Granite vs. Quartz vs. Marble vs.
Travertine vs. Soapstone
Granite is the most durable and resilient 100% natural stone available aside from diamonds, rubies, and sapphires. Each cut is completely unique from any other. Because of the feldspar in granite making it resistant to scratching, heat, degradation of color and texture, and the silicates protecting it from stains and acids, granite is an ever-growing favored choice for structural and decorative purposes. Minor scratches or dings in granite can be filled in with color-matching epoxy or resin. These qualities make granite a popular choice for countertops, vanities, flooring, entryways, fireplaces and more. One benefit of shopping with us is that the in-stock slab you choose here is the slab you get – cut and fabricated the exact way you specify!
Unlike natural-stone slabs, quartz is engineered in a factory, typically consisting of about 94% ground natural quartz with 6% polymer resins. The resins give quartz its color, bind it together and help make the material nonporous, stain and scratch resistant – eliminating the need for it to be sealed. Some designs contain small amounts of recycled glass and metallic flecks, allowing a vast variety of shimmering colors and patterns. Although it is slightly more durable than granite, keep in mind that quartz is more susceptible to fading in direct sunlight, and if damaged or scratched, it is not as easy to repair as granite. Therefore, quartz is ideal for indoor flooring, veneers, and decorative tiles, but not a bad choice for countertops.
Marble is recognized worldwide to be among the most elegant and luxurious of natural stones. Its high-gloss polish, style and texture offer a wide variety of rich colors, with choices of veined or solid varieties. Due to its porous nature, it is very susceptible to scratching and staining. Being more likely to stain than granite and quartz, marble is favored mainly for bathrooms, flooring, fireplaces, walls, and vanities, but still makes an affordable elegant countertop.
Formed by hot spring water flowing through underground limestone, travertine is uniquely characterized by natural patterns, veins, and cavities giving it a subtle distressed, earthy appearance. To ensure a smooth, stain-resistant and durable surface, travertine is often filled with cement, grout or resin. If a more natural and unusual surface is desired, the filling can be left out. Travertine is most commonly seen in outdoor and indoor tile flooring, as well as vanity tops, fireplace surrounds, exterior cladding, outdoor patios, and various specialty items such as sinks and light switch plates.
Quarried like granite and marble, soapstone is largely composed of the mineral talc, and is thus rich in magnesium. The talc in soapstone gives the stone a smooth feeling, like rubbing a piece of dry soap. Although it feels soft to the touch, soapstone is quite dense and resists staining. Slightly less impervious to scratching and denting than granite, extra care must be taken with soapstone. Also, we recommend avoiding putting hot items on its surface, as it retains heat longer than most other stones. Typically, people with more traditional homes with a vintage feel go for the soapstone.
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Roanoke Rockfab Hours
Monday-Wednesday & Friday 9:00am-5:00pm
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Located in Roanoke and Lynchburg, Virginia, and soon to open in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, Rockfab specializes in the custom fabrication of natural stone and designing custom cabinetry with Tedd Wood Cabinetry and Wellborn Cabinetry. We import granite, marble, limestone, travertine, slate, onyx and sodalite slabs from all over the world, creating masterpieces for your home and office. We also fabricate LG Hi-Macs®, Cambria®, Living Stone®, Compac®, Wilsonart®, Vicostone®, Samsung Staron®, DuPont Corian®, DuPont Zodiaq™ quartz.
Serving the Shenandoah Valley, the Central, Southside, Southwest, Piedmont regions of Virginia, and Southwestern West Virginia including: Roanoke, Salem, Daleville, Hardy, Bedford, Smith Mountain Lake, Rocky Mount, Martinsville, Danville, Reidsville NC, South Boston, Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Radford, Wytheville, Lynchburg, Forest, Monroe, Appomattox, Piedmont, Amherst, Lovingston, Lexington, Clifton Forge, Covington, Hot Springs, Hinton, Waynesboro, Charlottesville, Harrisonburg, and West Virginia areas including: White Sulphur Springs, Oak Hill, Alderson, Conceverte, Union, Frankford, Rainelle, Lewisburg, Williamsburg, Fayetteville, Beckley, Peterstown, Princeton, Bluefield, Harrisonburg and Staunton.