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 Natural Stone Installation, Sealing & Maintenance Guide

IMPORTANT FACTS ON NATURAL STONE:

Understanding natural stone and being informed about your product is essential to achieve a perfect end result. Please read the following important facts before you install:

         BEFORE TILING:

  1. Marble, Limestone & Travertine are natural products, variations in color and veining must be expected. Marble & Ceramic Corp shall not be liable for any such variations that may occur in materials supplied.
  2. Prior to laying any tiles, the homeowner, builder or tiler must: 1. Inspect the tiles for any defects 2. Check that the tiles delivered to site are the correct quantity, color, shade and size as ordered. 3. Check that the shades are consistent thru the batch delivered. 4. Ensure that there are enough tiles on site for the project. If not order some more from the same batch before work commences.
  3. Marble & Ceramic Corp strongly recommends that only experienced tilers/stonemasons lay natural stone. Inexperience with natural stone can result in damage to the material.

        DURING TILING:

  1. During tile laying we suggest to: 1. Mix the tiles from several boxes to ensure blending of any inherent shade variation.
  2. All natural stone must be laid using specialized stone/marble adhesives. Products not made for natural stone installation will affect the resulting finish. Always clean any adhesive, grout and wax from the surface area of stone.
  3. Adhesives/sand or cement with salt content will re-act with some natural stone and should not be used for stone applications.
  4. We strongly suggest that your tiler or builder for each specific stone to choose appropriate glue by consulting directly to glue adhesive manufacturer before application.
  5. Natural Stone should not be cleaned with acid or acid based industrial cleaners.
  6. During the laying process, adhesives and grout must be cleaned off stone immediately and at all times.

       AFTER TILING:

  1. Natural stone is porous. All stone and porcelain products must be sealed using appropriate sealants.  Sealing your stone is a vital part of the installation process. We recommend Sure Seal Sealants – we have these in our showroom. Different natural stones require different sealers. General process of installation can be in two ways:
  • (1) Lay, clean, seal, grout, clean and seal again (We recommend this process for most natural stone)
  • (2) Pre seal, lay, clean, grout, clean and seal again (NOTE: some soft or porous stone may require this process)
  1. It is essential that sealers are applied correctly. Sealers may last around 10-15 years. However, depending on surface usage and traffic, we suggest close inspection of the natural stone to see if re sealing is required every 3-5 years.
  2. Some natural stones require pre-sealing. Please check with us first if your stone requires this.

Marble & Ceramic Corp shall not be liable in any respect for advice provided herein regarding installation, fixing, grouting, cleaning or maintenance

 

NATURAL STONE SEALING GUIDE

Clean, Residue Removal, and Seal.

Products required: Appropriate Sure Seal Sealer, Sure Seal Liquid Sure Clean, Lambs Wool applicator, clean and dry white toweling

1. Mop the floor with Liquid Sure Clean and warm water

    (5 parts water and 1 part Sure Clean)

2. Then wipe off with clean white toweling

3. Mop the floor with a mild detergent (Morning Fresh) and water mix.

4. Wipe the floor dry.

5. When all the tiles AND grout are completely dry apply the appropriate SURE SEAL Impregnator using a lambs wool applicator in a forward and backward motion. It is important to make sure that the grout absorbs the sealer evenly. This implies that you have applied sufficient sealer to the tiles and grout. All stones will differ to the amount of sealer they will absorb, so we recommend a second or third application after drying until the tile repels the sealer. A genuine Sure Seal Lambs Wool applicator is highly recommended as it can mean the difference between a proper application and an inconsistent application. The genuine lambs wool applicator has a leather backing which absorbs excess sealer for an even application.

6. After allowing the sealer to dry properly for up to 24 hours, mop the floor with Sure Clean Liquid Cleaner and water or mild detergent, then wipe dry with clean white toweling. For a high polish finish you can buff the tiles with a floor polishing machine using the 0000 grade polishing pad.

 

STONE MAINTENANCE:

Proper care and maintenance will ensure your natural stone retains its beautiful appearance. Please read the following important information:

1. CLEANING:  Only use a mild cleanser (mild soap is good) as harsh chemical cleansers can eventually breakdown the sealer. Sure Seal (our recommended sealer) makes a product for cleaning natural stone.

