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  1. natural stone care Q. Hello I have just built a new home. I have Crema Alara Marble in the kitchen and foyer floors, slate in my mudroom and travertine in my bathrooms. All have been professionally sealed. I do not use any chemical cleaners. Is water and a microfiber d... Read More
  2. Resin on marble table top cracking and peeling Q. The resin coating of our Knoll Saarinen marble top table has been cracking for the last one year. We don't know what to do. Any advice? A. Some manufacturers, such as in your case, will use resins to create a topical rather than natura... Read More
  3. How do I know if my 2nd floor bathroom floor is strong enough to handle the weight of tile? There is vinyl on the floor now, obviously tile will add a lot of weight and I don’t know how to check this out. If you are worried about the floor collapsing, if you can stand on your floor without falling in that chances are it will bear the weight of the tile.  However, with this said there are some other concerns. The first would be what is called d... Read More
  4. What can I use to seal the grout on my ceramic tile shower walls and is this something I can do myself? Many brands of grout sealer are available for this purpose; most are easy to apply, but make sure the grout is first cleaned thoroughly. Grout sealers are available at most hardware and home supply centers.  TIP: Most of t... Read More
  5. We just sealed our marble tile with a water-based sealer. There is now a light, rainbow-like film on the surface of the tile. I have used every cleaner I could purchase to try get it off, but it won’t budge. Any suggestions? Sealing your stone and tile requires that every last bit be removed from the surface. This is one of the reasons why we strongly suggest to homeowners that they think twice before doing any sealing job themselves. This problem you are describing, alo... Read More
  6. We installed a marble shower wall, and the contractor used an acid to clean it. We had it professionally repolished, but it keeps getting etched after we take a shower. What’s causing the etching and how do we correct it? I will assume you are not cleaning it with acid cleaners. There is a possibility that there is some residual acid in the grout or the pores of the stone that bleeds out when you take a shower. Try rinsing the shower wall with a solution of baking sod... Read More
  7. We have Italian marble on the lobby floors in our commercial office buildings. Recently, we have noticed several problems: 1. Entire tiles are evenly discoloring yellow or grey and 2) Rust-like stains are appearing in an area near the door. What is c The yellowing and graying of certain Italian and Greek white marbles is a common problem that I see all over the world. There are several possible causes for this condition:  Maintenance technique: Take a close look at your maintenance progra... Read More
  8. We have a terrible problem with hard-water deposits in our ceramic tile shower. We were told that installing a water softener would solve this problem. What is your recommendation? I definitely agree, that a water softener will resolve the problem. A water softener will remove most of the minerals that cause hard-water deposits and you will probably use less soap and shampoo, avoiding soap build-up as well. If you choose not to... Read More
  9. We have a beautiful set of stone steps leading to our front door. They are polished and very slippery when it rains. Is there any treatment we can apply to make them less slippery? I am afraid someone will fall and break their neck. There are several options for making the steps less slippery.  Option 1. The steps can be honed and the polish removed. The high-gloss shine will be gone, but the steps will be less slippery. This can be done by a qualified stone restoration... Read More
  10. The shine on our travertine marble floor has not looked even since it was installed. Many areas have dull spots. The installer told us this was characteristic of the stone, but I’ve noticed that a local hotel has the same travertine, and it loo Your installer is correct. Most travertine contains many holes that are filled with a cement filler. The cement filler does not take a shine when polished. There are fillers that can be used that will take a shine, however.  If you are lo... Read More
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