"Understanding Your Home" by Building Inspector Mark Visser
Home Page
About Us
Fireplace/Wood Stove
Heating and Cooling
Windows and Doors
Marble countertops. Marble vanity tops. Marble countertop sealers

Marble Kitchen Countertops and Bathroom Vanity Tops

Need more information?
Use our search box
Marble countertops. Marble vanity tops. Marble countertop sealers
Marble is a metamorphic rock composed of recrystallized calcite or dolomite carbonate minerals. When we hear the word marble our first thoughts may be about sculptures and palaces. However, marble has been used since Roman times to provide class and elegance to bathrooms and kitchens in upscale homes. Marble vanity tops and marble kitchen tops are still available but lost some of its popularity when other natural stone and engineered (man-made) stone tops became available for the public at large.
Some marble can be very hard and vitreous, like granite or ceramic tile, while others can be easily scratched and stained.
Marble tops are very strong, require proper installation and are available in many styles and colours. Natural marble is relatively soft compared to marble and is porous. Unless it is vigorously cleaned after each use and sealed annually it will not stand up to heavy use in the kitchen. Because of marble's limitations and past popularity, manufacturers have come up with an excellent alternative product called, cultured marble.

Marble is dominantly calcium carbonate, and is virtually depleted of uranium. Unlike granite, there is no radon in marble and therefore there is no radon gas emitted into the air.

Cleaning. Always use a PH neutral stone cleaner. Do not use regular cleaning products that can etch the stone surface over time and never use abrasive cleaners that will damage and dull the finish.
Sealing. Acidic foods like tomatoes, citrus fruits, and even vinegar will damage marble. If your marble kitchen countertop is not properly sealed it will leave ugly spots, rings and spill marks. Sealing will prevent stains and damage and keep marble countertops looking beautiful.
Marble vanity or kitchen counter tops should be resealed on an annual basis or when water fails to bead when splashed on the surface.
Permanent sealers. There are sealers that are offering "permanent" acid-resistant and anti-etch treatment for marble vanity tops and marble kitchen countertops. Read the labels and check if there is a written warranty offered. In my humble opinion these sealers may last longer than the run-of-the-mill sealers but no sealer will last "forever".
Warning. Marble is porous and can stain easily. "Forget" to apply and reapply a good quality sealer and marble can become a nightmare in a bathroom or kitchen environment.

* Marble has a tendency to stain and scratch but with proper sealing can be used for bathrooms and kitchens.
* Marble, without regular sealing, is so porous and absorbent that it will soak up stains that are almost impossible to clean.
* Spills of mild acids such as lemon juice or vinegar should be wiped up immediately even if the marble countertop has been treated with a sealer.

Back to Top