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Old 02-24-2018, 04:59 PM   #1
Jim M
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Polished marble finish problem

Hi I'm Jim. This is my first time posting on this site. I have installed tons of very kind of tile over the years. For the past few days I have been installing a a chocolate color polished marble. So finally today it was grout day. This tile is polished to a beautiful high gloss. So I used unsanded Mapei grout. I used unsanded because my joints are 1/16". After waiting about 30 mins I damp sponged off the residue. Then after it hazed again in about 15 mins I damp sponged again. It all looked incredible. The after about 30 minutes when the surface of the tile had dried I couldn't believe my eyes. Many of the formerly highly polished time now had leopard like spots that looks nearly like I had applied muriatic acid. In other words the polished surface was now dulled and nearly etched. I tried vigorous rubbing and even tried a razor blade thinking maybe it was just a stubborn residue. Anyway I'm having a stressed day because of this. And for the record I have installed this exact same color marble with the exact same grout years ago with no problem. And lastly I did not seal the tile before grouting. Nor did I ever seal before grouting. I know this is a long-winded message but if any of you have an idea on how to restore the shine or moreover a clue to what happened to cause this that would be great. This is a huge bathroom walk in shower so the thought of attempting to polish the whole thing gives me bad dreams. Thanks for your help. Jim in Nashville TN
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Old 02-24-2018, 06:22 PM   #2
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Hi Jim. Do you have any pics you can post?

Do you think it could be moisture that has soaked in and would dry back out in time?

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Old 02-24-2018, 06:39 PM   #3
Jim M
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Thanks. I will post photos tomorrow. I've departed the build site for today. I'll be surprised if photos do it justice due to its only visible when the light angle hits it just right. And lastly I'm positive it's not trapped moisture. I've worked with this type of tile many times and have never seen the polished surface change in this manner. I keep thinking that somehow the grout chemicals literally discolored the tile surface. I hope there is a reasonable fix.
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Old 02-25-2018, 06:42 AM   #4
John Bridge
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Hi Jim,

I've read everything you've said, and I would still suspect moisture penetration. And pictures will help.
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Old 02-25-2018, 05:02 PM   #5
NEPA Remodeling
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I agree. Give it a couple days to dry out and then inspect the area again. I have experienced similar color variations from the washing/ haze removal with marble.

It is a very porous material that will absorb moisture, unlike ceramic tiles. Just like wet concrete, wet stones will have a color shift.

Don't panic.
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Old 02-27-2018, 05:15 AM   #6
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It could be efflorescence which will mimic etching.

Ill discuss this on my radio show this Wednesday at www.blogtalkradio.com/drfred
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Old 03-02-2018, 09:36 AM   #7
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I would have to say it is moisture that penetrated the tile as well. That marble is very soft and porous. If you want to alleviate your anxiety I would try sealing that marble tile before grouting. Ya it sucks to have to seal everything twice. But it will make grouting and clean up so much easier
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