2. ACIDS AND NATURAL STONES:Products such as wine, fruit and fruit juice, milk (lactic acid), coffee and teas, household cleaners, dishwasher powder, laundry powders ALL contain either natural acids or harsh chemicals that will eat away at natural stone AND the sealers that are used to protect them. Whenever spills occur – wipe them up. If any product that contains acid or harsh chemicals is left on a sealed natural stone it will eventually eat away at the sealer and affect the stone.

Always use coasters under glasses to prevent unseen spills from remaining on the stone. As long as you follow these simple steps your natural stone will stay looking beautiful for years. 

3. PROTECTING FROM HEAT: Never place a hot dish directly from an oven onto the natural stone - always use protective mats or trivets. This also protects the stone from chipping that could occur. 

4.STAIN REMOVAL:  For stain removal obviously the first step is to identify the stain. Here are some handy do’s and don’ts:

 

DO Wipe up spill immediately

DO Try to identify what caused the stain

DO Use a mild detergent or soap first to try and remove the stain

DO Call for professional advice if you are not sure what to do

DON'T Use vinegar, lemon juice or other acid based cleaners on natural stone. Be aware of “Natural” and “Organic” products – always read the labels.

DON'T Use cleaners that contain acid. Read product labels carefully of any bathroom or grout cleaners

DON'T Use abrasive cleaners or scourer pads or household grade steel
DON'T Ever mix chemicals together. Some combinations could create a toxic gas.

 

Comprehensive Guide for Stain Removal

 

Stain removal for All Natural and Engineered Stone, Concrete Style Materials

The listed types of stains can be removed with the following Lithofin products. Many stains disappear entirely with a single treatment; whereas with other heavier or older stains residual marking even after repeated application could remain. The result of cleaning can depend on the material being cleaned and if that stain has damaged the composition of the stone surface. Surfaces should be kept in a clean state with impregnating sealers reapplied as required and stains cleaned immediately. Maintain surfaces with recommended Lithofin maintenance cleaners.

Explanation:

1. Product is recommended

2. Apply if no success with the recommended product.

*1 Do not apply to polished or honed marble, limestone, travertine or concrete style materials

*2 To help clean use a scraper, white nylon pad, brush etc. especially on textured surfaces.

*3 Ensure that the product does not damage or alter the appearance of the material.

 

Instructions must be read and understood prior to application and if unsure complete a test area to determine the correct application method and application time. For best results the dilution of concentrated cleaners can be altered to suit a particular cleaning situation.

 

Important: Acidic cleaners are not suitable on polished or honed marble, limestone, travertine or concrete style materials. Acid etching on carbonate calcite materials like marble, limestone and travertine is not a stain that can be cleaned. Acid etching is damage to the composition of the stone surface and must be mechanically re-polished or re-honed to restore the surface.

 

Important: Avoid using, resting or placing products on your natural or engineered stone surface that may contain methylated spirits, bleaches, chlorine, acid, citric acid and corrosives. These types of products may cause permanent damage to the stones composition.

 

This information is provided without any commitment. The use of the product is to be adapted to suite the local circumstances and the surface requiring treatment. In all cases of doubt, test the product first in an inconspicuous area.

 

Algae & Moss

1. Lithofin ALGEX *2

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away *2*3

Bitumen

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Bench Tops

1. Lithofin MN Easy-Clean

2. Lithofin MN Power-Clean*2(for irregular intensive cleaning)

Blood

1. Lithofin MN Easy-Care

2. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

Bathroom areas

1. Lithofin MN Easy-Care*2

2. Lithofin MN Power-Clean*2

(for irregular intensive cleaning

Candle Wax

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Dyes

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean *2

2. Lithofin ASR *2*

Dirt’s - Engrained             

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean*2

Dispersion Dyes

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Efflorescence

1. Lithofin MN Builders’ Clean*1*2*3

2. Lithofin MN Power-Clean *2

 (use on polished marbles)

External Surfaces          

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

External Pavers

1. Lithofin MN Outdoor-Cleaner*1*2

(for extreme dirt, tree and plant stains)

Felt Pen

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away *3

Floors

1. Lithofin MN Easy-Care

2. Lithofin MN Power-Clean*2

(for irregular intensive cleaning)

Flower Stains

1. Lithofin MN Outdoor Cleaner*2

2. Lithofin ASR *2*3

Glue

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF*2

Grout Lines & Tiles

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean *2

Grout Residues

1. Lithofin MN Builders’ Clean *1*2*3                    2. Lithofin MN Power-Clean*2

(use on polished marbles)

Grass

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Ink

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away*

Linseed Oil

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

2. Lithofin OIL-EX

Lacquer (Varnish)

