From travertine to granite, the Southern Arizona climate can take a toll on outdoor stone surfaces—not to mention the daily onslaught of your sprinkler system. Learn how to protect and care for your natural stone patios, walls, walkways, fireplaces and more. 

Year-round sunshine, jaw-dropping natural scenery, an outdoor sports paradise. What’s not to love about living in Southern Arizona? And in the winter, while most of the country is huddled indoors, we’re soaking up the vitamin D and enjoying the picture-perfect weather from the sanctuary of our outdoor patios.

Of course, many of the reasons we love residing in the Grand Canyon State are the same reasons our outdoor stone surfaces require a little extra care and attention.

From the granite countertops that are the focal point of your backyard kitchen and bar to the travertine tiles around the pool, read on to discover the best ways to protect and restore your natural stone oasis. 

How does living in AZ impact your outdoor stone?

Natural stone is inherently durable and can withstand a lot. However, the Arizona climate—and how we adapt to it—is not without its challenges. They include:

  • Extreme heat and sunlight. The dry desert climate may cause your outdoor stone surfaces to wear and fade over time. While granite is a popular choice for outdoor kitchen and bar areas because of its durability and resistance to heat, other stones may not fare as well. Quartz, for example, though nearly impervious to stains and scratching, may become discolored over time from sun exposure. 
  • Water damage. The heavy rains, high winds, and hail storms associated with Arizona’s monsoon season are unavoidable and may be potentially hazardous to your outdoor stone. However, homeowners rarely think about the impact of sprinkler systems, which regularly drench your outdoor stone in hard water. Here’s why that’s a problem.
  • Exposure to dust and sand. High winds carrying dust and sand are no friend to your outdoor stone surfaces. It is important to remember that natural stone, though sturdy, is not completely invulnerable. Travertine is especially susceptible to minute grains of dust and dirt getting in its small holes, which can leave it looking dull and dirty.
  • Impact from heavy objects. Outdoor stone is even more at risk of impact than indoor stone, since anything from storm debris to sporting equipment can strike your stone surfaces and cause cracks, chips, and scratches. 

Caring for your outdoor stone in Arizona

Just like the stone inside your home, your outdoor stone surfaces require regular care and maintenance. This applies to outdoor stone countertops and tabletops, fireplaces, pool and hot tub surrounds, walkways, and more. The following simple tips can help keep your outdoor stone looking like new. 

Tips to protect your outdoor stone countertops, bar tops, and other surfaces:

  • Cover all dining and entertaining surfaces when not in use to prevent them from becoming a target for your sprinkler system.
  • Clean spills quickly with a mixture of mild soap and warm water. Avoid harsh (bleach- or ammonia-based) cleansers as well as abrasive sponges. 
  • Keep acidic liquids (including vinegar and citrus) away from stone surfaces to prevent etching
  • Always use a cutting board instead of cutting directly on stone. 

For all other outdoor natural stone surfaces:

  • Wash the stone frequently to prevent dirt and grime buildup.
  • Keep plants and vegetation trimmed back.
  • Keep an eye out for mold and mildew.

Finally, reseal your stone surfaces regularly to prevent staining and scratches:

  • Granite: Every 5 years
  • Travertine: Once a year
  • Marble: Twice a year

Keep outdoor stone beautiful with AZ Stone Proz.

Have your outdoor stone surfaces lost their luster? Our master craftsmen were extensively trained in Italy and specialize in restoring natural stone surfaces both indoors and outdoors—including granite, marble, travertine, quartz, and more. Call us today at (520) 779-2052, or schedule an appointment using our online form.