Rare and valuable minerals

How long does artificial stone last?

27 September 2019 How to care for an artificial stone countertop? The most popular today are two types of countertops: Countertops made of artificial stone last more than 15 years. Some quartz agglomerate manufacturers promise a lifetime warranty on the material. In order for the stone to retain its original texture and color all these years, it is necessary to take into account the peculiarities of caring for the countertop made of each material separately. The service life directly depends not only on the type of material, but also on its quality.

How to care for an acrylic countertop?

Acrylic kitchen countertops require more maintenance than quartz countertops. This is a softer material, which may receive scratches from sharp objects, which are especially noticeable on plain dark textures. The acrylic surface absorbs dirt; old stains can only be removed by sanding and removing the top layer of material. It is not recommended to place hot dishes without a special stand. There are a number of basic rules for caring for acrylic surfaces.

  • Warm water and a mild detergent are sufficient for daily care. An ordinary soap solution will work fine.
  • Remove any resulting contaminants immediately, do not allow time for the contaminants to be absorbed deep into the material.
  • For stubborn stains, use products specialized for caring for artificial stone.
  • It is safe to use only non-abrasive cleaning products.
  • To protect against scratches, it is recommended to use a wood varnish that does not contain silicone or wax.
  • Do not use a substance that contains acetone, acids, alkalis, chlorine or other solvents for cleaning.
  • Oil and wax create a film on the surface of the material, spoiling its appearance.
  • It is not recommended to use the knife without using a special stand.
  • Do not pour liquids containing bright coloring pigments into a light-colored acrylic sink. Don’t leave tea bags on it.

How to care for quartz countertops?

Quartz is considered one of the most wear-resistant and low-maintenance materials. The absence of pores ensures resistance to the absorption of any dyes and contaminants. The surface remains clean for many years with minimal effort on your part. However, you should pay attention to the following points.

  • Currently, a huge number of manufacturers of quartz agglomerate, differing in quality, have appeared on the market. It is impossible to guarantee that any quartz stone has the necessary set of properties.
  • The wear resistance of a material depends on its texture and composition. Unlike acrylic, quartz is resistant to high temperatures, with the exception of textures with large glass inclusions. It is not recommended to place hot dishes directly from a hot stove on such a surface.
  • Textured surface treatment gives the product a special charm, but entails more careful care.
  • Quartz has a certain UV resistance, which depends on the color and pattern of the stone. If exposed to direct sunlight for a long time, the design and color may be partially lost or distorted.

In general, caring for a quartz stone countertop is much easier than any other material. The only competitor to quartz in terms of wear resistance is ceramics.

Caring for countertops made of natural stone requires special attention. When installing a work surface made of natural marble in the kitchen, like any natural material, you need to take into account the features of its operation. The main problem is the high porosity of the material, due to which any contaminants quickly penetrate deep into the thickness of the material. It is almost impossible to remove such stains. To avoid such problems, it is necessary to periodically impregnate the surface with a special liquid that clogs the pores.

If defects still appear on the artificial countertop, you need to contact a specialist. Restoration of stains and scratches, as a rule, consists of removing, by grinding, the top layer of material and its subsequent restoration using special grouting and polishing.

The specialists of the World of Quartz company have more than 10 years of experience working with stone. We carry out the entire cycle of work, from drawing and production to installation of the finished product.

We are waiting for you in our showrooms!

February 27 2023

Artificial stone: pros and cons

Artificial stone is used in the production of countertops, window sills and cladding panels. It has high performance qualities and an affordable price, and is in demand when implementing design projects.

The material is presented in 4 versions: quartz agglomerate, acrylic, ceramics and cast marble. Each product has advantages and disadvantages.

Quarry agglomerate

Quartz agglomerate is an artificial stone based on natural raw materials. The product is used in the arrangement of wet rooms and is an excellent solution for the kitchen.

