Home Business Insights & Advice Should you use different cleaning products for different types of stone?

Should you use different cleaning products for different types of stone?

by Sarah Dunsby
14th May 24 10:14 am

Stone is a popular construction material used for both interiors and exteriors. Indeed, it’s prized for both its excellent aesthetics and its robust structure. However, just like any other building product, stone can weather and dirty, and this can impact the quality of the environment in which it is placed.

Despite its hardy nature, some stones, especially natural stones, can be delicate in some ways, too. Natural stone, while a great defence against time and weather can be damaged by using the wrong cleaning materials. The good news is that some products have been specially formulated to clean stone without damaging it, leaving it looking spotless without harm. Read on to find out more about such products and to get a definitive answer to the question of whether you need to use different cleaning products on different types of stone.

What is a stone cleaner?

Those with any experience in cleaning will know that there are a wide range of cleaning products out there, many designed for very specific surfaces such as cleaning the bath, cleaning the oven, or even cleaning the windows.

For people interested in cleaning the stone they have in or around their home, this then begs the question of whether they will need to use different cleaning products for different types of stone they have. Indeed, in this post, a definitive answer to this question will be provided.

However, before answering this question, it’s necessary to first look at what stone cleaners are. Stone cleaners are products that are used to remove stains, clean, and even polish stone surfaces. Stone cleaner often comes in formulations that can be used both inside and out and usually comes in the form of a liquid chemical solution.

Should you use different cleaning products for different types of stone?

To answer the question of whether to use distinct cleaning products for various types of stones, it’s important to remember that the term ‘stone’ can refer to two different categories – natural stone and artificial stone.

Natural stone is stone that is harvested from the Earth via quarries and includes slate, granite, and marble. Artificial stone, on the other hand, is man-made stone, such as flagstones, cast stones, and tile.

The essential thing to remember here is that natural stone, while robust in many ways, is far more delicate when it comes to cleaning. Indeed, because of their natural structure, stones like granite and slate can be vulnerable to extremes in pH.

What this means is the answer to the question of whether to use different cleaning products when cleaning different types of stone is yes. Natural stone requires a specifically designed cleaning product with a neutral pH balance, so products containing vinegar or lemon are a big no-no. However, when it comes to synthetic stone, most generic cleaning products can be used without worry.

The benefits of products specifically designed to clean stones

The most significant benefit of using stone cleaning products that have been specially designed for their purpose is that you can avoid damaging the stone used on your property. Stone is a beautiful building material used for a range of exterior tasks, from building walls to paving to alfresco cooking areas. However, because of its desirability and the fact that natural stone has to be quarried from the ground, it can be an expensive option. This means you won’t want to do anything that damages or defaces the stone, as it can be costly and time-consuming to replace.

How to use stone cleaner

To use stone cleaners effectively, just follow the guidance below:

  1. Do wash down the surface you plan to clean before applying a stone-cleaning product. You can use a hose or a pressure washer for this task outside.
  2. Do allow enough time for stone flooring to dry after cleaning to avoid spills and slips.
  3. Do check whether your stone cleaner is approved for indoor/outdoor use.
  4. Do check that your stone cleaner can be used in a pressure washer before use.
  5. Do use a mop or power washer to apply the stone cleaner.
  6. Do always apply stone cleaner with a mop to avoid etching the surface when cleaning marble.
  7. Don’t use other products such as abrasive cleaners, dry cleansers, or soft cleansers when cleaning stone.
  8. Don’t use any cleaning products with acids such as vinegar or lemon when cleaning stone.
  9. Don’t use non-specialist stone cleaners on natural stone.

Final thoughts

Some stone types require a cleaning product specifically designed to be used with natural stone to ensure it’s not damaged in the cleaning process.

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