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countertop disaster

Posted by memex2 (My Page) on
Wed, Jan 4, 12 at 19:01

I've spent 6 months researching and agonizing over what material to use for countertops in our small, galley kitchen. I finally decided to go with quartz
and it was the worst decision I could have made. It has been in our kitchen for less than two weeks and there is a large stain of unknown origin smack in the middle of one counter as well as scratches from out cat jumping up on the counters.
The stain appeared after carpenters installing shelves left. They claim they did not spill anything on it and did not have any chemicals that could have penetrated it. They did however have tea and juice but said nothing spilled?

The installer specializes in granite and marble and urged me to choose granite. When I reported the mysterious stain, they basically said "we told you" not to use quartz.

I choose Silestone/Tao which is neither shiny nor matt. It is opaque (black) and has no pattern in it. I thought it looked like an old chemistry lab top. In less than two weeks it looks like a disaster.
The installer is coming to look at the stain. Silestone will rely on their report.
When I mentioned that my cat (10lbs) leaves scratches on the 'scratch proof'
surface the customer service rep asked if she was declawed?

I have no idea how this is going to turn out but in less than two weeks I have learned that there is no such thing as stain or scratch proof.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: countertop disaster

Holy freakin' cow!! Never heard of quartz doing that! I'm so sorry for you. I hope you can get some restitution from this. Nice smart @ss comment from your installer.


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RE: countertop disaster

Re, smart ass comment. No kidding! If I spoke to a customer like that I would expect a punch in the mouth.

It is so, so unlikely that the stain is any common soft-drink, tea or coffee, that I can almost guarantee you its something else. But if it is, then the Silestone was certainly defective.

Silestone advertises its resistance to common stains very widesly, viz:


Silestone is non-porous and therefore it is highly resistant to stains from coffee, wine, lemon juice, olive oil, vinegar, makeup, and many other common household products. Unlike granite, Silestone does not need to be sealed to keep its lustrous shine."

Buyt I was also just reading the Silestone "Limited 15 Year Wrranty". It is one of the more interesting "Non-warranty" Waranties I have read in a while.

Basically Silestone warrants it it surface to the original owner to be free from factory defects, but only if


  • The surface has been maintained according to the "Silestone quartz surfaces Care and Maintenance guide"

  • The surface was installed by a Silestone approved installer

  • The owner registers the surface with Silestone within 60 days of its installation and "the Silestone product identifier [is] still affixed at the time of the warranty claim"

  • The owner can prove the surface was maintained according to the "Silestone quartz surfaces Care and Maintenance guide", and can prove the surface was installed by a Silestone approved installer.


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RE: countertop disaster

I've read a few times about quartz chipping and scratching... then I read that it's indestructible... makes ya wonder. I wouldn't take the chance myself.

maybe it depends on the brand it is?


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RE: countertop disaster

It sounds as though you may have a defective surface. How have you cleaned it and what products have you used?

As a FYI, honed and "leathered" surfaces of whatever material will have a lot more texture in their micro-surface that will trap oils and are thus more difficult to clean. The texture holds on to those oils in the tiny crevices. Also, many sinks or counters will get "scratch marks" on them, but they are not actually scratches in the surface. If you drag a pot or pan across granite or quartz, you will have a mark because the quartz is harder than the metal and is eroding a tiny bit of it onto the surface. Again, on a textured surface, any residue of any kind is more difficult to clean.


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RE: countertop disaster

If your kitty is causing issues, something a lot of folks don't know about are SoftPaws. When kitty jumps up it's usually the BACK feet that cause the scratches. Most veterinarians won't do a rear foot declaw these days (not that declaw is great on the front feet either). SoftPaws are harmless and easy to use. They are inexpensive and leave kitty with all his/her parts. Try SoftPaws.com if you're curious. We use them on all of our kitties and many shelters put them on all the adoptable cats to show folks that declaw is not the answer.

Good luck with the stain.

Ne


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RE: countertop disaster

I had an issue with my install of Silestone. The installer called the Silestone rep who came to my house and inspected the defect. He told me that the only thing that will truly scratch Silestone is either diamond (i.e. diamond blade) or another piece of Silestone. He tried Bar Keepers Friend on my scratches, but it didn't work because my scratches were caused by rubbing of another piece of Silestone during install. My situation was amicably resolved with the help of the Silestone rep. The rep indicated that Silestone has a 99.4% customer satisfaction rate and they plan to keep it that way.