Production technology

The technology for producing agglomerate involves mixing 4 components: stone aggregates, mineral chips, resin and dyes. The raw materials are combined in the prescribed proportions, mixed using mixers and laid out in molds. The last procedure involves vibration compaction in a vacuum. This guarantees complete filling of the container, absence of pores and uniform distribution of the composition.

The molds with the mixture are sent for polymerization – baking in an oven at a set temperature. At the final stage, the frozen workpieces are removed, calibrated and polished. Products are checked by Quality Control Department employees and then sent to the warehouse.

Advantages

Quartz agglomerate has many advantages.

  • High strength. The strength of artificial stone is comparable to natural stone. The product is resistant to mechanical stress and withstands shock and vibration loads. Intensive use of the material does not lead to the appearance of abrasions, scratches and other defects.
  • No pores. One of the important characteristics of artificial stone. The material has a homogeneous structure and does not absorb liquids or unpleasant odors. Quartz agglomerate does not require regular treatment with pastes and complex periodic cleaning. To clean, simply wipe the surface with a damp cloth.
  • Chemical resistance. The product retains its performance characteristics when in contact with acids and alkalis.
  • Temperature resistance. Quartz agglomerate is resistant to high temperatures. Heated objects can be placed on its surface without fear of deformation.

An additional advantage of artificial stone is the use of a large volume of minerals. The mass fraction of natural raw materials in the agglomerate reaches 97%. This guarantees environmental friendliness and excellent aesthetic performance of the products.

Disadvantages

Speaking about the advantages and disadvantages of artificial stone, it is worth paying special attention to the latter. The key disadvantage of the product is its vulnerability to ultraviolet radiation. Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight will cause the dyes to fade.

Disadvantages also include the price and the presence of small seams at the junction of the plates.

Application

Experts use artificial stone to make kitchen countertops. The material is actively used in bathrooms and other places with high humidity.

Acrylic

Acrylic stone is a composite product consisting of mineral raw materials and polymer binders. The share of minerals is from 60 to 70%, the share of binders is from 30 to 40%. Dyes are used to give the required color.

Winemaking

The production of acrylic stone is carried out by analogy with quartz agglomerate. The procedure involves performing the following operations.

  • Selection and dosing of raw materials necessary for the manufacture of the material.
  • Mixing components using a vacuum mixer.
  • Filling the resulting mixture into special forms.
  • Waiting for the time necessary for the mixture to polymerize.

Finally, the parts are extracted, calibrated and defective.

Advantages

Advantages of acrylic-based artificial stone.

  • Reasonable price. Key feature of artificial stone. The products are cheaper than other analogues obtained artificially. It is optimal for carrying out repair work on a limited budget.
  • Possibility of manufacturing complex products. The characteristics of acrylic-based artificial stone allow you to create large, seamless surfaces. This simplifies the implementation of non-standard projects and guarantees adaptation to the characteristics of the premises.
  • Light weight. The thickness of the acrylic slab does not exceed 10 mm. The remaining dimensions of the element are obtained from MDF. As a result, the weight of the product and the requirements for the supporting structure are reduced.
  • Easy installation. The MDF base makes it easy to fix the component. The master can use classic hardware to securely hold the part.

As with quartz agglomerate, acrylic does not contain pores. It does not require rubbing with pastes and careful care. Artificial stone does not absorb odors and dyes.

Disadvantages

Acrylic material has three main disadvantages.

  • Low stone strength. The product is inferior in strength to other artificial materials. Its intensive use will lead to scratches and abrasions.
  • Vulnerability to Heat. Regular exposure to high temperatures creates whitish spots on the surface of the countertop. Such defects cannot be eliminated and remain forever.
  • Sunburn. Dyes used in the production of products may change color when exposed to ultraviolet radiation.

In addition, acrylic can absorb color pigments from food.

The listed disadvantages limit the use of artificial stone.

