Limestone Countertops - Features
Caring for limestone surfaces
Limestone is probably a material that you associate more with great monuments or architecture, rather than a countertop for your home. Canada is the main source of quality limestone in North America.
Limestone resists humid climates very well, so its use in hot and stuffy kitchens makes sense. However, since one of limestone’s main ingredients is the highly reactive calcium carbonate, it does not mix well with acidic solutions. Prolonged exposure to low pH (acidic) substances will cause erosion of all limestone surfaces. Limestone is also an extremely heavy material, which makes manufacturing and installation more expensive.
Being a natural stone product like granite or marble, the range of available colors for limestone countertops is dictated by what is currently being quarried around the world. There are, however, some shades found in limestone that do not exist in other natural stones, such as particularly vibrant blues.
Different varieties of limestone are less porous; they will absorb less liquid and last longer. Some of the best limestone used in countertops is almost as hard as granite. But no matter what type of limestone you choose for your countertop, it is important to have the surface properly sealed to prevent acidic solutions such as vinegar, mustard and citrus juices staining or eroding your precious investment.
How to Remove Stains from your Limestone Countertop
Being porous, Limestone can be easily stained, unless it is properly sealed. However, removing stains from Limestone countertops is not as difficult as you may imagine. In fact their very porous nature allows the use of what is called a poultice to re-absorb the stain out of the limestone. Poultices are either made with a powered whitening agent like hydrogen peroxide or a chemical reducing agent. The poultice is wet with distilled water and then applied to the stain and allowed to dry for 48 hours. After this time the stain will have been absorbed into the poultice, which can then be rinsed away – along with the stain.