Tile is one of the most durable, and beautiful, floor coverings available on the market. Tile has become increasingly popular for kitchens and bathrooms, and many homeowners choose it for their hallways and other rooms as well. Travertine is a stone tile that comes in a wide variety of colors and patterns to mesh with any indoor design. Travertine tile care is important, however, as travertine tiles can be damaged and worn without special care.
Sealing Your Travertine
Travertine, like most tile, should be sealed before use. A properly sealed travertine tile will not wear or stain as easily as bare tiles. Using a proper sealant is a must for effective travertine tile care, as this tile has a tendency to wear and to develop small holes over time.
If you already have your travertine installed, it is important to know whether it has already been sealed. Calling the installer will let you know if their policy is to seal all travertine at the time of installation. If not, you will have to seal it yourself.
Tile sealant is available commercially practically anywhere. You can buy it at the major home improvement stores, hardware stores, or large discount stores. These sealants will form a thin protective barrier over the stone, protecting it from damage.
Tile sealers come in either matte or glossy finishes. Using sealants for travertine tile care requires a strict adherence to the directions. Some will have longer drying times or require more coats than others.
Fixing Swirl Marks in Travertine
Some travertine tiles will develop swirls on the surface. This can be caused by an unsatisfactory job done when the stone was cut. This can also happen when sealer is spread unevenly, or when there has been something else applied to the stone that dried unevenly. Swirl marks are fairly common in travertine, but this part of travertine tile care can be difficult to resolve.
The top portion of the stone can be honed in these instances and then resealed. This would be a much easier option that replacing the affected tiles, but it still may be costly as it should be done by a professional.
Some people also coat their travertine with a layer of epoxy or filler that has a pigment. This will provide a much more even surface color for the tile. When your travertine tile care requires a pigmented filler, be sure to apply it evenly, or you could wind up with the same discolorations again.
Fixing Holes in Travertine
Travertine begins with natural holes in it. The holes are then filled at the factory before the tile is sold. As the tile accumulates wear, some of the holes may reappear- especially in high traffic areas. As a result, travertine tile care often has to do with refilling these holes. But luckily, it is relatively easy for a homeowner to do this quickly and inexpensively.
Travertine holes may be very small, barely noticeable holes. They can also be large, oddly shaped holes that pose a trip hazard. Any size hole can be filled by grout or by epoxy resin.
Both types of filler are inexpensive and easy to apply. The trick to making this aspect of travertine tile care most effective is to find one that best matches the travertine color.