Travertine is a beautiful and durable natural stone that will easily last forever if taken care of properly. Unfortunately, far too many homeowners are unaware of how to clean there travertine tile floors. Consequently, these homeowners will often etch, fade, or otherwise damage their tiles without ever knowing what they did wrong. Thankfully, taking the time to review the dos and don'ts of travertine maintenance outlined below can prevent you from making this same mistake.
Do sweep your floors on a daily basis. Even if your floors do not look dirty, it is important that you take the time to thoroughly sweep your floors each day. This is because the small particles of dirt and sand that get tracked in by your shoes can leave behind small scratches on the surface of your floor. While a single one of these scratches may not be noticeable, the accumulation of scratches over time will cause your floor to look dull and dingy.
Do test the seal on your travertine floors at least once a year. This is incredibly important because as the sealant on floors begins to wear down, your flooring tiles will become increasingly susceptible to moisture damage. In order to test the integrity of your seal, simply place a few drops of water on the floor. If the water beads up and begins to roll off the tile, you seal is intact. However, if the water begins to soak into the tile, it is time to apply a fresh coat of sealant.
Don't use acidic cleaners when cleaning your travertine floors. Cleaning products that contain bleach, citrus, vinegar, or other acidic ingredients can etch the surface of your tiles. Consequently, these products should never be used, even when trying to remove stubborn stains. Instead, stick to a basic solution of mild dish soap and warm water to clean even the most difficult messes.
Don't allow any liquid to sit on the floor for an extended period of time. While you may be tempted to try and soak your tiles or grout in cleaning solution in order to try and remove difficult stains, allowing liquid of any kind to sit on your tile can cause the floor's seal to breakdown prematurely. This is why it is so important to always clean up spills quickly and to only use a damp mop when mopping your travertine floors.
The Bottom Line
Travertine is very durable, however, it can also be incredibly vulnerable to damage if not cleaned and maintained properly. If ever you are unsure about the use of a particular cleaning product or technique, is always best to contact experts from a company like All American Stone & Tile Care Inc. before proceeding. This will allow you to identify the absolute best cleaning solution for the job while also avoiding any damage to your floors.