Slate flooring is one of the most desired types of stone flooring in homes and businesses today. Slate is known for its many good qualities, not the least of which is its durability. When used as flooring it is most effective for high traffic areas or areas with a significant amount of moisture.
Benefits of Slate
Slate has several benefits, such as durability, less maintenance, and is a value adding addition to your home. The quality of slate varies and this depends on which level of the ground the slate is extracted from. Slate that is extracted from the ground level is more porous compared to slate that extracted from underground since it is exposed to the elements. This more porous slate stains easily while the high quality slate is slip and stain resistant and easier to maintain over time.
The Beauty of Slate
Slate adds depth and warmth to a floor and will make a room stand out. Stone is available in natural cleft (textured rough surface) and hone-polished (ground and polished with a smooth surface). The natural cleft is ideal in a den or dining room but not the kitchen since dirt and debris will accumulate due to the uneven texture.
Slate is porous and absorbs stains and since it is a soft stone it is easily chipped, scratched, or eroded with a hard scrub brush or the wrong type of stone cleaner. Now, although slate is easy to take care of maintenance is required on a routine basis by frequently vacuuming the surface. Vacuuming is important to best remove the dust that is trapped in the fibers.
When finished vacuuming the floor, you can wet mop with a mild detergent or a cleaner that is specific for slate floors. Whichever type of cleaner you use check the ph to make sure there are no alkaline or acid ingredients (vinegar or lemon) which will scratch the surface of the stone. Scratches are not noticeable on a natural cleft stone, but they are obvious on polished and honed slate. When finished with wet mopping the floor use a soft cloth to dry the floor so that water spots do not occur.
Cleaning the slate is easy but now you have to clean that grout. Your grout is probably discolored by a gradual buildup of dirt and grime. Don’t worry you can bring back the brightness of the grout by using a 50/50 solution of water and hydrogen peroxide. Spray the solution on the grout and let it soak for about ten minutes. Repeat this process until the results are satisfactory. If you have colored grout, then do not use this method until you have tested the solution in an area that is out of view.
Grout is porous and will absorb spills and can end up with mold or mildew stains. If your stains are stubborn, mix baking soda with hydrogen peroxide and create a paste. Apply the paste to stains and areas that have any mildew or mold and wait about ten to fifteen minutes. Use a wet cloth to remove the paste from the grout you are treating. Again, if you have colored grout please test an area and make sure you will not alter the color.
A sealant is advised to keep the products free of stains, since neither grout or slate are maintenance free. A sealant will help prevent damage as well as stains and extend the life expectancy of your floor. When you use a sealant do check the label for directions so that you will know when it is time for a resealing.
The treatment for cleaning floors is very different for each type of floor. Knowing how often, what to use, and the method for cleaning is a service that our company excels at. We can minimize allergens, dust, germs, and bacteria for you. We know that if a floor is not cleaned correctly, an injury will occur. We will extend the life of your floor with our up to date tile and grout cleaning systems. When you are ready contact us and talk to one of our certified specialists who will help you in evaluating your cleaning needs. Let us do the work for you.