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A Professional Stone Honing Service Restored This Black Marble Shower's Elegance in North Riverside, IL

July 14, 2017


Most people like to have their homes as neat and beautiful as possible. Homeowners put a great amount of time and effort into the interior design of their property with elegant and functional details. They take their time choosing materials that combine both durability and style, such as stone surfaces. Unfortunately, most homeowners overlook the maintenance of these versatile materials, thinking that their durability alone will make them last forever. It's true that some stones are tougher than others, but they all need proper maintenance techniques and products to last longer. Oftentimes, people use incorrect cleaning products that can damage the surface causing them to show signs of deterioration like dullness and etching. Such was the case of this Illinois resident who had to look for a stone honing service in North Riverside to revive the beauty of his black marble shower.

Before and After Picture of a Bathroom Stone Honing in North Riverside, Illinois
The homeowner loved his shower, so he used to thoroughly clean it using a combination of cleaning products, acidic solutions, and DIY methods. After some time of doing this cleaning routine, the black marble began to show a whitish appearance and the shine that it once had just faded away. The homeowner felt frustrated as he watched the situation was getting worse, so he decided to look for help. He asked his best friend for advice since he worked for a flooring restoration company in a different city. The friend told him that Sir Grout Chicago offered stone honing in North Riverside and that it was a reliable company in the hard surface restoration industry. The homeowner went online to do some research about our company and his friend's opinion was confirmed with the testimonials he read from other satisfied customers. He then decided to schedule a free in-home consultation.

Surface assessment
On the planned date, the team arrived to assess the black marble shower. Our experts told the homeowner they would do a multi-step procedure. We said we were going to begin by deeply cleaning the surface to prepare for the honing and polishing. We also said that it would be necessary to seal the surface to prevent similar or worse results in the future. The customer agreed and planned a new date for the job.

Surface description
Marble is a metamorphic rock, which means it is among the toughest stones and, if well maintained, it can last many years. However, marble can show signs of damage due to incorrect maintenance. For example, it can show etching due to the use of acidic solutions. Mainly composed by calcite, marble is more prone to etching when exposed to acids—the combination of acids and calcite produces a chemical reaction that dissolves the stone leaving an unappealing etch mark that can ruin any surface. Also, it can leave behind some white stains. This is the result of hard water exposure when a surface isn't protected, leaving mineral deposits. Like any other stone, marble has pores that allow liquids to seep through, which is why sealing the surface is extremely important. Even though marble pores are very small, they can absorb water, especially in spaces highly exposed to moisture, like showers and bathrooms. That was the case of this homeowner that didn't pay enough attention to the sealant and also cleaned the surface with harsh cleaning products and techniques.

Surface renovation procedure
On the set date, the experts arrived and immediately got to work. We began by thoroughly cleaning the surface with a combination of stone safe products and a high-speed scrubber. Since showers are constantly exposed to water, our experts used vapor steam cleaner to eliminate any mold and mildew that might have grown within the tile. Once the marble surface was clean, the crew began the honing and polishing stage. We used a very low grit pad number at the beginning with the purpose of removing all the water stains, etch marks, and scratches left by abrasive scrubbers. As the marble became smoother, the specialists progressively raised the grit number until the deep black shine was restored.

When we achieved the desired finish, it was time to seal the surface to prevent future damage; this is very important to keep the stone looking as good as new. There are two main types of sealants—topical and impregnating. The topical ones are coatings applied directly onto the stone. Topical sealants create a barrier between spills, foot traffic, and acids and the stone. However, they may leave a layer of waxy residue that can attract grime to the stone. On the other hand, impregnating or penetrating sealers permeate the stone closing its pores from the inside, without altering the finish and form of the surface. Nevertheless, it is important to frequently check the state of the sealant to see if it's properly working. The team decided to apply a layer of impregnating sealant to this black marble wall to prevent further deterioration.

Surface renovation outcome
When our experts finished the job, we showed the homeowner the results. He was impressed by the renovated appearance of the shower. He mentioned that it looked better than new and thanked the team for a great job and a wonderful service. Before leaving, we gave the homeowner some recommendations regarding care and maintenance. Our crew told him to keep the wall as dry as possible, for which he should use a cloth or a squeegee. Also, we told the owner that he should check the state of the sealant every two or three months by placing a few drops of liquid on the stone. If the liquid beads, the sealant is properly working; if it's absorbed, the surface needs to be resealed as soon as possible.

If you have a stone surface that needs restoration, Sir Grout Chicago is the best choice for you. Our highly trained technicians are ready to provide you with a top-notch and professional hard surface restoration service at a fair price. Call us at (773) 661-6761 or fill out the "Request a Quote" form below. Find us on Facebook at Sir Grout Chicago, follow us on Twitter @SirGroutChicago, and Instagram @SirGrout. Our specialists look forward to assisting you.


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