How to Care for Natural Stone Tile

Posted by Ben Thompson on 10.25.10

Natural Tile (slate, marble, travertine, etc.)

Care: Wipe up spills, especially acidic or oil based ones immediately. Prolonged exposure can cause staining. Natural stones are strongly recommended to be sealed. How often is highly based on use, but every 2-3 years is recommended. If used in a shower, you may need to seal as often as once every year. Tile can be sealed by a professional or use a “natural stone” sealer purchased from the manufacturer or home improvement store. This process takes about 5-10 minutes. Clean surface before sealing

Cleaning: Avoid cleaners with ammonia or vinegar. Use a soft damp cloth for routine cleaning. While a mild, soapy water can occasionally be used, overexposed will cause buildup and can dull the finish. It is recommended to use a specialized cleaner formulated for “natural stone” if you want to use more than water. To minimize build-up in a shower, do not use bar soap, but liquid body wash.

Special Note on Slate: A nature characteristic of slate is to slough off thin layers of itself-this is NORMAL and does not mean the tile has been damaged.  Slate also will have natural height variations that will produce a textured surface.

Topics: Care & Maintenance, care, cleaning, marble, how to clean natural tile floor, maintenance, slate, travertine