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How to Drill a Quartz Countertop

Quartz is one of the most popular stones for both interior and exterior design due to its versatility and aesthetic appeal.

Quartz is an engineered stone made up of about 90 to 95 percent ground quartz with the rest being polyester resin which serves as the binder and pigments to give the stone its color. Since it is assembled in a factory, the options for designs are endless and quartz can be used to fit any preference making it a popular choice for homeowners and designers alike.

Nowadays, quartz is commonly used on countertops, floors and walls.

Quartz kitchen countertop and island

Drilling Quartz

Aside from their attractiveness, quartz countertops are also popular for their durability. The manufacturing process of quartz involves a sealing procedure to ensure that the countertops last for a long period of time. In fact, quartz is considered to be more durable and has a harder surface than granite, another popular option for kitchen and bathroom countertops.

Because of this quartz countertops can fit any lifestyle. It is also fairly easy to maintain making it perfect for households with children. This is because quartz stone slabs are non-porous in nature, which means that they don’t absorb moisture. They are also resistant to scratches, scuffs, dents, stains, and burns. However, they are not completely immune to damage. To ensure that the quartz surface will give you a lifetime of quality, appropriate maintenance is needed.

The durability of quartz is one of its best assets but this also means that performing alterations on the surface will be a difficult task. Drilling a hole in a quartz countertop usually requires professional input but doing it yourself is possible only if you use the proper equipment to prevent any lasting damage to the surface. Making a mistake when drilling a hole in a quartz countertop will be costly.

Measuring a quartz countertop for drilling

Here’s a step by step guide on how to drill quartz:

Step 1: Prepare the right tools

Quartz exceeds the drilling capability of standard metal drill bits. Drilling quartz with a metal drill will dull it rapidly. Aside from that, the heat generated by friction can crack the quartz crystal. Drilling quartz countertops usually require a diamond hole drill bit because it is not as likely to chip or damage the top due to heat. You use other drill bits but make sure that that drill bit can go in or cut into glass.

Step 2: Prepare the work area

Drilling the quartz will be a messy work so make sure to prepare the work area to reduce the clean-up time once the task is done. Place a bucket beneath the countertop directly under where the hole will be drilled. The bucket will help catch the water that will be poured to lubricate the drill bit. The water will help keep the tip of the drill cool and rinse away the debris.

Step 3: Place the template

Place the drilling template on the countertop where the hole is to be. While holding the template in place, put the drill bit into the hole and begin drilling.

Step 4: Work slowly

This is the most important step. Make sure that you work slowly and carefully. Take your time and don’t rush because you can’t undo any mistakes and mistakes in drilling quartz countertops are costly. The speed of the drill needs to be slow. Don’t apply pressure on the drill and let it work at its own pace. Once in a while, lift the drill up so water can get under the bit where it makes contact with the countertop. Working with water will help keep the drill cool and will make the drilling process a lot smoother.

Step 5: Remove the template

Stop drilling and remove the template when the cut is about ¼ inch deep.

Step 6: Keep the drill lubricated

Form a dam around the hole using modeling clay and fill that area half full with water. This will help keep the bit lubricated properly.

Step 7: Continue to work slowly

Continue the drilling process by pumping the drill and adding water as needed for lubrication. Again, make sure that you work slowly to prevent any mishaps.

Step 8: Reduce speed

As you get near the end of the hole, reduce the speed on the drill slowly. At this point, you should only let the drill make enough contact to cut the hole. This is to prevent any chipping and cracking the quartz countertop.

Kitchen with a quartz countertop

DIY or Hire a Professional?

Working with quartz countertops is tricky. One false move and you will have to repair or replace the countertop which will cost a lot of money. For this reason, most experts recommend hiring a professional if you plan to install or do alterations on your quartz countertop to ensure that any mishaps are minimized.

However, working with quartz can also be a DIY project provided that you are knowledgeable enough. Home improvement stores can provide you with the equipment and knowledge regarding how to work with quartz countertops on your own. Make sure to understand the scope of your project before you decide to hire a professional or do the project on your own.

Conclusion

Quartz is a hard and heavy material and drilling it will be a difficult task. However, it can be achieved. You just need the proper tools and have patience in order for this to be a successful project. Quartz can be cut down but it cannot be cut back up again, so be sure to measure accurately and work with the stone carefully. Don’t skip any steps during this process and if you run into any mishaps, call an expert immediately to help you.

Granite selection is a manufacturer and installer of natural stone countertops for kitchens and bathrooms in the Chicagoland area. Located in Elk Grove Village, IL, we serve 70 mi area. If you need help with your kitchen or bathroom quartz countertops, don’t hesitate to give us a call at (888) 906 3317 and we’ll be happy to assist you.

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Nolan Banks
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Can I use tile drill bits if I want to drill a hole on my quartz countertop?