Have you tried Bar Keepers Friend?

If you can't resolve it with the installer, be sure to have them direct you to your area's Silestone rep.


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RE: countertop disaster

The installer specializes in granite and marble and urged me to choose granite. When I reported the mysterious stain, they basically said "we told you" not to use quartz.

It doesn't help that you're dealing with incompetent and/or dishonest installers.


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RE: countertop disaster

I'm confused.
Quartz is stone.
Silestone is a manmade blend, isn't it?

Neither is supposed to stain or scratch.
If a cat can scratch your counters (and a tiny one at that) you're in trouble if someone slices a bagel, drags something over it, (imagine someone grating cheese and the base of the cheese grater...)

Something's wrong here. All stains aside, the scratching is what would really have me up in arms.

Either way, this is stinking for you! Good luck.

Christine


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RE: countertop disaster

I have to say, the scratches sound weird. We have quartz and are hard on our countertops - no scratches at all, so far. Perhaps something was done to the surface to make it like that?

As far as the weird stain - is it in a similar color to the rest of your quartz? It is probably a resin blob since quartz countertops are like 93% stone and 7% resin. We have one small blotch but it is in a corner and hardly noticable. I think there was one poster here who had several unattractive splotches. If it is really that bad, I would ask for a new slab.


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RE: countertop disaster

Thanks everyone for your input.

I wish I could have a Silestone rep look at it too, but the protocol (according to Silestone) is that the installer has to make the initial report, even though the
installer (who has been doing stone countertops for 50 years) is not that familiar with quartz, and not at all with Silestone.

I selected quartz because I thought it would be less prone to stains and scratches. After two weeks, with minimal use, it is really awful.


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RE: countertop disaster

Do not accept your installer's report if it is in any way unfavorable to you. Your installer has already told you something absurd and dishonest--that granite is more durable than quartz.

First of all, very few people have reported serious scratches and stains with quartz. There are known issues with discoloration due to UV rays, and to bits of the aggregate popping out and needing to be refilled with resin. And like real stone, it could come to a bad end if you put something really hot on it. So the chances you have a defective material are high.

Second, granite is not inherently bulletproof. Some are, true. But many need to be sealed. Others stain easily. Others chip. Each type of stone is unique. There is nothing magic about the entire category of materials called "granite"--except the fact it's what your installer usually sells.

So, if their "report" doesn't say you get a new stone, then demand to take it up with the manufacturer.


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RE: countertop disaster

I'm totally baffled by your experience. I had Silestone in my last kitchen for 10 years without a scratch or stain. In fact, when we sold the house, it looked just like the day it was installed. I'm wondering if you really got a quartz product?? Is there anywhere that you can look at the underside of your counter, maybe take out a drawer and look. Ours had Silestone imprinted on the underside, so it was obviously Silestone. I find your experience totally unacceptable, and hope you stick to your guns and get a resolution that is satisfactory to you.


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RE: countertop disaster

I don't have Silestone, but I have Caesarstone in my kitchen and Zodiaq in the bathroom. The damage you described doesn't sound like quartz at all. Our cats live for jumping on and off the counters, and there isn't a single scratch. Is your quartz honed? Our KD said that honed quartz surfaces have a few more issues, but what you have experienced doesn't sound right at all.


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RE: countertop disaster

No tradesman left any acetone or other harsh chemical soaked rags on the surface did they? Acetone or lye will melt the resin component of the Silestone. That is the only reason I can think of that a "stain" would appear on the surface unless it's just oil residue that hasn't been cleaned correctly. If it's neither, then it's defective.

Any marks that look like scratches, such as a bit of residue from cat claws, should simply scrub right off with some Softscrub. The keratin of nails, whether human or animal, are only about a 2.5 on the Moh scale. Quartz is around a 7. Nails might scratch a wood counter, but they should not scratch a quartz one. Any "scratch" marks should come right off with Softscrub. If cat claws truly do scratch the surface, then it's defective.

