Natural marble countertops can be a beautiful addition to any modern kitchen, and the stone materials can withstand heat and pressure better than a lot of other types of counters. However, marble will become somewhat dinged and etched over time and professional cleaning is required to restore the marble's shiny and lustrous finish. Professional cleanings do not need to be scheduled too often, and you can prolong the service as long as you work hard to remove marble stains as soon as they occur. Remove stains according to the type of material that caused the blemish with these tips.
Dye, Ink, or Highly Pigmented Fluid
Marble is often utilized for use in homes due to its strength and durability, but the material does contain very small openings. These tiny pores can allow fluids to seep into the stone material. When these fluids contain a large concentration of natural and artificial coloring agents, then these colors are likely to stain the marble as the fluid evaporates. Fortunately, you can reach into these pores or openings to pull up the ink or dye color. You will need a material to dissolve or break down the inks or dyes though, and hydrogen peroxide can typically do this. Once the peroxide breaks up the coloring agents, you will need a powder like baking soda to absorb the ink before it can re-stain the marble.
Pour a teaspoon or two of hydrogen peroxide directly on the stain and allow it to sit for 30 to 60 minutes. Sprinkle three teaspoons of baking soda over the peroxide and allow it to sit for two hours. Use a cloth to wipe away the wet baking soda. Repeat the process until you can no longer see the stain. If the cleaning process does not lighten the stain after two or more applications, then allow the hydrogen peroxide and baking soda to sit overnight.
Lemon, Vinegar, and other Acids
Acids that are spilled onto your marble counters can easily stain the surface. This is the case, because marble is made up largely of calcium carbonate and this substance can be dissolved or deteriorated by acidic substances. Materials like lemon juice, orange juice, vinegar, and tomato juice are not strong acids though. This means that your marble will not wear away, but a small blotch or stain will be present.
You can release the stain only by polishing it away and an agent like tin oxide will work well for this. The polish will help to release any acids that are left over within the marble and it will also force away the dulled and stained surface where the acid has affected it. Tin oxide is often sold as marble polish, but you can also find the substance in its powder form at your local home store.
Mix a small amount of water with the tin material to create a thick paste and use a sponge or cloth to lightly scrub the stained surface. After two or three minutes, rinse the cleaner away.
Substances like peanut butter, margarine, cream, and animal fat can work their way into the surface of your marble counters and create a dark stain. Oil and grease stains are notoriously difficult to remove from all types of surfaces. To release the grease from the marble, you will need to use a basic material to dissolve the stain and then use a substance to soak up the grease. Both ammonia and acetone can work for this. To make sure that the grease is forced away from the marble, mix one teaspoon of either acetone or ammonia with either baking soda or cream of tartar. Use two teaspoons of the powder and spread a generous amount over the grease stain.
Remove the paste after one or two days and use a damp cloth to clean the surface. If you still see dark grease spots, then repeat the process.
Marble countertops can stain. However, you can complete stain removal by yourself as long as stains are small and your marble does not appear dull or uneven. Otherwise, you will need to speak with a professional from a place like All American Stone & Tile Care Inc. who can clean the marble for you.