What are the effects of microorganisms on stone and how to prevent them?

Amazzonite Quartzite

Microbial erosion refers to that some lower organisms (such as fungi, bacteria, bryophytes, etc.) or higher organisms (such as Boston ivy, etc.) in nature attach to the stone surface and start to develop and grow in the presence of water and at a suitable temperature, resulting in the erosion of stone and the formation of various spots. This will damage the decorative effect of the stone surface, promote the differentiation of the stone, and affect the service life of the stone.

Amazzonite Quartzite Slabs
Brazilian Amazzonite Quartzite

The occurrence of the disease has the following two factors:

1. Water is an essential factor for living things to survive.

2. Specific environment – suitable temperature.

Factors of disease formation

1. The symbiosis of certain algae and fungi causes erosion to the survival of a group of special organisms in the ecosystem. Such as lichens.

2. The growth of bryophytes causes erosion. Such as funaria hygrometrica, wall moss, etc.

3. The erosion caused by the covering of some higher plants and their pseudostems attached to the stone surface. Such as Parthenocissus.

Amazzonite Quartzite slab from Brazil
Amazzonite Quartzite Slab

Microbial erosion of stone

(1) Accumulate moisture and floating dust to pollute the stone.

(2) It secretes acidic metabolites to corrode stone.

(3) Absorb light energy and carbon dioxide for photosynthesis and generate carbohydrates to corrode stones.

(4) When these creatures die, the decay of their remains will corrode the stone.

Prevention and treatment of diseases

Amazzonite Quartzite kitchen countertops
Amazzonite Quartzite kitchen Countertop


(1) Keep the facing stone ventilated and dry.

(2) All stones shall be protected on six sides (mainly waterproof) with a high-quality stone curing agent before installation.

(3) Avoid long-term infiltration of exogenous water.


(1) Dredge the water source.

(2) Remove these organisms with a dolomite blade (for smooth surface) or a wire brush (for hairy surface).

(3) Use a special cleaning agent to thoroughly clean all stains, and then use a high-quality stone protective agent to do a good job of waterproof treatment to prevent the recurrence of diseases.  


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