Natural stone slabs are a great choice for a paving project; they are durable, aesthetically pleasing and low maintenance.
When it comes to cleaning them, it is important you understand how best to do so to avoid damage or discoloration.
Hopefully, our handy guide covers everything you need to know about doing a safe and thorough job to keep you path looking its best.
Natural stone is hard-wearing and weather resistant, and maintenance can be a relatively simple and easy job if carried out correctly and regularly.
A first step is to brush the surface of your paving to remove debris such as dirt and leaves. While seeming straightforward, it goes a long way to ensuring they don’t embed themselves which risks causing discolouration that can damage the slabs.
The second is to clear any visible surface weeds at their roots. If allowed to go deep, they can create cracks beneath the surface.
This leads us into the next stage; replacing jointing sand regularly to prevent weed growth or other debris falling beneath the cracks.
Finally, to keep your paving looking fresh and clean, use an acid-free soapy water mixture and stiff brush to scrub the surface.
In most instances, using a basic mixture of soap and water will be enough to clean any dirt and debris off your natural stone.
To do so you, mix a bucket of warm water with an acid-free washing-up liquid to avoid any staining or discoloration.
Start by pouring the mixture across your slabs, then use a hard-bristled brush to gently scrub across the surface.
Once you feel that you have worked your way across the entire area, rinse the surface with clean water and let it drain away.
After 24 hours
If you find after 24 hours that the surface still isn’t as clean as you would like and you are struggling to remove tougher stains, moss or algae from the slabs, either repeat the process or use a bleach mixture.
If opt for the latter, firstly ensure all outdoor furniture is removed from the area to avoid any damage.
Like before, sweep away any loose dirt or debris from the surface. Next, mix equal parts bleach and water in a bucket. Once the bleach has been diluted, pour it onto your slabs and leave it to sit for 15-30 minutes. You can then start to brush the surface or, use a power washer to ensure there is no bleach residue left over that could stain the paving.
If you use a brush, once finished clear the area with clean water or use a hose to drain away the mixture.
Natural stone paving cleaning
By following the above steps, your paving should stay looking fresh and clean throughout the year.
If you remain unsure of the best cleaning method for your natural stone, always ask a professional paving installer.