F.A.Q.


Where does Natural Stone Come from?

Natural stone has been the premium building material of choice since the beginning of time. Quarried from rock beds formed over millions of years, natural stone used in residential and commercial settings comes from all parts of the world, including Italy, Spain, the U.S., Brazil, Canada, China, France, Israel, Greece, India, Mexico, Germany, Taiwan, and Turkey. We quarry our stone within the Western region of the US.

What is the difference between the Natural Stones?

MARBLE: Ideal for foyers, bathrooms, floors, and hearths Marble is found in the mountainous regions of Canada, Italy, Germany, Spain, the U.S., and other countries worldwide. Because of its beauty and elegance, marble is a popular choice for countertops, floors, foyers, fireplace facings and hearths, walls, and windowsills. Marble adds a sophisticated element to your home, and its wonderful appearance, superior engineering characteristics, and ease of maintenance makes it a natural choice for floors, wall coverings, table tops, and bathroom walls, floors, vanity tops, tub decks, and showers. Another option for marble-loving homeowners is using another natural stone – serpentine – for kitchen counters. Sometimes called the “green” marble, serpentine is not a true marble but offers a marble-like look. And, because it is magnesium-silicate based, it is not sensitive to citric acid and other kitchen spills. GRANITE: An excellent choice for kitchen countertops, floors, and other heavily used surfaces Granite, quarried from the mountains of Italy, the U.S., India, and dozens of other countries around the world, is one of the most popular natural stones on the market. Available in a striking array of colors, granite’s durability and longevity make it ideal for kitchen countertops and other heavily used surfaces, including table tops and floors. While some synthetic surfaces scratch easily and melt under hot cookware, granite resists heat. Granite is also one of the most bacteria-resistant kitchen surfaces, and it is not affected by citric acid, coffee, tea, alcohol, or wine. It is also nearly impossible to scratch, and with proper cleaning, will not stain under normal use (ask your professional contractor about sealants available to further improve resistance to staining). Because of its exceptional strength, granite is well suited for exterior applications such as cladding, paving, and curbing. TRAVERTINE, LIMESTONE, SANDSTONE AND SLATE: Beautiful enhancements for your home, inside and out, they are other examples of natural stone frequently used in residential applications. TRAVERTINE: Travertine is a type of limestone and one of the most popular natural stones for interior flooring and exterior wall cladding, interior and exterior paving, statuary, and curbing. It is also widely used in vanity tops and sinks. It is popular for its matte (honed) finish, rather than high-gloss (polished) look, that makes it appear more natural. It is available in a variety of edging and neutral shades from creams and browns to golds and reds. LIMESTONE: Limestone is widely used as a building stone because it is readily available and easy to handle. Popular applications include countertops, flooring, interior and exterior wall cladding, and exterior paving. SLATE: Slate is a popular flooring material and sandstone and slate are often used for exterior paving stones, or pavers. Other sandstone applications include fireplace facings, chimneys, garden walls, patio benches, and poolside. Additional slate applications include kitchen countertops, fireplace facings, tabletops, and roofing.

Things to consider when using Natural Stone

You have many options when it comes to beautiful, long-lasting natural stone for your home’s interior and exterior: Slate, granite, onyx, travertine, and sandstone, just to name a few. Choosing a natural stone for your home is a very personal decision, much like selecting wallpaper or artwork. While there are scores of natural stones to consider, some are better suited than others to particular uses in and around the home. COLOR: Natural stones are available in a beautiful spectrum of colors. Color in granite and marble, for instance, can range from soft beiges and pinks and classic black and whites to rich corals, greens, and multi-colors. Some stones features swirls and veins of colors, while others have a flecked, pebbled or even fossilized appearance. Unlike the repetitive sameness of materials produced by machine or assembly line, natural stone’s naturally varied appearance has wonderful character and creates a one-of-a-kind effect everywhere it is used. FINISH: Natural stone can be polished, honed, brushed or flamed for a distinct appearance: A polished finish has a flossy surface that reflects light and emphasizes the color and marking of the stone. This finish is typically used on walls, furniture and countertops, and floor tiles. A honed finish is a satin-smooth surface with relatively little light reflection. It is generally preferred for floors, stair treads, thresholds, and other areas where heavy traffic will wear off a polished finish. Brushed and flamed finishes are different treatments done to the face of the stone to give it a soft (brushed) or rough (flamed) texture. This look gives the stone a more rustic appearance and is frequently used on floor tiles. USAGE: The harder the stone, the more it resists abraision. One measure of a natural stone’s strength is its Measurement of Hardness (MOH) rating, on which 1 is the softest and 10 is the hardest. On the MOH scale, most travertine and marbles rate 3-4 and quartz-based granites and slates rate 6-8. Using a softer stone simply requires the owner to use gentler cleansers and more frequent dusting to prevent scratching.

Maintaining your Stone Walls

Inspect your walls each year. Look for missing or loose stones and deteriorating or missing mortar. Promptly make repairs as needed. Inspect the drainage at the base of your walls for puddling. Clean weep holes and flush water through them to insure they are not plugged. Every couple of years, power wash walls – be careful not to blast out the mortar. Remove brush and branches that are rubbing up against walls. As always be careful when making inspections. Consider contacting a professional to access dangerous or hard to get to areas. Professionals will also know what to look for and they can give you the best advise on making repairs. WITH JUST A LITTLE WORK, NATURAL STONE WILL RETAIN IT'S BEAUTIFUL APPEARANCE FOR YEARS AND YEARS.

