Our latest blog was part 1 outlining the pros and cons of specific natural stone. This is part 2 with helpful tips to care for and maintain your floors. First the cleaning. Marble requires special deep cleaning agents to lift stains out of the pores in the material. Susceptible to etching and staining marble used on counters will need special attention. Granite on the other hand resists etching but can be stained. It needs to be resealed at one to two-year intervals. Terrazzo is a synthetic composite with natural stone chips imbedded in cement. This flooring is durable, resists staining polishes well but may matte due to high foot traffic. Travertine is softer than limestone, though they can be mistaken for each other. Due in part to it softness it does not hold a polish well, most who choose this material opt for the ‘honed’ look, a more matte look than polished. Travertine scratches easily and dully occurs with use.
Slate wears to a dull finish by heavy foot traffic. Slate counter tops are gaining rapidly in popularity.
Cultured marble is a synthetic material made from stone particle bound together by a resin. May develop cracks around high stress areas, like the sink for instance.
Deep Cleaning Natural Stone
Cost of cleaning is determined by the build of dirt and grime. Long periods between sealing means more surface abrasion and stain absorption. Ever notice the edges of tiles, and occasionally one will be proud (higher) of the other. This is called ‘lippage’ and the technician must grind the higher tile even with its neighbor. Sometimes restoration of a floor calls for a replacement of one or more tiles. As a natural product it will be difficult to replace a tile.
Natural Stone Polishing, Refinishing & Sealing
After cleaning comes the polishing and refinishing. Those products that can be polished are brought to a high luster and sealed. Even the finish of travertine can be ground to an attractive matte finish.
Then the technician needs to reseal the floor. Sealing prevents staining from liquids and protects the polish.
DIY Natural Stone Care
Then you do your part:
• Dirt is abrasive. As you walk over dirt on a natural stone floor you are grinding that floor with the abrasive particles in dirt. Sweep often to avoid dirt build up and subsequent surface wear through abrasion.
• Mats can be not only attractive but serve a purpose. At entries they allow the cleaning of footwear as to not track dirt onto the floor.
• You spill it, you clean it, and do it as soon as possible. Prolonged exposure to spilled liquids can lead to deep staining.
• Many beverages are acidic. Protect natural stone countertops by using coasters.
• The fancy trays that hold all your beauty and hygiene products are there to protect your bathroom counters. Use ‘em.
• Make sure your cleaning agents are compatible with the stone, on floors and countertops.
• Avoid abrasive cleaners, the accelerate the deterioration of the natural stone surface.
• Wash stone floors and a regular basis using pH neutral cleaners. Avoid cleaners with soap as it causes a build-up of film that streaks. Using a proper sealer will prevent future staining.
Natural Stone Cleaning, Polishing & More in Aliante, Anthem, Desert Shores, Eldorado, Enterprise, Green Valley Ranch, Henderson, Inspirada, Mountain’s Edge, North LV, Peccole Ranch, Paradise, Providence, Rhodes Ranch, Seven Hills, Silverado Ranch, Spring Valley, Summerlin, Sunrise Manor, The Lakes, Tuscany Village & Las Vegas Nevada
You can maintain your investment in natural stone products by adhering to the recommendations that come with the floor. If you inherit a natural stone floor, follow the directions of a restoration professional. For a full restoration and renovation of natural stone floors knowledge and experience go a long way in knowing not only the how but what products are needed and work best. Most stone floor work requires the knowledge and access to special machinery and products needed to be applied from the cleaning, to the polishing and especially to the sealing, therefore it is suggested that you consider contacting a pro at Silver State Floor Restoration.