Choosing a countertop for your outdoor kitchen is no easy task. It’s not just about deciding what material is going to look best – the material has to be able to withstand everything that the elements will throw at it, from snow to storms. The countertops also have to withstand everything that a regular kitchen goes through, from heavy pans to raw food.
Two of the most popular countertop types for outdoor kitchens are granite and quartz. These materials are hardy and durable, but there are several differences between granite and quartz that should be considered. So, which is better for outside: granite or quartz?
If you’re designing the outdoor kitchen of your dreams and don’t know which countertop to pick, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s everything you need to know about granite vs quartz for outdoor countertops!
Firstly, let’s take a look at what each countertop type is like before we compare granite and quartz.
Granite is arguably the most popular countertop material for outdoor kitchens, and for good reason. Granite is incredibly durable, making it perfect for dealing with every element that the outdoors has to offer – whether it’s snow, rain, a storm, harsh winds, or a hurricane. It’s even durable against heavy items that could be dropped onto the surface.
You’ve also got to think about exposure to heat when it comes to outdoor kitchens. Not only do you have to consider hot cooking oil and hot pans, you’ve also got to think about the unforgiving sun in the heat of summer. The last thing you want is for your countertops to bleach and become discolored in the sun, or even become warped in the heat.
Fortunately, granite countertops are resistant to wear and tear from the heat, and aren’t likely to stain or become warped by hot oil. It’s also not going to become discolored under the sun, so whatever granite color you choose will remain that way for years to come.
Overall, granite is a trustworthy material that is hard-wearing and dependable. As it’s non-porous, it doesn’t stain as easily as materials such as concrete, so the maintenance is really minimal.
However, the granite must be properly sealed in order for it to be non-porous. Not only will this prevent stains and cracks, but sealing a granite countertop will also make it resistant to mold and mildew. Given that mold and mildew will otherwise almost definitely occur thanks to exposure to the rain, this is a necessity.
Fortunately, sealing your granite countertops is really easy. There are lots of gel colors available that will match a variety of granite colors, so you’ll have no trouble sealing it.
Quartz countertops are another popular kitchen countertop material, but only for indoor kitchens. It’s a beautiful material that exhibits that classic quartz pattern, which works beautifully in modern and traditional kitchens.
Quartz is naturally a non-porous material, meaning it is resistant to liquids and staining without the need to be sealed. As a result, it requires little maintenance, and wipes down very easily. It’s hygienic and easy to clean – but that doesn’t mean it’s the best countertop material for outdoor use.
While quartz is resilient for indoor kitchens, its durability isn’t quite the same for outdoor kitchens. The main reason is that quartz doesn’t hold up well under bright sunlight, and is prone to bleaching and discoloration. It would be a waste of money to install a quartz countertop for your outdoor kitchen, only for it to not look the same in the future.
Also, quartz generally isn’t prepared for the harsh elements that the outdoors has to offer. Unless your outdoor kitchen is really sheltered and you’re prepared to cover the countertops whenever you’re not using the kitchen, it’s not going to bode well under certain weather conditions. This is especially true for those who live in areas of extreme weather changes.
While quartz is non-porous and resistant to mold and mildew from exposure to rain, the same cannot be said for extreme heat or storms. It’s not as strong as materials such as granite, and the structural integrity is likely to be compromised.
Quartz itself is resistant to heat, but it’s the polymer and resin fillers that don’t do well in heat. Too much heat will melt the fillers, leading to spotting, discoloration, and cloudiness. This goes for hot pans and dishes as well as direct sunlight.
Granite Vs Quartz For Outdoor Kitchens
So, now we know how both granite and quartz perform in outdoor kitchens. Let’s take a look at the comparisons between the two, to help us decide which is better.
The durability of the countertop is arguably the most important factor to consider. Outdoor kitchens are exposed to every element, including rain, sun, snow, storms, wind, and more. Depending on where you live, and whether your area is prone to extreme weather conditions, this will impact what countertop you choose.
Not only this, but you also have to consider the general wear and tear that a regular kitchen countertop goes through. The material has to withstand heavy objects, hot pans, countless dishes, and more.
While quartz is a good option for indoor countertops, granite is the clear winner when it comes to durability. It’s far more hardy than quartz, isn’t likely to change consistency or shape under the sun, and is resistant to virtually every weather condition.
Both quartz and granite are low-maintenance countertop options. As both are non-porous, they are unlikely to stain or develop mold or mildew. This means that all you have to do is wipe them down.
Just keep in mind that granite will need to be sealed, whereas quartz is naturally non-porous. However, if you use quartz outdoors, it will need to be covered when not in use, as it doesn’t fare well under most weather conditions.
Of course, you’ve got to consider the appearance of your outdoor kitchen countertops. This comes down to personal preference, but it’s worth keeping in mind that quartz will change color under direct sunlight or extreme heat. So, unless you want your quartz countertop to become discolored and patchy, it’s best to avoid quartz.
Granite, on the other hand, comes in a variety of colors and patterns, none of which will become discolored under extreme heat or direct sunlight. The sealant that goes on top of granite can also come in various colors, so this won’t change the appearance, either.
Price To Install
Generally speaking, the price to install both quartz and granite is mostly the same. However, you’re more likely to pay slightly more for granite, and that’s purely for the additional bonuses it comes with. This includes the cost of sealing.
So, Granite Or Quartz?
When it comes to outdoor kitchens, granite is definitely the better choice. Granite is far more durable than quartz, and while both perform in similar ways when it comes to their non-porous textures, granite is far better suited for outdoor kitchens.
So, there you have it! Now you know why granite is the better choice for outdoor kitchens than quartz. Hopefully, this guide has helped you choose the right material for your outdoor kitchen needs.