Getting brand new travertine pavers for patio can make your outdoor space look elegant all year round. But when it comes to cleaning your new paver patio selections, not just any method will do. Travertine is a beautiful, delicate material that can withstand a lot of pressure and heat but can’t be exposed to certain acidic elements. Because of this, homeowners have to be extra careful about how they treat their pavers. If you’re the proud new owner of a travertine walkway, here are a few tips for making your new investment last.

Stay Away from Acids

While it might be a great idea to take advantage of all the natural cleaning products in your kitchen pantry to deal with household stains, your travertine pavers should be protected from natural cleaners like lemon, citrus-based sprays, and vinegar at all costs. Because your pavers are sensitive to acids, you don’t want to directly expose them to anything that could erode or damage them permanently. That means that even if you get a stain on your paver, you can’t treat it with a normal all-purpose outdoor cleaner. Rather than taking any chances, only use a specific stone cleaner and hot water to erase stains and etches from your pavers.

Seal Your Pavers

One of the best and easiest ways to keep your pavers free from harm is to seal them as soon as they’re installed. While you might imagine that this process is arduous, it’s actually fairly simple. You can apply your own travertine seal at home with one swipe. If your travertine is polished, you may not need to seal it. However, if you’re not sure, try doing a water test to see how much your pavers are able to absorb. While some travertine pavers in their raw state are able to ingest a lot of water, others may already be treated to fight against weather damage. If you’re buying sealant at your local hardware store, ask someone at the front desk about whether sealing makes sense for your pavers.

Don’t Use Generic Products

While many multi-purpose cleaners are just fine for indoor use, it gets trickier when you’re dealing with a substance as sensitive as travertine. Since many of these store-bought cleaners do contain some amount of natural acid, they should never be used on your pavers. Unless you’re committed to reading through all the ingredients listed to make sure nothing contains acid or anything else that could be harmful to your pavers, you should stick to a specific stone cleaner that’s made for treating travertine.

Ditch Abrasive Cleaners

Don’t be fooled by marketing: Even the gentlest cream cleaners can be full of chemicals and abrasive products without your knowing it. Sometimes, applying the wrong cleaner to your delicate travertine paver can be just as detrimental as scrubbing it with a Brillo pad or steel wool. Don’t take any chances with “gentle” home cleaners. Instead, stick to targeted treatment or use hot water and a sponge to erase any stains or etchings.

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