Top 3 surface cleaning don’ts
It's no secret that, as durable, long-lasting and beautiful natural stone is, it's also sensitive. Being the owner of a slate countertop, for instance, or a limestone tile floor is more than just a hobby or something you do on the side – it's practically your day-job.
This is not only because of the effort it takes to keep stone surfaces looking good and healthy. It's also due to the many intricate, at times arcane, details you need to know in order to take care of it properly. After all, cleaning stone isn't like scrubbing a bit of spaghetti of your shirt.
With this in mind, we present to you some of the absolutely, positively, no-good, terrible, under no circumstances right, must-nots when it comes to cleaning stone. You would sooner sell off your first-born than make one of these blunders when cleaning stone.
Using a vacuum cleaner
Your stone tiles aren't like carpet. While stone may have many advantages over a carpeted floor in terms of health and longevity, one thing they don't have over carpet is their propensity for damage from vacuum cleaners.
When vacuum cleaners are dragged across stone floors, the wheels or their metal and plastic attachments can scratch the surface. This is particularly the case with old, worn cleaners, but it can happen regardless. So pack that vacuum cleaner away in some dusty, long-forsaken part of the basement and throw away the key.
Mixing ammonia and bleach
Ammonia and bleach are both common household cleaners used for natural stone. As the Marble Institute of America points out, ammonia, for instance, can be used to remove oil-based, organic and biological stains such as moss or algae – with the help of other substances. Meanwhile, bleach can be used to clean organic, biological and ink stains. So surely combining these two cleaning super-substances would be a winner, right?
In reality, this is something you should absolutely never do when undertaking surface cleaning on natural stone – or anywhere else for that matter. Doing this produces chlorine gas, which you might recall was used as a weapon in World War II. This can cause anything from nausea and coughing, to chest pain and pneumonia, according to the Washington State Department of Health.
Cleaning with acid-based cleaners
A variety of cleaning agents, from those for the bathroom to to cleaners for grout and tiles, contain acid. Acid can also be found in drain cleaners, rust removal products and some window cleaners.
Avoid getting these on your stone. In the worst case scenario, you may end up with acid etching on your stone, which will eat away at the surface of your floor, countertop or other feature, and is something sealers won't be able to protect against.
Your safest bet for avoiding these no-nos is to use HANAFINN Oxy-Klenza™ for your cleaning purposes. It's a reliable, powerful oxygen-based cleaner for just about anywhere in the house – and if you use it right, you won't have to worry about these other hazards.