Stone Care Articles

Stone Care Articles

Cleaning Limestone Surfaces

Limestone surfaces are a popular choice for renovations and improvements providing the luxurious expensive look of marble but an a more affordable old-world price. Most limestone is usually white or off-white in color with unique and naturally occurring patterns throughout the stone.

Beautiful as they are, they come with a downside that they require more care than other stone types, such as granite. This is because compositionally, limestone is more porous and sensitive to acids attack. The porosity makes it more prone than other stains and discoloration. (We once were asked to seal a brand new set of limestone stairs after removing a coffee stain… it took 6 seal applications to finally seal the stone… and each day the property manager dropped a new cup of coffee as a test.) Once sealed it usually just takes another annual application to maintain, but the first application is a doosey. Once sealed spills are easily cleaned up without staining.

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Home & Garden

Simple Ways to Condition Your Granite

Often made into countertops, granite is a beautiful stone product. Its surface is durable, resisting scratches, burns and stains. With quality cleaning products such as Marblelife Granite & Quartz Countertop Cleaner the finish on your granite countertops can remain as beautiful as the day you first got them. Your countertops shouldn’t need polishing and glossing if they are cleaned properly.

When polishing granite is desired it should only be done by trained professionals. Granite polishing is not the same as other household polishing. The process uses hard abrasives and friction with varying coarseness, and heat is used in varying degrees. A lack-luster granite finish is often caused by residue. Many ordinary products can leave a residue such as dish soaps, oils, and cleaning products.

The surface of granite is porous with miniscule indentations and holes. Foods, oils, and bacteria can get easily get trapped in these areas. This causes the finish to look dull. If left too long the surface can become rancid and smell bad. To prevent any damage to the surface, clean and condition with the proper products only. High quality products made specifically for granite surfaces, such as Marblelife Granite and Quartz Countertop Cleaner, will remove any residue and bring the finish back. Cleaning products not made for granite surfaces, or of a low quality can not only leave a residue, they may cause actual damage to the granite surface. Products never to use include dish soap, alcohol, vinegar, common cleaners, multi-purpose cleaners, and water. Only use products that are made specifically for granite surfaces such as a Marblelife cleaning products. Cleaning the surface is easy, simply spray with the proper cleaner, wipe up and buff dry using a microfiber towel. Buffing is important to remove any left-over residue. Your countertops should now look shiny.

A bit of extra cleaning is needed for stains. Spray, wipe and buff the area as usual. Then re-spray the stain and let the cleaner set for ten minutes. At ten minutes, use a tooth brush to scrub the stained area, buff dry with your microfiber towel. Do a basic spray, wipe and buff again to make sure nothing is left on the counter. Some foods that are likely to stain your granite surfaces include ketchup, mustard, red sports drinks, red wines, coffee, and barbecue sauces.

It’s now time to apply the conditioner. A great one is Marblelife Granite Countertop Gloss Conditioner. It is a premium conditioner that has no odor, and is safe to use. If it works, a gloss conditioner can make your granite countertops look wetter and bring out the natural richness of the colors. Not all granite will take conditioners. Some granite products are too thick for the gloss conditioner. The only way to find out if a gloss conditioner will work on your countertop is to give it a try. If you see a difference then a gloss conditioner will work. Using quality cleaning and conditioning products made specifically for granite, will ensure the finish on your countertops will maintain their luxurious look.

MARBLELIFE of Los Angeles can help you bring your granite back to life.

To locate a stone care professional, contact Marblelife Of Los Angeles at 888-218-4616 or visit for more information.

Stone & Tile Cleaning Tips

The Most Often Overlooked Aspect of Bathroom Remodeling – YOUR FLOOR

One of the most often overlooked aspect of bathroom remodeling is the floor- other than matching wall and tile colors. What most people often do not realize is that they can change the color of their grout without the mess, dust and delay of cutting it out or replacing the floor. COLORSEAL applies a durable colored seal to sanded grout which can alter its color while also providing a better seal than the standard permeating sealer. Yes, you can even change white to black or black to white, but in most cases, it is a question of adjusting your accent.


The floor of your bathroom should be one of the first places to start when remodeling. This is because the floor gets much more use than other aspects of the bathroom. If you do consider the floor update, replacement of tile with marble or granite can significantly alter the perceived elegance of the space. Tile size can rage from 1” to 24” and with it alters the amount of grout present, and its impact on the color and finish of your space. Floor material selection can also impact safety and slip. With each selection though, be aware that your care requirements and cleaner selection will change as well. (SEE MARBLELIFE as the source for cleaners optimized for tile type).

