Care and Maintenance
Routine Care & Maintenance
Read below for helpful, step-by-step instructions on how to best care for Marazzi ceramic tile.
Glazed tile products should be cleaned routinely with an all-purpose, low VOC, household or commercial cleaner. The product chosen should also be grout joint cleaning compatible. The type of product may vary depending on the tile application and use. A multipurpose spray cleaner, which removes soap scum, hard water deposits and mildew designed for everyday use can be used on wall tile areas in residential baths and showers. A cotton mop, cloth, sponge, or non-metallic brush should be used to apply and agitate cleaner. Rinse the area with clean water and dry thoroughly. Routine cleaners should never contain harsh chemicals as these can damage tile. Acids can damage grout and the glazed surface of the tile. Ammonia can discolor grout.
Regular dust mopping, sweeping, or vacuuming is recommended prior to cleaning with liquid products.
Unglazed tile should be cleaned routinely with concentrated tile cleaners with a neutral pH for safe regular use. These cleaners are better suited for removing grease, oils, and normal spills from unglazed products. Again these products will vary depending on the application, amount of traffic and the use. The product chosen should also be compatible with the grout.
REMOVAL OF SEALERS, WAXES, FLOOR FINISHES
Ceramic tile can be sealed if desired. It is recommended that grout be sealed.
If you need to remove a topical sealer or floor wax from a ceramic tile you should use a tile sealer and adhesive remover. Always test a small area first. Apply a liberal amount of undiluted sealer & adhesive remover to a manageable area. Allow it to set without drying until coating or residue softens. Reapply if necessary until sealer softens and can be removed. If necessary, agitate with white nylon scrub pad. Wipe up the residue with a cotton towel or sponge. Rinse thoroughly with clean water. Do not use ceramic sealer removers on natural stone products.
Grout is the material used to fill the spaces between the individual tiles. Grout comes in many colors. While color is important to the final finished look of the tile installation, it has little effect on the functionality of the grout. The purpose of grout is, simply, to fill the joint between the tiles and becomes a permanent, integral component of the finished installation. Grout darkens over time, so we recommend that it be sealed regularly to preserve and protect it. Grout can be stained to normalize the color of older grout.
Immediately after tile has been installed and grouted, the new installation should be covered with brown paper to protect it from debris during the remaining construction process. The grout joints should be dampened daily with water using a clean sponge or mop during the first seven days. This procedure facilitates the grout cure and color lock. The paper will allow for two important things: (1) to protect the newly installed tile grout and (2) to allow moisture to escape from the grout as it cures, further protecting the look and utility of the floor. This is an important step in achieving color consistency. Never use plastic or non-absorbent materials to protect freshly installed tile. These types of non-absorbent products will trap moisture, causing the grout to discolor during the curing period. The protective brown paper should remain until construction is complete and the floor is opened for intended (post-construction) use.
Following a curing period of at least 24 hours, grout haze can be removed with plain water or a grout haze remover, which usually contains Sulfamic acid. Sulfamic acid can also be purchased in powder form and mixed with water to different strengths by qualified professionals. Similarly, epoxy grout haze can be removed with an epoxy haze remover. These removers are formulated to safely and quickly remove cured epoxy haze from new tile installations. Their unique formulation will soften most epoxy hazes for easy removal without damaging the grout or tile, usually in one application. Sulfamic acid or grout removers should never be used on natural stone products.
Most tile installations use cementitious grouts. This type of grout should be sealed after installation to prevent it from staining. The grout should be sealed with a penetrating/impregnating sealer (often called grout sealers), which does not contain silicone, as silicone can shorten the useful life of the sealer. Epoxy grouts, conversely, are chemically cured and acid resistant, and as a result, do not require a sealer. The application of a good quality penetrating/impregnating sealer into the grout joints of a cementitious grout will not change the natural color of the grout, but will prevent the penetration of moisture, simplify maintenance, and help prevent staining or discoloration. Only the grout needs to be sealed, it is not required for glazed tiles to be sealed. Grout can be sealed 72 hours after installation.
There are different grades of penetrating/impregnating
sealers. Be sure you are aware of the life-span of your sealer. You may need to
reapply the sealer on an annual basis depending on the sealer quality, traffic
patterns, and maintenance routine. Some sealers have multiple year warranties.
