How to Safely Remove Water Spots from Quartz Countertops

How to Safely Remove Water Spots from Quartz Countertops

How to Remove Hard Water Spots from Quartz Countertops

Mineral deposits are also known as hard water spots, water stains, and watermarks. They are commonly found on countertops, around sinks, and on glass shower doors. They require specific cleaning solutions or specific methods to remove them. When popular cleaning solutions are used to remove water spots from quartz surfaces, they typically leave behind a permanent blemish or dull spot that can be seen when the light reflects off of it. We do not sell cleaning solutions that are safe to remove mineral deposits from quartz countertops, nor does anyone else.

This blog will guide you through safely removing water spots from quartz counters without causing damage. You will also learn the cause, and how to protect against them using Supreme Surface Treatments that contain ioSeal.

Quartz countertops contain sensitive resins, meaning you must clean your quartz with pH-neutral cleaners (non-acidic, and with no alkaline). Unfortunately, hard water stains and hard water spots are resistant to pH-neutral cleaners.  To simplify the process and keep your quartz countertops safe and protected, we will explain what causes hard water stains, the "Do's and Dont's" of removing them, and how to prevent them in the future.

Note: Removing water spots from granite composite sinks requires a different method.



What Causes Hard Water Spots?

Water spots generally arise when water evaporates, leaving behind leftover minerals that build-up.

These minerals (usually calcium and lime) dry and bond to the surface, creating a chalky stain-like spot that won't wipe away.  These spots are known as hard water spots or hard water stains, and are resistant to quartz cleaners. 

These marks still occur even with a water softener; softeners just create a softer form of hard water.



Quartz-Safe Cleaners Can Not Remove Hard Water Spots

Quartz countertops are combined with acid-sensitive resins during their manufacturing, meaning they are vulnerable to chemical damage.  This causes acidic products such as vinegar, lemon juice, or acidic cleaners to eat through the resins, "etching" the surface. As a result, quartz requires pH-neutral cleaners.

Hard water spots, unfortunately, can not be removed by pH-neutral cleaners.  Although certain cleaning products specialize in removing such deposits, the large majority of them are acidic or alkaline-based. This is why prevention is key.

With this in mind, here is our list of guidelines for removing hard water spots and mineral deposits from quartz countertops:

How to Clean Hard Water Spots 

Your options for cleaning hard water spots from quartz countertops sound counterintuitive but are safer and easier than they sound.  Since quartz cleaners are ineffective, we will have to use friction to remove the deposits.  All you will need is super-fine steel wool (grade #0000), or a straight-razor. It is essential that your steel wool is grade #0000 since other variations will be too abrasive.



  1. Use grade #0000 super-fine steel wool to remove light water spots, lightly rubbing the deposits in a circular motion.

  2. For heavier spots, Carefully use a new, sharp straight razor or scraper.

  3. Take preventative measures to prevent water stains and mineral deposits from building up



  1. Don’t use aggressive/strong cleaners on your quartz or granite countertop

  2. Don’t use vinegar or lemon juice; they can etch your surface

  3. Don’t use non-neutral household cleaners on your quartz

  4. Don’t use water and dish soap to clean your quartz, (without a rinse and wiping off excess water left behind) as they can lead to more water spots, mineral deposits, and soap-scum build-ups 

 The easiest method of removing hard water spots from quartz is to use Super-Fine Steel wool (#0000 grade).  Begin in an inconspicuous (hidden) area, buffing the surface in a circular motion.  Ensure the area is undamaged, and proceed to mimic the technique along the water spots.  This should be enough to remove light mineral deposits from the surface.

If heavier deposits exist, it may be best to carefully scrape them off of the surface with a straight razor.

Preventing Water Stains and Mineral Deposits

Removal is difficult, so prevention is key. 

Many individuals clean their countertops with soapy water, but this should be avoided. Like washing glass with a soapy wet rag or sponge, doing this to your quartz can create a cloudy haze over time from soap scum or leftover mineral deposits.

For proper prevention, utilize a quartz cleaner formulated with ioSeal Protectants.  ioSeal forms an ionic bond to the surface, creating a layer that resists incoming stains and messes such as hard water spots.


We hope this information has served well to clarify and simplify cleaning in the future.  With a history of more than 25 years of experience in the stone installation and stone-care industries, we believe in educating consumers. With that in mind, if you have further questions about your stone surface, reach out to us, and we will help you find a quick solution. We can be reached by calling 317-865-0000.


Discover the "ioSeal™ Advantage on Quartz"

  • An additional level of protection against stains, hard water spots, calcium and limescale buildup
  • Lowers the bond strength of future mineral deposits/water spots, making them easier to clean
  • Helps protect against UV rays and fading
  • Safe to use on unsaturated polyester resin, natural and engineered stones
  • Leaves a smooth look and reflective feel
  • Colors become vibrant

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  • Sam Munro
Comments 3
  • Barbara

    I have new white quartz countertops and they have little smudges in a few areas (almost like fingerprints). Me area is a little larger (almost like the size of a glass ring). I’ve tried dish detergent and warm water but this does not remove these smudges. Any advice would be extremely appreciated. Thank you!

  • Sam

    Hi Connie,

    From the information you have given, we are unable to give a definite diagnosis for the issue. There is more information we would need to know, such as when the circled appeared, if you used the product before or after, which exact products you haves used on the sink, etc. It is possible that the circles could be a result from heat damage such as hot cups; however, the most common cause of this issue is damage from abrasive products (windex, CLR, oven cleaners, vinegar, lemon, etc.).

    If the circles are a surface-stain or residue issue, follow our recommendations and try to remove them from the surface with grade #0000 ultra-fine steel wool. If this does not work, then the issue is due to heat damage, chemical etching, or something similar. Our product, the CTP Multi-Surface Treatment, is an excellent treatment for preventing and defending your quartz countertop from hard water stains and mineral deposits; however, it is not able to remove mineral deposits/hard water stains or reverse etching/heat damage.

  • Connie Gurule
    Connie Gurule

    New white quartz. Cloudy circles 4 as if hot cup was set there. Had to have men who installed. They will not take responsibility. Read all cleaning recommendations & use Weissman to clean. Any way to remove, return original shine? Your product?

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