem in one way or another, but environmental concerns and sustainability issues have led to safer mining practices. Companies now take care of the environment and ecosystem when mining for these rocks.
Design and Variations
All three stones are available in a variety of colors. Locally mined colors are cheaper compared to varieties imported from other countries. Marble comes in various colors like pink, red, brown, green, white, and black. Granite also comes in different colors. Quartz is usually found in white, grey, or cream colors.
Granite Vs. Quartz Vs. Marble – Pros And Cons
|Ideally heat resistant and doesn’t get damaged after placing hot pans on it.||It is heat-resistant only if the counters are properly sealed.|
|Durable and can last longer without scratches and wearing out.||The porous surface allows the seepage of liquids for disruption.|
|It can also resist cracks even if your knife accidentally slips on the counter.||Among all the stones, granite is the most expensive, but the price range varies from cheaper to costly.|
|With just a single wipe, you can clean it conveniently.||Without sealant, your granite countertops will get tough stains.|
|Its color doesn’t fade easily, and minor scratches are easy to repair.||The slabs of granite can chip easily compared to quartz.|
|It gives a warm, elegant and luxurious look to the surface.||Marble can easily crack and chip due to its soft and porous surface.|
|Marble is a heat-resisting stone but comparably not better than granite.||You will need extra and more frequent maintenance for sealing and resealing counters.|
|Among all other stones, marble is easy to find.||It isn’t safe to use lemon, vinegar, or harsh chemicals for cleaning.|
|You can enhance the market value of your home by using marble.||It is less pricey, but it is quite expensive on average compared to granite.|
|If you are a fan of versatility in the color and designs of slabs, quartz is the right option.||Quartz gets minimum points when the heat resistance comes. Placing hot pans will damage the surface, so keep them on heating pads.|
|It requires the least maintenance due to its non-porous surface.||Quartz is also a bit pricey, but not more than marble and granite.|
|Their designs are indestructible, and oils, liquids, and other spills don’t affect their surface.||It doesn’t look as appealing as granite.|
|A sealant isn’t needed for quartz.||It can’t bear the sunlight, and the color will fade away.|
How do you spot Marble, Granite, and Quartz?
The difference is hard to tell. You may know all their properties, but you’ll probably get confused when buying. The easiest way to distinguish them is the pattern. Marble has a large layered pattern, while granite has a dense and speckled pattern. Quartz appears to be embedded into the stone.
Are there Seams in Quartz?
Yes. Most quartz pieces have seams. A seam appears on quartz when the manufacturer molds two smaller, separate pieces to make a bigger piece. Some sellers try to hide the seam addition or make them look smaller. You can identify the seam by looking deeply at the piece or gently moving your fingers over the piece. Seams are also present in granite and marble.
How do you clean Granite, Quartz, and Marble Countertops?
All three are easier to clean. You can use a soft cloth to clean daily and use commercial cleaners for a deep clean.
Can you Paint/Polish Granite, Marble, and Quartz Countertops?
Yes. You can paint these surfaces but make sure you use a paint compatible with the surface. You can then use a sealer to protect the surfaces.
Can I cut Granite, Marble, and Quartz Countertops?
Yes. You can cut these materials. However, the ease of cutting depends on hardness. Granite is the hardest of all and requires heavy-duty cutters and grinders.
What are other Countertop options I can use?
You can go with stainless steel and butcher block. Stainless steel is mostly seen in commercial kitchens, but many homeowners are now installing it. Stainless steel is heat-resistant and easy to clean but gets scratched easily. Moreover, it makes the kitchen unwelcoming and feels cold.
Butcher’s block looks great and welcoming but is highly absorbent and stains easily. It can be damaged by knives and is not heat resistant.
So, now you know why homeowners usually prefer granite, marble, and quartz.
Conclusion: Which is best; Marble, Granite, or Quartz?
All three are excellent to use in your home, especially for kitchen countertops. The best for your home is the one that suits your needs better. You can select the best option for your home, keeping your budget and requirements in mind.