8 Tips for Installing Quartz Countertops
According to reports by the National Kitchen and Bath Association, quartz is the most popular countertop material amongst designers and homeowners. In fact, it’s popularity only continues to grow as more and more people discover the versatility, beauty, and low maintenance durability of quartz.
How to Install a Quartz Countertop
If you’re considering having quartz installed in your home, follow these 8 tips to ensure that the job comes out right.
1. Discuss All Details First
Quartz countertops are beautiful, durable, and come in many colors and styles. The amount of choices available may seem endless, but by working through each one, including color, pattern, edging, overhang, backsplash, cutouts, and seams you will ultimately be happier with the final install, and the fabricator can do a better job providing your countertop installation.
2. Make Sure the Space is Ready
Cabinets alone are not the only thing you need ready and installed before your countertop can be put in. Before scheduling installation of your quartz countertop, make sure that the electrical and plumbing are roughed, the walls are painted and dry, the flooring is finished, the cabinets completely installed, and the appliances are at least on hand if not actually in place. This will ensure that the most accurate template and installation can be done.
3. Have a Physical Template
It’s one thing to draw a picture of your kitchen cabinets, and something else entirely to have a physical template taken. A template is made of many strips of wood laid around the perimeter of the counter area, and glued together. Notes about things like edging, sink cutout, sink size, overhang, backsplash, curves, and any other personalized information will help complete your countertop.
Instead of simply providing the measurements to your fabricator, opt for a physical template. You’ll get a better, more accurate representation of your countertop.
4. Have Your Sink and Appliances on Hand
Don’t assume that simply knowing the size of your sink or stove is going to be enough to create the countertop. Small variations in size, as well as shape do exist. So, make sure that you have these items on hand at the time of templating. This will give you better results.
You’ll also have your sink installed at the same time as the countertop, so this will enable your installer to put everything in at once, and save a second trip.
5. Schedule Your Plumber for the Next Day
If you’re using an undermount sink, it will be attached to the underside of your quartz countertop with clips and epoxy, and held in place with a clamp while the epoxy cures. This will take roughly 24 hours. Your sink’s waste pipe and plumbing cannot be attached until after the curing has finished, as this will weaken the join. So, while you will want to use your countertop and sink right away, have your plumber come the day after the countertop has been installed to ensure it’s hooked up right.
6. Protect Your Cabinets
Adhesive joins your quartz countertop to your cabinets. And sometimes, that adhesive may get on the face of the cabinets, not just on the edge where it makes contact with the countertop. Protect your cabinets first by applying a strip of painter’s tape to the face of the cabinets, so any dripping adhesive won’t make contact.
7. Use Supports Where Needed
Quartz countertops are heavy, and not all cabinetry is strong enough to hold it. In addition, you may have unsupported areas, such as desks or overhangs that may need some support. If your cabinets cannot hold the weight of the quartz, plywood or backer board may be used beneath the countertop to help. If you will have an unsupported section of 12-inches or greater, you may want to consider corbels, a steel plate bolted to the cabinet beneath the quartz, or some other from of support to prevent sagging or cracking over time.
8. Control for Dust
There are two areas where dust and debris may impact your installation. The first is any dust or material inside your cabinets, which may settle on the counter and in new seams. Make sure that you clean out your cabinets well, and they are ready for install prior to the countertop arriving.
The second issue is the dust generating from installation. Make sure you remove items from the vicinity, and consider using drop cloths to help protect nearby tables and floors until after installation is complete.
Enjoy Your New Countertop
Investing in a quartz countertop may feel like a big step, but it’s an important part of completing your new kitchen design. Follow these tips to help make the installation go more smoothly, and enjoy your new countertop for many years to come.
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