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF *

Leaf Stains

1. Lithofin MN Outdoor Cleaner *2

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away *3

Lipstick

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

2. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

Mortar Residue

1. Lithofin MN Builders’ Clean

Mold & Mildew                         

1. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Nail Varnish

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

2. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

Oil

1. Lithofin OIL-EX

2. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Oil-Ex Residue

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

Paint - Fresh

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Plant Stains

1. Lithofin MN Outdoor Cleaner *2

2. Lithofin ASR

Red Wine

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Resin

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Rubber Stains

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF *2

2. Lithofin ASR

Rust

1. Lithofin MN Builders’ Clean

Rust on Marbles

1. Lithofin Rust-EX

Soot

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

2. Lithofin ASR

Soap Scum

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

Shoe Polish

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

 2. Lithofin ASR *2

Silicone

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF *2

  (mechanically remove bulk of  silicone)

Sealer Residues

1. Lithofin ASR

Tar

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Tea & Coffee

1. Lithofin MN Power-Clean

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Timber Stains

1. Lithofin ASR

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away*2*3

Topical Sealants

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF*

Wax

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

 

Stain removal for All Porcelain, Ceramic, Quarry and Terracotta Tiles

The listed types of stains can be removed with the following Lithofin products. Many stains disappear entirely with a single treatment; whereas with other heavier or older stains repeated applications could be required. Surfaces should be kept in a clean state and stains cleaned immediately. Maintain surfaces with recommended Lithofin maintenance cleaners. 

Explanation:

1. Product is recommended

2. Apply if no success with the recommended product.

*1 To help clean use a scraper, white nylon pad, brush etc. especially on textured surfaces.

*2 Ensure that the product does not damage or alter the appearance of the material.

 

Instructions must be read and understood prior to application and if unsure complete a test area to determine the correct application method and application time. For best results the dilution of concentrated cleaners can be altered to suit a particular cleaning situation.

 

This information is provided without any commitment. The use of the product is to be adapted to suite the local circumstances and the surface requiring treatment. In all cases of doubt, test the product first in an inconspicuous area.

 

Algae & Moss

1. Lithofin ALGEX *1

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Bitumen

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Blood

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Bathroom areas

1. Lithofin KF Active-Clean

Candle Wax

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

 

Concrete Dyes

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner*1

2. Lithofin ASR

Dirt’s - Engrained             

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner

Dyes

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner*1

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Efflorescence

1. Lithofin KF Cem. Res. Rem

External Surfaces           

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner

Felt Pen

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Floors

1. Lithofin KF Vitra-Clean

2. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner

 (for irregular intensive cleaning)

Flower Stains

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner*1

2. Lithofin ASR *1

Fruit Stains

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF*

Glue

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF*

Grout Lines & Tiles

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner

Grout Residues

1. Lithofin KF Cem. Res. Rem.                                    2. Lithofin MN Power-Clean*2

(use on polished marbles)

Grass

1. Lithofin KF Intensive-Cleaner*1

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Grease

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Ink

1. Lithofin KF Intensive-Cleaner

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Lacquer (Varnish)

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Leaf Stains

1. Lithofin KF Intensive-Cleaner

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away *1

Mortar Residue

1. Lithofin KF Cem.Res.Rem

Mold & Mildew

1. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Nail Varnish

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

2. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner

Oil

1. Lithofin OIL-EX

2. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Oil-Ex Residue

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner

Paint - Fresh

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Plant Stains

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner*1

2. Lithofin ASR*

Red Wine

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Resin

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Rubber Stains

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF *1

2. Lithofin ASR

Rust

1. Lithofin KF Cem.Res.Rem

Soot

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner*1

2. Lithofin ASR

Soap Scum

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner

Shoe Polish

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner*1

2. Lithofin ASR

Shoe Polish

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner*1

2. Lithofin ASR *1

Silicone

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF *1

(mechanically remove bulk of  silicone)

Sealer Residues

1. Lithofin ASR

Tar

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Tea & Coffee

1. Lithofin KF Intensive Cleaner

2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Timber Stains

1. Lithofin ASR *1

 2. Lithofin KF Mildew-Away

Topical Sealants

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Water – Hard Water

1. Lithofin KF Active-Clean

Wax

1. Lithofin WAX-OFF

Wax – Hard Tile Wax

1. Lithofin Abra-CLEAN