Polishing Black Marble

QUESTION:

Once you have removed scratches and etching, what do you use to give the marble that high gloss, glass look?


ANSWER:

Marble polishing is a confusing issue that is usually misunderstood.

Most people think that the "high-gloss glass look" is achieved by applying a coating or wax to the marble surface.

This is not true.

What you are asking is equivalent to asking "what product do I use to make my mirror reflective?"

Well, everyone knows that glass is made into a mirror that is shiny and reflective. You can spray windex on a piece of glass all you want, but you'll never turn it into a highly reflective mirror.

It's the same with marble and stone. The shiny polished "finish" on marble is part of the marble itself... not from applying a "polish". But the use of the word "polish" definitely confuses the issue.

The shine is achieved via a polishing process (much like sanding wood smooth) on big machines or by skilled and experienced professionals using special abrasives and tools.

Here's more in-depth info on our marble polishing page.

The long and short is that marble can be finished with a number of different surface types. The shiny reflective "polished" finish is but one.

It's very common so people often think that all marble is supposed to be shiny and if it isn't you just need to apply or re-apply the "polish" product.

No... if marble is not shiny it is either meant to be that way (a honed, tumbled, hammered, etc. finish) or it has been damaged by using the wrong cleaning products or from contact with acidic foods/drinks.

You can restore the shine on such etched dull spots using the ETCH REMOVER / Marble Polishing product if your marble was originally polished to a shine.

And this is likely your issue, so... this is what you use get the gloss back... (but not create it in the first place).

But, if your black marble currently has a matte and non-reflective surface (most likely a honed finish), then you'll have to call in a pro to re-finish the surface to a "polished" surface.

There are products like the Topical Polish/Shine Enhancer that can be applied to a polished/shiny finish to enhance the shine, but it won't "create" the high-gloss glass look you desire.

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Spots on Black Marble Tile in Kitchen

by Carolyn
(Wyoming)

QUESTION:

I have black marble tile as my kitchen counter. It has been in for about 6 months.

I now notice rings, light areas and spots that are somewhat white and have dulled the surface.

Even the feel of the tile is rough as compared to the un-affected tiles.

When this was laid, no sealer was applied by the contractor. I didn't know about the care of marble tile, just loved the look of it.

I need to know what I can to do restore what is damaged and what to do to stop any further damage. I am desperate!!!!!!!!!

Carolyn

ANSWER:

Carolyn, take a deep breath and relax because I have solutions for you.

And if it makes you feel any better, you are not alone. I can't count how many times someone has told me, "I didn't know anything about marble, just loved the look and now I have XXX problem."

Marble is beautiful and there is no reason not to install marble in many areas of your home, except you must know what you are dealing with first and once you do you'll realize that for kitchen countertops, marble is not the best choice.

Unfortunately, many consumers are getting the wrong information or simply no information. The whole point of this website and forum is to help consumers get the right info so they can make the best choice, avoid problems and really get the most out of their stone.

Here's what has happened...

Marble is sensitive to acidic foods and drinks. When in contact with acids, marble will corrode or "etch." The acid actually eats into the marble causing dull spot that are lighter in color and sometimes rough.

I'm sure you've tried to "clean" these and nothing happened. They are not "stains." Nothing has been absorbed into the marble. It's physical damage that must be repaired.

How to remove etch marks...

You'll need to buy a good marble polishing compound like ETCH REMOVER / Marble Polishing Product which is made specifically to remove etch marks and light scratches.

And you are right. You also need to learn how to properly protect, clean and maintain your marble so you can avoid problems in the future.

Fortunately I've written an ebook (that you can download) with exactly you in mind. And since your marble countertop is in the kitchen, you have a bigger challenge and will definitely need this guidance.

The Cleaning Marble Secrets ebook will teach you everything you need to know about etching, removing etch marks, sealing, stains, scratches along with every other topic related to marble maintenance.

Every marble owner should have this information. It will save you lots of time, money and headaches.

So Carolyn, get the Etch Remover Product and the manual and follow the step-by-step instructions. For most etch marks, it's a fairly simple DIY project once you know how.

