Homemade Baking Soda Marble Cleaner

Use Baking Soda to Clean Marble. Photo © Erin Huffstetler

Are you looking for a marble cleaner that won't drain your wallet? If your wallet can tolerate it, buying a commercial, neutral pH marble cleaner may be a good investment in ensuring your marble isn't scratched or etched by a homemade cleaner. Marble is vulnerable to acids, alkalis, and abrasive cleaners. You have a lot invested in your marble surfaces, so a guaranteed-safe commercial product is worth the small extra expense.

Clean Marble With Hot Water and a Soft Cloth or Sponge

For most clean-up jobs, simply use plain water and a sponge or soft cloth. Hot water may work best. As water is basically free, this is the least expensive and least risky homemade marble cleaner.

Marble is a soft stone made of calcium carbonate. It is easily stained, dulled and scratched. You need to take care not to scratch it or expose it to acid (such as vinegar) or strong alkaline agents like ammonia and detergents. Baking soda is alkaline, so you should only use it with caution. It is also a mild abrasive, so you need to use it gently rather than applying elbow grease to your cleaning tasks.

Baking Soda as a Homemade Marble Cleaner

You will see baking soda suggested as a homemade marble cleaner. Keep in mind that it is an alkali and it is a mild abrasive. Because of these factors, you should use it only infrequently rather than every day.

Using it frequently may dull your marble. Never leave baking soda or a baking soda solution in contact with your marble for more than a few seconds.

What You Need

  • Baking soda: yes, the same baking soda that you use for baking. You probably already have this in your pantry. You may want to buy another box to put into the cupboard where you keep your cleaning supplies.
  • Water
  • A rag: You should use a soft cloth for cleaning marble rather than a scrubber or scrub brush.

What You Do To Clean Your Marble Countertops, Floors and Furnishings

Sprinkle a little baking soda onto the surface. Gently rub the baking soda into the marble with a damp cloth. You do not want to scrub as that can damage the surface.

Then, rinse with water and towel dry. You want to be sure to rinse with water to neutralize the pH, and to dry it so the solution is not in contact with the marble surface for any longer than necessary.

Why This Works:

Baking soda is a light abrasive and a natural disinfectant. However, you need to take care to use it gently on marble surfaces. A light abrasive is still abrasive. Be sure to wipe away all traces of baking soda so it isn't left in long contact with your marble surfaces.

Benefits of Cleaning with Baking Soda:

  • inexpensive
  • no harsh chemicals - baking soda is used in baking, you eat bits of it all the time.
  • effective sanitizer
  • effective stain remover
  • effective deodorizer
  • less likely to etch marble than harsher chemicals such as vinegar, ammonia, dishwashing liquid or detergents.

Warnings About Cleaning Marble

1. Clean up spills immediately to avoid staining or etching.

Do not leave any baking soda powder or dissolved baking soda on your marble surfaces. Wipe it away with a damp cloth and then rinse with water and wipe dry.

2.  Do not use vinegar, lemon or other acidic substances to clean marble – this can lead to etching.

3. Do not use strong alkaline cleaning products on marble, such as ammonia, dishwashing liquid or detergents.