Limestone is a sedimentary rock that can contain inclusions such as shells and pebbles. It is a calcium based stone that consists of layers upon layers of silt that has been compressed over time.
Travertine is a type of limestone. It is a sedimentary rock formed where there once was moving water such as hot spring beds or waterfalls. The result is holes in the stone from gas bubbles trapped in the layers of calcium. These holes are the main identifying characteristic of this stone group.
Limestone and travertine are extremely versatile, easily fitting into any style of design from classic to rustic. The color varies from light cream to reddish brown, gold, or even silver blue-grey. These stones are predominantly quarried in Turkey, Italy, France, Peru, and China.
Travertine and Limestone are best used for floors, light use countertops, showers, shower floors, and backsplashes.
TEXTURES & STYLES
Brushed: The surface of the tile has been treated with a silicon carbide brush that removes the softer material and gives the stone a soft satin finish with textural variation. The result is very beautiful, elegant look. Brushed tiles can be found with a couple of different edge styles; chiseled and straight edge. A brushed and chiseled travertine definitely has old world charm.
HONED: A honed travertine is what most people think of when they think travertine. The surface comes pre-filled from the factory making it smooth and matte. Occasionally honed travertine can come unfilled showing all of the little cavities that are naturally found in the stone. Most likely the stone will be filled when it is installed. Honed tiles can be found with a couple of different edge styles; chiseled and straight edge.
Polished: Polished travertine has a shiny surface. The stone is able to be polished but the filled areas generally keep a more matte finish and is almost always is found with a straight edge.
Tumbled: Tumbled travertine comes in many different sizes making it ideal for backsplashes and wall accents. Due to the manufacturing process, tumbled travertine is found in sizes smaller than twelve inch and has rounded edges and open pits and pores. This tile is very comfortable to walk on and is a popular choice for shower floors. The holes and pits are generally filled with the grout of your choice during installation.
Split Face: Split face travertine has a very rough, highly textured surface making it a good option for fireplaces, cladding, and accents. Instead of being cut into a tile, the stone is chiseled along a fissure to split open revealing a natural tile face. This process can only be done to smaller pieces of stone, limiting the sizes this style can be found.
With a little maintenance your stone can last an eternity. Test all cleaners and sealers in an inconspicuous area before full application.
Sealing & Cleaning
When it comes to cleaning your travertine floors, there are some basic travertine maintenance strategies to keep your stone looking great. You don’t necessarily need to deep clean your floors, as general upkeep will help keep your stone in pristine condition.
Sweeping, vacuuming and just water mopping is the best way to keep your stone dirt free. When it comes to light cleaning there are several different products and methods that we recommend. Miracle Sealants Company offers a wide variety of supplies that you can purchase through our showroom.
Stonetech Stone & Tile Cleaner/Revitalizer: This product is used diluted in clean water in a 15:1 ratio. For floors you can mop it on and leave it wet for ten minutes, agitating periodically with a nylon brush. Use a wet vac to clean the floor and rinse the floors with clean water. This is a pH neutral cleaner.
Mira Soap: Mira Soap is a one of a kind product that over use and time adds a beautiful patina to the surface of the stone. Used as directed, this no rinse natural stone soap will react with the surface to create a protective film that will enhance the natural patina.
Miracle Sealants: Used for deep cleaning, Liquid Poultice is designed to penetrate deep into the pores of the stone to safely lift out dirt, mold, and stains. Apply both the A & B parts of this system per instructions on the label. Allow to stand for a minimum of 40 minutes agitation with a nylon brush. Use a wet vac to extract all the dirty remains.
As for sealing, Baptista Tile strongly recommends sealing your travertine stone with a penetrating sealer. The need to reseal will vary depending on porosity, density, foot traffic, and cleaners used. A general rule of thumb is every three years for floors and once a year for showers and countertops. There are two different options that we would suggest.
Stonetech Enhance & Seal: This color enhancing, penetrating sealer is designed to leave the stone with the color it is when it is wet but with a matte finish.
Stonetech Impregnator Pro/Bullet Proof: Penetrating sealers have an added polymer that is large enough to clog the open pores of travertine and limestone, providing a durable, natural finish.
Have questions regarding travertine maintenance? We’re here to help. Simply use the contact form and we’ll be in touch.