Limestone is a sedimentary rock which is formed at the bottom of the ocean. It consists wholly or mainly of calcium carbonate. In its pure state it is white but it may be coloured by other materials. This calcite is sourced primarily from the shells and bones of marine organisms. The sediment that builds up preserves these organisms into fossils and over millions of years heat and pressure cause a chemical reaction which turns this sediment into limestone.
Limestone flooring is porous and prone to scratching, staining and fracturing. Limestone also needs to be allowed to breath instead of being covered by synthetic sealers or urethane. Our experienced technicians offer the best solutions to protect your limestone by using highly penetrating impregnating sealers.
The primary cause for polished stone floors becoming dull is foot traffic. Prolonged foot traffic grinds and packs in dust, sand, and grit. Although the scratching that occurs is very fine, it eventually covers the majority of the surface and over time dulls the finish to the point where it loses its reflective properties. To make your stone surfaces smooth and reflective, we employ the use of high speed polishers.
Many older buildings have durable limestone flooring, the chalky porous type with a smooth granular surface typical of most French and Spanish limestone. This variety does stain easier than marble, varies in hardness and does become etched by acids including soft drink, as well as absorbs oils and other liquids. Common colours are black, grey, white, yellow and brown. Limestone should be sealed with a penetrating sealer to prevent staining and reduce soiling and should only be cleaned with neutral pH detergents. Because it is soft, limestone should never be cleaned at pressures above 800 PSI and then only if the grout is in good condition.
Professional regular maintenance will be required to maintain the honed or polished appearance of limestone. Limestone looks best with a honed or low/medium sheen appearance however many people also insist on a high shine finish. Some low calcite limestone can be extremely difficult to polish and therefore vitrification would be required, vitrification however can give the stone an unnatural plastic appearance when repeated too often.
- Easy to clean
- Less expensive than marble and granite
- It is moisture-resistant
- Feels cold and hard under-foot
- It requires sealing
- It reacts to acid