Travertine Filler and Travertine Maintenance

by Bev Berling
(Charlotte, NC)

Here's a question regarding travertine filler and travertine maintenance.


We had a travertine courtyard patio installed this past April. It looked GREAT until the couple of months. It has been very hot & humid, with only an occasional really hard rainstorm. Now all the pits & rough edges are much more obvious. Should we reapply another sand coating, sweep it into place & wet it down? How often should this be done? Thank you for your advice!

ANSWER

Hi Bev,
It sounds like the travertine pavers originally had quite a few holes in them and that the installer used a sand travertine filler in the joints and also the holes. Although there was not a lot of rain, it has probably washed away and that is why you are seeing more of the pits. I am assuming polymeric sand was not used. (See below.)

So you have two options. The first is to live with the holes and rough edges. Many people have travertine pavers like this and just ignore the fact that they are not perfectly smooth.

The second is to sweep additional sand as the travertine filler into the holes and joints periodically. How often you do this travertine maintenance depends on the weather and your personal tastes.

There is another option, but I am not sure if it can be done. There is a product called polymeric sand. This is sometimes used as an alternative to regular sand swept into the joints. Once it is applied, it is sprayed with water and the material hardens. I am think that it might be possible to spread this over the travertine pavers so that it fills the holes, along with the joints. Spray it with water and the material will harden in the holes and joints.

There are two problems however with this thought. The first is that you cannot have any loose sand on the pavers themselves or you will create a speckled concrete-like grit over the hardscape. The other issue is that polymeric sand should be used alone in the joints...not applied after the regular sand has been used.

Here is a very good article on polymeric sand.
Polymeric Sand

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