Removing Bleach Spots on Marble



bleach spots on marble table - marble etching

QUESTION:

Help! I used a bleach-based cleaner on my dark brown marble table in my dining room.

I sprayed it with the bleach cleaner and then got sidetracked. The cleaner and bottle sat for a few minutes on the marble left spots and rings that I can't out.

I've used other cleaners and bought a stainless steel/marble aerosol cleaner from Home Depot but that hasn't helped either.

How do I remove bleach spots in marble and make the tabletop shine again?

ANSWER:

Bleach and bleach-based cleaners have a high pH and can be very alkaline which isn't safe for cleaning marble.

The bleach has "etched" the marble causing the dull, light spots on your table top.

Marble is made of calcium carbonate, which reacts with acidic and alkaline substances like bleach.

The reaction happens in seconds and corrodes or eats away the marble essentially destroying the polished layer on the surface.

You can't "clean it off" because there isn't anything "on" the surface. The marble itself was burned by the bleach.

The marble itself must be repaired or restored back to its original finish (which is in this case a shiny "polished" finish).

The shiny polish on marble is created by friction and abrasion much like sanding wood. Thus, to restore the shine the marble will need to be re-polished using a product and procedure specific for this type of problem.

Use ETCH REMOVER / Marble Polishing product to remove
the spots and restore the shine.

It works like sanding wood to make the marble surface as smooth as possible. The smoother it gets the more it will shine.

The above product makes the surface as smooth and shiny as possible. It is the best on the market and should do the trick for you.

If it does not work, then you have severe damage / etching. Roughness to the touch is a tell-tale sign of more severe etching.

DIY repolishing with the above product can still work in some instances of severe etching, but the rougher the surface the less likely it can work.

If it is severe etching, you'll need to hire a marble restoration professional to hone down and re-polish your marble table.

Etch marks are not stains (click the link to learn the difference).

Nothing has been absorbed into the marble (like a "stain") or is on the marble and there is nothing to "clean." Etching is physical damage to the marble.

Future Cleaning

For future cleaning use products formulated specifically for marble cleaning.

I do not and would not trust products bought at your local box or grocery store that claim they are safe for marble. Very few in the stone industry use those products.

All the best marble and stone care products are available at local dealers or online. I have yet to see one that I would use or recommend in a regular store.

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