travertine floors flaking up?

Hi, I recently noticed that in some spots my travertine floor (exterior and interior) has a white flakey build up in certain spots. If I broom it off, it comes back after a few days. Someone told me that this is a natural occurence of oxidation in the natural stone. Is there anything I can do about it and is it a problem? Thanks.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I don't believe it is natural oxidation. You might check for moisture under the tiles that show this buildup, especially if the rock is installed over a slab base. Travertine is an extremely porous and sometimes permeable limestone rock that when in contact with a moisture source will wick up the moisture along with dissolved sulphate or carbonate salts from the rock itself or from the mortar underneath. Efflorescence - look this up! - occurs when these wicked solutions hit the air at the surface of the floor, and the evaporation causes oversaturation, and the salts precipitate out . One test for moisture might be to put a piece of newspaper on the freshly cleaned tile, then cover the paper with a weighted piece of glass, then check the paper after a week or so. If wet, then you have a seepage problem.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.