Photo: cdrin (Shutterstock)
Marble isn’t just beautiful – the stone can be a long-lasting feature of your home. This is why it is used to make everything from countertops to floors to showers. And as anyone who has mopped a marble floor before knows, it’s pretty hard.
But at the same time, some of the cleaning products and techniques that are great in other parts of your home can damage marble. Fortunately, the editors of ThisOldHouse.com have put it together instructions on how to safely clean marble. Here’s what you should know.
What to Avoid When Cleaning Marble
Let’s start with the things that can damage marble so it’s clear what to avoid. Here are some examples from the Editor of ThisOldHouse.com:
- Too much pressure or elbow grease can cause the marble to be scratched (or “etched” in marble).
- Acidic detergents – natural or not – can start eating their way into marble in seconds. Examples are vinegar, lemon wedges / juice, Windex, bleach and rust dissolving solutions.
- Alkaline (or basic) cleaning agents can also damage marble. Examples include ammonia, borax, and caustic.
- Grainy, abrasive cleaning agents or rough sponges can cause burns.
How to safely clean marble
Now that you know what to stay away from, here’s how to clean the marble surfaces in your home without damaging them, also courtesy of the Editor of ThisOldHouse.com:
- Use a mild, pH-neutral, non-abrasive soap such as dish soap. There are specialized marble cleaners on the market, but most people already have dish soap (which will do the job) so you don’t have to buy another product.
- Either put a few drops of safe soap on a wet cloth or mix a few drops with some warm water in a spray bottle. Then wipe the marble surface. Only a small amount of soap is needed, and too much can result in a film.
- Once you are done with the soap, immediately rinse the marble, then dry it off.
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