As the most elegant and timeless construction material in the world, marble has a natural property that makes it vulnerable to stains. Marble is a metamorphic rock, which means it started off as limestone that was eventually changed by chemical and geological processes. This metamorphic property is not lost when marble blocks are extracted from quarries. When exposed to certain substances, this natural stone has the potential of absorbing them into its chemical composition.
Marble can stain easily, but homeowners should not feel discouraged because staining is a chemical process that does not have to be permanent. Here are five common stains homeowners may encounter on their marble slabs and tiles.
1. Coffee Stains
Coffee is one of the most common stains homeowners are likely to find on their marble kitchen countertops. This unmistakable dark stain can be problematic due to the high acidity content of coffee beverages. However, it is fairly easy to remedy with quick action. Coffee and other organic stains can be removed by placing an absorbent cloth, paper towel, or cotton balls soaked with liquid bleach and letting it sit for 24 hours before lightly rinsing with water. The stone should then be resealed.
2. Fruit Juice Stains
Similar to coffee stains, fruit juices are the bane of homeowners who have marble countertops in their kitchens. Orange and other citrus juices are highly acidic. They can etch and damage marble if the stains are not removed. If countertops have been sealed regularly and properly with a high-quality granite sealer, spilled juice can be wiped off with a dry towel and marble cleaner. When juice stains remain, they can be removed by following the same process for coffee stains.
3. Lipstick Smudges
Lipstick and other cosmetics are oily, greasy substances that require more wiping than the aforementioned liquids. To loosen up lipstick, make a thick mixture of baking soda with acetone and spread it over the stain. Allow the mixture to sit for 24 hours, then remove it and rinse the area with water, and repeat if necessary. Once completed, the stone should be resealed.
4. Mildew and Mold
When marble installed in bathrooms and shower stalls starts showing mildew spots, the best course of action is to dilute one part bleach into one part water. This solution should be scrubbed into the mold and mildew stains using a non-scratch nylon pad or bristle brush. The bleach and water mixture should be allowed to sit for 15 minutes, and the surface should be resealed after rinsing.
5. Rust Stains
In most instances, rust stains on marble will need to be removed by a professional. However, you can try pouring or spraying 3 or 4 percent hydrogen peroxide on the stain, then agitate it with a stone-safe granite scrubbing sponge or nylon brush. Allow it to sit for 24 hours, then rinse it with water.
If you’re interested in learning more about how to clean granite, marble, slate, travertine, and other types of natural stone, reach out to Granite Gold® today. Granite Gold Daily Cleaner® is safe to use on all types of natural stone. Call 1-800-475-STONE to speak with one of our knowledgeable representatives.