Australian Pearl Marble, Double-Resined

by Jane

Answers are in italics below questions:

My husband and I are building a new home. We have selected an Australian Pearl Marble from Italy for our Master Bathroom vanities, whirlpool surround, and within the tiled shower, we will be using this marble for the shower shelves and sill. On the label, the slabs say they are double-resined and vacuum-sealed.

a) Any information regarding Australian Pearl Marble that has been double-resined and vacuum processed will be greatly appreciated.

b) How does the resin treatment affect the potential for etching on marble?

Does not affect this. Marble can still etch.

c) Does the double-resin process eliminate the need for a sealer? Our intention is to squeegee and towel dry the shower after each use as we do now with our fiberglass unit. Do we need to extra careful about drying the marble areas, or does the resin treatment itself lend a good amount of protection from water issues?

Resin will often seal a stone. The only way to know for sure how porous a stone is and/or whether is needs a sealer is to test it.

In checking out the Marble Institute of America's guidelines for the care of natural stone, they make mention that resin-treated stone may or may not go well with sealers, depending on the type of resin that was used, and whether the sealer is compatible with it.

True, you would have to apply sealer to a sample to see what the results will be.

Our fabricator said they would use a solvent-based sealer on it, and that as the customer they would recommend I repeat the treatment once or twice a year.

Again, no reason to just blindly seal a stone. Test it first and also consider that polished marble is not very absorbent and often does not need and won't absorb a sealer, so no benefit.

And how often will you be eating or drinking or using products that could stain in your bathroom?

Given that it is polished marble in a bathroom, your chances of staining are minimal. You may still etch the marble, but that has nothing to do with sealing.

I'd consider sealing the shower shelves and maybe the vanities, but only if the test demonstrated that you should. The rest is overkill that won't provide you much (if any) added benefit.

Also, there's a good argument not to seal stone in a wet environment. It's just better for the long term integrity of the stone to let it breath.

If you do seal, I'd recommend a water-based sealer like these recommended marble & granite sealers that utilizes the latest chemical technology.

If the marble will take a sealer, these recommended marble & granite sealers will last a long time. You may never have to seal again in fact.

d) One of our shower shelves had some small surface scratches in it, which the fabricator is going to remove before installation. For future reference, is resined marble that easy to scratch? Can minor surface scratches be fixed by a homeowner? Does removal of the scratch also destroy the integrity of the resin feature?

Marble is much softer than granite and does scratch more easily. At certain angles you may see scratches in the resin and/or marble.

Homeowners can deal with minor scratches and etching by using ETCH REMOVER / Marble Polishing Paste.

e) Our stone is highly polished, but there are small lines and shapes on our stone, which do not have a gloss to them, and are matte in appearance. They correspond with actual lines/marks of the stone itself, and do not appear to be damaged. We are curious as to why the stone is glossy everywhere on the surface, except where there are these little squiggles and patches that are matte. It almost looks like there is something smeared on the stone, but indeed it is the stone itself. Is this typical for this type of stone?

Normal. I'm sure that if you run your hand over the surface, it is uniformly smooth and that you see these patches only at certain viewing angles. It's just a function of the different minerals in the stone and their reflectivity.

Thank you in advance for your help with my questions.

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