Use the "comment" link below or contact me if you have further questions.

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Polishing & Cleaning Black Marble Tile

by Theresa
(Jacksonville, FL)

QUESTION:

Marble color - Black, Marble color-Gray: Black marble is stained with food acids such as mustard, etc... from catering......

Some black marble is very dull needs polishing. Gray marble is dull need polishing.

I also would like a maintenance program for marble tile.
Thanks, Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena

ANSWER:

Theresa, the marble in question has been etched from the acidic foods as you suspect. This is a different issue than "staining," although you may have stains too.

If the etch marks are not too rough (severe damage) then you can repair them and get the shine and color back with the Etch Remover Compound (see links noted above and below).

It's easy to use.

If large areas of the marble (whole countertops, floors) are dull, then professional restoration may be required.

For a marble maintenance program: Our marble maintenance manual Cleaning Marble Secrets will teach you everything you need to know to properly protect, clean and maintain your marble.

It includes step-by-step instruction for all procedures and includes simple solutions for just about any problem you could encounter (including etching & staining of course), marble safe products, etc.

Good Luck,
Ryan

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Re-Polishing Black Marble Counter Top

by Renee Shmuel
(Israel)

QUESTION:

I have accidentally set a pot with an acidic material on the bottom of the pot on the black marble counter top in the kitchen we are renting in Israel.

Now I have a ring from the pot onto the marble and some of the finish is gone.

What to do without having to replace the whole countertop??

ANSWER:

Usually, if the shiny finish is removed that means the acid has eaten into the marble. It's a corrosive process called "etching". If the etching is severe (rough to the touch) you'll probably need to hire a professional stone restorer to re-polish the area.

However, severe etching is rare, so you should be able to restore the color and shine just fine using the Etch Remover Compound (see links above) designed just for this problem.

If the marble is honed (a matte, non-reflective surface), then the etch remover can't be used and you'll have to follow the simple instructions in the Removing Etch Marks e-book or call a pro.

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Whitish Spots from Spilled Alcohol on Black Marble

by June
(Lexington, Ky.)

QUESTION:

We were having a quiet wonderful party and I knocked over some champagne and wine on my beautiful black, Italian marble coffee table which has left it with spotting (whitish).

I have applied mayonaise on the tabletop - it looks as if it is helping a good bit, can you recommend anything else?

ANSWER:

Marble is sensitive to acidic foods and drinks and will react chemically when in contact with such substances.

This is a corrosive reaction called "etching". If you Search this site you'll learn all about etching.

The good news is that etching can almost always be repaired using the Etch Remover mentioned above, which will restore the color and shine on shiny "polished" marble, travertine, limestone and onyx.

Basically the corrosive action of the wine and champagne destroyed the polished surface layer of marble.

Marble polishing (done on big machines... not by applying a potion or lotion or "polish") makes the color darker and deeper, so when the polish is destroyed the marble looks lighter in color and dull.

So, remove the mayonaise. I'm not sure where you got that idea or what it is supposed to do, but it isn't doing anything except maybe staining the marble if you left it sit there for a few hours or more.

And use the Etch Remover product. That'll take care of it for you.

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Black Marble Bar Top Beer Stain

QUESTION:

I have a new bar and the top is black shiney marble. How do I get a spot off it and make it shiny again? A beer leaked on it left a spot.

ANSWER:

Beer like many alcoholic drinks is acidic. Marble is reactive to acids and the acid will corrode the marble countertop destroying the shiny polished layer leaving a dull and discolored spot or ring.

It's called "etching" and it's a known marble cleaning issue. But this is different than marble stains.

Too late now, but because marble etches it isn't a good choice for a wet bar top.

Luckily, you can use ETCH REMOVER / Marble Polishing product to remove etch marks.

Be sure to use coasters diligently and store alcohol, etc. on a tray. But the above paste is easy to use and will restore all but the rare severe (rough to touch) etch marks, so it good to have around.

For severe etching your only option is to hire a marble maintenance pro, but again severe etching is not common.

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