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marble soot stain

Q. My fireplace surround is a honey colored marble which has become stained black from what I assume is smoke/soot from building fires in it. These stains appear to be below the surface, that is to say that the marble retains its sheen and most of its original color. Please advise on how to remove these stains.

A. Try a heavy duty cleaining first. I would recommend that you clean with a stone-safe, heavy-duty cleaner. We recommend Stone Care Central products. If, after doing so the stains still remains, you will have to try using the poultice method to draw out the stains. 

Make a poultice solution using the same cleaner as the liquid and a dry substance such as flour or baby powder. Make the mixture pretty thick -- like peanut butter. Because it is a vertical surface you’ll have to put the poultice mix directly onto a sheet of plastic (like Saran Wrap), then position the poultice over the stained area, and tape it down securely. Poke a couple of small holes in the plastic to allow some air to escape. Leave it for about 24 hours.

After you remove the dried poultice, see if the stains are gone. Sometimes a poultice must be applied several times to completely draw out a stain entirely.

For further instructions on how to create your own poultice, visit Stone and Tile PROS’ Stain Removal Application

You may want to hire a professional stone restoration contractor to do this for you. If so, you can find one in your area by clicking on

Please keep us posted.

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