Quartz & yellowing

krycek1984February 27, 2013

Does anyone have any info concerning light quartz yellowing? We love Stellar Snow from Silestone...but I am very afraid that over time, UV rays will start to yellow the resin binding the material. Our windows in the kitchen are north facing with an east facing half french door.

We are spending significant money (to us) on our kitchen and hoping the cabinets last 20-25 years (with a possible refinish somewhere in there) and would like the counters to last that long. I would just want to cry though if the quartz started to get a yellowish tinge. I prefer granite because we are kidn of messy and careless, and our current granite tile countertop is bulletproof (I cut on it, put hot pans on it, nothing comes close to damaging it). But I love the sparkly look of the Stellar Snow quartz.


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How new are your windows? I believe most modern windows block a significant amount of UV rays. I know you aren't supposed to use quartz outside because of the UV issue, but for all the comments I've read about quartz yellowing, I've not actually read an account where someone said it actually happened (in their kitchen). Maybe it's too new and that's something that takes decades to happen? I don't know. I do know we just ordered off-white quartz countertops for our very bright south and east exposure kitchen and the least of my worries is the UV situation. After all, I'm not getting a sunburn from standing in my kitchen nor have I noticed fading on any of the fabrics in my banquette area.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2013 at 12:35PM
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Just a comment on the way you treat your current counters. You should definitely break those habit now whether you get granite or quartz. Cutting on counters is horrible for your knives. As for placing hot items on the counter, this will most likely scortch the quartz and is still a bad idea on granite as it can cause cracks. Granite tiles are not the same thing as a granite slab. I don't get what is so hard about using a cutting board or trivet. It takes all of 10 seconds to pull one out of a drawer. Why take the risk?

    Bookmark   February 27, 2013 at 1:28PM
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> As for placing hot items on the counter, this will most likely
> scortch the quartz

That is a myth. I did an experiment to test this. I heated a 12" cast iron skillet to over 500F, than placed it on a 12" square of pale quartz countertop. Not a mark. I had to use a plumber's blowtorch (over 1,000F) at close range to get scorching.

All that said, I would not take a searing hot skillet and put it on any type of counter. Right now we have old-school tile counters, which is one of the few surfaces that can take extreme heat without damage, but I still wouldn't do it.

The bottom line is that you can put your pasta pan full of boiling water on your quartz countertop without scorching it. Like stone, there is a risk you might crack the countertop due to local expansion (quartz is less vulnerable than stone, but it is certainly not immune).

(Note for the sharp-eyed - yes, I opened a new account under a new name.)

    Bookmark   February 27, 2013 at 1:36PM
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I learned to cook in this kitchen so I just had always put it right on the countertop because it just isn't an issue. Plus we have an electric range right now so I have to take the pans off the range very quickly when food is done cooking to prevent overcooking so I just plop it down on the counter.

I don't necessarily plan on cutting on the countertop or putting pans directly on it all the time, but I would like the comfort of knowing that if I need to once in a while, or I forgot and just plop a knife through a tomato one time, that my countertop isn't ruined.

We are lazy and slip-ups will happen. At least I can openly admit it lol.

We will have new windows in the kitchen.

I'm just afraid of yellowing but that is a good point that the windows should filter out a fair majority of the UV hitting the counters.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2013 at 1:38PM
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> I would like the comfort of knowing that if I need to once in a while,
> or I forgot and just plop a knife through a tomato one time, that my
> countertop isn't ruined

That's another test I did: I took a cheap serrated table knife and sawed vigorously on the quartz sample, pressing hard. I managed to make a small silver mark, which was simply metal from the knife wearing off. The mark wiped off quite easily, leaving no visible damage to the quartz.

Bear in mind that a solid granite counter is not the same as granite tiles. I think the risk of cracking if you put a searing hot pan on solid granite is higher than it is for granite tile.

If you are getting a gas or induction cooktop, you won't need to move hot pans onto your counters. Otherwise, get a trivet.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2013 at 2:00PM
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