How to Maintain Your Marble Countertops
To keep your marble countertops looking like new, here are a few preventative care tips for how to best maintain marble.
Don’t Scratch the Marble
Marble is a calcium-based stone, so it’s naturally softer than other stone types and can be easily scratched. Especially in a kitchen, where sharp and blunt objects are abundant, you should take extra care when working over marble. Always use a cutting board when handling a knife, and consider using other coverings like a flexible mat when cooking on the marble surface. Also, avoid sliding pots, pans, or other rigid objects across the counter. Anything you can do to protect the delicate surface of your marble countertops will help prolong their life and preserve their beauty.
Protect Marble Countertops From Heat
Marble countertops are tolerant of heat, but you should always use placemats and trivets for pans or hot dishes. In the bathroom, don’t place hot items like irons or hairdryers directly on your marble countertop if you can avoid it.
Avoid Staining Your Marble Countertops
Marble is more porous than other stone types like quartz or granite, so it is especially susceptible to staining. Commonly staining foods include wine, coffee, and oil. If you spill a staining food or liquid on your marble countertops, clean it up immediately. If you catch it right away, you can prevent a stain from setting. It’s a good idea to always use coasters to prevent drips or rings from causing stains.
In addition to stains, another common problem with marble is that it can etch. Etching is where the surface of the stone is eaten away. It can leave a spot where the finish looks off and feels different to the touch. Anything acidic can cause etching, such as alcohol, vinegar, and fruit juice — especially citrus. Once the marble has been etched, the spot can’t be removed without professional refinishing.
Regular Care to Maintain Marble
Marble countertops are meant to be used, so they will receive daily wear and tear. To keep them in great condition, here are some regular care tasks you should follow to maintain marble countertops.
Maintain Marble by Cleaning Often
Marble countertops can be cleaned using a mild soap or stone cleaner. Use a soft sponge or microfiber cloth to wipe the surface and avoid using abrasive materials or cleaning agents. If you’re using any chemicals, always check the label to make sure it’s safe to use on stone. If you’re not sure if it’s safe for marble, stay away from it — there are plenty of safe products you can use as an alternative.
Seal Marble Countertops Regularly
You should keep your countertops properly sealed to maintain the marble finish. Sealing protects against stains and can keep them from seeping into the stone where they are difficult to remove. Sealing products can last up to 10 years, but different manufacturers will vary. To check if your marble needs resealing, splash some water on the countertop. If the water doesn’t form beads and instead starts to soak into the surface, it’s time to reseal. While a good defense against stains, sealing won’t prevent etching.
Refinish Damaged Marble
To repair significant wear and damage, stone restoration can make your marble countertops look and feel new again. In refinishing, professionals will remove a tiny amount of stone from the top of the countertop to smooth out etched areas. They will also pull out stains that have set into the stone and reseal it to add a new layer of protection. Eventually, all marble countertops will need to be refinished to restore them to their original state. However, with good preventative and regular care, you can maintain your marble countertops so they can continue to shine for a long time.
Interested in marble countertops, but not sure what marble countertop installation and maintenance entails? Let Kowalski Granite & Quartz know! We’re happy to talk to you about all of the pros and cons of marble, and help you decide what stone countertops might be right for your home and your lifestyle.
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