How to Hone & Polish Travertine Tile

Travertine is a sedimentary stone that is a form of sandstone such as marble.


The difference between marble and travertine is the amount of time it's subjected to pressure, similar to how peat can turn into coal. Travertine works well for counters and floors and as tiles for floors. Though like marble, it should be sealed. Over time, however, it may be necessary to hone and polish travertine tiles. .

Apply water to a small area of the travertine floor tiles. Fasten the resin bond diamond to the floor machine. Start 1/4 inch from the edge of the floor first and work your way toward the middle of the floor. Keep in a parallel path to the wall and remember not to allow the floor machine to stop moving in at any point, for it could dig into the tile and mar the finish. Add more water to the travertine tile floor as you work your way to a new position.

Add more water to the floor when you have made your first pass with the resin bond diamond. Replace the pad with a diamond metal bond. This pad is less harsh than the one above. Repeat the process outlined in Step 1.

Add more water to the floor and replace the pad with a carbide stone. Repeat the process outlined in Step 1.


Add water to the floor. Put the 400-grit pad on the floor machine and start next to the wall. Work in the same fashion as when you were honing the floor, making sure you don't let the machine stop moving at any time.

Change the pad to the 800-grit carbine stone. This will be the final pass you will make with the floor machine as you polish the travertine tiles.

Clean the floor thoroughly and apply another seal to the travertine tile.

Things You Will Need

  • Water
  • 15-inch or 20-inch floor machine
  • 120-grit diamond resin bond
  • 115-grit diamond metal bond
  • 220-grit carbide stones
  • 400-grit resin bond diamond
  • 800-grit carbine stones


  • When you use the floor machine, make sure you move it in a gentle side to side fashion. Never let it stand in place while running. This will mar the floor.

About the Author

Marjorie Gilbert is a freelance writer and published author. An avid researcher, Gilbert has created an Empire gown (circa 1795 to 1805) from scratch, including drafting the gown's patterns by hand.