What have you used to clean your counters? Softscrub is a great choice, but it can leave powdery residue if it's not rinsed off completely. A solid black surface will also need drying with a microfiber towel if you are going to avoid any water marks. For oils that get really down into the texture, a thin bit of Dawn placed on top of them for a bit and then washed up usually will bring up the oils and let them be wiped off---again with a microfiber towel.


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RE: countertop disaster

I can't believe the counter scratches so easily in addition to the staining. We have caesarstone in the kitchen and hanstone in the ensuite, and these counters take a helluva beating and still look brand new. They're pretty much indestructible in our experience.

I'm actually wondering if you really do have silestone installed? Is it possible the contractor did some kind of bait and switch or something?


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RE: countertop disaster

Thank you all for your comments. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate the information you have given me.

I posted a letter and a photo of the large stain (not the one along the edge that
the installers left) on the Silestone Corporate Facebook site. I am hoping someone there will look at it and get in touch. :http://www.facebook.com/SilestonebyCosentino?ref=ts

The product I have is the Zen series, color Taos. I think one problem might be that it is neither shiny, nor matt and possibly a new surface for Silestone.
There is no pigment in it. It is virtually opaque which maybe why scratches are so visible. The stains are darker.
The only thing I used on it is Dawn liquid. The installers had a 'mineral spirit"
of some kind that they used to remove some marks. I had a 2'' edge put on it and I think the dark lines near the edge maybe the result of glue.
I just wish I could get a Silestone rep to look at it.
It really is awful and now I am wondering if it is Silestone. It was 2x as much as the granite and soapstone quote they gave me.
Thanks again for your help!


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Could it be waxed or sealed incorrectly? If the installer is that inexperienced with it, perhaps the shop put goop on it.


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My installation issue was handled in the same way yours is. The installer makes a report, then the rep gets involved. It took about 3 weeks for this to happen.

Your stain looks like a greasy residue. Have you tried Bar Keepers Friend? That is what the rep will likely do first.

Hang in there!


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I wouldn't try to remove the stain again right now. I'd wait until folks have had a look at it.

Did you try peeking underneath through the drawer or cab openings to look for the logo, just to be sure?


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Hi, I too just had Tao countertop put in. Within 2 weeks of having it there were scratch like marks on it, about 10 of them. They weren't actually scratches where you can feel it with your nail. I have learned that they are called transfer marks. Along with the marks there were also discolorations...dark and light.
I got pretty upset and called the company I bought it from and Silestone. They both came over about a week later. I should also say that the woman on the phone from Silestone said "oh yeah Tao color marks up easily" I said WHAT! no one told me that.
The distributer came first and said he has never seen anything like it! although he said he has never installed this color before. The Silestone rep came about half hour later. By this time the dealer had already started buffing out the marks with some ground up Silestone and acetone. This was definitely helping. But he needed to do the whole piece or you would see a slight color difference.
Well needness to say I told the Silestone guy whats the deal?? I haven't even used he kitchen yet and its got marks! Whats going to happen when my kid gets home from collage and we all actually use the kitchen? He said well this color and the blacks mark easily, but can be removed. I said ok great so I will see you every 2 months for the next 15 years right!! He laughed, well no. I said again so what am I supposed to do?
So we left it that he buffed ALL my counters I am going to do some heavy kitchen work without deliberately trying to scratch it and see what happens. I said I was going to call him this week if the marks don't come out. As of tonight just by dropping some silver wear a few inches above it makes marks!! Stay tuned to next week.


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RE: countertop disaster

Hi, I too just had Tao countertop put in. Within 2 weeks of having it there were scratch like marks on it, about 10 of them. They weren't actually scratches where you can feel it with your nail. I have learned that they are called transfer marks. Along with the marks there were also discolorations...dark and light.
I got pretty upset and called the company I bought it from and Silestone. They both came over about a week later. I should also say that the woman on the phone from Silestone said "oh yeah Tao color marks up easily" I said WHAT! no one told me that.
The distributer came first and said he has never seen anything like it! although he said he has never installed this color before. The Silestone rep came about half hour later. By this time the dealer had already started buffing out the marks with some ground up Silestone and acetone. This was definitely helping. But he needed to do the whole piece or you would see a slight color difference.
Well needness to say I told the Silestone guy whats the deal?? I haven't even used he kitchen yet and its got marks! Whats going to happen when my kid gets home from collage and we all actually use the kitchen? He said well this color and the blacks mark easily, but can be removed. I said ok great so I will see you every 2 months for the next 15 years right!! He laughed, well no. I said again so what am I supposed to do?
So we left it that he buffed ALL my counters I am going to do some heavy kitchen work without deliberately trying to scratch it and see what happens. I said I was going to call him this week if the marks don't come out. As of tonight just by dropping some silver wear a few inches above it makes marks!! Stay tuned to next week.


