Limestone Flooring Tiles

Limestone Flooring Tiles

Limestone Flooring Tiles

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Limestone is a Sedimentary rock that is generally comprised of the skeletal remains of organic ocean organisms formed into solid crystallite manifestations of calcium carbonate. Its most common mineral ingredients are calcite and aragonite. In flooring it is considered a mid strength mid porosity natural stone option, with a relatively uniform palette, and a historically classic design essence.

Note: Limestone accounts for 10% of all sedimentary rocks found on the earth.

Appearance: These materials tend to be light white or beige in color, and have a relatively uniform look with only mild variations in hue and shade between composite veins. The contrasting colors that emerge in their surfaces are often due to iron oxide imperfections that are present during formation. This accounts for the unique look that each tile may have in any given batch.

Limestone is an ancient building material that has been used in the construction of numerous famous sculptures and landmarks over the centuries, most notably the great pyramids of Giza. Because of this it has an inherently classic look that instantly lends a sense of age and presence to any space in which it is used. Over time, natural weathering effects can actually improve this effect, giving the stone a sense of unique personality.

Porosity: All natural stone materials have some level of porosity, making them vulnerable to liquid staining, damage, and penetration. Limestone’s absorption level will vary, but it is generally fairly prone to water damage, and therefore needs to be sealed regularly with both a penetrating below surface sealer, and a barrier chemical seal to create an invisible layer over its surface.

More About Natural Stone Flooring

Limestone Finish Options

Polished: Most limestone materials do not have the chemical consistency necessary to hold a high gloss polish. In some cases, tiles can be waxed after installation in order to create a simulacrum of that shining look.

Honed: These materials tend to have a relatively flat, parallel shape when sliced down into composite tiles. Honing is the process of grinding out any imperfections that remain in the surface after that, so that the tiles become perfectly flat, smooth, and even. A high hone can even achieve some of the glistening gloss associated with polish.

Brushed: This is a finish similar to honing, but the process does not try to achieve flat perfection. Rather it simply attempts to remove any jagged edges that may occur from the tips of rises that form in the stone, leaving the dips and crevices to mottle its face. The effect is a smooth but textured look and feel, that is comfortable to walk on barefoot, but which still has traction and tactile interest.

Water Worn: Since limestone tends to be somewhat naturally flat, texturing processes are sometimes used to create unnatural impressions in the surface of these stones. Jet streams of water can replicate the natural process of river formation, giving tiles a soft and lovely look and feel that is also resistant to slippage.

Sandblasted: This process uses sand shot at high speeds through jets, to texture the surface of the limestone in a process similar to water wearing. The effect tends to be more grainy, and can actually cause the stone to take on the look of a mottled desert landscape.

Limestone Tile Sizes

Standard: 12”X12”, 16”X16”, 18”X18”, 24”X24” and all smaller even divisions

Limestone is available in slab materials for countertops and flooring.

Limestone Maintenance: Before grout is applied limestone needs to be sealed with both a penetrating chemical liquid that will clog the natural pores found in the stone, and a barrier sealing agent that will create an invisible layer of protection over them. This will prevent the grout from permanently staining the tiles. These coats should then be reapplied once the installation is complete.

Regular maintenance of limestone consists of sweeping or damp mopping the floor on a consistent basis to keep it free of dirt and debris. Wet mopping can be undertaken with a proper stone cleaning solution. Sealer should then be reapplied to the material annually in order to maintain its luster and shine. If chemical protection is not used yearly then you can start to see weathering and fading over time, depending on the nature of the surrounding environment.

Hardness: Limestone is quarried from mountains and it takes its consistency from those stolid origins. However it is not impervious, and is actually considered a mid to soft range material when compared to other natural stone flooring options. While it will resist most average impacts, sharp and violent actions can cause permanent damage in individual pieces. At the same time broken tiles can be removed and replaced to correct those issues.

Travertine: This is a type of limestone that often forms in mineral springs and hot springs due to the rapid precipitation of calcium carbonate. The result is a material that has a distinct appearance, often accompanied by pock marks, or holes, that give its surface a textured feel. In flooring those gaps can cause structural problems, and are often filled with adhesive in order to reinforce tiles.

Travertine has historically been linked with classic Italian architecture.


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