You may be worried about how to clean marble surfaces and be worried about damaging those lovely work tops. Here are some tips and information for restoring marble surfaces to their former glory and keeping them clean.
If you need to remove stains then this article can help you to clean your marble floors so they look as good as possible. To learn how to clean a marble shower to keep it free from dirt and preserve the beautiful appearance of the stone just read on.
What is marble?
Marble is simply a rock. But it is the type of rock that makes it special. It is transformed throughout time by intense pressure and heat. It begins as simply limestone but the pressures exerted on it plus heat change the rock into what you know as marble.
This stone has been popular for centuries. Roman emperors adored marble and Ancient Greece and Rome were famous for their use of marble. The purest forms tend to still come from these areas.
How can you tell the purity of marble?
The less colour variation in the marble the purer it is. The very purest examples will be completely white or very lightly coloured. Although purity is important to some others prefer the lovely swathes of colour that appear in less pure marble.
Why has it been used so extensively?
Marble has been used to make buildings and statues for thousands of years. It is not the perfect building material as it erodes due to its softness and can be hard to quarry. However it has qualities that make it very desirable.
It is easy to carve, hence the extensive use in statues and buildings. It is partly translucent. Although not completely transparent the initial layers can be looked through. This gives that special look that people like in their kitchens and bathrooms. It is also the reason that marble statues have that eerie ‘live’ look to them.
It is also cool to the touch making it perfect for tiling and other applications in hot countries and regions.
How best to clean marble?
Cleaning marble is actually very simple but remember not to follow guides for cleaning granite or other materials. Marble needs a gentler approach. You might think with stone that looks this lovely that you need expensive products or professional cleaning companies to come into your home. Generally this is not needed. There are marble stone cleaners available on the high street or from the internet but you can mostly clean with gentle dish soap and warm water. Below is a list of things to help you clean your lovely surfaces:
- Warm water
- Dish soap
- Soft towel
- Dish closh
- Spray bottle (optional)
When choosing your soap check the label and get a nice mild, non acidic soap. You don’t want anything abrasive and non-acidic means pH neutral. Marble is porous and easy to damage so needs gentle cleaning.
To clean the surface just mix some soap and warm water together. You may find a spray bottle an easy way to apply the solution to the surfaces. Spray the surface and then use the dish cloth to gently clean the marble. Wipe off with a clean, wet soft towel.
Avoid acidic products
Acidic products will damage marble and they will eat into the stone and leave etching and other marks. Avoid commercial cleaning products meant for tougher surfaces like bleach or sink cleaners. Avoid vinegar and lemon juice also. Soft cloths and dusting regularly are good ways to clean surfaces safely.
Avoiding marble stains
The best way to remove stains from marble is to make sure they never happen in the first place! As soon as you spill something on this surface clean it immediately. The porous nature of this beautiful stone means it can stain very easily from all manner of everyday products and items.
How do you know if you need to seal the marble surface?
You can find out if your surface is adequately sealed by trying a couple of simple tests. One is done with water and the other with mineral oil.
To test with mineral oil just put a few drops in a spot on your counter. Wait for ten minutes and wipe the oil up. If the oil leaves behind a dark stain then you need to reseal your counter. Don’t worry about the mark, this will disappear naturally very soon.
If you prefer you can take the water test. Just sprinkle water drops over the counter and see if the marble absorbs the water and darkens. This might take a few minutes. If the water is absorbed then the marble needs resealing.
It is perfectly possible to clean your marble surfaces, remove stains and seal the surface yourself without needing professional help. However if you feel uncomfortable doing this then there are many natural stone specialists available to help.