Deciding to build a new home or renovate the current one is an
important decision in anyone's life. We all want the building to be
done perfectly the first time so we don't have to incur this again
anytime soon. Choosing the correct material that will give the
aesthetic appeal coupled with the quality you seek is the first
step in the process. From there, you need to apply the care and
maintenance required to ensure each of these materials will last a
Here are a few of the materials you might consider using and a
couple tips of how to maintain their initial sparkle:
There are a couple options when it comes to tile, and each comes
with its own set of maintenance needs.
Natural Stone Tile
Prevention - When your natural stone tile is
initially installed, it is sealed with a penetrating stone sealer.
In order to uphold the original prevention this seal provides, it
is suggested that you reseal the tile annually. The natural stone's
scratch resistance will depend upon the specific kind of natural
stone you use because each stone varies in strength.
Cleaning - Since all natural stone products are
porous, spills should be blotted up or rinsed away as soon as
possible to prevent staining. Vacuuming or light dusting is
recommended for daily cleaning. In addition, dust mopping the floor
frequently will help prevent scratches.
Prevention - Keep the surface clear of dust and
sandy soil in order to minimize scratches and heavy wear to the
tile. It is also important to maintain a proper seal on the grout
to ensure there is no staining or discoloration to the tile.
Cleaning - For routine cleaning, simply using a
vacuum to remove gritty particles or a damp mop to clean up stains
or spills will be sufficient. For larger messes or big cleanings,
use a mixed solution of stone and tile cleaner and water and mop up
the area. Change the water frequently to ensure soil is not
redeposited and allow the area to air dry completely before
Prevention - What most people assume about
granite is that it is a highly durable stone that will stand up to
spills and stains easily. In fact, the stone is naturally porous
and when moisture from food or drink stands on top of the granite
for an extended period of time, a dark ring or stain may form --
which can be difficult to reverse. To help prevent staining in the
first place, reseal the granite periodically after
Cleaning - Using a mild detergent or specialty
granite soap is suggested for cleaning up spills or messes. For
regular cleaning, experts suggest a simple dusting. Using any type
of acidic cleaner, lemon juice, or vinegar is not recommended, as
it will etch or scratch some of the granite's surface. It is
strongly recommended that you clean up anything that spills on the
granite's surface immediately. Liquids like soda, juice, alcohol,
ketchup, mustard, rock salt, and dish soap can damage the surface
of the granite.
Prevention - First, to prevent scratches to the
floor apply felt pads to legs and bottoms of all furniture that
will come into contact with the wood. In addition, people rarely
realize that pets with long nails can scratch up wood floors.
Routinely make sure your pet's nails are trimmed to prevent
unsightly marks to your hardwood. It is important to remember pets
are not the only ones who can scratch up your new hardwood floor --
often times women in high heeled shoes can cause dents and
scratches. It is best to wait to put the heels on until you are
walking out the door.
Cleaning - One of the most important tips to
remember when cleaning your wood floor is that the less water you
use, the better. It is not suggested to wet mop your hardwood floor
because it can cause staining to the wood. A damp mop will clean up
most dust and spills. For larger messes, utilize professional
hardwood floor cleaner.
Each of these quality building materials are designed to last a
lifetime if maintained properly. Ensure your favorite counter,
floor, and bathroom is protected for as long as possible by
utilizing these cleaning recommendations today.