FOLLOW THE COLOR TO FIND YOUR Q&A
Q.1 to Q.4 info about FABERCA
Q.5 to Q.20 info about SEALER and PROTECTION
Q.21 to Q.49 info about MAINTENANCE and STAIN REMOVER
Q.50 to Q.60 info about MATERIALS
INFO ABOUT FABERCA
Q1. Where is Faberca located? Ans. We are located in Kb1 at Kaki Bukit avnue3, Singapore. Tel. 68448473 Fax. 68448475
Q2. Do you provide service? Ans. Yes we do! Trough our customers - SPECIALIZED STONE RESTAURATION NETWORK.
Q3. Which is your office working time? Ans. Monday to Friday 8:30 am. to 6:00 pm.
Q4. If we want to visit your office to ask solution or information how to do? Ans. You call office in advance (Tel. 68448473) to fix an appointmet and to be sure that one of our technician will be available. In the same time we suggest to bring pictures and if possible the material used to get the right answer. Some time may be needed to visit your site to have the final answer.
- INFO ABOUT SEALER AND PROTECTION
Q.5 How to protect the marbles and stones from the stains? Ans. We have appropriate sealer for any kind of material and surface finishing, natural look or colour enhancer.
Q.6 Why should I seal my natural stone? Ans. A protected stone, or tile and grout, will be easier to clean and resist staining. Considering the investment you have done, why wouldn't you provide the surface with the maximum protection possible? If you did not lay your sensitive stone yet it is advisable to seal before setting it.
Q.7 Do Faber have green sealer approved in Singapore? Ans. Yes Faberca have 5 different type of sealers already approved from SGBP obtaining 3 green ticks - HIDRO SST - PRO TEX WB - HIDRO 500 ECO - LIMESTONE DENSIFIER - HIDRO PROTECTOR MM
Q.8 Is it necessary to seal stone? Ans. Although there are no guarantees against staining, penetrating stone sealers do offer some degree of protection against staining. No stone is created equal and so there are various porosity levels depending on the particular stone. Granites tend to be denser resulting a more suitable natural stone for high traffic areas. Proper cleaning and maintenance is the best way to ensure the prevention of stains from oil, wine, or other liquids on the surface. Marble, limestone, and travertine require more care and attention.
Q.9 What is a sealer? Ans. A sealer is like an invisible barrier for your stone and/or grout. Sealer will decrease the likelihood that anything can stain or harm your surface. We believe that you should always use a high quality stone sealer, allowing you to retain the natural beauty of the surface.
Q.10 Why does my granite stain? Ans. Granite is like any other natural stone; it can be porous, and is absorbent to some degree. Stones that have more swirls or veins tend to be more porous and absorbent. These swirls and veins show the movement of the stone's active molten history. Generally, granites with smaller crystals are more absorbent than granites that have large crystals.
Q.11 How can I know if my stone has already been sealed? Ans. Apply a drop of water at least 10 mm. in diameter on the top of the stone and let stand for at least 15 minutes. If the stone did not darken then your stone is probably sealed against water-based stains. Testing for oil repellency is not as simple because if your stone is not sealed, you will have an oil stain.
Q.12 How do I choose a proper sealer? Ans. We carry many types of sealers and can recommend the proper type. Our sealers are available to sample in our showroom. If you bring a piece of your stone to us we can help to create a test sample using different finishes and sealers prior to purchasing.
Q.13 Is one coat of sealer enough for natural stone? Ans. When sealing a very dense stone, one coat will be sufficient. Most stones and grout will require two coats, depending from the sealer choosen. Only few of the more absorbent stones may need additional coats to be properly sealed.
Q.14 How often do I need to seal my stone? Ans. Usually after you sealed your stone with our sealer and have maintained it with top cleaner your sealer should last up to 3-5 years. Use and ongoing maintenance greatly affect sealer durability. As a result, heavily used surfaces should be sealed annually for optimal protection.
Q.15 Is it really necessary to seal stone outdoors? What do I need to protect it? Outdoors can be very harsh on your stone. There are things that can affect your stone that are visible like pollen and dirt and then there are things that are not quite that easy to see like UV Rays. You make an investment to your home by putting natural stone in your yard, so it would be worth to seal the stone and preserve its natural beauty. Sealing with our sealers will give you maximum protection against rain, other chemicals, oils from trees and plants, & all of those wonderful and fun filled outside barbecues. We have a variety of sealers to choose from. We have sealers that will preserve your natural look, sealers that will enhance the natural look, and high gloss lacquer to give it that immaculate shine. As the home owner you need to decide what look you would like to achieve.
