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Travertine Flooring

Travertine is one of the most frequently used stones for flooring applications. The rock travertine is a natural chemical precipitate of carbonate minerals; typically aragonite, but often re-crystallized to primary calcite; which is deposited from the water of mineral springs (especially hot springs) or streams saturated with calcium carbonate. When pure, travertine is white, but often is brown to yellow due to impurities.

When carbon dioxide-rich water percolates through rocks in limestone areas, the water dissolves the limestone and becomes saturated with it. When the water resurfaces later, the sudden drop in pressure and the change in temperature cause the water to release the carbon dioxide gas, much like fizzy drinks. The calcium carbonate then re-crystallizes. The resulting rock is typically quite porous with numerous cavities. When exceptionally porous it is known as calcareous tufa.

Travertine floors have a naturally pitted service and therefore can be purchased filled or unfilled. Travertine can be used for indoor and outdoor applications.

Helpful Terms

  • Honed
    The surface is smoothed by abrasives.
    Brushed
    The surface is brushed to give it an antique look.
    Tumbled
    The stones are antiquated by a vibration machine to give the stone a smooth surface and round edges.
    Straight Edge
    The edges are cut perfectly straight and square.
    Chiseled Edge
    The edge is chiseled or broken to give the stone an antique look.
    Beveled Edge
    The edges are cut on a slight angle to create a bevel between the stones when installed.