Nero Marquina Marble Cup Stains

by Craig Shaw
(Orangeville, Ontario, Canada)

QUESTION:

I just had a Nero Marquina marble counter top installed and it seems we already have cup rings on it. Is there any way to remove them?


ANSWER:

Hopefully the Nero Marquina marble countertop is not installed in your kitchen or else you are going to have a recurring problem.

What has happened is the marble has been "etched" by acidic substances, food and drink (coffee, soda, fruit juice, alcohol). Don't ask me how the acidic drink on the inside of a glass gets on the outside to damage the marble, but it is very common.

Most likely it's due to condensation carrying residue left on the outside of the glass from drinking down to the base.

Marble is composed of calcium carbonate, which is sensitive to acids and sometime alkalines (most cleaning products). The reaction eats into the marble destroying the polish.

Etching has NOTHING to do with sealing. Sealing helps retard staining, which occurs when a substance is absorbed into the marble.

Polished marble is not very absorbent. Most often it won't even take a sealer and thus will not stain very easy either.

To determine if and/or when to apply a sealer simply perform the water test.

If you do get a marble stain, it will be darker and you need to follow the instructions in the Removing Marble & Granite Stains ebook.

Marble will "etch" very easily though. Again... etching is not a stain. Nothing is absorbed. It is surface damage... a chemical burn, which will be dull and often lighter in color.

The only way to avoid etching is to avoid contact with acidic/alkaline substances. So, always use coasters and cutting boards and clean only with hot water or products safe for cleaning marble.

Removing Etch Mark Cup Rings

Most likely you'll be able to remove the cup ring etch marks with a marble polishing paste like this ETCH REMOVER / Marble Polishing Paste.

If the marble polish doesn't repair the etch marks, then the etching is too severe and you'll need a professional to re-polish the surface.

Also, if the marble is in your kitchen, I'd call the installer and raise heck about why they didn't warn you against putting it in your kitchen because of this problem. You may be able to get them to come re-polish it for you.

Let us know what happens via the comment link at the bottom of this page.

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