Even though the dense and hard characteristics of bluestone make it a very popular choice for interior and exterior paving projects alike, it is a stone that is rather to developing stains over time. This can have a very detrimental effect on the appearance of your stone, especially if the stains are left for long periods of time to fester and further ingrain themselves into the surface of the bluestone pavers. Use this guide to help you remove stains as soon as you see them.
You should always begin by giving your bluestone pavers a good clean – you never know when this simple method is actually going to succeed in removing that pesky stain. Use a neutral cleaner that has been specially made for use on natural stone (even better if it has been designed for bluestone), a special stone soap or a mild liquid detergent (the kind you use to wash the dishes). Add this to a bucket of warm water and use either a mop or a soft cloth to apply the solution to the pavers.
If simple cleaning was ineffective in removing the stains your bluestone has developed, one of these methods should be able to do the trick.
- Organic: These are pinkish-brown stains that are caused by coffee, fruit and leaves being left on the surface of the bluestone. On outside surfaces, simply remove the offending material and let the sun bleach the stain away. On inside surfaces, use a solution made up of water, a few drops of ammonia and some 12 percent hydrogen peroxide to remove the stain.
- Oil: These stains often appear greasy and are caused by cooking oils and greasy foods being left on the surface of the bluestone. Use a liquid cleaner, such as dishwashing liquid, mixed with water to remove.
- Ink: These stains can be removed on lighter bluestone using bleach or hydrogen peroxide. For darker stone, use a lacquer thinner or acetone to remove the marks.
- Biological: These stains are caused by mildew or algae growth; you will need to kill the bacteria in the bluestone to effectively remove it. Use half a cup of ammonia, bleach or hydrogen peroxide that has been diluted in water (only use one and never mix these chemicals).
- Metallic: These stains are caused by rusted furniture leaking into the bluestone below and are very difficult to remove. You may need to mix together a poultice to leach the stain out.
Regardless of the dense and hard nature of bluestone, it can still be stained if it is not handled or maintained correctly. If you notice that your stone has developed stains as a result of a spill or weathering, try using one of the above techniques to remove it and restore your bluestone to its former glory.
by Max Joseph