Natural stone is formed over millions of years and is one of the most enduring substances on earth. Its beauty can be ruined in an instant, however, if not properly protected and cared for.
Porosity & Sealants
To protect this significant investment and ensure your natural stone’s lifelong beauty, you must first understand its porosity, which varies from stone to stone. For example, the density of granite is greater than the density of travertine, limestone, slate and other porous stones such as marble. Once you know the porosity, you can select the proper impregnating (penetrating) sealer for your natural stone surface. View our recommended sealants and natural stone care products.
Cleaning Products & Recommendations
Most standard household cleaners contain acids, ammonia, vinegar or other cleaning agents that can damage natural stone. They can also etch the polish, discolor the surface and degrade the stone sealant. Scouring powders and creams, which usually contain abrasives, can actually scratch a natural stone surface and should never be used.
Selecting a cleaning solution that is designed for natural stone will help protect it, maintain its integrity and enhance its natural beauty over the course of its lifetime.
In addition to using the correct cleaner, keeping your stone dry and free of dust and debris will minimize scratches and wear patterns that can develop. Sweep and dust all natural stone surfaces frequently.
Don’t cry over spilt milk…or juice…or wine
Spills happen. A quick response time and knowing what to do for each kind of spill will help you avoid or limit possible damage to your stone and/or sealer.
Food Spills – Carefully scoop up the spill but do not wipe across the surface. Blot with a dry cloth.
Liquid Spills – Blot away excess liquid with a clean dry cloth, turning regularly. Do not wipe across the surface. For both types of spills, spray area with one of our recommended cleaning sprays and then wipe until dry.
Oil Spills – Oily stains due to salad oils, cooking oils or lotions do not damage natural stone and will naturally dissipate over time without any treatment.
Acidic Spills – Substances such as coffee, wine, orange juice, mustard and soft drinks will etch all natural stone except for granite (sealed or unsealed). Having your stone properly sealed will give you the advantage of a little more time to wipe up the spill.
- Do use coasters under glasses, especially if they contain alcohol, citrus juice or soda
- Do use cutting boards, hot pads and trivets to avoid scratches and extreme temperature changes to stone
- Do dust and clean surfaces frequently
- Do blot up spills immediately to minimize permanent damage
- Do clean surfaces with recommended cleaners
- Don’t use vinegar, bleach, ammonia or other standard household cleaners
- Don’t use cleaners that contain acid, such as bathroom cleaners, grout cleaners or tub and tile cleaners
- Don’t use alkaline cleaners not specifically formulated for stone