What Value does Natural Stone add.

Because stone is a natural, not manufactured product, no two pieces are exactly alike, which means each finished countertop, wall, floor, mantle, or sill in your home is distinctive and matchless. And, unlike synthetic imitations, natural stone can be three-dimensional. When used in exterior applications, natural stone has also proven superior to manufactured or engineered stones in withstanding the effects of nature. Whether you’re building a new house or remodeling, natural stone offers you unparalleled beauty, permanence, and uniqueness – and adds true value to your home. See what others are saying about natural stone: Natural stone is a key part of two of the top 10 elements of design in the home that are resonating with today’s buyers: the desire for low-maintenance/no-maintenance materials and the use of natural materials inside and outside the home. Builder Magazine/National Association of Home Builders Homeowners who remodel recover the following percentages of their remodeling costs at resale (note: upscale projects include stone): Bathroom remodel-upscale: 92.6% Bathroom addition-upscale: 84.3% Kitchen remodel-upscale: 79.6% 2003 Cost vs. Value Report, Remodeling Magazine

How do I care for and clean Natural Stone

The natural stone your have purchased for your home or office is an investment that will give you many years of beautiful services. Stone is a natural product and simple care and maintenance will keep it looking beautiful. The number one recommendation to protect your natural stone is to seal it with a natural stone sealer once every few years (more if in wet areas). Here are some recommendations for routine care and cleaning. PRECAUTIONS: Use coasters under all glasses, particularly those containing alcohol or citrus juices. Many common foods and drinks contain acids that will etch or dull the stone surface Do not place hot items directly on the stone surface. Use trivets or mats under hot dishes and placemats under china, ceramics, silver or other objects that can scratch the surface. Cleaning Procedures: Floor Surfaces Dust mop interior floors frequently using a clean non-treated dry dust mop. Sand, dirt and grit do the most damage to natural stone surfaces due to their abrasiveness. Mats or area rugs inside and outside an entrance will help to minimize the sand, dirt and grit that will scratch the stone floor. Be sure that the underside of the mat or rug is a non-slip surface. Normally, it will take a person about eight steps on a floor surface to remove sand or dirt from the bottom of their shoes. Do not use vacuum cleaners that are worn. The metal or plastic attachments or the wheels may scratch the surface. Other Surfaces Clean stone surfaces with a few drops of neutral cleaner, stone soap (available at hardware stores or from your stone dealer) or a mild liquid dish washing detergent and warm water. Use a clean rag mop on floors and a soft cloth for other surfaces for best results. Too much cleaner or soap may leave a film and cause streaks. Do not use products that contain lemon, vinegar or other acids on marble or limestone. Rinse the surface thoroughly after washing with the soap solution and dry with a soft cloth. Change the rinse water frequently. Do not use scouring powders or creams; these products contain abrasives that may scratch the surface. Bath and Other Wet Areas In the bath or other wet areas, soap scum can be minimized by using a squeegee after each use. To remove soap scum, use a non-acidic soap scum remover or a solution of ammonia and water (about 1/2 cup ammonia to a gallon of water). Frequent or over-use of an ammonia solution may eventually dull the surface of the stone. Vanity Top Surfaces Vanity tops may need to have a penetrating sealer applied. Check with your installer for recommendations. A good quality marble wax or non-yellowing automobile paste wax can be applied to minimize water spotting. Food Preparation Areas In food preparation areas, the stone may need to have a penetrating sealer applied. Check with your installer for recommendations. If a sealer is applied, be sure that it is non-toxic and safe for use on food preparation surfaces. If there are questions, check with the sealer manufacturer. Outdoor Pool & Patio Areas In outdoor pool, patio or hot tub areas, flush with clear water and use a mild bleach solution to remove algae or moss. The DO's and Don'ts: DO dust mop floors frequently DO clean surfaces with mild detergent or stone soap DO thoroughly rinse and dry the surface after washing DO blot up spills immediately DO protect floor surfaces with non-slip mats or area rugs and counter top surfaces with coasters, trivets or placemats Don’t use vinegar, lemon juice or other cleaners containing acids on marble, limestone, travertine or onyx surfaces Don’t use cleaners that contain acid such as bathroom cleaners, grout cleaners or tub & tile cleaners Don’t use abrasive cleaners such as dry cleansers or soft cleansers Don’t mix bleach and ammonia; this combination creates a toxic and lethal gas DO call your professional stone supplier, installer or restoration specialist for problems that appear too difficult to treat.

Formula for Coverage

1 Ton of Flagstone Will Cover: Approx. 120 SQ FT @ 1 1/4 inch thick Approx. 100 SQ FT @ 1 1/2 inch thick Approx 75 SQ FT @ 2 inch thick 1 Ton Of Most Wallrock Will Cover: Approx. 35 SQ FT Square Foot per Piece of Cut Stone: Length x Width (in inches) divided by 144 = SQ FT per piece Approximate Weight / Coverage For Natural Stone: Thickness in Inches LBS. per SF Approx. Coverage per/ton 1/2 6.75 300 3/4 10.12 200 1 13.5 150 1 1/4 16.87 120 1 3/4 23.62 85 2 27 75 2 1/2 33.75 60 3 40.5 50 4 55 36 5 67.5 30 6 81 25 7 94.5 21 8 108 18