Why Does White Marble Turn Yellow?

Problems With Your White Marble Turning Yellow?

Why does white marble turn yellow? It’s a question we often get from homeowners and businesses. White marble turns yellow due to oxidation, a process caused by natural iron found in white marble and moisture. White marble tends to develop a yellowish stain over time if not regularly maintained with appropriate cleaning and protection. Yellow marble often indicates oxidized iron content, like rust. However, a yellow stain can also develop over time from grease, grime, or even the wrong kind of sealing product.

If your white marble has turned yellow, there are restoration methods that can reverse the damage. A marble expert can help you diagnose the issue and recommend cleaners and repair options to remove the stain, restore the natural beauty, and properly seal it for the future.

Yellow Coatings on White Marble

Floor coatings designed for wood, concrete, or even other kinds of natural stone may not work well for marble floors. In fact, waxy coatings of urethane and other materials may be the reason your white marble floors have turned yellow see it here.

Wax coatings are relatively soft. That makes it easy for dirt and grime to get trapped in the coating. Over time, the yellowish hue will overshadow the white marble itself. Standard cleaning will not remove the yellow stain because it’s baked into the wax coating.

However, a thorough marble cleaning can strip the discolored coating away to restore the natural white marble. With a good polish and seal, the marble can potentially look as good as new.

Oxidized Iron in Marble

Virtually all marble contains trace amounts of iron. Even a small amount of iron spread throughout marble can oxidize and change the color of the surface. Water speeds up the oxidization process, so marble in bathrooms or anywhere that has been exposed to excessive moisture can turn yellow fairly quickly.

The good news is that certain chemicals can effectively remove the oxidized iron from your marble. These cleaners are called chelating agents. Through a specific set of cleaning steps, a marble restoration expert can remove the iron from yellowed marble.

Yellowed Marble from Flooding or Chemicals

In still other cases, marble acquires a yellowish build-up of dirt, grease, food stains, or poorly selected cleaning products. Abrasive tools and acidic cleaners can cause etching that accelerates this build-up. Basically, the marble has been scratched up, and stain-causing substances get stuck and penetrate further into the marble.

The best way to reverse etching and stain damage is to clean the marble with an alkaline (non-acidic) cleaner and then diamond-grind the surface to smooth out imperfections.

Do I Need a Professional to Clean Yellow Marble?

There are store-bought kits for cleaning marble, but these often fail for two important reasons. First, you need to determine the reason for the yellow stain in order to know the right cleaning process. Second, damaged marble cannot simply be bleached or cleaned. Deep stains need grinding and polishing if you want to unveil the hidden white marble below.

Sandifer’s uses marble restoration techniques certified by the Marble Institute of America. We serve the greater Charlotte, NC area and can treat Carrara, Calacatta, and other types of marble with yellow stains. Call us or contact us online for a free estimate for marble restoration in Charlotte, NC and its surrounding areas!