Stone care

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linda
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Joined: 10/17/2008 - 01:40
Stone care

Stone Sinks Maintenance
One of the most frequent questions asked is how do I take care of these sinks? The answer will depend somewhat on the particular stone and the degree of polishing applied to the surface. For example, limestone is more porous than granite and a highly polished surface is less porous than a honed surface.

Due to the porous nature of stone, there are certain substances that can stain your sink if not properly protected. The longer a stain remains, the deeper it penetrates and becomes more permanent; therefore, it is important to remove a stain as soon as it occurs. We recommend that you wipe up spills immediately and do not allow surface deposits of water bi-products such as calcium, salt, lime or detergents to build up on your stone sink.

To clean your sink, use a soft cloth, sponge or soapy nylon brush. Be sure to rinse the sink well after cleaning and dry. Cleaning on a regular basis will help prevent the development of hard water deposits. If you develop persistent stains, try a non-abrasive cleaner such as dishwasher soap, Soft Scrub or a professional stone cleaner solution which can be purchased from a local hardware or tile store. DO NOT use any acidic tub and tile cleaners, toilet bowl cleaners, ammonia, abrasive or soft paste cleaners, vinegar, alcohol, window cleaners or lemon juice. In addition DO NOT use abrasive cleaning pads such as steel wool, metal brushes or scouring powders.

Marble has a shiny, elegant finish. Maintaining this Most of the stone sinks we sell are not sealed due to varied customer requirements. However, we do recommend sealing your sink to protect it against staining and water absorption. There are two ways to seal your sink? wax or one of the many stone sealing products available in the marketplace. The type of stone sealer you use depends on the type of stone, but most tile or hardware stores carry a variety of stone sealing products to choose from. Stone sealers should typically be applied once a year. If you prefer to wax your sink, you will want to do this at least once a month.

If you purchase a soapstone sink, you will want to treat this very non-porous stone a bit differently. Soapstone is extremely dense so it repels stains well. To clean, use a damp cloth or sponge with a mild cleanser. Beyond that, you should treat your sink and/or countertop with mineral oil. Soapstone fresh from the quarry is actually a cloudy blue-gray in color. The charcoal color that soapstone is known for comes when the stone is exposed to water, grease and oils. These liquids cause the stone to oxidize, which darkens the stone color and really brings out its natural beauty. The mineral oil actually expedites oxidation of the stone and a monthly treatment will keep oxidation uniform across the entire surface.

Stone Care
You take care of your family of course. But you also take care of the material things in your life, like clothes and cars, jewels and tools.

Because they're an investment, and a source of pride, or practicality.

If you're going to make natural stone a flooring solution for the way you live, you owe it the same care and attention.

Maintain your natural stone flooring investment and it will reward you and your home for many, many years to come.

Plus, knowing what's expected of you regarding floor upkeep can be a determining factor in the type of natural stone flooring you purchase.

this section is about the care, considerations and cautions of maintaining a natural stone floor. Your floor.

So check over the following advice and be a little smarter about smart and stylish, ancient and arresting natural stone flooring.

Best advice is to fight dirty.
Sand, dirt and grit do the most damage to natural stone surfaces due to their abrasiveness.

Floors should be dust mopped frequently using a clean, non-treated dry dust mop or broom.

A vacuum cleaner can be very helpful, especially on textured floors, but it needs to be in good condition and have no beater bar, so as to avoid scratching your beautiful floor.

Vacuum cleaner attachments are also useful for hard to reach areas.

Be preventative. Walk-off mats or area rugs on either side of exterior entrances will help collect loose dirt before it reaches your stone floor.

Make sure that the underside of the mat or rug has a non-slip surface.

These mats need to be kept clean, as well. So shake, shake, shake!

For stone floors, these do's and don'ts rock.

Damp mopping your natural stone floor will help keep it looking beautiful for life.

Your retailer or manufacturer can suggest specialty products designed for use on your stone floors. These are highly recommended.

Always blot spills immediately. A neutral pH detergent or pure soap, such as Liquid Ivory, and warm water, can be used for spills or periodic complete cleaning.

Be sure to rinse the floor thoroughly and dry the surface with a soft, clean cloth. Too much cleaner or soap may leave a film and cause streaks. Change your rinse water frequently.

Do not use products that contain lemon juice, vinegar or other acids on marble, limestone or travertine.

You should avoid using products that contain abrasive cleaners, cleansers (dry or soft) or any ammonia-based cleaners on any stone. These products will dull its luster.

Also, do not use retail grout cleaners, scouring powders or bathroom tub and tile cleaners on your stone.

For heavens sake please don't mix bleach and ammonia; this combination creates a toxic and lethal gas.

To remove algae or moss from your stone in outdoor pool, patio or hot tub areas, flush with clear water and use a mild bleach solution.

And a few final reminders.
You should know that once your natural stone is installed it is your responsibility to properly maintain caulking in heavy water-use areas to prevent damage.

Additionally, it's best to take care when moving heavy objects across your stone floor to avoid scratching or chipping. Get a small army to help you move that dining room table.

Cover furniture and table legs with protectors to guard your floor against damage.

Remember that each stone has its own level of porosity which makes some stone floors more susceptible to staining than others.

So, based upon your lifestyle and the type of stone you choose, sealing your stone may be an option to consider.

Care of Granite Countertops
Since granite kitchen countertops represent a major investment, homeowners naturally want to know the facts about care of granite countertops. Granite is a harder stone than marble, and the care for it is generally more simple than it is for marble. However, whichever stone is used for countertops, one of the most important principles of care of granite countertops is that you should always wipe spills immediately. Granite is somewhat absorbent, and can absorb stains if spills are left any length of time.

A mild solution of dish washing liquid in warm water is fine for routine care of granite countertops. Using a soft cloth, give it a quick wipe every day. Stains are unlikely is the stone is sealed with a countertop sealant, but they can still happen.

In severe cases, a stain may require a granite cleansing poultice. A poultice for care of granite countertops can be made by combining a tablespoon or two of dish soap with a cup of white flour and enough water to make a paste. To use the paste, spread it over the stain, and lay plastic wrap over the paste. By letting this set overnight, the flour will have time to absorb the stain back out of the granite counter top surface.

Molding plaster can also be made into a poultice for care of granite countertops. Combine it with bleach and use the paste on stains that are not from greasy sources. Stains such as ink or wine might respond to this treatment. For oily stains, use water instead of bleach to make this poultice.

Hydrogen peroxide is safe to use for care of granite countertops and can be combined with ammonia to treat food stains like tea or coffee. Peroxide is more suited to light colored granite countertops, however, since it has something of a bleaching action. It can also be used with flour in place of dish soap to make a paste to clean greasy stains.

Coasters are a good idea under any drinks, and you should also be careful not to set hot pots directly on granite counters. Since granite counters are growing in popularity, it is possible to find special cleaners designed for care of granite countertops. It is also recommended that the countertop be resealed by the installing company every couple of years. The professional granite installer can also polish away scratches for you.