How to Clean Marbles and Granite Floor
Marble is a sensitive stone. It is highly porous in nature and quickly absorbs stains. Also its softness makes it susceptible to cracks and abrasion.Marble is a beautiful stone and a luxurious and wonderful addition to a home. However, marble is also a delicate stone and homeowners with marble know that great care is required to maintain your floor’s shine and prevent scratching. Cleaning marble floors starts with preventative care and regular maintenance. Sweeping or dusting and mopping on a daily basis will remove any dirt or surface debris that could scratch or otherwise harm your marble. It’s also important to take care of spills as soon as they occur so that water or other liquids aren’t allowed to stain your floor.
Use micro-fiber broom for sweeping
Do not let dust sit on marble for long. Sweep the floor daily with a micro-fiber broom. Do not be harsh on your floor and sweep the floor gently. This is simple and most cost-effective way to keep marble floor clean. Place door mats in high traffic areas and protect your floor from dirt and dust.
Use mild soapy solution for mopping
Use mild soapy solution to mop your marble floor. Fill a bucket with luke warm water and add a small quantity of dish washing liquid soap, like Vim dish liquid and clean the floor. This soapy solution is mild enough to treat your marble floor with special care, as well as help remove tough grime at the same time. Use a soft mop preferably soft cotton cloth and wipe the floor applying gentle strokes. Please take care that the mop is not too wet because marble is porous in nature and may absorb the extra water, leaving water marks to form on the floor.
Use marble cleaning solution for tough stains
If the floors are dirtier than normal and require something stronger than mild soap solution, add a small amount of marble cleaning solution into cleaning water. There are some good quality marble floor cleaners available in market. Always follow manufacturer’s instruction printed at the backside of the bottle. Some good quality marble cleaners are lizol and Mr. Muscle marble floor cleaner.
Dab the spill immediately to avoid stains
Dab rather than wipe any spill on marble floor with a soft cotton cloth. Blot immediately and do not let the spill stay for long. If required clean spill with mild soapy solution. Gently rub the stain in straight lines. Don’t scrub in a circular motion, as this could damage the marble.
How to Clean
- It is important that the cleaning solution used on marble be pH neutral. Do not use acidic cleaners on your marble or it will scratch and lose shine.
- You can clean your marble floors with a highly diluted mixture of ammonia and water or with a highly diluted mixture of dish soap and water. Sweep or dry mop the floor to remove surface dust and dirt.
- Mix 3 tablespoons baking soda and a generous squirt of dishwashing liquid to 1 quart of warm water. As an alternative, use a commercial stone cleaner.
- Fill a bucket with plain tap water.
- Dip a soft cloth, nonabrasive sponge or soft-bristled scrub brush into the soapy water and scrub the floor. Rinse the sponge or brush frequently in the plain water, emptying and refilling the container when the water becomes dirty.
- Measure 1 cup diatomaceous earth, plaster, powdered white chalk or talc. Add water to the powder, stirring constantly, until the paste is the consistency of cake frosting.
- Wet the stained area with distilled water, and spread a thick layer of poultice paste over stains.
- Cover each stain with plastic wrap, and tape all the way around the edge with masking tape.
- Leave the poultice on until dry, approximately 24 to 48 hours.
- Remove the plastic wrap and wipe the poultice away with a wet cloth or sponge.
- Apply a commercial stone sealant according to the package directions.
Caring for Marble and Granite
Marble and granite floor care is much easier if there’s not much dirt to begin with, so you might want to implement some preventative measures to reduce both the build-up of dirt and grime and the risk of scratching and damage. Try placing a floor mat at the entrance to your granite floors to catch dirt, dust, and small stones stuck into the soles of shoes before they can damage your floor.
Always ensure that any items you place on the floor, like plant pots, are put on a rubber mat so that there’s no direct contact between the marble or granite and a hard material that could cause damage. Consider applying a marble or granite sealer onto the floor to add a protective barrier and limit the amount of damage that can be done to the floor.
Granite & Marble Cleaning Products: What NOT to Use
Always check the instruction and safety guidelines on any product that you use to clean your floors, and test on a small, inconspicuous area first. As granite and marble are natural materials, there are also some items that shouldn’t be used due to a risk of damage and scratching. Here’s what you should avoid using for marble or granite cleaning:
- Conventional floor cleaning products – you’re better off using special marble cleaners or granite cleaners.
- Ceramic tile cleaners, as these can dull the marble.
- Anything that’s either very acid or very alkaline – vinegar, for example.
- Rough cloths, like wire scouring pads.
- Vacuum cleaners, as the wheels and hoses can scratch the materials.
- Never clean marble with store brought cleaning products since it contains acids, alkalis and chemicals that can damage the countertops and floors. This makes the marble more vulnerable to staining.
- Don’t use vinegar, lemon or ammonia for cleaning marble surfaces.
- If you have marble countertops in the kitchen, don’t sit on them as this can cause cracks.
- Never drag heavy furniture or sharp items on the floors since this can cause deep scratches or gouges. Even unprotected furniture legs leave scratches too. These scratches leave a permanent mark on the floor.
- Continuous use of water as the sole cleaning agent, not changing the cleaning solution and using dirty mops can make the marble look pale and unattractive.
- Sitting pots can cause scratches and deep stains on the floor so place all plants on a special base.
- Don’t use oil treated dust mops on marble surface. Run the dust mop in one direction instead of moving it back and forth.
- Blot the spills with a paper towel instead of wiping it because it will spread the spill.
- The cleaning mop head should be kept clean always.
- While damp mopping the floor divide the area into few sections. When you notice the cleaning solution has become cloudy and dirty, replace it with fresh solution.
- Use neutral stone soap or neutral cleaners with pH7.00. This will prolong your stone life.
- Get professional help to clean marble annually to maintain its shine.