How to Stain Limestone Tiles
Limestone tiles look lovely in a room or an area. You might decide, though, that you want to color the limestone tiles to match the décor of your house. It’s not a difficult job, although it requires patience. At heart it’s similar to applying color to concrete as both are porous.
Step 1 - Cleaning
Clear the entire area and then use a broom to remove al the debris, taking special care to get into corners and all the nooks and crannies. After this, use a wet/dry vacuum on the limestone tiles to take off all the dust and remaining dirt. To complete the preparations, apply masking tape to other area where they meet the limestone tiles, such as baseboards. This will prevent the stain splashing on other areas and cut down on the cleanup.
Step 2 - Testing Colors
After selecting the stain for your limestone tiles you need to test it on the tiles. If possible, select a place not on view, such as a closet. Use a solution that’s 1 part stain to 1 part water. Allow it to dry for 3 hours then wipe of any excess stain and inspect the results. Since the color is the product of a reaction, it might not be exactly what you’d seen on the color sample.
Before applying stain to the limestone tiles, wash them thoroughly and allow to dry. This will give you a clean surface for the stain. Remember that the concrete stain is mildly acidic so be sure to wear safety goggles, a respirator mask and gloves for your own protection.
You need to mix the stain in a 1 to 1 ratio and mix fully. As you’re working on limestone tiles, the best way to apply the stain is with a paintbrush on the surface of the tiles. This will require some care, and you should only apply a thin coat. Work in sections on the floor and use the brush to work the stain into the limestone tiles. After you’ve finished, leave the floor to dry for several hours.
Step 4 - Baking Soda
To stop the acidic reaction you need to go over the limestone tiles with a solution of baking soda and water. Use a mop and this solution on the floor and then use the wet/dry vac on the floor to take up excess water. Allow to dry slightly then go over the floor again with the solution. You might need to do this three times to fully neutralize the acid. Leave overnight to dry completely.
Step 5 - Sealer
It will be easiest if you use a roller to apply the sealer to the limestone tiles, after cutting in around the edges with a paintbrush. Apply one coat and then leave it to dry before putting on a second coat. You’ll see that the sealer gives depth to the stain on the limestone tiles.