Slate is a natural stone that is a mix of small silt and clay particles that bonded together in high heat and pressure. This gives slate a smooth texture, and due to the particles being so small it makes it difficult for liquids to penetrate the slate. This makes it stain resistant, which is perfect for areas that are high traffic, the kitchen, and bathrooms. The great news is that it comes in various types of colors and textures. This is caused by impurities in the stone. Besides slate being stain resistant, another reason it is desirable is due to the texture being slightly rough and making it less slippery. The cleaning process for slate flooring is very simple. Simply vacuum or sweep up any debris, dust, or dirt. But make sure that the vacuum used is specifically for stone floors and that the broom used is soft bristles.
From there, you can use a dust mop that has a rag mop with cotton fibers, and moving in a single directions, sweep up the remaining dust and dirt. For the mopping process, you can mix a couple gallons of warm water with either a specified slate floor cleanser or a mild soap, such as Dawn. If your floor does not seem to be very dirty, using just warm water will work as well.
Start mopping, but do it slowly and make sure that you frequently wring out the mop head so you do not just spread dirty water throughout the floor. After this, if the floor has soap suds, rinse it using a clean mop and clean warm water. You can allow the floor to air dry. If after this process you still see stains in areas of the slate flooring, this is more than likely a stain in the grout than the slate itself. Depending on if the grout is colored or not will depend on what cleansing product you will use. For grout that has been colored, it is best to test them out in grout that is not very noticeable and make sure it will not discolor the grout.
If the grout is not colored, then you can use a simple solution of half water and half hydrogen peroxide. Pour some of the solution in the stained area, and allow it to sit for about 15 minutes before wiping it up. If the stain remains, consider a second treatment or a specialized grout cleaner. Cleaners to avoid would be any that have an acidic base to it. These can cause your slate flooring to become discolored or even damage it. Do not use any scrub brushes or anything with metal or stiff bristles. They can scratch the surface of the slate and damage it. Make sure with all your cleaning tools that they are clean so you do not just push dirt around or spreading it. Also, to prevent any buildup of dirt or debris, that you sweep and/or dust mop on a regular bases.
Once you have completely cleaned your slate floors, make sure that you do not need to reapply a sealant. The sealant will not only prevent from dirt and debris from getting in all the cracks and holes, but also prevent any liquids spilled from soaking into the stone. It will also protect the grout for dirt, stains and grime, making it easier to be able to keep it looking clean. Sealant will also give your slate flooring that beautiful shine.
When in doubt, do not hesitate to call a professional like Floor ReNew Houston. Please feel free to contact us today to schedule your appointment or if you have any further questions.
Floor ReNew Houston
Natural Stone Restoration
4530 W. 34th Street Suite C
Houston, TX 77092