Removing Stains From Travertine Floors:
Travertine is a beautiful natural stone material from the limestone family. It is made of soft calcium carbonate and is usually found in the form of deposits near bubbling warm or hot springs. Since Travertine is made of soft calcium carbonate it is therefore highly reactive to acids found in juices, fruits, wines, coffees, and other beverages. Acid spills will etch the surface of the stone, leaving ring marks, stain patterns, and will dull the appearance of the stone.
In order to protect your Travertine it should be sealed immediately upon installation. It is critically important to select the correct sealer for maximum protection. Because of Travertine's diversity the porosity of your stone will vary from house to house. Sealer is an acrylic polymer, sticky plastic, that creates an invisible shield (barrier) between the stone and the spill. When you spill coffee, for example, the sealer will give you time to pick up the acidic coffee before it can penetrate and etch the stone. Sealer, unfortunately, does not last forever and should be inspected and tested by a skilled service company every two years. Your stone will also be worn by the grinding of dust and dirt across its surface such as you would find on the bottom of a shoe or slipper. You will need to regularly clean your Travertine with a pH neutral cleaner and dry mop the stone on a frequent basis. NEVER USE VINEGAR, BLEACH, PINE SOL OR ANY CLEANERS THAT ARE ACIDIC OR THAT ARE GRITTY LIKE COMET. THESE PRODUCTS CAN PERMANETLY DAMAGE OR RUIN YOUR TRAVERTINE FLOORS.
What do you do if you have spots or etches? If you currently have a stain, spot, or etch on your Travertine it is imperative that you neutralize the effected area with pH neutral cleaner. This will eliminate the acids ability to further etch or stain your stone. To remove these etch marks you will need the assistance of a skilled craftsman. To remove etch marks, stains, or spots requires special training, tools, and chemicals. This is definitely not for amateurs. Make sure that the person you are hiring has good references, the proper insurance, and is experienced.
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