Application

Taking into account the pros and cons of artificial stone, we can formulate recommendations for its use:

  • the material should not be subjected to intense mechanical stress;
  • Hot objects should not be placed on the surface of the product;
  • Products should be protected from ultraviolet rays.

The main area of ​​application of artificial stone is the decoration of surfaces and the production of countertops. When using the latter, you must follow the manufacturer’s recommendations and remember the shortcomings of the product.

Ceramics

Artificial stone based on clay, ceramic pigments and crushed granite. The products are characterized by practicality and a wide range of applications.

Winemaking

The production of the material is carried out according to a certain algorithm:

  • mixing components;
  • filling forms using vibrocompression;
  • baking the material in a gas or electric oven at a set temperature;
  • gradual cooling of the product to prevent cracks.

Finally, the products are removed and calibrated.

Advantages

Ceramic products have many advantages.

  • Long service life. The products have a significant service life and retain their quality throughout the entire period of use.
  • Chemical resistance. The material is resistant to acids and alkalis and is compatible with any cleaning agents.
  • UV resistanceradiation. Ceramic surfaces do not fade in the sun and retain their original, rich color.
  • Scratch resistance. Exposure to piercing and cutting objects causes minimal damage to products. In this regard, it is superior to all artificial stones.

Ceramics are easy to care for and tolerate heat well. Any dirt can be easily removed from its surface.

Disadvantages

Among the disadvantages of the material it is worth highlighting:

  • difficulty in processing;
  • use only for simple countertops;
  • inability to create curved edges;
  • the most noticeable seams compared to other materials.

Ceramics have the highest price.

Application

Artificial stone is used for countertops and window sills. Resistance to mechanical wear and ultraviolet radiation guarantees long service life of the product.

Cast marble

Cast marble consists of mineral fragments and binding resins. The strength of the stone chips used in production is at a high level. This guarantees excellent performance properties of the product.

Winemaking

The production process involves the selection and dosing of raw materials, their subsequent mixing and molding. After the resin has polymerized, the element is removed from the mold, calibrated and ground.

Advantages

Key properties of artificial stone: high strength, does not absorb moisture. The material also has a number of additional advantages.

  • Environmentally friendly. The stone does not affect food or skin, and is an excellent solution for kitchen countertops.
  • Resistant to fading. The product does not change color when exposed to sunlight and retains its aesthetic appeal for a long time.
  • No pores. The material, unlike its natural counterpart, does not absorb odors and dyes. It does not need to be rubbed with pastes.
  • Moderate weight. The stone is two times lighter than products made from natural marble. A strong base is not required for its installation.
  • Variability. Product colors are not limited to the natural palette. The use of modern dyes allows you to obtain any patterns and colors.

Products based on cast marble are characterized by excellent wear resistance. They withstand cutting tools and natural abrasives well.

Disadvantages

The main disadvantages of the product are:

  • relative high cost;
  • higher weight compared to acrylic;
  • the impossibility of maintaining high dimensional accuracy and straightness of surfaces due to manufacturing technology;
  • the likelihood of cracks;
  • Each manufacturer has its own recipe and technology.

The last point excludes consistently high quality when purchasing products and introduces additional risks.

Application

The use of durable artificial stone is possible in various fields. On its basis, functional window sills and countertops are made, sinks and bathtubs are created.

The product can be used as wall decor. Wide molding possibilities allow you to create unique interior decorations.

Conclusion

The materials listed are suitable for domestic and commercial use. In the second case, it is worth using artificial stone with increased strength: quartz agglomerate or ceramics. This is due to intense external influence and increased requirements for the service life of the surface.

Acrylic is suitable for solving problems in the economy segment. It has a reasonable price and excellent aesthetic characteristics, and is an excellent addition to the kitchen.

It is worth purchasing artificial stone and products based on it from a trusted manufacturer. This will allow you to obtain high-quality products that meet the stated requirements. Such products will last for many years and will delight you with their practicality and attractive appearance.

Our catalog will help you get acquainted with the range of artificial stone products.

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