Remodeling your floor does not have to be expensive, though it can be. Restoration is always less expensive than replacement. In most cases, restoring your grout color might cost $2/sqft versus $15-20 for a new floor. Need to restore a marble floor? Here again, one is generally looking at a fraction of the cost of replacement. Need an estimate? Contact your local stone restoration professional. (MARBLELIFE is the largest in the North America and offers free estimates on restoration. Plus MARBLELIFE has the knowledge and experience in how to properly maintain your surfaces, regardless of what floor you have. Always useful.) With a few changes you can radically alter the appearance of your space as well as add considerable value to your home.

If you opt to replace the current floor material, your next decision is finding the right contractor. A poorly installed floor can mean additional expenses. How long would you put up with a toe-kicker (high tile that catches your toes)? Of course this is easily avoidable by using an experienced professional. Your local tile shops maintain a list of their best customers. No one gets recognized without doing it right, but a lot of new installers enter the market thinking anyone can do this.

Dream of beauty. Get a solid referral. Add value to your home, but more importantly make your partner happy. Nothing like starting the day with a smile when your remove those eyesore areas you encounter every day.

Stone & Tile Cleaning Tips

But I sealed my grout?

Tile & Grout CleaningDirty Grout, Vinegar and the mother of all myths.

You did everything right. 

  • You picked a beautiful grout color that accents your finishes and looked clean.
  • You clean it regularly and it just gets worse.
  • You have had it professionally cleaned…

but the dirty grout comes back.

You will be surprised how many new homeowners are surprised to learn they do not have gray grout but a bright tan.  You are not alone.  Even more surprising, architects report that even after specking to have their new tile floors sealed, 95% of the complaints they see on their brand new buildings in the first month deal with stained grout. 

How can that be?

You are not alone.  In some cases, the more you work at cleaning your grout the worse it looks.  How can that be?

Answer:  Vinegar and acidic cleaners.

The popular tile shop myth is that vinegar is a great tile cleaner.  Replace vinegar with “acid” is and you get a whole class of tile cleaners.  In fact, it often will lighten the grout.  Unfortunately, cleaning and lightening are two very different things.

Here are three reasons why you do NOT want to use vinegar on a tile floor:

  1. Vinegar/Acid will leech the grout dye right out of the grout.  The result is an ever lightening of the grout color all the way back to standard mortar gray.
  2. Vinegar/Acid damage the penetrating seal that was installed on your grout.  Your seal serves to convert what is normally a very porous surface (think rain on a concrete sidewalk porous), to a sealed surface that keeps liquids on top (versus in) your grout where you can clean it.  Problem is most penetrating sealers are based on a class of chemicals called siloxane which have the unfortunate habit of reverting to their base raw materials in an acidic environment.  Exactly what happens when an acid cleaner comes in contact with the grout surface.  Over time one effectively washes your seal away. Returning your grout to a stainable, thirsty surface that will take on the color of the liquid it absorbs, including that beautiful brown mop bucket water you get after mopping your floors.

So clean with vinegar/acid cleaners will eventually result in your grout being lightened and then stained to a dark brown or black.

On the other hand, clean with a basic, alkali or non-acidic (doesn’t have to be neutral just not acidic) and your grout will retain its original color and allow its seal to last longer for a cleaner more colorful grout surface.

…Of course if you are already facing a stained grout problem, a faded grout problem, or just want a different color.  Call your local MARBLELIFE office and ask them about their COLORSEAL options.  MARBLELIFE can clean, restore a uniform color, and seal your floors against further staining.

Then get the right product for the problem clean with MARBLELIFE Tile & Grout Cleaner or MARBLELIFE Marble & Travertine Cleaner for your marble surfaces.

Stone & Tile Cleaning Tips

WOW! Look at the clarity and the detail in the reflection.

Marble Floor Restortion BeforeOver time even the most well kept marble floor will get dull and hazy. In the picture on the left it is very obvious that this floor has had many years of neglect and spills. The spills caused the etching (to the right of the floor vent) and haziness on the surface. All of that takes the shine off the floor and leaves the results you see here.

After we completed the project you can see the results are amazing. WOW! Look at the clarity and the detail in the reflection. The images are so crisp and clear. This floor is now the envy of the neighborhood. Oh, one more thing about this photo. That floor is “DRY”! That is right, DRY! It looks wet and it will for a long time. Amazing.

MARBLELIFE® has been the trusted name in Marble Floor Restoration Aferservice for over 20 years. Whether you are seeking marble polishing, granite sealing, or simply grout cleaning & restoration MARBLELIFE® delivers exceptional results. MARBLELIFE® works hard to  present you with a professional and pleasant service experience in every job we do.

With Marblelife’s “No More Restoration Guarantee”, it’s no wonder, due to this economy, why more and more property managers are turning to MARBLELIFE®. We have restoration and maintenance programs that will improve your building appearance, reduce your overall cost, and guarantee “no more restorations”.