Refer to the manufacturer warranty, technical & product information for
specific details on product installation, useful life, and product applications
(including any warnings) before use.
Neither sealing the grout nor using an epoxy grout will guarantee against surface buildup or discoloration of the grout. Grout needs to be cleaned on a periodic basis to remove any surface buildup. Routine grout cleaning can be done with a daily concentrated household or commercial cleaner depending on the application. When heavy-duty grout cleaning is required, you will need to use a professional strength tile and grout cleaner that can remove grease, soap scum, body oil, mildew stains, algae, and synthetic or acrylic waxes from the grout joints. However, such a product should contain non-polluting chemicals and low VOC levels. This type of product can be purchased from most home centers, or through your local professional floor covering dealer.
GROUT COLOR RESTORATION
When grout has been stained to the point that it cannot be maintained or returned to its natural color, you can return the grout back to its original color or any other color using a grout stain. Grout stains are epoxy-based products that are specifically designed to penetrate the grout and seal the surface with a permanent color. Once the grout has been stained there is no need to seal it any further with a penetrating/impregnating sealer. Prior to staining, the grout joint should be cleaned thoroughly to remove any dirt, oils, grease, or sealers with a professional strength tile and grout cleaner.
Routine Care & Maintenance
Porcelain is the champion floor and wall tile that brings flexible style and enduring quality to your home or commercial space. With the minimal care, your porcelain can easily have a decades-long lifespan.
ROUTINE CARE AND CLEANING
Regular, basic cleaning with warm water and mild soap is sufficient to keep floors looking good. You can also use gentle, everyday multipurpose spray cleaner to remove soap scum, hard water deposits, and mildew. Do not use cleaning products that contain acids or ammonia (and other harsh chemicals) as these can damage grout and glazed surfaces of the tile. Choose products that are compatible with your grout to avoid damage or discoloration of the grout. Always dry your porcelain thoroughly after cleaning.
Unglazed tile should be cleaned routinely with concentrated tile cleaners that have a neutral pH. These cleaners are better suited for removing grease, oils and normal spills from unglazed products.
StepWise™ Product Care
StepWise is a technology infused into tile that makes it 50% more slip resistant than regular tile. Products with StepWise do not require any specialized care. They can be cleaned and maintained as you would any porcelain surface.
Preventing Stains and Scratches
While porcelain is resistant to scratches, etching and stains, these surfaces are not damage proof. Take care to avoid exposing porcelain to permanent inks or dyes, as these might not be removable. If porcelain surfaces are exposed to permanent marker or dye, rinse the area with water as soon as possible then apply approved cleaning product. Rinse and dry thoroughly. Although porcelain is resistant to stains from juice, wine, coffee and other food substances, it is best to wipe up spills immediately to prevent possible stains.
Use cleaning products and implements that are non-abrasive. Additionally, sweep or vacuum tile prior to cleaning to remove dust or debris.
Protecting Porcelain Surfaces
Porcelain does not require sealing; however, it is a good idea to seal grout or any joints. Use a product that is safe for both the tile and the grout.
To remove sealers, waxes and other floor finishes from porcelain tile, use a tile sealer and adhesive remover. Always test a small area first. Apply a liberal amount of undiluted sealer and adhesive remover in a manageable area. Allow it to sit without drying until sealer residues on the surface soften. Reapply if necessary until sealer softens and can be removed by wiping off with a cotton towel or sponge. If necessary, agitate with a nylon scrub pad. Rinse thoroughly with clean water. Do not use on tile or grout sealers on natural stone products.
The purpose of grout is twofold, to fill the joint between the tiles and to provide a space for tile to flex. It decreases breakage of tile and becomes a permanent, integral component of the finished installation. Grout is one of the more difficult parts of maintaining a porcelain tile floor. It tends to capture dirt and darkens over time. It requires more specialized cleaning and maintenance than tile.
Immediately after tile has been installed and grouted, the new installation should be covered with brown paper (to protect it from debris and allow for moisture evaporation) during any remaining construction. The grout joints should be dampened daily with clear water using a clean sponge or mop during the first seven days. This procedure facilitates the grout cure and helps it retain its color better.
