Travertine is a natural stone that is formed around mineral hot springs & caves, and is made of calcium carbonate. Because it’s a naturally occurring stone, it’s also renewable and eco-friendly. However, because it’s so porous – moreso than, say, marble – it’s not a good idea to use it in high-moisture areas, such as bathrooms or basements, without properly sealing the stone first.
Are there different types of travertine?
Yes! Tumbled travertine has rounded edges, thanks to naturally-occurring water erosion, and is great for outdoor use. Brushed travertine (also known as patinato) has – as its name indicates – brushed surfaces. This makes it ideal for low traffic areas, or for decorative purposes. Honed travertine is only half-polished (although smooth to the touch) and, because it’s got a matte finish, is safer to walk on than polished travertine, which can get extremely slippery when wet.
Should I seal my travertine?
Absolutely! Without the sealant, erosion will happen much quicker. In addition, the proper sealant will protect your travertine from stains and spills.
How do I care for my travertine?
Cleaning and maintenance is actually pretty simple – use a dry dust mop to remove dirt, dust, and debris. Once a week, use a steam mop (hot water and a clean cloth pad) to clean the tiles themselves. Don’t use harsh chemicals (such as bleach or ammonia). If the travertine is on the floor, don’t walk across it with athletic spikes or high heels. If you must use a cleaner, make sure it’s an alkaline cleaner – the best kind is a poultice made of baking soda and hot water. Rub the poultice into the stain, let it sit for about five minutes, then wipe it away with a damp, warm rag.
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