Care and Maintenancefor all natural stone

For a full guide download the pdf here

Get to Know Your Stone


The first step in proper stone care and maintenance is to understand your stone’s geological classification and composition. this information will help you to identify what cleaning products to use and how best to care for your natural stone.

Natural stone is categorized into three basic geological classifications by their respective formation processes: Sedimentary, Metamorphic and igneous. Additionally, stones in each category can be either Calcareous or Siliceous.

Calcareous stone is composed mainly of calcium carbonate, a chemical compound commonly found in natural stone, shells and pearls. Calcium Carbonate is sensitive to acidic solutions so mild, non-acidic cleaners are recommended.

Siliceous stone, as the term implies, is one composed primarily of silicates, such as quartz, feldspar, mica, etc. as such, a siliceous stone is generally resistant to most acids found in kitchen settings, although acidic cleaners are still not recommended, as these stones may contain trace levels of minerals that are acid sensitive.

The following chart will be a helpful guide:

Easy Care Tips


To get the longest life and preserve the beauty of your natural stone, follow these simple tips:

Coasters: Use coasters under all glasses, particularly those containing alcohol or citrus juices.

Dust Mopping: Dust mop interior floors frequently using a clean non-treated dry dust mop. Sand, dirt and grit are abrasive and can damage natural stone.

Mats/rugs: Mats or area rugs inside and outside an entrance will help to minimize the sand, dirt and grit that may scratch the stone floor.

Vacuum cleaners: If used, be sure the metal or plastic attachments or the wheels are not worn as they can scratch the surface of some stones.

Spills: Blot the spill with a paper towel immediately. Don’t wipe the area, it will spread the spill. Flush the area with water and mild soap and rinse several times.

Cleaning:

Clean stone surfaces with a neutral cleaner, stone soap, or a mild liquid dishwashing detergent and warm water.

Use a clean rag mop on floors and a soft cloth for other surfaces for best results. Rinse the surface thoroughly after washing with the soap solution and dry with a soft cloth. In the bath or other wet areas, soap scum can be minimized by using a squeegee after each use. Frequent or over-use of an ammonia solution may eventually dull the surface of some stone types. In outdoor pool, patio or hot tub areas, flush with clear water and use mild bleach solution to remove algae or moss.

Cleaning Products:

Many suppliers offer products used for stone cleaning.

Products containing lemon, vinegar or other acids may dull or etch calcareous stones.

Scouring powders or creams often contain abrasives that may scratch certain stones.

Many commercially available rust removers (laundry rust stain removers, toilet bowl cleaners) contain trace levels of hydrofluoric acid (HF). This acid attacks silicates in addition to other minerals. All stones, including granite and quartzite, will be attacked if exposed to HF.

Do not mix ammonia and bleach. This combination creates a toxic and lethal gas.

Sealing

Sealing is a common step taken on some stones as an extra precaution against staining. In fact, the sealing products used in the stone industry are ‘impregnators” which do not actually seal the stone, but more correctly act as a repellent rather than a sealer.

Sealing does not make the stone stain proof, rather it makes the stone more stain resistant. When consulting with your stone supplier, you may find that many stones do not require sealing. However, applying an impregnating sealer is a common practice.

When considering sealing, remember that sealing the stone does not make the stone stain proof, it makes it more resistant to staining.

If a sealer is applied in a food preparation area, be sure that it is non-toxic and safe for use.

Consult with your supplier or sealing manufacturer specific to the type of sealer and frequency of use recommended.

Stain Identification Tips

Identifying the type of stain on the stone surface is the key to removing it. Stains can be oil based, organic, metallic, biological, ink based, paint based, acid based. If you don’t know what caused the stain, consider likely staining agents that may have been present. Here are some questions you consider:

Where is the Stain Located?

Is it near a plant, a food service area, an area where cosmetics are used?

What color is it?

What is the shape or pattern?

What occurs in the area around the stain?

Stain Removal Steps

Surface stains can often be removed by cleaning with an appropriate cleaning product or household chemical.