Ask This Old House host Kevin O’Connor learns how quartz countertops are manufactured and then helps install one in a homeowner’s kitchen.
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Time: 1-2 weeks
Cost: $1500 and up
Skill Level: Expert
Steps for installing quartz countertop:
1. Kevin starts by explaining how quartz countertops are manufactured:
a. Quartz is a mineral, which is mined out of the ground and crushed into different sizes.
b. The quartz is then mixed with a binder and poured into a form.
c. The form is compacted, vibrated, and baked at 200 degrees for 30-60 minutes, which turns it into a hard, stone slab.
2. To have a quartz countertop installed, the existing cabinets need to be templated by a stone fabricator.
3. Once the cabinets have been templated, the fabricator can cut the quartz to the proper dimensions, including cutting out a hole for sink, using a variety of specialty cutting tools.
4. When the quartz is ready to be installed, the old countertop will need to be removed.
a. Start by shutting off the water to the kitchen sink and disconnect the supply hoses with a wrench.
b. Loosen and disconnect the drainpipe.
c. Pry the sink away from the countertop. Oftentimes, the sink is clipped to the countertop and those can easily be pried off.
d. Pry the countertop off using a pry bar.
5. The quartz slab can then be installed on the cabinet using silicone and clips. Quartz is heavy, so it will take multiple people to install it.
Kevin toured the manufacturing facility for Cambria Stone (https://www.cambriausa.com/). The slab that was installed at Jenny’s house was also Cambria quartz in the color “Windermere [https://bit.ly/2LMfgid].”
The tools required for installing the quartz, including the hammers and pry bars for removing the old counter, and the silicone to secure the new countertop, can all be found at home centers.
Expert assistance with this segment was provided by Gemini Stone, LLC of Everett, MA [https://www.geministone.net/about-us].
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How to Install a Quartz Countertop | Ask This Old House