Problems With Limestone

Updated February 21, 2017

Limestone is a material made out of calcium carbonate or double carbonate calcium and magnesium. Limestone serves as a hard building material for a variety of structures ranging from countertops to walls. Homeowners use limestone because they like the aesthetic beauty of it, not because the limestone is easy to care for. Limestone can have thousands of fossils in it that homeowners can enjoy looking at.


Limestone materials are porous, meaning that the materials easily allow liquids to enter into the limestone. However, different limestone materials have different levels of porousness. The porousness of the limestone makes stains occur more easily, and stains can be more difficult to remove. However, limestone does not always stain, even if the limestone material is especially porous. The worst spills for limestone are acidic spills, such as hydrochloric acid, which can do serious damage to the limestone. However, lightly acidic materials do not cause damage unless they sit on the limestone for a long time. Wipe away any citric juices or vinegar when they spill on the limestone.

Organic Materials

Organic materials can have negative reactions with the limestone, causing the limestone to start looking unattractive. Outdoors, one of the most common problems that limestone develops is climbers, such as vines that climb up the wall. Moss can also cause a problem for limestone.

Poultrice Drying

Limestone can develop stains from various materials. Poultrice can draw out the stains on the limestone, but the poultrice can cause the limestone to develop powdering, which results from the poultrice drying. Homeowners must dust off the poultrice. They can speed up this drying process by adding a dehumidifier to the room.

Grease Stains

When people sit on limestone benches and other objects, these benches can develop dark and greasy stains. A lot of cleaners will not remove these stains, but a solution of hot water and bleach can get the stains off when scrubbing the limestone with a natural fibre brush.


When limestone gets really dirty, some homeowners use sandblasters to wear away the dirty parts of the limestone. These methods can make the limestone look better temporarily, but they can also wear away the structural integrity of the limestone, eventually making the limestone unstable.


Limestone needs to be washed in a very specific way. High pressure water can cause damage to the limestone, but low pressure water will not give the limestone enough force to clean it. One way to avoid damage is to use a pressure washer that has a nozzle that creates a pulse effect so that the water does not hit the limestone with too much consistent force.

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About the Author

Charles Pearson has written as a freelancer since 2009. He has a B.S. in literature from Purdue University Calumet and is currently working on his M.A. He has written the ebooks "Karate You Can Teach Your Kids," "Macadamia Growing Handout" and "The Raw Food Diet."