Haze is a film that is left behind on the tile after it has been grouted. This can easily be buffed off the surface after the grout has cured 12-24 hours with a sulfamic acid-based grout haze cleaner. It can be purchased in powder form and mixed with water to the appropriate strength. This type of cleaner breaks down the cementitious grout haze. If your grout is epoxy-based, epoxy haze cleaners are formulated for this different form of grout. Both haze cleaners are safe for grout and tile but should not be used on natural stone.
Cementitious grouts should be sealed after installation. A penetrating/impregnating sealer that does not contain silicone is effective in grout’s resistance to spills, stains and moisture absorption and can help it retain its original color better and decrease maintenance. Sealers should be reapplied regularly to grout (glazed tile does not need to be sealed). Some sealers will last several years (see product information, and warranties) but frequency will also depend on traffic patterns and maintenance routines. Grout should be sealed 72 hours after installation.
Epoxy grout is chemically cured and doesn’t require the sealers that cementitious grouts do. They are naturally resistant to spills, stains and moisture.
Grout needs to be cleaned on a periodic basis to remove any surface buildup. Routine grout cleaning can be done with a daily concentrated household or commercial cleaner depending on the application. When heavy-duty grout cleaning is required, you will need to use a professional strength tile and grout cleaner that is capable of removing grease, soap scum, oils, mildew stains, algae, and synthetic or acrylic waxes from the grout joints. Select a product that does not contain polluting chemicals and is low VOC. This type of product can be purchased from most home centers, or through your local, professional floor covering dealer. You might also consider professional grout cleaning companies.
When grout has been stained to the point that it cannot be maintained or returned to its natural color, you can use a "grout stain." Grout stains are epoxy-based products that are specifically designed to penetrate into the grout and seal the surface with a permanent color. Once the grout has been stained there is no need to seal it any further with a penetrating/impregnating sealer. Prior to staining, the grout joint should be cleaned thoroughly to remove any dirt, oils, grease or sealers with a professional strength tile and grout cleaner. This can be purchased from most home centers or through your local professional floor covering dealer.
Natural Stone Tile
Routine Care & Maintenance
There's nothing more beautiful than the permanence of natural stone. With the right care and regular maintenance, your stone can last a lifetime.
Read below for helpful instructions and tips on how to best clean and maintain marble, granite, limestone, travertine, and soapstone flooring.
Natural stone floors should be cleaned with neutral cleaners specifically designed for stone. These cleaners are concentrated pH neutral cleaners that will not affect existing sealers or other types of coatings. Stone cleaners should never contain acid or bleach. Acids, even a light solution of vinegar and water, will etch and eventually damage many varieties of natural stone. A solution of the pH neutral cleaner and water mixed to manufacturer instructions should be applied to the stone surface with a sponge or spray bottle. Allow solution to sit per manufacturer recommended specified amount of time to ensure penetration of the stone. Agitate with a sponge, or soft bristle brush. Remove dirty solution with clean sponge and buff dry. Some textured stones may require a different cleaning method or additional procedures not specified here.
HEAVY-DUTY STONE CLEANING
If stone needs a deep clean, you will need to use a heavy-duty stone cleaner and degreaser to effectively remove dirt, grease, grime, waxes, etc. These cleaning products are concentrated and designed to deep clean the stone without damaging it. Apply the solution per manufacturer instructions to the stone surface with a sponge. Allow to stand for manufacturer-specified amount of time.
Agitate with a sponge or soft bristle brush. Remove dirty solution with a clean sponge and buff dry. Be sure to change out the cleaning solution every 100 square feet to avoid reintroducing dirty water during the cleaning process. Rinse thoroughly with clean water when finished. Make sure to always limit the time liquids sit on any type of natural stone and dry the surface thoroughly.
A stone specific poultice can be used to remove stains and grout haze from stone. Poultice is a fine, non-acidic, absorptive clay cleaning powder that removes stains and light cementitious grout haze from polished and unpolished natural stone. Stone poultice efficacy depends on the nature of the stain and how long the stain has been in the stone. Base the selection of the type of poultice on the nature of the stain. If the stain is old or has penetrated the stone deeply, a poultice may not be enough to remove it. Spills should always be cleaned up as soon as possible. Light colored marble and nearly all limestone are subject to staining. Spills on such materials should be cleaned up immediately to prevent staining.
CAUTION: Poultice may dull the shine of the polished stone. If this occurs you will need to use a stone polish to restore the natural shine.
If your natural stone has been damaged or is worn, we recommend that you contact a professional stone restoration company.