Q.16 I like the specific look and feel of my countertop. Will treatment with the sealer change the look or feel of my countertop? Ans. Our Stones Sealer provides maximum “natural look” protection. It creates an invisible barrier against water- and oil-based stains without darkening or changing the stone’s appearance.
Q.17 My polished marble/limestone/travertine is sealed but still has marks – why? Ans. Penetrating stone sealing products protect the stone from staining. Often the “stains” are not stains but are etches. These stones are acid-sensitive, and any acid will burn the polish and create a dull or frosty surface. A good example is red wine. On an unsealed stone you will get a red stain and an etch, but on a sealed stone you will only get the etch. Penetrating sealers sit below the surface of the stone and prevent the red wine acid penetrating deeply to set up a stain, but will allow the acid to burn the surface. Acid can be in many forms, as simple as fruit or wine and salad dressings, or in the bathroom, urine may do the damage. This damage can be repaired.
Q.18 Will a sealer make my floor slippery? Ans. A sealer such as penetrating sealer is designed to penetrate below the surface of the stone. Because of this, it will not make your natural stone flooring any more or less slippery. It won't change the color either.
Q.19 Which from your sealer is suitable to enhance the colors on the stone and give protection in the same time? Ans. You can find an incredible STONE COLOUR ENHANCE MATT FINISH here. This will give your tiles the "wet look". Make sure to wait a few weeks after the installation of your tiles before applying the color enhancer.
Q.20 If I remove the tile and carpet covering my terrazzo flooring can it be refurbished? If so, how? Ans. Yes. You need the services of a natural stone restoration professional to regrind and refinish your terrazzo flooring.
- INFO ABOUT STAIN REMOVING AND MAINTENANCE
Q.21 Do Granite and Marble counter tops stain? Ans. All natural stone is porous by nature. Some stones are denser than others such as granites, but nevertheless porous. Some stains (oils, coffee, etc) will set easier than others depending on the material and type of stain. Any product that is left on the surface of the stone will without doubt penetrate the surface over time. To protect stone from staining we suggest to apply a good sealer and now also green and suitable for food contact.
Q.22 Is it okay to chop foods or leave hot pans on my granite countertops? Ans. Yes, your countertops will not be damaged at all. Due to the characteristics of natural stone, heat will be absorbed and the surface will not be cut or marked by any kitchen utensils. In order to avoide stain we will strongly recommend to apply a good sealer.
Q.23 What SHOULD I use to clean my Granite or Marble counter top? Ans. We recommends CONSTANCE CLEANER to clean stone surfaces. We do not advise the use of bleach, ammonia or acid based cleaners.
Q.24 Can I use typical house-hold cleaners to clean my natural stone? Ans. This is one area that is very important in stone care. It's important to use non-abrasive and acid-free cleaners. Keep in mind that stone is soft and can be scratched with abrasive cleaners and also scrub brushes. It may also be dulled or etched over time by acidic cleaners (such as vinegar/water, Windex or 409). We have appropriate cleaners available in our showroom.
Q.25 How do I clean my recently installed and sealed stone counter tops? Ans. Our suggestion for your ongoing care would be to use our CONSTANCE CLEANER. Not only is this an excellent cleaner for removing everyday soils and spills, but every time that you clean you're reinforcing the protection of the initial sealing.
Q.26 Will my natural stone look glossy after sealing or enhancing? Ans. No, unless you selected a topical, high gloss sealer such as a lacquer. If properly applied, impregnating sealers will leave your surface looking natural. Enhancing sealers are designed to darken the stone while retraining the original polished, matte or honed look. There’s a hazy, grout looking residue smeared all over
Q.27 There is like a powdery residue on my newly installed ceramic tile floors, Can this be fixed? Ans. The haziness that you see is probably grout residue from the installation process. This can be safely removed using our CEMENT REMOVER. Make sure you protect all walls, baseboards, carpeted areas, plants, foliage and metals. CEMENT REMOVER may damage stainless steel and other surfaces. Sweep or dust mop loose dirt and debris off of the floor. Prepare a solution of 1 part of CEMENT REMOVER mixed with 4 parts of warm or hot water. Liberally apply over your floor using a sponge or mop. Agitate well using a stiff nylon bristle scrub brush or stiff bristle push broom. Rinse well with clean water and mop, sponge or wet vacuum to remove the remaining solution. Repeat the rinsing and wet vacuum process to insure that all dirt, soil and cleaner residue have been removed. Thoroughly rinse all metal surfaces. I would strongly recommend sealing the floor once you've removed the grout haze to protect it from staining and soiling. Use our Grout Sealer for protection against oil and water-based stains.
