Owning marble flooring means you have a peak luxury feature to your home.
However, despite its elegant appearance, like every other surface in your house, it will require cleaning every now and then.
Yet, how do you clean off all the dirt and stains without causing damage to the overall marble appearance you’re so proud of?
You hear a rumor that steam mops can do the trick, but are they safe to use on your flooring?
Yes, you can use a steam mop on marble flooring!
In this article, we’ll go over the characteristics of both marble and steam mops, some dos and don’ts of cleaning marble, steam mop maintenance, and some alternative methods for cleaning your luxury surfaces.
What You Should Know About Marble Floors
To achieve the best cleanliness possible, we’ll first have to understand the actors at play here. Let’s take a look at marble first.
Officially classified as limestone, marble has been used in many famous buildings throughout the millennia due to its durability and elegant appearance.
However, like all things in nature, limestone has strengths and weaknesses.
Despite its natural durability, it’s also susceptible to forces such as erosion and weathering.
Of course, the marble floors inside your home can avoid harm as long as they remain indoors, but understanding what can degrade marble flooring will give you a better sense as to what can clean it best.
For example, the biggest initial threat is staining.
Limestone will react with just about anything acidic, so, beware of these substances on your marble flooring:
- Organic materials (animal droppings, coffee, tea, leaves, flowers)
- Dyes and inks (can seriously discolor the marble)
- Oils (can cause darkening over time)
- Metallic substances (rust, copper, bronze)
- Salts (can cause wear and tear)
Spilling a little bit of any of the above won’t affect the flooring much, but it would be a good idea to clean the area sooner than later.
That way you’ll keep that brilliant marble shining for years to come.
Stark changes to temperature can also affect the limestone structure.
Quick changes from hot to cold, or cold to hot will cause cracks in the marble.
Again, any marble that’s indoors will usually be exposed to constant temperature, but being aware of this fact will help future cleaning regardless.
What You Should Know About Steam Mops For Cleaning
Now we’ll look at the second actor, the steam mop.
Steam mops are handy devices that take ordinary water and heat it up into steam.
The steam is then used to loosen up tough stains, such as dried out fruit juice or difficult dirt spots.
Using such technology is highly recommended for surfaces such as marble, due to its ability to remove messes without harsh cleaning chemicals.
So, is a steam mop safe to use on marble flooring? The answer is a resounding yes!
Steam Mop vs Steam Cleaner
However, beware the difference between a steam mop and a steam cleaner.
A steam cleaner makes use of hard brushes to give carpets a deep clean, but will scratch and destroy materials such as marble.
A steam mop, however, is usually fitted with micro-fiber pads, which are recommended for effective, but delicate cleaning.
The Best Steam Mop For Marble Floors
Yet, how do you know the steam mop you want will do the best job possible?
The best models out there are put through vigorous testing, like seeing how they perform on stains that are dried for 14 hours.
The floors are then observed for drying times, and the mops checked for how easy they are to clean, store, fill, and use them.
We think the best steam mop for marble floors is the Bissell Power Fresh Steam Mop.
Cleaners To Avoid Using On Marble Floors
Remember how certain substances are bad for marble floors?
Well, here’s a short list of some other things you should avoid using:
- Any abrasive cleaning agents (stuff used to clean tiles, grout, etc)
- Vacuums (many will scratch marble surfaces)
- Any acidic chemicals (vinegar, lemony cleaners)
- Chemicals recommended for granite (granite can handle acidic things, whereas marble can’t)
Should you have any marble flooring on the outside, be aware that you’ll need to clean those surfaces more frequently than the inside.
This is due to all the things nature can do to stain and wear down marble.
Another thing that needs cleaning and care of is the steam mop itself!
Aside from cleaning and changing out the mop pads, it’s also a good idea to fill the tank with distilled water whenever you can.
Regular water contains trace minerals, which could accumulate over time and get into your marble flooring.
Excessive moisture within the device can also foster mold growth.
To avoid these scenarios, empty the water tank after each use, and clean it out using vinegar once in a while to get rid of any abrasive minerals (rinse it out thoroughly to get rid of any excess acidity!).
Marble floors won’t always require vigorous steam mopping.
Sometimes it helps to simply take a dry mop and wipe away dust and other kinds of dry debris.
Should you wish to clean stains without a steam mop, make sure whatever chemical you’re using has a neutral PH of 7.
There are also some soaps out there designed specifically for cleaning marble.
Whichever you choose, use soft materials such as a micro-fiber cloth for both cleaning and drying.