We get calls everyday from homeowners requesting their marbles to be cleaned, but merely cleaning the surface of the marble will not restore its shine to the original factory look so let's take a look at some facts this article will give you a better understand of what kind services your natural stone floors may need in order to restore its original beauty.
How is the polished reflection on your marble restored?
When you look at polished stone, the shine you see is as a result of someone rubbing that stone with several different types of abrasive materials. You can think of this as a similar process to sanding wood. During the process the stone is rubbed with an abrasive grit and then using finer and finer grits until the stone ultimately shows a smooth appearance. At each stage, the scratches from the past round are eliminated in the next, meaning that the scratches become finer and finer over the course of the process. This will continue until the scratches are miniscule.
The stone's shine is achieved by abrading the surface so that it begins to develop reflectivity and becomes extremely smooth. Therefore, the stone's shine is a result of optics. This property can be observed on a pond. When you look at a pond's surface and it is wavy as a result of the wind blowing, it can be difficult to see a reflection. That being said, when the pond is calm it is easy to see a reflection. In order to obtain a deep shine on the stone, all that must be done is approach the surface with finer and finer levels of grit until it is shining.
What Is a Deep Cleaning System?
A deep cleaning system is one that would remove the majority of stains or heavy dirt from a stone's surface. Over time, household dirt accumulates and may alter the appearance of your stone, making it look dull. Marble Doctors can remove stains and dirt on any damaged stones, repair any problems on the surface and leave the stone with a protective coating that will shine and impress you.
Levelling and Grinding
Leveling or grinding is a process in which large stock of the stone are removed with aggressive sanding. This is typically recommended by the professionals when stone tiles are uneven. The term used to describe this condition is lippage. Grinding is recommended by professionals when your lippage exceeds 1/8th of an inch or if it is your goal to have a totally flat floor.
There are numerous different reasons that you may want to consider grinding a stone floor to become flat. First of all, it is much easier to maintain a flat floor. The grinding process will eradicate concerns associated with grout joints that have become depressed, making it more difficult for grime to accumulate in this area. When the floor is completely flat, it also gives the appearance of being all one piece. Bear in mind that not all floors have to necessarily be grinded in order to remove scratching.
Marble Doctor craftsmen can sometimes repair various stones without going through the grinding process. Bear in mind that there are also disadvantages associated with the grinding process. It is expensive and time consuming. With certain type of stones such as granite, it can take an entire day to grind just 50 sq. ft. Bear in mind that the grinding process can also be messy. The slurry of stone and water can generate a water damage issue.
Honing and Re-honing
These terms are used to refer to smoothing a stone using abrasives. This process is not as aggressive as grinding, although it can be quite messy due to the reliance on water. Honing is used to address scratches but it does not remove lippage.
A smoother finish for the edge of your stone can be accomplished, however, with this process. Usually honing is achieved using numerous types of diamond abrasives, although some contractors prefer screens or silicon carbide bricks. It is imperative that you select a craftsman with the right level of skill to accomplish this.
Bear in mind that using honing means that your stone floor might not have much shine at the end although some stones may have a luster that looks like satin. The lower the number on the grit size, the more aggressive the grit. A skilled craftsman will usually stop at a 600 or 800 while polishing marble stone. With granite, the highest grit will usually be preferred.
It is essential that all stone tiles including marble are sealed. This is because stones are porous and can easily absorb liquids and generate stains. Many individuals who put sealer on their stones do not realize that they have not selected the right kind of sealer. Make sure that a cleaner you select is a non-acidic, low PH cleaner designed for natural stone. The majority of household cleaners are somewhat acidic and can remove sealer and damage the surface of your stone.
Diamond Bright Polishing
The high shine that you see on certain stones is the result of approaching these stones with finer and finer abrasives. A master craftsman will use diamond abrasives to hone the stone and then use powdered abrasive to accomplish the final polish. Powdered abrasives are super fine crystals of tin oxide or aluminum oxide. These powders can be yellow, gray, brown or black but they are usually white.
An abrasive powder is worked into your stone's surface with a buffer using polyester fiber pads or cloth with water. The powder is added to the water to generate a slurry which is used until the ideal level of polish is achieved. While this is a relatively simple procedure, it requires practice by a master craftsman.
If too much powder is used, for example, the stone can easily burn. This is why you should hire someone who is experienced with accomplishing this process. If too little powder is used, however, the appropriate level of shine may not be achieved. This is why you need to work with craftsmen who are familiar with the powder polishing technique.
Stone Color Enhancing
Penetrating sealers are used to enrich or enhance the color of your stone during this process. To learn more about how this can help protect and improve the appearance of your stone, consult with Marble Doctors today.