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Removing Rust Stains from Quartz Countertops

Written by Castor Syro on February 13, 2023
Edited By Francis Resway, Last Updated On January 01, 2024
Reviewed By Angela Warren
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Rust is an unsightly chemical stain which can make the nicest looking quartz countertops appear aged and neglected. Rust stains seem like they come out of nowhere, and once they are seen they become very difficult to remove. However, that doesn’t mean rust cannot be removed.

Learn to keep your quartz countertops safe by understanding how rust stains form and the proper techniques for removing it.

Table of Contents

What is rust?

Rust is the chemical residue when wet iron or steel objects rest on a countertop or surface for too long. Rust stains can form from a variety of objects like pots, pans, knives, forks, spoons, steel wool, etc. When an acidic substance like water or lemon juice contacts metal, the acid will corrode the iron particles.


What Causes Rust?

Rust is like hard water stains. Moisture contains tiny particles of metal and minerals in them. When the moisture evaporates, the solid metal particles remain and stick to the surface. These metal particles corrode the surface they stick to, which causes the reddish-brown look of rust.

Rust can be caused by exposure to the elements like rainwater coming through the window and splashing on window mesh, as well as tap water resting on objects.


Quartz Durability

Quartz is highly resistant to scratching, chipping, and staining. Unlike other stones, quartz is manufactured and designed to be stronger than granite or marble.

However, with enough force or improper care, quartz countertops can be damaged. Cutting directly on a quartz countertop will dull a knife sooner than damage the stone, but over time it will weaken the quartz and leave scratch marks. Stains are easy to clean off, but if left on for too long, they will be harder to remove.

Quartz is a beautiful option for countertop installation because it can be customizable and more affordable than expensive stones like marble.

The benefit of quartz being an artificial stone is that it does not have the minor groove or pores like natural stone. Because quartz is non-porous, that means any stains and spills rest only on the surface. This allows messes to be cleaned much easier than others.




Removing Rust Stains

Removing rust stains from quartz counters can range from easy to moderately difficult, depending on how long the rust has been left to sit.

Dish Soap and Warm Water

As mentioned before, quartz is non-porous, so any mess or stain should just be on the outermost surface. If the rust stain is still new, it might be possible that a simple cleaning is all that is required.

Step 1: Obtain a bucket of warm water, soft microfiber cloth, and mild dish soap

Step 2: Add a small amount of the mild dish soap into the bucket of warm water and mix.

Step 3: Wet the soft, microfiber cloth in the soapy water and rub in a circular motion on the rust stained surface.

Step 4: Continue cleaning the affected area until rust has been completely removed.

Step 5: Use a separate towel or cloth to dry the countertop.

This is the preferred cleaning method for regular care on quartz countertops.


Soft Scrub

When a rust stain has been left to linger for too long, it may require more force to remove. For this method, use a soft scrub in combination with dish soap and warm water.

Step 1: Procure a soft scrub brush, bucket of warm water, and mild dish soap.

Step 2: Add a small amount of the mild dish soap into the bucket of warm water and mix.

Step 3: Wet the soft scrub brush into the soapy water combination and start scrubbing the affected area.

Step 4: Continue scrubbing until the rust stain has been removed. Use a gentle, circular scrubbing motion to cover as much surface area as possible. Do not scrub too hard as too much pressure can fade the sheen on the quartz.

Step 5: Once the stain has been completely removed, use a clean towel to dry the countertop.

A soft scrub is more abrasive than a microfiber cloth, allowing it to more easily remove stains.


Baking Soda + Water

Baking soda is a well-known household cleaner and easily obtained in most local convenience stores. Baking soda will chemically absorb the rust stain, leaving your quartz countertops safe and clean.

Step 1: Mix equal parts baking soda with equal parts water until it has a paste-like consistency.

Step 2: Apply the baking soda paste to the affected area and let sit for 10-15 minutes.

Step 3: After the allotted time has passed, use a microfiber cloth or soft sponge to wipe away the paste. Wipe in a circular motion to cover more surface area.

Step 4: Rinse the area with warm water and dry with a separate soft towel or cloth.

If the first application of the baking soda paste has failed, re-apply and wait 15-20 minutes. For larger rust stains, allow the baking soda to sit overnight and clean in the morning.




Barkeepers Friend

Barkeepers Friend is a commercial cleaning product designed to remove rust from flat surfaces. Before using this product, check your quartz supplier warranty and care guide to ensure Barkeepers Friend can be used. Using products not recommended by the specific quartz brand can damage your quartz countertop by fading the finish and dulling the sheen.

This product is an abrasive powder, so follow the instructions on the box or guideline from the quartz manufacturer. Improper use of this product can damage your quartz countertop and is often not covered by company warranties.


Magic Eraser

Magic Eraser is an excellent cleaning product for removing dirt and stains. However, the chemicals composed in Magic Eraser can damage your quartz over time. It is advisable to only use this method sparingly and not to apply too much force when cleaning a quartz countertop.

Step 1: Put on gloves and obtain the Magic Eraser with a bucket of warm water.

Step 2: Soak the Magic Eraser in the bucket of warm water and gently scrub onto the rust-stained area.

Step 3: Continue gently scrubbing until the rust stain has been completely removed. Rinse the Magic Eraser in the bucket of warm water to keep it wet. Ring out any excess water in the bucket so it does not drop onto the countertop

Step 4: Using a separate microfiber cloth, wet the towel in the bucket of warm water and wipe down the countertop. This will remove any chemicals left behind from the Magic Eraser.

Step 5: Use a paper towel or dry rag to absorb any remaining moisture to prevent future stains.

Before using the Magic Eraser, contact your quartz supplier to see if it can be used to remove rust stains.


Company Specific Cleaners

Commercial cleaning products like Barkeepers Friend and the Magic Eraser are outstanding cleaning agents designed to remove stains. But quartz companies have different care guides regarding cleaning their products. Using a cleaning agent not approved by their specific care guides can damage the quartz by dulling the finish and sheen.

Always consult the quartz manufacturer first before using any cleaning products.

Do not use bleach to remove dirt or stains from quartz countertops as bleach will quickly damage your quartz.



The best way to remove rust from your quartz countertops is by preventing it from ever showing in the first place.

Do not leave metal objects directly on the surface of your countertop.

Use coasters, place mats, and trivets under wet metal to absorb liquid from reaching your quartz.

Dry off your quartz countertops after anything wet has touched the surface and after every spill.

Clean your quartz countertops on a regular basis with warm water and a microfiber cloth.



Quartz countertops are a beautiful addition to any room. Don’t let them get tarnished by rust stains. Wipe up any spills, perform routine cleanings and your quartz countertops will be healthy for a long time.

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