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Professional Maintenance Services
What services might you need as a homeowner to care for your stone? What are the various disciplines within the stone and tile industry that you may need and what services do each offer? What are the criteria you need to look for when you need to hire someone? First, before you hire any contractor, check them out. Don’t hesitate to ask for references. Even ask for customers from just the past recent weeks. Find out their training background, how many courses have they taken? Can you see floors they have worked on recently?
STONE RESTORATION SERVICES
Generally speaking, restoration of stone is the restoring of worn stone to the state in which it was installed. It may also entail the altering of the stone’s original factory finish to match a desired finish of the installation’s owner or management. In some cases an owner may desire a polished surface to be honed or vice versa.
Restoration is a process that can only be done by a professional stone restoration company. Your typical maintenance/janitorial or tile & grout cleaning company will not have the proper tools or experience to restore natural stone. Most processes are done in a wet environment that helps prevent dust from invading your home.
What is involved?
Restoration of marble, granite, limestone, travertine or other natural stone involves the removal of scratches and/or other damage from the surface of the stone. The optimal method is mechanical abrasion known as diamond grinding. Diamond grinding gives better clarity and reflectivity than other methods that can used, such as the use of sanding screens, honing powders or paste polishes alone. A stone floor that has been restored with diamonds will also retain its look longer than it will with the use of these other methods. While the use of diamonds may cost you more in the beginning, having to have your floors done every 4-6 years compared to every 1-2 years (as with other methods) costs you less in the long run.
Natural stone reflects light and does not need a topical coating or wax to achieve this desired finish. It only needs a series of diamond grits used in the proper order by a craftsman who is experienced in their use. This is followed by a careful polishing technique that can only be mastered through experience. A restoration professional will also take care to protect the surrounding surfaces from damage. The diamond grinding technique involves large amounts of water and this could be damaging to wood and carpet if measures are not properly taken to ensure the use of water was kept to a minimum and protection against splatter used.
TILE & GROUT CLEANING & RESTORATION
A properly trained tile and grout restoration contractor can clean and restore your tile and grout and make it look brand new. Missing grout and broken tiles can be replaced. Grout can be sealed to inhibit staining or color sealed to hide stains that can’t come out or to simply change its color completely for a fresh new look.
CLEANING AND MAINTENANCE TECHNICIANS
What should you be concerned with when hiring a janitorial or cleaning company when you have natural stone? First and foremost, always ask the prospective cleaning professional if they have been specifically educated in natural stone maintenance. By far, one of the most common causes of damage to marble and other calcite based stones is the wrong cleaning product has been used on or near the stone which resulted in etching, sometimes so severe there is nothing that can be done short of having a restoration contractor mechanically polish out the damage. A properly trained cleaning professional will have been trained to know what products to use and which to avoid. They will also know to look for and recognize various potential problems and be able to point them out to you before they become serious. Janitorial companies trained in natural stone care will know the techniques and products to use to preserve and maintain polished marble floors. Some also include sealing in their menu of services.
Here at Advanced Stone & Tile Restorations we are glad to provide you with this tile and stone care guide. For any questions we can always be reached on the web at wecleantileandstone.com or by calling 714-917-5255 Best regards, Martin Escobedo