How to Care for Marble Counters
Would you want to know how to care for marble counters? Marble is an excellent material for countertops in the kitchen, bathroom, laundry area, or even beside the fireplace. However, because marble is a sensitive stone that is easily damaged or discolored, understanding the right technique to care for marble countertops is critical.
Marble is a timeless stone in terms of interior decorating and aesthetics, but it is not an everlasting building material. If this were true, many ruins from ancient Greece and Rome would still be standing and in better condition. Despite its durability, marble’s metamorphic nature renders it sensitive to external influences that might tarnish its look or alter its molecular structure over time. Marble surfaces that are properly cared for will endure longer and keep their beautiful polish.
There’s no denying how stunning a block of marble can be. But there’s no denying how soft it is in comparison to other countertop materials. Its surface is easily scratched, chipped, fractured, engraved, and discolored. In certain places where there isn’t much traffic, such as your master bath or on a shelf, this may not be an issue. However, in the kitchen, this may lead to disaster. Marble is also not inexpensive.
If you intend to use marble countertops in your kitchen, you must first learn how to care for them. That includes not just day-to-day maintenance but also how to clean them if something damages or stains them. It’s not too difficult, but it does require a little more work than granite or quartz.
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What Makes Marble Difficult to Maintain?
There are three major reasons why marble is more difficult to maintain than other types of countertop stones.
- Soft. Marble is a delicate, easily scratched stone. You could also notice increased pitting, cracking, and a dulling of the luster.
- Porous. Marble is extremely permeable, making it prone to staining. Last year, we constructed a new house with a massive marble slab covering the island. By accident, one of the employees left a soda can on the counter, and the marble was discolored an hour later. We were able to get it out with a simple poultice treatment, but it was a $3500 error if we couldn’t. Dirt, bacteria and liquid coloring may easily soak into the stone, producing smears.
- Calcium. Marble has a high calcium carbonate content, making it particularly simple to etch with acids. And we’re talking about commonplace acids like those found in soda, juice, tomatoes, oranges, and lemons. Mild acids may be found in a variety of meals and can all etch the marble.
Caring for Marble requires effort
A marble countertop in the kitchen, where cooking and dining take place, is difficult to maintain clean. But you can accomplish it if you remain on top of things and establish a habit of wiping up spills as soon as they happen. Never leave anything wet, not even water on the counter. Water spots can be caused by chemicals in the water. That’s how fragile marble is.
Things You Will Need
- Washing Cloth.
- Exces Water.
- Antibacterial Dish Soap.
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Step-by-step on How to Care for Marble Counters
Step: 1 Apply a Good Sealant
Marble is a porous stone that can easily stained. Bacteria can also enter the pores and cause illness. The sealant fills all of the holes and forms a tiny smooth coating on top of the stone that resists bacteria, germs, mildew, and stains. When you get a new countertop, it does not come with any sealant.
Most installers will apply the sealant after the countertop is installed, and some will return for a charge to reapply it for you. However, if you want to save money, it is extremely simple to do it on your own.
A matte surface hides scratch better than a polished surface, although it is more prone to stains. In any case, both polished and honed surfaces should be sealed with the same sealant.
It is quite simple to apply a marble countertop sealer. Make sure the surface of your counters is clean and dry. I clean them with a soft cloth and a basic soap and water solution. Then I generally go over them with a soft paper towel to absorb any remaining moisture. With a delicate cloth, apply the sealant.
A marble sealant may be purchased from your installer, online, or at any Home Depot. They are not difficult to find and are not prohibitively costly. Under typical conditions, the sealant should last for about a year before needing to be reapplied.
Pro Tip: Avoid using strong cleaners on your countertop. They might damage not just the marble’s polish but also the sealant. If you wish to test your sealant, pour some water onto the countertop. It’s time to reapply if it doesn’t bead up. Remember that while sealing repels stains, it does not render marble stain resistant. Consult your fabricator to choose the best sealant for your marble.
Step 2: Regular Cleaning
It’s a constant fight to keep your marble looking like new. Here’s what you should do.
- Get into the habit of cleaning down your countertop with a moist soft cloth or sponge and a mild soap and water solution every day. I like to use antibacterial dish soap. Don’t get the counter too wet. You’re only wiping it down, not washing it like a vehicle.
- Clean up any spilled food as soon as possible so that it does not seep in and cause a stain or discoloration. Even with a sealant, it can happen faster than you realize. Keep in mind that a sealant is a stain-prevention technique. It will not make your marble stain-resistant.
- Use a cutting board for all meal preparation to avoid having food or liquids come into touch with the countertop. I enjoy working with wood. It’s soft and smooth, with no harsh edges that may damage the marble as it glides.
Coasters are quite useful. Red wine, soda, juice, and coffee have all been known to discolor marble.
- Clean up liquid spills as soon as possible. If water sits for an extended period, it can create a mark.
- Keep oil away from the stone. It will soon penetrate and stain.
- Avoid using strong cleaners. They will erode away at the sealing layer, making your marble more prone to stains.
The easiest approach to keep marble appearing new is to clean and maintain it daily. After all, aging has no impact on marble until someone from the outside destroys or stains it, which is you. It is a naturally occurring stone that will survive for many years. The reason for this is that they are well-kept, and no one spills food or beverages on them.
Step 3: Protect Against Spills
Even though your marble kitchen and bathroom surfaces have recently been sealed, they are still susceptible to certain chemicals. Because this natural stone is so porous, even water might produce stains under certain conditions. The ideal approach is to promptly clean anything that comes into contact with marble. In this case, paper towels or a lint-free cloth are ideal. After absorbing spills, use a natural-stone granite cleanser to clean the surface. Use coasters in the kitchen and vanity trays in the bathroom instead of setting glasses or bottles straight on marble surfaces. Use dining mats to protect your marble breakfast counter.
Step 4: Using Cutting Boards and Coasters
Extra-large cutting boards and coasters are recommended. I prefer a cutting board that is 24 inches broad by 20 inches deep. This provides me with enough space around the meal to chop on one side and then push the food to the other.
I also recommend using a cutting board with a groove around the edge to capture liquids. When you chop meat, fish, or vegetables, liquid might leak out. It will be caught by the groove before it reaches the edge. I also prefer larger-than-normal coasters since they are more forgiving.
Even if you’re using an extra big cutting board, you should still clean the marble off when you’re through. Small drops of water might squirt and go unnoticed. A simple wipe down with a moist soapy sponge is all that is required.
Step 5: Re finishing your Marble top
Marble countertops may need to be polished and resealed in the future. How frequently depends on your tolerance for flaws and how conscientious you are about keeping them clean. If you want to understand how to care for marble countertops, you may have to do more than just clean them.
If you can’t remove a stain by washing and a poultice doesn’t work, it’s time to bring in a refinisher. They will do a thorough cleaning with sophisticated grinders and fine grit sandpaper. Consider it similar to refinishing your hardwood flooring. Just underneath the stains, scratches, and etching, a little piece of marble is sanded down.
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