Q.28 I put something down on my polished white marble table and it left a white ring mark on it. How can I clean this spot? This kind of discoloration and ring mark that you are noticing are likely not stains but actual etch marks. Etch marks occur on polished marble and other stones of this nature due to acids or other chemicals reacting with the minerals in the stone. This causes the stone to feel rough and look a little discolored, usually lighter. In order to remove these there would have to be a refinishing process done to restore its original, polished look. If it is in fact a stain, a product called poultice can be tried. The purpose of a poultice is to wick the stain out of the stone.
Q.29 I have a beautiful entry rug. Will it harm my stone floor? Ans. Rugs are a good idea to catch dirt and grit. However, there are a few things to keep in mind. It is important to use rug holders designed to go under rugs to keep them in place. Sliding rugs are not only dangerous, they are a constant source of new scratches. Do not use rugs that are backed with rubber or latex.
Q.30 Is there routine, daily or weekly maintenance I should be performing? Ans. The #1 culprit of damage to floors is dirt, (grit, sand & dust). The best treatment for your floor is a dry, untreated microfiber dust mop or vacuum, used every day when possible. Damp mopping is recommended on a weekly basis and whenever there are visible spills. For more information about stone care, consult our CARE TIPS AND PRODUCTS section.
Q.31 Why won't the water spots on my marble or travertine clean up? Ans. These are not water spots, but an etch mark in the surface of the stone. This is what happens when an acidic substance comes in contact with any calcium based stone. To get rid of the etch marks, the stone will need to be polished out, much like a gemstone would have to be if it were scratched.
Q.32 My Natural Stone countertops are no longer shiny. How do I get the shine back? Ans. Most of the time when a customer asks us why their countertop is not shiny anymore, it turns out that some sort of film is sitting on the surface. This happens when one does not use the proper cleanser, or when they clean their granite surface with water and dish soap. (This will eventually lead to soap film build up.) Give us a call. We can provide solutions for you.
Q.33 Does sealing make my tiles or stone maintenance free? Ans. Nothing is maintenance free! Sealing makes your surface easier to clean. Contaminants can sit on the surface longer, so you have more time to clean up before any staining occurs. On some unsealed tiles and stone, staining can start immediately. Think of your stone sealing product as a bottle of time. No stone sealing product will make a porous surface stain-proof, but will make it highly stain resistant. Using the correct stone cleaning products also makes a difference.
Q.34 Will sealing my pavers or stone stop algae growing? Ans. Sealing changes the characteristics of the tile or stone. It doesn't change the environment. If you have a damp shady backyard the stone sealing product can't change that. It reduces the porosity of the tile or stone and inhibits the growth and makes cleaning easier. In most cases it is worth considering.
Q.35 If I seal my grout, will it stay clean? Ans. No - not without the correct cleaning. Grout is the low point and often the most porous part of the wall or floor, and gathers the grime and residue from mopping. Sealing your grout makes it easier to keep clean. With a good grout sealer or colourant, you will get a much better result when you give your grout a good clean with the correct cleaner.
Q.36 The tile supplier said to seal my porcelain but my tiler said not to – why? Ans. The truth is porcelain is creating much confusion in the market place and many pages have been written to try to put all issues into perspective. The more questions you ask the more confused you will be. As a rule of thumb, textured and honed porcelain doesn’t need to be sealed, but polished porcelain often does need to be. This is contrary to what may seem logical. The tiny pores that accept staining are created in the polishing process. A good penetrating sealer fills these pores and sets up good stain protection. The textured tiles generally just need a good clean because of the “rough” surface. If you are not sure, do a stain test. Get a sample tile or an off-cut and try to stain it with the things common to that area. If it stains, there is a benefit to having the tile sealed.
Q.37 How do I clean mildew from the grout on my marble shower floor? Ans. Many of the products and general cleaners are not safe for natural stone. The COLOURED STAIN REMOVER was formulated to do the job without damaging your stone's surface. It's safe, easy to use, and it works! It does need to be rinsed though.
Q.38 I recently had a marble floor installed in my home and now there's dull spots all over it. What is causing this and how can I get rid of them? Ans. This is commonly referred as etching. Etching eats away at a polished surface and produces those rough dull marks that you see on your flooring.Mild etching still feels smooth and can be removed with a POLISHING CREAMS from our RESTORATION KIT or by polishing Powder . If the etching is more serious, you will need to contact a natural stone restoration professional.
