Marble is a beautiful, durable stone with a timeless appeal. But it can also be sensitive to stains, water damage, and other chemicals. In today’s article, we would address 5 reasons you should not use bleach on marble surfaces.
Marble is a highly porous stone so using bleach on it can result in the marble weakening, discoloring, and can lead to the marble cracking and chipping with time. What you would want to use instead are natural stone cleaners specially formulated for marble and other natural stones.
To learn more about the reasons you should not use bleach on your marble surfaces and some of the best alternatives to go for, keep reading this article.
1. Bleach Can Cause Marble To Weaken
Bleach can strip away the natural oils and other vital ingredients that hold the stone together and makes it durable. This then causes the natural stones like marble or granite and can cause them to weaken, which can lead to cracks or fissures.
This is usually going to be bad news as the marble may be severely damaged and not worth saving.
When you see this happening with your marble surfaces, it is time to call an expert for help because they are going to need professional attention quickly before the damage has caused irreparable harm.
So you definitely want to avoid bleach on your marble surfaces to avoid any natural stone becoming weaker or more susceptible to cracks.
If you want something strong and durable for your marble surfaces, I will always recommend using a product that is specially formulated for the stone material like Miracle Sealant’s Marble & Granite Restorer.
It will seal in the natural oils of this gorgeous surface while enhancing its brightness and beauty with minimal effort on your part.
2. Bleach Can Cause Discoloration On Marble Surfaces
Bleach is a harsh chemical that can bleach out the color of marble surfaces.
Some people mistakenly think that bleach can remove any stains on the marble but this is not true and so become victims of this notion.
Using a bleaching agent like chlorine, oxalic acid, or potassium permanganate will not only damage your marble surface and cause discoloration but will also leave behind unsightly white spots.
This can be a pretty hard thing to deal with as it will take a lot of sanding and scrubbing to be able to possibly remove those spots.
Meaning once the surface of your marble has been damaged all that you can do to salvage the situation is to remove the surface of the marble or completely start over if you’re OCD like me.
There are better ways to clean marble surfaces like using natural cleaners, mild dish detergent, or surface cleaner that is specifically for marble. These products won’t strip away any color from your marble and leave behind unwanted stains.
These products are safe and will as well not leave any residue on the floor which can cause accidents with pets or kids walking around barefoot.
The best part is these products also protect against future damages from water, grease, and other sources of dirt so it is well worth investing in for longevity purposes!
3. Bleach Can Erode The Delicate Surface Of Marble
Marble surfaces whether floor, countertop, tabletops, etc, are usually sealed with a sealant that helps to protect the marble from damage.
Bleach can actually erode and strip away this protective layer of the stone, which will allow for stains to form in on your beautiful marble floor or countertop.
In most cases, you will not notice the harm the bleach does on your marble surface until it’s too late and you will need to resurface and re-seal the surface.
So if you have mistakenly applied bleach to your marble surface you would want to quickly apply the sealer again even if you applied the sealer days or just hours ago. This helps in preventing future damages from occurring to the stone which can take years off of its lifespan.
What you need to take note of is bleach should only ever be used on non-porous substances such as glass, aluminum, etc. One of the best ways to clean off light dirt or dust is with a microfiber cloth instead of any harsh chemical cleaners like bleach.
In other cases, dilute ½ teaspoon per gallon of water for light duty cleaning jobs where heavy dirt and grime are not an issue.
4. Bleach Can Cause Marble To Crack And Chip Away
Another imminent trouble you will be dealing with if you use bleach on marble is that it will cause the stone to break and chip away. This happens because of how highly concentrated bleach can be when used for cleaning purposes.
Bleach does not discriminate against surfaces or material types so one should exercise caution before using this type of product on any surface, especially ones as delicate as marble.
This can be a whole lot worse if the marble has a pattern or design on it. This is because those patterns and designs will be attacked as well and can fade away or disappear altogether.
If bleach is also applied is applied in too heavy a concentration then there are risks of the surface being damaged by chemical reactions caused by too much contact time between solvent and solute molecules.
5. Bleach Could Be Harmful To You
In addition to bleach being corrosive to stone surfaces, bleach is toxic. It’s made up of chlorine gas which reacts strongly with other substances. This means it doesn’t just mess up your countertops but could even be harmful for you!
There are many people who are allergic to bleach. Even if you’re not allergic, the chlorine in bleach can be a cause of headaches and respiratory irritation.
Many claim bleach has the ability to cut through even the most stubborn stains and leave your clothes, dishes, tile floors, or any other surface squeaky clean.
But the truth is bleach or cleaning products with bleach are not without risks. Though there have been many reports about bleach damaging surfaces like marble, it can lead to a number of different problems for those who use it regularly.
If you think someone might be using too many chemicals on their marble countertop then chances are they may also be doing this with all the other types of furniture in their home. So it’s worth checking out what they’re up to before going over again for that barbecue.
What Are Some Safe Alternatives To Bleach From Marbles
It is clear bleach will do a lot of harm not only to your marble or natural stone surfaces but also to you the user. But the good news is there are so many other household items you can use to safely to clean your marble surface without any collateral damage.
Natural Stone Cleaning Products
Simply getting a natural stone cleaning product from Amazon, will help remove a lot of the guesswork. All you do is go to your nearest hardware store and pick up a natural stone cleaner.
You’ll be able to find one for each type of cleaning need you have as they are pretty specific when it comes to the needs of your marble or other types of stones.
The best thing about getting a natural stone cleaning product is that it will remove stains, keep your marble looking shiny and even smell better.
Natural stone cleaners use things like hydrogen peroxide to break down the dirt you have on your surface while also removing any buildup that could be causing an odor or discoloration.
Another great thing about natural stone cleaners is most are made with all-natural ingredients so there’s no need for them to contain bleach which can weaken both your marble and other surfaces around it if too much is used.
If you want a safe way of making sure you’re cleaning off as many different types of bacteria found in regular household items without using chemicals then this type of cleaner might just be what you’ve been searching for!
Mild Soap and Water
Mild soap and water are a great alternative to bleach when it comes to marble and other natural stone surfaces. Some people use dish soap but any mild detergent will do the trick as long as you are not using too much of it.
Water is never a bad option for cleaning such surfaces, either in its pure state or heated up a bit.
All you do is wipe down your marble surface with a solution of the mild dish soap before going over it with a damp cloth dipped in water.
After this step is sure to rinse off everything well and then dry your marble cleanly from all moisture so that nothing remains behind on its surface. Doing this is important to eliminate any moisture which could cause damage later on. It’s important not to forget this last step.
Warm water by itself is such a great alternative to bleach.
It is just as effective at removing dirt and stains from marble while also being much gentler on the stone.
Plus, unlike bleach which has a chemical reaction with the surface of your marble, warm water will not cause any damage to it whatsoever.
All you need to do is simply use a cloth dipped in hot water or steam cleaner for an even deeper cleanse.
It should be noted that this method may require some scrubbing to be able to get rid of tough stains. If there’s one thing you will learn about cleaning your marble and other natural stone surfaces is that you don’t always have to overdo it! Soap isn’t always necessary when cleaning marble surfaces like floors, countertops, etc.
Baking soda is a natural household cleaner which can be used to clean marble surfaces. It’s safe for use on other stones such as granite and limestone (although it should not be used on travertine).
To get started, you’ll need some baking powder in addition to water; the ratio of these two ingredients will depend on how dirty your surface is but usually, equal parts are enough!
Let the mixture sit for about 20 minutes before scrubbing with a cloth dipped in hot-water. Afterward, make sure to rinse everything thoroughly with plain water because any residue left will cause the marble to gradually deteriorate.