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Memex2 and Kimmarinal,

Would you plese update what has happened since. Has any of you found more chipped, scratched area? I've had a Silestone only 3 weeks new and just noticed a good number of holes (dents) on the surface. I couldn't tell 100% if they were there originally despite I did inspect upon installation. MY worries is the resin keeps coming off for whatever reason, hence the surface feel chipped. Thanks.


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Same thing happening to us! Same deal! Wow. Silestone has a problem...


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That sounds like a nightmare!
I have Cambria and no scratches after about 6+ months - but I also have a pattern which would make anything hard to find.
Any resolution?
Definitely sounds like a problem with the Silestone.


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I have some Silestone samples that I have abused deliberately. I don't see the problems being reported here. Deliberate gouging with a serrated knife didn't make any significant marks.


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It looks like it's oxidized or something. I can't quite explain it, but it looks like something has reacted with the acrylic or whatever it is that they use as a binder. It looks lousy. Just awful. See photo!

(P.S. Fingerprints from the installers!)

This post was edited by tortoise2013 on Wed, Mar 6, 13 at 13:45


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RE: countertop disaster

Happy you posted this thread! In process of making decisions, and after getting bulldozed by our contractor into granite, and stupid stock cabinets, I'm thinking plain old ceramic tile... maybe use the 24" stuff... with some nice sparkly accents, but you have convinced me to stay away from quartz, silestone, and I already don't like granite.

Things are trendy. We pay a ton to put them in, and next year, the trend is something else. I don't have patience for that. We sell our house, and what we did will get ripped out for a fresh start for a new owner. I don't need trend. Don't need scratches.

Love this thread!
Suzi


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I know. If this is what one can expect from Silestone, yikes!


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Desertdance -
We previously had 12x12 tiles for counter (had them for almost 10 years) and I loved their durability (no scratching, staining and could put hot pots on them). What I didn't like was the grout.

When remodeling we went with a polished dark granite and now have all the above advantages without the grout maintenance.

Everyone has their preferences, but I was curious why the dislike for granite when it seems you want durability and low maintenance.


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> you have convinced me to stay away from quartz, silestone

As I and others have stated above, the experiences posted above are not typical for quartz countertops, including Silestone. The overwhelming majority of people find quartz to be a very good countertop material.

This post was edited by Caliente63 on Thu, Mar 7, 13 at 17:35


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RE: countertop disaster

"The kertin of nails, whether human or animal, are only about a 2.5 on the Moh scale. Quartz is around a 7. Nails might scratch a wood counter, but they should not scratch a quartz one."

this is incorrect. any quartz surface is approx. 30% resin which is scratched relatively easily compared to what is considered acceptable countertop material. quartz IS quite hard but it only makes up part of the surface.


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We had a Silestone (Bamboo color) counter installed 14 months ago and it looks perfect. No stains, chips or scratches. We do use cutting boards, and trivets for hot pans. We try to keep our cats from jumping on the counter, but I know they do when we're not there and I can't see any damage from their claws. We have one seam in our counter and it is nearly invisible.

When we had our counter installed, our fabricator rejected the first slab that his supplier sent him because it was scratched. Our fabricator thought it was because of rough handling at the suppliers, that the slabs scraped against each other. He asked for a replacement slab and it was scratched too. So he went to the supplier and picked out a slab himself, which he asked us to come see and approve. It looked great and we used that. We're very happy with it.


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RE: countertop disaster

Oh dear, oldryder repeats the lie about "30% resin" again. Refer to my detailed explanation of why this is not true in the "Caesarstone staining" thread (link below - scroll down to the end).

Here is a link that might be useful: Link to other thread

This post was edited by Caliente63 on Fri, Mar 8, 13 at 17:21


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