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Professional tips on cleaning natural stone

Natural stone can help create beautiful surfaces in your home, adding character to any kitchen, bathroom or floor. But in order to maintain its natural beauty, it’s important to know how to properly clean and maintain it.

Catherine Gervino, of TLC Cleaning Service Inc., a highly rated New York City house cleaning company, says because natural stone is porous, she’d recommend using pH neutral soap and water as a cleaning solution.

“Make sure to dry the stone very well to avoid water spots,” the New York City house cleaning expert warns. “There are also a number of products specifically designed to clean natural stone. They can be found at most hardware stores. Remember not to use any oil or acid based cleaners, and remember to remove dirt and grime regularly. Leaving dirt and grime to penetrate the stone will make it almost impossible to clean.”

Tampa house cleaning professional Joanne Braccio, owner of highly rated Maid to Order in St. Petersburg, Fla., agrees and says a natural pH detergent or pure soap, such as Ivory, and water should work fine.

“[The] first and most important rule would be to blot spills immediately,” she says.

Braccio says for floors, dust mopping frequently to remove sand, dirt and grit is important, as the abrasiveness of these particles could be damaging.

“You can always use a vacuum attachment for all the hard to reach spots,” she suggests.

If you plan on deep cleaning stone floors, Braccio says make sure to rinse and dry thoroughly with a soft, clean cloth.

“Too much cleaner or soap may leave a film and cause streaks,” she says. “Change water frequently. Dirty water contains sand that can get into your mop and scratch the stone while you clean.”

Braccio also says to avoid acidic products, like lemon juice, vinegar and most household cleaners.

“Cleaners not specifically designed for stone can permanently damage the stone,” she says. “Avoid any products containing abrasive cleaners, dry or soft. “These products will dull all stone’s luster.”

If you’re unsure how to clean the stone in your house or are dealing with a delicate surface, consider hiring a professional house cleaning company to help. Angie’s List can help connect you with a highly rated and recommended house cleaner in your area.

Members like John Stiles have written thousands of reports on recent hiring experiences. Stiles recently hired Amanda’s Cleaning Service of Cambridge, Mass.

"Amanda [Aguiar] is one of the nicest and most thorough house cleaners we have ever met," he says of the Boston area house cleaner. "She and her team pay attention to even the smallest details. We have been using her to clean our oversized condo for six months now, and she has done a terrific job every time."

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