Limestone Flooring: Pros, Cons & Costs

Kenneth Wilson

Are you planning to remodel your home with luxurious rustic vibes? A good flooring choice would be limestone floors.

This stone flooring material can give your room a classy feel without the need to break the bank, starting from $9 to $27 per square foot. Not to mention, these floors are effortlessly gorgeous. It is available in different tones and styles, adding an elegant touch to your living space.

Now let's talk about the pros and cons, as well as the average costs of limestone floors!

Limestone Flooring Average Costs

On average, limestone flooring will cost you $9 and $27 per square foot (covering material and professional installation costs).

Note that the price of limestone floors varies on a case-to-case basis. Depending on the tile thickness, color, and finish, prices may also increase accordingly. Tiles with a honed finish (flat matte look) are cheaper than brushed (textured) or polished/shiny finishes. (Related: Tile Installation: A Cost & Consumer Guide)

Expect to spend around $700 to $1,800 for a standard 10x10 ft bathroom. However, some contractors may charge you a flat rate for every small project.

Advantages of Limestone Floors

Here are some advantages to consider in installing limestone floors at home.

  • Unique Floors: You can count on your limestone tile floors to be one-of-a-kind. There are different subtle colors and textures available to unleash your creativity. That said, limestone can be very versatile. It can suit your decor preference– even when you pair large and small tile sizes in a mosaic pattern.
  • Cost-effective Stone Flooring: Compared to other natural stone floors such as granite and marble, limestone makes for a more affordable choice. It has a great range of prices that meet every homeowner's budget.
  • Highly durable: Even though it is relatively cost-effective, limestone floors can also last for long years. That is if you follow and maintain proper upkeep. Thanks to its mineral composition, this soft stone has been highly durable. There are several natural stones in the flooring market today, but limestone offers an unbeatable appearance and longevity in its price range.
  • Adds warmth: Limestone is a natural stone that adds warmth to any room in the home. Additionally, these tiles are available in beige hues to white and ivory– offering a layered appearance. Regardless of whether you want a rustic look, classy, elegant interior decor, or contemporary style, you can use limestone floors.
  • Eco-friendly option: Homeowners looking to reduce their carbon footprint can benefit from limestone tiled floors. Using these eco-friendly materials does not harm the planet. The stone is also not flammable/explosive, an excellent feature to consider if you're a chronic smoker. Commercial limestone slabs do not have harmful chemicals. When it's time to replace your limestone floors, you may safely dispose of the old tiles.
  • Highly versatile: Limestone considered a soft stone, can be trimmed in different dimensions. It's also suitable for use in various home areas, such as your bathroom or the living room. Aside from flooring use, it also works well on walls. Some homeowners even use limestone as a countertop material.
  • Ideal for low-traffic areas: Experts recommend using limestone floors in low-traffic areas in the house to balance its pros and cons. That way, you can enjoy its beautiful appearance without worrying about stains.

Disadvantages of Limestone Floors

Even limestone floors have their fair share of disadvantages. As long as you work the floors within its limitations, this shouldn't be a significant problem. For your reference, here are some limestone flooring disadvantages to be mindful of.

  • Requires meticulous maintenance: You will need to take good care of your limestone floors to keep them in their prime condition. Since it is a porous stone, your new floors are increasingly prone to stains. You'll need to seal your floors every 3 to 5 years to maintain their beautiful appearance. Not to mention, you will need to be extra careful if you're vacuuming your floors to avoid accidental scraping.
  • Will cost you more than other synthetic alternatives: As we’ve mentioned, limestone floors are cheaper than other natural stone floors. However, if you compare it to synthetic alternatives such as ceramic, vinyl, or porcelain– you may end up spending more.
  • Needs professional installation (ideally): Bad news for DIY-ers, but limestone floors are ideally installed only by a trained/experienced professional. Unless you are skilled with laying tiles, that is. It's best to prepare your budget accordingly for professional installation costs. Larger tiles, in particular, are pretty heavy and difficult to work with. If you don't have any previous experience in installing these stone tiles, they may chip or crack easily (which is something you'd want to avoid).
  • Softness: Limestone is a porous stone that tends to easily chip than other natural stone flooring options when installed in heavy foot traffic areas. It's one reason why limestone floors are not recommended for commercial kitchens and hallways. To protect your floors from wear and tear, you may need to have them sealed and treated regularly.

How to Properly Clean and Maintain Limestone Floors

To keep your limestone floors in their best condition, you need regular sealing. Doing so ensures no stains stick around, and the color you've chosen will stay looking its best over time.

Suppose you're not a habitual cleaner. In that case, this stone flooring option may not be the best choice for your situation. To appreciate its beauty, you will need to put in the work. Once the floors are sealed, it's also crucial to mop the limestone floors frequently, and clean/mop spills immediately.

Sweeping or vacuuming your new limestone flooring is also something you'll need to do regularly. Some homeowners also opt to use a limestone cleaner to ensure the floors remain as pristine as ever.

Don't worry. These cleaners are specially formulated to avoid damaging your stone floors. For deeper cleaning, you may want to rent a steamer to restore the prime look of your limestone flooring.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is limestone?

Limestone is primarily composed of calcium carbonate, considered a sedimentary rock. Naturally, it forms when algae, corals, and shells are crystallized from water. When various sea animals extract calcium carbonate in warm waters to create bones and shells, limestone is created in the process.

What do you clean a limestone floor with?

You can use a soft broom or vacuum to clean your floors to remove any dust and hard debris. Other guides also recommend daily sweeping to avoid accidentally scratching your limestone tiles. Word of caution: This can quickly happen when homeowners unwittingly step on grime and drag them across the floor. Another cleaning method is to use wet cleaning materials regularly. This includes a soft floor cloth or mop. As much as possible, avoid using rough materials.

Is limestone flooring slippery when wet?

Different limestone flooring types also have varying levels of slipperiness. If you opt to use shiny/polished tiles, these may be highly slippery as the polish fills its natural porosity. Other limestone types, such as honed limestone or travertine, are notably less slippery.

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, limestone floors are a beautiful, durable addition to any home. We're not saying it's 100% rainbows and butterflies. Just like any other natural stone flooring material, it has its own set of drawbacks to consider.

It's best to weigh the pros and cons thoroughly before making a purchase. If you're convinced the benefits are more than the drawbacks, then it's time to install limestone floors at home!

Kenneth Wilson
January 10, 2022
Cost Guides, Flooring

Kenneth Wilson

Retired contractor. Currently residing in Southwest Florida. Now in semi-retirement, I write and manage this blog focused on helping home owners make savvy decisions when it comes to finding contractors and getting their projects done. I also operate remodeling design service for homeowners.

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