Monday, May 17, 2010

Going old school

Back when I renovated my bathroom a year ago, I was pretty nervous about maintaining all my new tile. I had basket weave marble tile laid on the floor and carrara (cararra?) baseboards, subway, and chair rails laid on the wall. I was particularly scared by the folks over at GardenWeb, many of whom could make the biggest marble fan afraid of every stain under the sun and every cleaner on the market. A Turkish friend reminded me that there are bathrooms and kitchens all over Europe that have had marble surfaces in them for ages and if they were somehow flawed, it wouldn't be so popular. I banned bar soap from the bathroom, sealed the tile as directed, and ignored the internet comments about marble's impracticality.

A year later, my marble is just fine. There are no stains, no dulling, and no chips. However, the cleaner I had been using, one I found at Bed, Bath & Beyond, didn't seem to be getting the floor tiles very clean. One day, I saw a cleaner that looked pretty old fashioned at World Market. I figured that something that didn't work wouldn't be around very long and bought it.


Now, this isn't eco-friendly and it definitely has a cleaner smell, but the stuff worked. The basket weave tiles look great after using this Sprayway cleaner on them. I only wish it did as good a job on grout. I'm worried about using a grout cleaner that will come into contact with the marble. I guess GardenWeb's warnings actually had an effect!

Are you using any "old school" cleaners with great success? If you have marble tile, what are you using?



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7 comments:

  1. I know it is not recommended; but, I use X-14 mildew remover spray, and when needed, the Clorox bleach pen (fine tip only on the grout line). I will try to find your spray and see how it works.

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  2. Found you via If the Lamp Shade fits comments. I'm really glad that I did. Stop by sometime...BTY love the bathroom, and I only use the Sprayway glass cleaner

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  3. I use method tile cleaner in my shower that has marble floor, method wipes for my carerra marble counter, and I think it's Eco brand general floor cleaner. It said was safe for marble. I think it works pretty good. I will keep an eye out for your spray, cute bottle!

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  4. We just laid a marble floor at the beach house, and I swear that if I see a stain on it come September I am going to pit a royal fit. And yes, I did zero research on marble tile, staining or cleaning it beforehand. I tend to be a leap before you look type of gal.

    I'll file these cleaning tips away for the fall.

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  5. I might have to try the bleach pen. There is one spot of grout that has always driven me crazy...from the plumber's boot. The tile guy had a quilt down during the majority of the project, but the plumber had to come back one day to fix something and he left dirt on the floor. :(

    Welcome to the blog, Tonia!

    Sarah, I had no idea Method could be used on carerra! Thanks for the heads up!

    I don't think you'll see stains on the tile, Eva. The grout is my problem and I even used gray. I guess I should have gone a shade darker than Silver Shadow.

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  6. I just use soft scrub as needed but I'd be curious to try this stuff out. I don't really feel like it looks any different than the day I installed it but Im sure at some point I'll feel differently.

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  7. Hi there!
    Thanks for posting about marble sealing & cleaning! I almost wish I hadn't used marble after all the time I have had to spend researching and scrubbing (carefully)! After Mrs. Limestone's comment, above, about using soft scrub, I looked at their website and saw that they say you can use their soft scrub GEL with bleach on marble and I have been using that on the floor of my shower (which is marble hexagon with silver shadow grout). I was like you, the marble was not the problem, but yuck in the grout was. I have been happy so far - after using it for about 2 months. I did previously seal it and will seal again. I am going to look at the Method cleaners that your other commenters mentioned!

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