Cleaning limestone

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Cleaning limestone

Postby Simon TL » Fri Jun 04, 2010 5:15 pm

We have been asked how to remove grout and blackcurrant stains from a limestone fireplace.

The advice here http://www.bricksandbrass.co.uk/diy_materials/stone/marble.php should do the trick for the blackcurrant. Or use one of the commercial stain removers eg Vanish Oxi Action Carpet & Upholstery Stain Remover. As long as it does not fizz – indicating an acid – on a test patch, it won’t do any harm.

The grout is trickier; I assume you mean that grout was applied in such a way it has gone into the limestone, rather than the grout being stained.

Being lime-based it will only respond in the same way as the limestone so you need to try a dilute acid eg clear vinegar or lemon juice with an alkali at the ready to stop the reaction. Readily available are Baking Soda (Sodium bicarbonate), ammonia or borax – dilute the latter two more. I would dab some on in the most hidden area as a test, scrub gently eg with an old toothbrush and as it gets clean enough, wash it with the alkali.

Anyone with better ideas? Thanks.
Simon TL
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