Cultured marble is a widely used stone for countertops, floors and showers. It is a much-preferred option rather than marble because marble is costlier and also requires a lot of maintenance. But even cultured marble stone has its woes and when not maintained properly, it can get yellow and stained. In this article, we will throw light on all the facets of this engineered stone and discuss how to clean cultured marble.
What is Cultured Marble?
Cultured marble is a wonderful concoction of marble dust and resin. It is sturdy and non-porous unlike natural stone marble, which is very porous. Cultured marble is often used in showers and countertops as it is not that costly as marble. This stone is a hard polymer and has a wonderful radiance.
Cultured Marble Vs. Marble:
The basic difference between the two stones is that one is engineered by humans, while the other appears naturally from the Earth’s crust. Cultured marble is not real. It can be customized into a variety of shades by adding dyes. It is coated with a clear protective resin gel to make it hard, durable and sturdy, unlike real marble which is very delicate, easily stained, porous and also brittle. Cultured marble contains marble dust, but is not actually natural marble.
What causes Cultured Marble to Turn Yellow Over Time?
As it is used in the showers, it faces a problem of soap scum accumulation, hard water dots, scratches and etching. This reduces its sheen and brilliance. It also gets scratched due to sharp or pointed things. When used in countertops, cultured marble soaks in some of the food stains and turns yellow or dull-looking after some time. Cultured marble surfaces get stained easily due to food and beverage spills, soap scum accumulation and hard water dots. It needs to be sealed with a protective coating to prevent such yellow stains.
Will Vinegar Damage Cultured Marble?
Vinegar is highly acidic with a pH value of 2.5. When poured on cultured marble, it starts corroding the top layer of the stone, resulting in etching. This etching is nothing but a rough patch formation on the surface where vinegar is spilled. Etching is a phenomenon when the acid molecules begin eating and dissolving the molecules of the stone tile, resulting in a damaged surface. One should never use vinegar to clean cultured marble.
Does Baking Soda Ruin Cultured Marble?
Baking soda is often used as the most common house-hold remedy to clean stains out of stone and tile. But when used on cultured marble regularly, it can lead to dullness. The reason is that baking soda is alkaline and a mild abrasive. You need a neutral cleaner to clean cultured marble. When you use a highly acidic product like vinegar or a highly alkaline product like baking soda on cultured marble, it will cause scratches, abrasion, discoloration and dullness.
What Product should be Used to Clean Cultured Marble?
To bring back the sheen on a dull cultured marble stone, you need to follow a step-by-step procedure. Experts usually follow a systematic method to clean and restore cultured marble :
Tile and Grout Cleaning Using a Strong Cleaner:
Hard water leaves calcium and magnesium deposits on the surface, which look like white stains. If you have used cultured marble on your countertops, you might find scratches due to vegetable and fruit chopping. Food and beverage spills also lead to stains on the surface. Cultured marble countertop cleaning, when done with heavy duty cleaners, helps to get rid of these nasty stains. You can try using Benaz from pFOkUS to get the best cleaning results.
Sealing Grout Using Impactful Sealer:
The grout filled in between the tile is very porous. Due to the porosity, it tends to absorb moisture, thereby leading to mold breeding. A proper grout sealing done after cleaning the surface ensures that the grout lines become waterproof and safe. There are many cultured marble repair companies which avoid this step, but if the grout is left unsealed, mold breeding will start again. You can try sealing grout with Caponi from pFOkUS to seal the grout lines and make them waterproof.
Sealing Cultured Marble Using a Clear Topical Sealer:
Sealing cultured marble with a clear topical solvent based resin sealer will shut all the pores and form a protective barrier on the surface, thereby preventing further staining. After sealing, you can find your cultured marble to sparkle with a natural sheen. You can try using Celine from pFOkUS for sealing cultured marble tile.
Regular Maintenance of Cultured Marble:
Once you have cleaned and sealed your cultured marble, you will find a few superfluous stains and mold forming on the top. These can be removed by regular cleaning using a maintenance cleaner that keeps the top sealant coat intact, while also removing the stains. You can try using Valore Maintenance or Imperia Maintenance for regular maintenance.
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Cultured Marble:
Q.How do you get water stains out of cultured marble?
Water stains can be removed by using Benaz as it thoroughly removes the stains and leaves no etch marks.
Q. How do you remove the yellow stains from cultured marble?
Although you can remove these yellow stains using vinegar and baking soda, but to get the best results, you should use a good cultured marble cleaner like Benaz.
Q. Is scrubbing safe for cultured marble?
Although cultured marble is more durable and scratch-resistant when compared to marble, scrubbing using an abrasive cleaner can result in scratch marks. One should use a soft cloth to clean the stains.
Q. What happens if you don’t seal marble?
Many people feel that as cultured marble is durable and made with a resin gel, it is non-porous. Although non-porous to some extent, it is in fact a little porous and tends to absorb food and liquid spills and stains. It is best to seal the marble with a clear sealer to prevent staining. Marble should be sealed to prevent staining.
So, follow the above guide to clean cultured marble countertops. Follow the same instructions if you have cultured marble showers or floors too.