Thursday, Sep 27, 2012









Travertine is a versatile option around the home
By The Kingston Whig-Standard


Homeowners looking to renovate their spaces -- both inside and out --may want to look to a versatile and popular building material ... travertine. Travertine is a natural stone that is sometimes referred to as travertine marble or travertine limestone. In fact, the stone is neither marble or limestone, but something in the middle. It is a formation of calcium carbonate, which results from deposits by springs (typically hot springs) and rivers. Travertine is usually hard and can be crystalline.

Although travertine is naturally white in color, it is found in banded colored patterns thanks to impurities and iron compounds that become mixed into the stone. Travertine can end up being shades of white and beige to coral red. Travertine is removed from the earth in large blocks before it is cut into what can be recognized as travertine tile.

The more compact versions of the stone have been used as a building material since ancient Roman times. In fact, the Roman Coliseum stands as a tribute to the long-lasting nature of travertine as a building material. Today, travertine is quickly becoming one of the most popular materials for home renovation. It can be used for flooring inside of the home, but also for outdoor garden paths and patios, backsplashes, countertops, and shower walls.

Travertine is generally a porous and somewhat uneven surface. Homeowners who like a really natural stone will enjoy travertine for these natural factors. However, some prefer a more polished looking stone. Only the hardest travertine can be polished. Some finishes will fill in the porous cavities of the stone. But note that the finish used may not wear the same way as the natural stone and could change color apart from the stone. Here are some of the more popular finishes for travertine, according to Love to Know: Home Improvement.

* Honed (Matte) -Honed travertine tiles offer a flat and smooth finish that has a matte look to it.

* Polished (Shiny) -A polished travertine tile has a flat and smooth finish like the honed travertine tile, but it has a shinier look.

* Brushed -Combining the benefits of a flat surface with a bit of texture is what the brushed travertine tile will do for you.

* Tumbled -Because its flat, textured surface reflects the least amount of light, tumbled tile is popular in rooms that get a high amount of natural light.

Experts say that travertine is very durable and versatile. Because it can be cut more easily than other popular stones, it can be shaped to fit in areas that would prove difficult for marble or granite.

There are things to keep in mind for travertine, however. Because it is porous, spills will need to be wiped up promptly otherwise the stone may discolor. It can also gouge or scratch more easily than other stones. Some sealants can guard against these situations. Also, avoid vinegar or citrus-based cleaning products, which can erode the stone over time. Homeowners are urged to talk to a professional stone retailer and installer about travertine to determine the right finishes and sealants for their application. Homeowners looking to renovate their spaces --both inside and out --may want to look to a versatile and popular building material ... travertine.

Travertine is a natural stone that is sometimes referred to as travertine marble or travertine limestone. In fact, the stone is neither marble or limestone, but something in the middle. It is a formation of calcium carbonate, which results from deposits by springs (typically hot springs) and rivers. Travertine is usually hard and can be crystalline.

Although travertine is naturally white in color, it is found in banded colored patterns thanks to impurities and iron compounds that become mixed into the stone. Travertine can end up being shades of white and beige to coral red. Travertine is removed from the earth in large blocks before it is cut into what can be recognized as travertine tile.

The more compact versions of the stone have been used as a building material since ancient Roman times. In fact, the Roman Coliseum stands as a tribute to the long-lasting nature of travertine as a building material. Today, travertine is quickly becoming one of the most popular materials for home renovation. It can be used for flooring inside of the home, but also for outdoor garden paths and patios, backsplashes, countertops, and shower walls.

Travertine is generally a porous and somewhat uneven surface. Homeowners who like a really natural stone will enjoy travertine for these natural factors. However, some prefer a more polished looking stone. Only the hardest travertine can be polished. Some finishes will fill in the porous cavities of the stone. But note that the finish used may not wear the same way as the natural stone and could change color apart from the stone. Here are some of the more popular finishes for travertine, according to Love to Know: Home Improvement.

* Honed (Matte) -Honed travertine tiles offer a flat and smooth finish that has a matte look to it.

* Polished (Shiny) -A polished travertine tile has a flat and smooth finish like the honed travertine tile, but it has a shinier look.

* Brushed -Combining the benefits of a flat surface with a bit of texture is what the brushed travertine tile will do for you.

* Tumbled -Because its flat, textured surface reflects the least amount of light, tumbled tile is popular in rooms that get a high amount of natural light.

Experts say that travertine is very durable and versatile. Because it can be cut more easily than other popular stones, it can be shaped to fit in areas that would prove difficult for marble or granite.

There are things to keep in mind for travertine, however. Because it is porous, spills will need to be wiped up promptly otherwise the stone may discolor. It can also gouge or scratch more easily than other stones. Some sealants can guard against these situations. Also, avoid vinegar or citrus-based cleaning products, which can erode the stone over time.

Homeowners are urged to talk to a professional stone retailer and installer about travertine to determine the right finishes and sealants for their application.

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