Q.39 What is Efflorescence? Ans. Efflorescence is a white crystalline or powdery, often fluffy/fuzzy deposit on the surface of masonry materials like concrete, brick, clay tile, etc. It's caused by water seeping through the wall/floor/object. The water dissolves salts inside the object while moving through it, then evaporates leaving the salt on the surface.
Q.40 Can efflorescence come back? Ans. In some cases, efflorescence will come back no matter how many times you treat it. We suggest as our maintenance program catered specifically to your needs to use the NEUTRAL CLEANER daily until the efflorescence will no reappear and after that to seal the surface with a specific sealer.
Q.41 I have a white stain on my marble vanity top. I've tried everything and I can't remove it. Ans. What you are describing is not a stain but an etch. Etching can occur on marble and other calcite based stones when acidic liquids interact with the calcium in the stone. The acids have actually etched away a fine layer of the stone's surface, leaving behind a dull, sometimes rough area. Just like with a diamond or other gemstone, when the surface is damaged, it needs to be polished down to the level below where the damage is. If it is a minor etch, there is a great product for this. Etch Remover Marble Polishing Compound was created just for this purpose.
Q.42 How do I know when it's time to reseal my stone countertops? Ans. There is a simple way to test if your countertops are due to be sealed. Spill a few drops of water onto the counters and let it sit for a few seconds. Wipe the water away and if after a couple of seconds you see that the area where the water was has darkened, indicating that the water penetrated below the surface, it's time to re-seal.
Q.43 I have mold and mildew on my grout lines in my shower. How can I safely remove it? Ans. Mold and mildew growth is a very common problem on grout lines in damp areas. For routine cleaning of mold and mildew stains use CONSTANCE CLEANER. If the staining is very severe, or it has been there a long time, you may use COLOURED STAIN REMOVER.
Q.44 What SHOULD NOT be used to clean my Granite or Marble counter top? Ans. Absolutely no acid based cleaners. No homemade cleaners such as vinegar, alcohol or lemon/orange cleaner. No abrasive scouring pads.
Q.45 I have Marble and vinegar got on the floor and now we have a light spot. What is the best way to bring the normal shine back? Ans. When acid (vinegar) comes into contact with marble (calcium carbonate), it causes a chemical reaction. The result is called etching. Natural stone sealers penetrate the stone and do not prevent this natural reaction. If the stone is etched, we suggest to use the RESTORATION KIT or call for a professional to repolish the surface.
Q.46 My floors had a beautiful shine when new. How can I restore that shine again? If your floor is not deeply scratched, surface polishing may bring back an acceptable shine. However, existing scratches may remain. If your floor has worn badly, a complete restoration is warranted. This decision should be made between you and us.
Q.47 How much dust will be created during the restoration of my floor? Ans. There is no dust created during the restoration process, because we use diamond abrasives and water.
Q.48 How do I keep my stone clean? Ans. We recommend using a cleaner specially formulated for natural stone. General purpose cleaners or those with acids (such as some porcelain or tile cleaners), may etch the surface of the stone. General purpose cleaning products can damage natural stone, or the sealer applied, so don’t select just any product on the shelf at the grocery store. Make sure that you select a cleaner specially formulated for natural stone care. - INFO ON MARBLE - GRANITE - STONE - QUARTZ - ENGINERED STONES - CERAMIC - HOMOGENEOUS TILE -
Q.49 What is Engineered Stone? Ans. Engineered stones are manmade materials that typically have a stone pumice and resin base. It is comprised of naturally quartz colored pigments and polyester resins, available in a multitude of colors. It is normally highly recommend it for kitchen countertop surfaces. For the proper maintenance we suggest our QUARTZ MAINTENANCE KIT.
- INFO ABOUT MATERIALS
Q.50 What is the Difference between Marble & Granite? Ans. Both are natural stones quarried from the earth, along with Limestone, Travertine and Onyx. Granite is a very hard stone created deep in the earth, formed from crystallized minerals under extremely high pressure & temperature. Marble starts out as sediment - shells, plant matter, silt and even animal skeletons (you wanted to know) This super hot mass starts to rise after millions of years of resting on the bottom of bodies of water, it solidifies as it cools into a hard stone known as marble. **Note: Because it is naturally high in calcium content, Marble, Travertine, Onix, can be affected by acids such as fresh fruit drinks and even vinegar!
Q.51 Is Granite good for kitchen counters? Ans. Yes it is fine for use on counter tops mainly due to it's extreme hardness. Granite stands up well to daily use from kitchen utensils, unaffected by heat from cooking pans and is not subject to damage by acids, like marble.
