How To Get Dirty Tumbled Travertine Clean Again
We have had plenty of customers who were ready to tear up their tumbled travertine flooring because they just could not get it clean.
It is a story we hear often of how the tiles looked so beautiful in the store and even better when they were laid, justifying the significant cost of the flooring. However after just a short time the floor started to get dirty and soon becomes impossible to clean.
How To Deep Clean Travertine Floors
The honeycomb structure of Travertine and the nature of the grout lines means that your Travertine floor will probably need deep cleaning every year or every couple of years. Deep cleaning will also help to remove staining from the tiles and grout lines.
Travertine cleaning is a task a homeowner can undertake with the right materials and equipment.
- Dry vacuum cleaner
- Mop and bucket
- The best mop for deep cleaning travertine is a cotton round mop.
- Deck scrub brush
- Hand Scrub Brush
- Grout cleaning brush.
- Strong alkaline Travertine and Limestone Cleaner
- A wet vacuum is advisable for rinsing.
Cleaning Travertine Tiles
Carefully dry vacuum the floor to remove all dry soil loose dirt and grit.
Please don't skip this step, because if the soil and grit mix with the cleaner, it can turn into a cutting paste.
Make up a bucket of cleaning solution using the strong cleaner and warm water according to the manufacturer's instructions.
If your floor has worn topical sealer, you may need to remove the old sealer with a sealer removing cleaner.
The sealer remover will also act as a strong floor cleaner.
Clean manageable areas, between 4 and 8 square metres of floor.
Mopping Travertine Tiles
Mop the cleaner over a manageable area of the floor, mopping well into the surface of the tiles and the grout.
Leave the cleaner to work for 5 to 10 minutes. During this time, keep the floor wet, do not let it dry out.
Scrubbing Travertine Tiles
Scrub the floor with the deck brush and hand brush, making sure to work the cleaner into the tiles holes and grout lines to remove any buildup of dirt.
Remove the dirty water and slurry with the mop, or a wet vacuum will be much easier.
Rinsing Travertine Tiles
Rinse the area with clean warm water.
Once the rinse water gets dirty, replace it with clean fresh water.
If you want the floor to dry quickly, you can towel off the floor with a clean, dry towel or absorbent soft cloth.
Treating Grout Stains On Travertine
If you have staining in the grout lines, you may need to use a small amount of acid grout cleaner.
Be careful not to get the grout cleaner on the tiles, because the acid will damage the surface of your travertine
Repeat the travertine cleaning until the floor is as clean as you can get it.
Then move onto the next area of the floor.
Resealing Your Travertine Floor
Once the floor has been deep cleaned to your satisfaction, you will need to reseal the floor, using an impregnating stone sealer, a topical stone sealer or an impregnating stone sealer followed by a wax coating.
Regular Maintenance - How To Clean Travertine floors
Regular travertine cleaning is different to deep cleaning in both the cleaning chemicals and equipment.
Equipment for Regular Cleaning
- Dry Vacuum or Microfiber Dry Mop
- For regular mopping use a microfiber Mop - Flat Mop or Round Mop
- Ph Neutral Travertine Cleaner for a floor with an Impregnating sealer
- A cleaner containing a small amount of polishing product for a Topical Sealer
- A ph neutral cleaner with a small amount of stone soap or linseed oil for a Wax finish.
How To Clean Travertine Tile And Grout
Carefully dry vacuum the floor to remove all loose dirt particles and grit.
Please don't skip this step, because if the soil and grit mix with the cleaner, it can turn into a cutting paste.
Make up a solution of the ph Neutral Travertine cleaner and warm water, according to the manufacturer's instructions.
If you use a flat mop, dampen the mop with some plain water.
7 Expert Tips To Keep Your Travertine Clean
If you’re looking for help with cleaning travertine tiles, these expert tips will help you to keep your Travertine floors clean
1.Know Your Stone
One of the most important tips to help you keep your floor looking like new is to educate yourself about the characteristics of a Travertine floor.
Here are some simple characteristics of Travertine tile products that you need to be aware of.
- Travertine has a honeycomb structure, new holes can appear at any time.
- Unfilled Tumbled travertine has holes that will fill with dirt.
- Honed and Filled Travertine will crack more easily than a homogeneous stone like Marble
- Travertine can suffer permanent damage from Acid and harsh chemicals because it is a type of Limestone, formed from calcium.
- Travertine can be matt, honed or polished.
- Travertine can be sealed with Impregnating sealers, Topical sealers and Waxed.
