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August 14, 2019

The 5 Steps to Make Quartz Countertops for Kitchens 


quartz countertops for kitchensThough there are stone slab quartz countertops for kitchens, it’s much more common to find engineered stone, which is a man made product that cannot be called synthetic as they are primarily comprised of about 93% natural stone quartz particles.  The remainder of the substances that bind the quartz aggregate and add additional color make up seven percent or less of the overall sheet.  These pressed slabs are baked and cooled to harden them. However, there is a great deal that goes into these sheets before they reach this stage.  The following are the steps that need to be taken to create quartz countertops for kitchens.

Quartz countertops for kitchens step 1: mining

The main substance in quartz countertops for kitchens is, of course, the mineral called quartz.  It is among the most commonly occurring minerals on the planet.  Though mines for this natural stone are found around the world, most of it is imported from Brazil.  That said, within the United States, the largest mines are located in the Ouachita Mountains in what is known as the “quartz belt” which extends from Arkansas to Oklahoma.  There, everything from bulldozers to explosives are utilized for the exposure of the crystals of the mineral in the mines.  If the quartz crystals are loose, then they are collected by hand.  Otherwise, they are either extracted with shovels and pickaxes, or they are quarried.

Quartz countertops for kitchens step 2: grinding the crystals

The chunks of quartz crystals are not yet ready to be made into quartz countertops for kitchens at this size, so they are ground down to make them smaller and more uniform.  These can range in size from a coarse natural stone the size of gravel, down to fine sand-like particles.  The finer the grind of the quartz, the more uniform the color will be throughout the slab of the quartz countertops for kitchens that result from it.  That said, the larger crystals allow quartz countertops for kitchens to have greater sparkle and depth.  Natural color may be found in the mix as a result of naturally colored impurities or even semiprecious stones such as rose quartz, hematite, or tiger-eye.  These may either be set aside to ensure that only clear crystals are present in the final quartz countertops for kitchens, or they may be mixed in throughout.

Quartz countertops for kitchens step 3: blending the crystals with the filler

To bind the crystals so that they can be formed into quartz countertops for kitchens, resins are added.  These resins will have been mixed with natural pigments that add the desired color.  Other substances are also occasionally added for a desired final appearance, such as glass, recycled mirror, or even pieces of precious metals.

Quartz countertops for kitchens step 4: creation of designs and patterns

The next step toward making quartz countertops for kitchens is to add the designs and patterns to the mixture.  This is accomplished through various techniques.  For example, veining is added by creating a small space in the mix.  A special type of vacuum then forces a second type of mixture with a different color into the spaces.

Quartz countertops for kitchens step 5: creating the slab

The mix is then poured and pressed until it becomes a slab in the thickness that is desired for the quartz countertops for kitchens.  After that point, the desired type of edge can be formed.  Once the shape has been established, the mix is cured in an oven.  As this slab cools, it hardens significantly.  From this point, it is a glossy nonporous sheet and will not need any additional finishing or polishing.  That said, the surface may be honed if matte finish quartz countertops for kitchens are desired.

From there, the quartz countertops for kitchens are ready to be customized to your specifications so that it can be installed in your kitchen by a certified installer.  Once the fixtures, faucets, and other features have been installed, it is fully ready for many years of low maintenance use. 

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