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Should I use a poultice to remove an olive oil stain from quartzite?

Q. We just installed our new quartzite slab on to our kitchen island and three days later we have a distinctly round stain from where our olive oil dispenser was sitting on the counter. Should I be using poultice to get this out, or is there a better product for a stain like this?

A. As you guessed, a poultice is the way to go. If the oil is still fresh, try sprinkling a generous portion of poultice powder (for example, diatomaceous earth) on the spill and let it stand for 12-24 hours. When you remove the dry poultice, wet the spot with a mixture of degreaser and water. Keep it wet for 30 minutes, then blot the area with a clean white cloth. The stone may take a while to dry out and may appear darker than the surrounding stone for a while. If the oil spot persists, apply a poultice made with a solvent (commercial paint remover works well) and poultice powder as follows:

Wet the stained area with distilled water. Pre-wetting fills the pores of the stone with water, isolating the stain and accelerating the removal by the chemical.Pre-mix the powder and the chemical into a thick paste the consistency of peanut butter. Apply the poultice to the stain, being careful not to spill any on the unstained areas. Apply the poultice approximately one-quarter-inch thick, overlapping the stained area by about one inch. Cover the poultice with plastic (food wrap works very well). Tape the plastic down with painter‘s tape to seal the edges. Allow the poultice to dry thoroughly. This is a very important step. The drying of the poultice is what pulls the stain from the stone into the poultice material. If the poultice is not allowed to dry, the stain may not be removed. Drying usually takes from 24 to 48 hours. After 24 to 48 hours, remove the plastic. If the poultice is still wet, allow it to dry completely. Remove the poultice from the stain using a plastic putty knife. Rinse with distilled water and buff dry with a soft cloth. The stone may be darker where the poultice used to be because of moisture from the poultice. This will evaporate after a while. If the stain is not removed, but you do see some improvement, apply the poultice again. It may take five applications or more for difficult stains. For further assistance, contact your stone restoration contractor. If you do not already have one, contact us. We can check if one of our SurpHaces PRO Partners provides services in your area. Good luck! Let us know how it goes!

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