Limestone Floor Cleaning and Polishing 602-620-7881 by Prestige Floor and Carpet Care LLC will depend greatly on the type of stone being serviced. An unpolished limestone has different needs then polished granite. The first step is determining the type of Natural stone floor and how it has been finished. Smooth polished stone like marble, travertine, polished limestone, and granite get cleaned using polishing compounds while porous stone like limestone, tumbled marble, sandstone, and unfilled travertine need a contained pressure washing system to rinse the dirt and detergent from the pores of the stone.
Dirt embedded it small scratches in the Natural stone floor make the floor look dirty and dingy. To make the floor look clean again it needs to be polished with a Limestone restoration polishing powder to remove the dirt and restore the shine. The oxalic acid in the polishing paste draws dirt from the stone and grout. The abrasives in the polishing compound blends out small scratches restoring the consistency of the floors luster. A consistent luster not only makes a polished stone floor look cleaner it makes it easier to keep clean. For unpolished or very porous stone a contained hot water extraction cleaning system is used to rinse embedded dirt and detergent from the pores of the stone and grout.
The hot water extraction system uses pressurized water in a cleaning cyclone under a contained wash head. This uses 3-4.5 gallons of water per minute that scrubs the floor and draws dirt and detergent from deep within the stone and grout. Vacuum ports around the edge of the rinse tool immediately suck up and remove the water. Stain removal in a Natural stone floor can be complicated by the stones sensitivity to acid grout cleaning detergents.
To remove a stain it can be dissolved with a solvent, drawn out with a poultice, or bleached out with an oxidizing agent. Oil stains in a stone floor can be dissolved and removed using solvent detergents. The solvent detergent soaks slightly into the surface of the stone floor and dissolves the embedded oils drawing them to the surface where they evaporate with the solvent. Solvents work well on oily spots but do not work very well on organic spots, urine staining, mineral stains, or deeply penetrated oil stains. Deep oil stains need a poultice to slowly soak into the stone and then draw the stain out of the stone.
A simple home poultice can be made by mixing a concentrated hydrogen peroxide and diatomaceous earth. They are mixed into a soupy paste and poured onto the stained areas covering the stained area an inch thick and then covered with a piece of plastic wrap. This seals the poultice from the air and gives the water no place to go but down. This draws the poultice deep into the stone. It bonds with the stain and is drawn to the surface and captured in the diatomaceous earth. After 3-4 days the plastic is pulled up and the poultice is swept up. The area then only needs a slight wiping down after the poultice is done. Poulticing does not affect the polish of a stone floor but highly polished floors may need longer for the poultice to penetrate.
Organic material embedded in the pores of a stone floor can discolor as they break down or are converted into mold. To safely clean organic stains from a stone floor an oxidizing detergent is used. Hydrogen peroxide is a safe oxidizer for most stone floors when mixed with a capful of ammonia to raise the PH (NEVER MIX AMONIA WITH BLEACH). This needs to soak into the surface of the floor and worked into the trouble areas with a mop or scrub machine. The longer the solution stays wet on the floor the better it works. This bleaches out organic stains and destroys and dissolves organic material in the stone making it an effective treatment for urine contaminated stone floors or flood damaged floors.