How to Polish Etched Marble

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Marble is a beautiful stone to use in your home. It wears well, but it is prone to etching---or losing its shine---from cleaning products with acidic ingredients, and acidic substances such as juice, wine, vinegar and coffee. Even if your marble is sealed, it can still be etched. Marble polishing products are available for sale, which might work on mild etch marks, but they won't repair most etchings. If the etching is too deep, follow a procedure for repairing cracks. Run your finger over the etched area. If it doesn't dip below the surface, the steps below should restore your marble's original shine.

Things You'll Need

  • Non-abrasive sponge
  • Two buckets of clean water
  • Mild liquid dish washing detergent
  • Several chamois or soft dry cloths
  • Tin dioxide (also called grade polishing powder)
  • Mix one bucket of water with a few drops of dish washing detergent, and wash the etched area with the soapy water and a clean sponge.

  • Rinse the area thoroughly with a clean sponge and the other bucket of water. Repeat rinsing if necessary to remove any remaining soap.

  • Dry the etched area with a clean dry cloth.

  • Dampen a soft cloth. Felt or chamois works especially well for polishing. Make sure you wring out the cloth so excess water is removed and the cloth is not dripping.

  • Dip the damp cloth into the tin dioxide powder.

  • Rub the tin dioxide onto the etched area, using a small circular motion. Apply normal pressure. Do not grind the dioxide into the marble.

  • Rinse the cloth, wring out, and reapply more tin dioxide. Alternatively, you can fold under the used portion of the cloth, and use a clean damp area of the same cloth.

  • Repeat Step 6 and 7 until shine is restored.

  • Rinse the area with clean water and a clean sponge.

  • Dry thoroughly with a clean, dry cloth.

  • Buff with another chamois or clean, dry, soft cloth for a final polish.

Tips & Warnings

  • If a spill occurs on marble, especially one with acidic ingredients such as vinegar, juice, coffee or wine, blot it up immediately, rinse with clean water, and then dry thoroughly with a clean, dry, soft cloth.
  • Use coasters on marble counters and tabletops.
  • Do not clean marble with vinegar solutions.

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