2. Choose The Right Stone Cleaner
Before you start cleaning your Travertine floor tiles, make sure you have the correct cleaner for the job. Different stones need different cleaning products.
A cleaner that will work well on a slate floor could cause irreversible damage to a Travertine floor.
Once you know that Travertine is formed from calcium, you can choose the right cleaner for the cleaning you are doing.
If you are deep cleaning travertine, then you can use a strong alkali cleaner, but you must remember to rinse the floor well to remove all traces of the cleaner.
If you are undertaking regular maintenance clean, then use a ph Neutral cleaner, preferably containing a small amount of stone soap or linseed oil.
If you need a stronger cleaner for stubborn or ingrained dirt, then chose the right cleaning product for the stone. Also, make sure to rinse the floor with clean water after using a strong cleaner.
Don't use Acid cleaners on Travertine, because the acid will dissolve the surface, leaving dull, ugly etch marks.
With this information, you will be able to clean your Travvertiner without causing damage.
3. Dry Sweep or Vacuum the Travertine
Over 80% of the soil in a home is dry soil, containing dust, dander, grit etc.
Dirt will damage your stone and the sealer. And polishedfloors, in particular, suffer from scratching.
The best way to prevent damage from dry soil is by dry sweeping yourfloorat least once per day.
If you have pets and or small children, then you may need to dry mop two or three times a day.
Modern microfiber sweeping mops are low cost, light-weight and easy to use
4. Use A Microfiber Damp Mop
With modern microfiber mops, there is no need to use a mop and bucket on your stone floors.
Old style cotton mops are unhygienic and inefficient. They leave most of the soil on the surface of thefloor.
They are one of the main causes of dirty grout lines.
Microfiber mops work in a different way from cotton mops.
They pick the damp soil from the stone and trap it in the fibres.
Dirty mop heads are machine washed, rather than squeezed, so they are much more hygienic.
Microfiber mops are available online, in most supermarkets and DIY outlets.
5. Protected Your Travertine With A Travertine Sealer
“Do we need to seal our travertine?” is one of the most common questions we get.
Our answer is that sealing is essential for all forms of Travertine.
Modern stone sealers can be grouped into three broad types.
Topical Sealers sit on the surface of the travertine.
They will change the finish on the tiles, giving dull tiles a sheen or a gloss finish.
They can alter the slip resistance, especially when wet.
Being on the surface of the stone, they will eventually show wear, especially in high traffic areas
Impregnating or penetrating sealers soak through the capillaries deep into the surface of the travertine.
They change the surface tension of the stone, repelling water and oil spills.
With this kind of sealer, the stone acts as the wear layer.
Manufacturers often say they have a life of 10 to 15 years.
This may be true for the bit of sealer that has soaked deep into the stone, but the areas of sealer near the surface will be degraded by traffic and chemical attack.
That is why they should be topped up annually, to maintain the levels of protection.
Thankfully applying the sealer is a simple task of applying with a cloth and then wiping away any surface residue. So it is an easy job.
Wax is the original sealer.
Modern waxes offer a hard-wearing finish that can be easily maintained.
Modern Impregnating and Topical sealers are the more popular finish, but a Wax finish will give you years of life is maintained properly.
6. Prevent Soil Coming Onto The Floor And Other Forms Of Damage
- Use rugs and mats at every entrance to trap most of the sand and stop the grit from getting into your floor.
- Don't walk over Travertine with outdoor shoes.
- Use furniture protectors on chair and table legs, chair legs can be very abrasive.
- Wipe up spills immediately to stop a spill from turning into a stain
7. Seek The Advice Of Travertine Cleaning Experts
Over time a polished finish will dull, the sealer will wear, grout will start to get dirty and soil will start to become ingrained.
This is when most people call on the services of a stone restoration company.
You should not leave it that long.
As soon as you have your floor laid you will be better off making contact with a stone restoration company.
Travertine cleaning experts can give you valuable ongoing advice
In many ways, a stone floor is like a car, regular servicing will keep it in tip-top condition and it will last longer.
People service their cars to the manufacturer’s schedule. But they never think of servicing their stone floors.
A polished Travertine floor does not need to be completely dull before it is re-polished.
A Travertine sealer need not be completely worn away before being re-sealed.
Your floor will last longer and you will save money if you schedule a visit with a local stone floor restoration company.
Interim deepcleaningand polishing or sealing will make the finish last much longer. It is also cheaper, with less upheaval than a full restoration
Your restoration expert will give you advice on aftercare cleaning They can also keep you up-to-date with the latest money-saving developments.
If you would like helpful advice about your stone floor contact us. we are more than happy to help.
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