Q.52 What is the difference between ceramic and porcelain? Ans. Ceramics are generally made with red-clay based ceramic and have a color screened top. The screening is often 1-4 patterns repeating throughout the batch. Ceramic tiles are less dense than porcelain and are more likely to chip or break once installed. Some ceramics are made to be wall tiles only and will crack if installed in improper locations. The price for machined ceramics is generally less than porcelain. (Handmade ceramics are often comparable or more.) Ceramic tile usually requires a space joint installation.Porcelains are fired at high temperatures, creating a very dense and durable material. Some porcelain tiles are offered in through-body meaning the main color, not pattern, runs through the whole tile. It is unlikely a porcelain tile will chip but if it does, it is typically less noticeable than if a ceramic chips due to its base color. If tiles are not through-body, they are generally a bone or tan colored base. Some porcelains have the same screening process as ceramics but many are changing to turn-table process, the colors are layered on in different ways creating a completely random look, where no two tiles are alike. (See the Western Stone Series on the Products page.) Porcelains generally require space joints but are occasionally available "rectified", which means the tiles were cut after being cooked, providing a straight line for the installer to work with. Rectified tiles can be set tight joint. Porcelain is a dense enough that the installer can bullnose the edges in the same way as they do a natural stone. Porcelain can also withstand freeze-thaw conditions.
Q.53 Why shouldn't I use marble on my kitchen counter tops? Due to the density of marble it is not recommended for kitchen areas. Marbles are a soft stone and are more likely to stain, scratch and etch as compared to granite. Granite is a much better choice for your kitchen counters because it is stain and scratch resistant due to its density, particularly after it has been properly sealed. Granite can also accept having hot items placed on it without the possibility of scorching.
Q.54 What is the difference between Travertine, Marble & Limestone? Ans. Travertine is a sedimentary rock created by calcium carbonate minerals. When pure, travertine is white (such as Alabastrino travertine), but most often is found in a more brown to yellow tone due to its impurities (Noce, Classico, etc.). Travertine is available in polished, honed, and antiqued finishes. The most obvious characteristic of travertine is the swirl of the stone, its porosity, and small holes. Often the holes are filled by the factory, although stone is generally available with the option of having the holes filled or unfilled. Limestone is a rock of sedimentary origin composed primarily of calcium carbonate and magnesium. Density can range from low to high. It contains a number of distinguishable natural characteristics, including calcite streaks or spots, fossils or shell formations and a grainy appearance. Marble is a metamorphic rock resulting from the recrystallization of limestone. It is characterized by its clear looking (not grainy) background and veins. Marble is most commonly known for its polished finish although it is available in tumbled, antiqued and honed finishes too.
Q.55 What is the difference between granite and a quartz-composite material such as Silestone? Ans. Each one has its advantages and disadvantages. The quartz-composite materials are made from a granite/resin mix. The look is less natural, being very uniform and predictable. It's advantage is that it is stain and scratch resistant due to its density, particularly after it has been properly sealed. Granite can also accept having hot items placed on it without the possibility of scorching. The main advantage to granite, that a man-made material cannot provide, is the natural beauty of stone.
Q.56 What is the most durable material with the least amount of maintenance? Ans. Porcelain is the most dense material on the market. Due to its density, liquids cannot penetrate the surface alleviating the need to seal or to be concerned with staining. Once properly installed, it's very unlikely a tile will break or crack.
Q.57 Where does stone come from? Stone comes from quarries which are located all over the world. A quarry is a type of open-pit mine from which rock or minerals are extracted. Quarries are generally used for extracting building materials, such as dimensional stone. Quarries are usually shallower than other types of open-pit mines. Quarries can be located in flat plains or on the side of a mountain.
Q.58 Why does granite stain? Ans. Granite is like any other natural stone; it can be dense or porous and is absorbent to some degree. Stones that have more swirls or veins tend to be more porous and absorbent. These swirls and veins show the movement of the stones active molten history. Generally, stone with smaller crystals are more absorbent than granites that have large crystals. Stones have different porosity because of their mineral composition and geological formation. Depending on the process in which the stones were formed, and where in the world they were formed, affects the porosity of the stone.
Q.59 Why does the name of stone change from one store to the next, although the stone looks identical? Stone could sometimes be from the same quarry but from different sections and different owners. Some stones look identical but originate from different parts of the world, which makes the appearance look the same but possibly with different mineral composition. The name changes could also be a marketing technique.
Q.60 Why does stone porosity differ by stone? Ans. Stones have different porosity because of their mineral composition and geological formation. The process by which the stones were formed, and where in the world they were formed, affects the porosity of the stone.