I decided, after seeing a post on the Garden Web Forum, to do my own etch test on the leftover carrara subway tiles I had from the PA house remodel, open to disabusing myself of any Pollyanna notions of marble's perfection. They are polished marble. I had already done a pretty serious stain test that involved leaving a turmeric poultice overnite on the unsealed marble. There was light staining that eventually came off with multiple soapy scrubbings. But tonite I decided to soak a paper towel in vinegar and apply it to half of two tiles.
The tile on the left shows the results after 2 hours. The tile is definitely etched and there is a "water spot" pattern left from the texture of the paper towel.
The tile on the right received the same treatment, however, I scrubbed the etched surface with a Scotch Brite sponge to even out the texture.
Earlier this week I read that you can give your polished counters a honed appearance at home by applying an acid treatment and then sanding with a 200 grit piece of sandpaper. This is what gave me the idea to scrub out the surface to even it out.
I'm really glad I did the test because I can go forward with the countertop purchase without any reservation. We will save money and not get the island honed. Instead, we will enjoy our marble as a natural patina develops over the year, sanding out any major boo-boos. I showed the husband tonite and he also is undisturbed by the etching. In fact, he has no problem with the spottier look.
To see Bluebonnet’s post about her etch test on Imperial Danby marble, visit her blog here!