Terrazzo is a composite of marble, quartz, granite and glass chips that are set in cement or epoxy resin. The material is cured and then polished to leave the surface with a smooth finish. Terrazzo is often used as indoor flooring for residential and commercial buildings such as hotels due to its durability and relatively low maintenance.
Variety of colors of terrazzo
Typical Uses of Terrazzo:
Floors: Terrazzo is a popular choice of floor for residential and commercial buildings due to its unique appearance and the low level of maintenance required.
Kitchen Countertops: Terrazzo’s aesthetic design is why it is often chosen as a material for kitchen countertops.
- Polished: The surface has a glossy, reflective finish that is typically applied to floors. This surface can enhance the aggregates set inside the material.
- Honed: The surface is left smooth with no gloss. This finish is generally applied on countertops but due to the porosity of terrazzo, unsightly stains are a common problem for surfaces. Like polished terrazzo surfaces, acidic substances that come into contact with honed terrazzo can etch the surface due to its being comprised of pieces of marble chips.
Common Problems of Terrazzo
Terrazzo is not as porous as natural stones but any stain left on the surface will eventually be absorbed into the material.
STAIN-PROOF® has a number of products that can protect against staining and remove those difficult deep stains.
- STAIN-PROOF Premium Impregnating Sealer, formerly known as STAIN-PROOF ORIGINAL™, provides superior water and oil repellency, which will help prevent staining from food and liquid spills on all granite surfaces. The invisible, impregnating sealer permanently bonds to the pores of granite through a chemical reaction. This means a treated surface will not be affected by traffic, exposure to UV radiation or commercial cleaning processes.
- STAIN-PROOF Alkaline Cleaner, formerly known as OXY-KLENSA™, is perfectly suited for removing stubborn stains. The powerful, oxygen based cleaner can be made into a closed poultice which can remove stains that have had time to sink into dense stones such as granite. Refer to our maintenance guide for how to apply a closed poultice to a stain.
Terrazzo contains calcite deposits which makes the material vulnerable to damage known as acid-etching. Marble chips present in the material can be etched when anything acidic such as lemon, cola or coffee comes into contact with it. The acidic substance will dissolve the calcium in the aggregate. This results in a permanent, rough, mark.
No impregnating sealer will prevent acid-etching. This is because they do not physically stop a substance from touching the surface.
Protecting your terrazzo surfaces
For protection against stains, efflorescence and the enhancement of terrazzo surfaces:
Dense Stone Impregnating Sealer - 2 coats
To protect natural stone countertop we recommend using STAIN-PROOF Dense Stone Impregnating Sealer, formerly known as STAIN-PROOF PLUS™. The impregnating sealer is specially designed for dense stone countertops. The superior depth of penetration means your surface will have permanent water and oil repellence.
Note: STAIN-PROOF’s impregnating sealers will not prevent acid etching because they do not physically prevent an acidic substance from touching the travertine surface. For protection against acids STAIN-PROOF’s Vitremela™, the thin, 100% acid-proof, heat and scratch resistant coating can be applied to terrazzo countertops.
For natural look:
Premium Impregnating Sealer - 2 coats
For protection against water and oil-based stains and efflorescence we recommend using STAIN-PROOF Premium Impregnating Sealer, formerly known as STAIN-PROOF ORIGINAL™. The sealer’s deep penetration into the pores of your material will provide superior water and oil repellency. This will stop food and liquid spills from causing permanent staining and significantly reduce the formation of efflorescence. Premium Impregnating Sealer creates a chemical bond inside the pores, permanently becoming part of your material.
Waterborne Dense Stone Sealer - 1 coat
For indoor applications, we recommend using STAIN-PROOF Waterborne Dense Stone Sealer, formerly known as META CREME™, for protection against water and oil-based stains and efflorescence. The ultra-low VOC sealer chemically bonds to the lining of a material’s pore structure, providing permanent protection. Waterborne Dense Stone Sealer deeply penetrates into the pores which creates an excellent water and oil repelling barrier. This sealer is easier to apply, requiring only 1 coat, and is suitable for smooth surfaces.
For enhanced look
Color Enhancing Sealer - 2 coats
For superior color enhancement of a surface whilst providing protection against water and oil-based stains, we recommend using STAIN-PROOF Color Enhancing Sealer, formerly known as INTENSIFIA™.
Maintaining your terrazzo surfaces
For everyday and heavy-duty cleaning of your terrazzo surfaces:
Maintenance is an important part of owning a natural stone or other hard porous surface. Being diligent about the condition of your surface can minimize the need for regular, heavy-duty cleaning. There are a few simple actions that can be taken such as:
- Wiping up spills as soon as possible.
- Regularly washing down areas such as pool surrounds with fresh water after use.
- Frequently removing leaves, branches and other plant matter from patios. If left for long enough, some leaves will bleed tannins, staining the surface.
- Using walk on/walk off mats and vacuuming can reduce the amount of grit on a surface.
- Avoid spilling acidic substances such as lemon, cola, tomato sauce, or even using cleaners that contain acid as it can leave a permanent etch on the aggregate.
For outdoor cleaning:
For regular outdoor cleaning of organic stains such as grease, motor oil, mold stains, plant stains and stains from animal waste STAIN-PROOF Alkaline Cleaner, formerly known as OXY-KLENSA™ can be used. Alkaline Cleaner is a powerful triple action outdoor cleaner and stain remover for natural stone and other hard porous surfaces. The oxygen, alkaline and detergent based cleaner breaks down organic stains and soiling.
For indoor cleaning:
Daily Floor Cleaner
For regular indoor cleaning of organic stains such as oil, mold stains and food grime STAIN-PROOF Daily Floor Cleaner can be used. The powerful active enzyme cleaner concentrate is specially designed for natural stone and other hard surfaces.
For countertop cleaning:
Daily Countertop Cleaner
Countertops are a key feature of any kitchen. It can be a space for food preparation, dining and even acting as a second table. For this reason porous natural stone countertops usually need to be cleaned daily.
STAIN-PROOF Daily Countertop Cleaner is a pH neutral cleaner specially designed for natural stone countertops. The everyday cleaner is food safe and contains a tiny amount of invisible sealer to increase protection from staining. Daily Countertop Cleaner spray’s mild, natural citrus scent provides a refreshing aroma.
For cleaning efflorescence, limescale, rust marks, and grout haze on acid sensitive surfaces
Note on not using acid
STAIN-PROOF Acidic Cleaner, formerly known as EFF-ERAYZA™, and other acid cleaners are not suitable for acid-sensitive surfaces such as terrazzo. If used on these materials the cleaner will leave a permanent etch mark on the aggregate.
Other Surfaces :