As we already know from last week’s blog, stone tile flooring can be quite an investment. So you want to make sure you protect them the best you can. Over time they can lose their sparkle and the grout can discolor. Fortunately, most types of natural stone flooring are easy to care for and keep clean with easy maintenance.
One of the most important things when cleaning stone is to not use a cleaner that is too alkaline or too acidic. Both of these can remove the shiny finish from the floor. Make sure to always use a neutral cleaner when working with any natural stone. A pH of 7 is neutral, anything below that can eat away at the sealant and cause etching. Above 7 is alkaline, which is great for removing dirt and grime, but can leave a damaging residue so make sure to rinse to neutralize! This also goes for products containing lemon juice or vinegar on marble, limestone or travertine.
General household cleaners, such as ammonia and bleach can damage stone tile, while using natural solutions and methods on your stone flooring ensures its beauty is not only maintained, but also enhanced. Taking simple steps to maintain your floors daily, is essential, especially when dealing with marble. This helps to make your cleaning more effective and efficient, as well as keeping your floors from scratching. Marble is one of the softest stones and can be damaged easily. So make sure to sweep high traffic areas daily and use mats and rugs so dirt is left behind on them instead of on the floor. Dirt, grime and crumbs can act like sandpaper under shoes and act like sandpaper. Another item to stay away from when it comes to your stone floors are abrasive materials like steel wool and microfiber scrub pads, as they will scratch the surface.
So then what is the best way to actually get your floors clean? Just fill a gallon bucket with warm water and use a mild all purpose cleaner, stone soap, or Castile soap – making sure to change out the water if it gets too cloudy. It is recommended to use a rotating microfiber mop handle with microfiber towels or a wet mop. Rinse and thoroughly dry the surfaces of your floor with clean water after washing to ensure a film is not left on the stones surface. Dry with a soft, clean cloth. Never use oils or waxes to clean or treat your stone flooring.