Sealing is strongly recommended for all stone, especially newly installed marble, granite, and limestone to provide maximum stain protection. Be careful to select a high-quality sealer to protect your natural stone. Please check with your fabricator regarding their standard sealing regimen. Sealing every couple of years (see manufacturer's directions) will ensure your stone continues to look its best.
TYPES OF SEALING PRODUCTS
There are two categories of sealing products: penetrating/impregnating and stone enhancer.
Penetrating/impregnating stone sealers are a no-sheen, natural look sealer that can be water-based or solvent-based, and are good for interior and exterior applications. Most quality sealers of this type are rated to protect the stone for several years. A premium natural look penetrating/impregnating sealer is the standard choice on polished or honed natural stone.
Stone enhancer sealers are also a no-sheen, penetrating/impregnating sealer that is formulated to darken, enrich, and highlight the natural color and beauty of stone products. They will rejuvenate and improve the appearance of worn and weathered stone. However, they will also darken the color of seams and joints. They are, generally, suitable for interior and exterior use, and rated to protect the stone for several years.
Always reference manufacturers’ literature for specific information on the duration of the sealer’s protection and make sure that the sealer is applied in strict accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
The use of natural stones in environments where acid exposure is likely requires a proper stone selection to avoid etching. Most notably, the calcium carbonate and calcite-based stones (marble and limestone primarily) will react to relatively mild acids, such as lemon juice, vinegar, and sliced tomatoes. The result is not a stain, which could be removed, but an etching of the stone surface, which cannot be removed without refinishing the stone. In polished finish stones, a mild acid attack will usually manifest itself as a “dull” spot within the surrounding glossy surface.
LOT SPECIFIC ISSUES
Stone tile is a product of nature and is inherently subject to the variability of any product harvested from nature. Select adequate quantities of a product in the beginning of a project as it can be very difficult to buy stone later that matches an initial purchase. We recommend customers purchase a 10% overage.
Translucence may occur in some white or very lightly colored marbles and onyxes that have a crystal structure that will transmit light to varying degrees depending upon stone thickness and finish. Translucence can be an aesthetically intriguing, decorative attribute and is not considered a defect.
MIXING TYPES OF MATERIALS
Designs calling for a mixture of stones with different physical properties, while aesthetically interesting, can give rise to problems of wear and maintenance, especially in outdoor applications. Re-polishing will pose problems as well. The customer should be aware that mixing types of stones means there will be different application limitations, abrasion resistance levels, and different densities of stones that must be considered in the long term maintenance of the stone and its wearability.
Take a closer look at natural stone flooring at your local showroom.
Glass Tile & Metal Tile
Routine Care & Maintenance
Glass and metallic tile adds a beautiful accent to your design. With the correct care, it will continue to wow for many years. Read below for helpful, step-by-step instructions on how to best care for glass and metal tile.
For routine cleaning, use any non-abrasive cleaning product recommended for either glass or tile. DO NOT use scouring pads, steel wool, sandpaper or other abrasive products.
To clean, use a liquid non-abrasive household cleaner. Avoid cleaners containing ammonia, bleach, abrasives or other hazardous/polluting compounds. Always test in a small inconspicuous area when using a new cleaner to ensure compatibility with your metallic tile. DO NOT use scouring pads, steel wool, sandpaper or other abrasive products.
CARE AND MAINTENANCE GUIDE
Marazzi does not manufacture installation products or cleaning/maintenance products. Marazzi provides the information on this page to its customers as an information source only. Please contact an installation product manufacturer directly, PRIOR to usage, to obtain proper handling instructions, application instruction and warnings concerning potential health hazards for any product contemplated for use.
To ensure your products will provide you with a lifetime of beauty and utility, proper maintenance is crucial. Natural stone products are porous by nature and require a different maintenance program than traditional ceramic tile. Marazzi also strongly recommends testing a small area PRIOR to usage of any installation/cleaning/maintenance product to determine whether the product serves its intended purpose.
SAFETY PRECAUTION TO CUSTOMERS
The products described in this document may have chemicals that cause reactions in certain individuals. Marazzi strongly recommends the use of safety glasses, respirators (masks) and gloves in handling any materials that contain chemicals. Marazzi recommends the proper disposal of any scrap tile/stone, installation and/or maintenance products discussed herein.
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