Wax Sealed Mexican Terracotta Floor Stroud


We were called by a customer with a Mexican Terracotta floor who was looking at having it taken it up and replaced but before doing wondered what it would cost to have it renovated. I visited the property in the nearby market town of Stroud in the centre of Gloucestershire to survey the floor and advise on options. Stroud by the way is a lovely part of the county and sits within the Cotswolds which is an area of outstanding beauty.

Wax Sealed Mexican Terracotta Tile Before Cleaning Stroud

The customer had this floor laid thought the ground floor just five years earlier and had been was advised to seal it with wax. After three months the wax had broken down and started collecting dirt as you can see from the pictures. Unfortunately, he had not been advised the correct way to look after his floor and was now fed up with its appearance. Help was at hand and I was confident I could restore the floor for a lot less than replacing it, I explained what could be done, agreed a price which was accepted and agreed a date for carrying out the work.

Wax Sealed Mexican Terracotta Tile Before Cleaning Stroud

Stripping Wax Off Mexican Terracotta Tiles

So, the first job was to strip the layers of wax and sealant off using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and Remove and Go. I combined the products together to make a very effective cleaner and coatings remover and left them to soak into the Terracotta tiles for ten minutes, before scrubbing them in with a black pad fitted to a rotary floor machine. This process released a lot of dirt and waxes from the floor which I extracted with a wet vacuum and then retreated areas that needed more work until I was happy it was as clean as it could be.

After the floor was clean I set about on grout lines these were also in a bad state, they needed a lot of manual scrubbing with Pro-Clean which was worked in with a narrow stiff brush to get them clean.

Wax Sealed Mexican Terracotta Tile After Cleaning Before Sealing Stroud

Afterwards, happy with the result, I rinsed the floor three times with water to remove any trace of the cleaning products and soil from the floor. Because I had to use so much water and cleaning products to achieve a good result I left the floor for nearly a week, so it could thoroughly dry out. Mexican terracotta is very porous, and it would need to be dry before sealing so I figured five days should be enough time.

Sealing Mexican Terracotta Tiled Floor

I returned after five days and checked that moisture levels of the floor were satisfactory with my moisture meter. Once I was satisfied I was good to go ahead with the sealing. I decided to use two different types of sealant on this job. For the first coat I used Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnator that soaks into the pores of the clay tile protecting it from with and enhancing the natural colours in the process. I then applied six coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go letting it dry in between coats. Seal and Go is a water-based blend of acrylic polymers that provides both a stain resistant seal and a durable low-sheen finish, which the customer had requested on this job.

Wax Sealed Mexican Terracotta Tile After Cleaning Sealing Stroud

The customer was pleased with the result, he never expected it to look so good and had thought he was going to have to put a new floor down. Not only had we completed a great job for them, they had been saved significant expense too.

 

Professional Restoration of Mexican Terracotta Tiles in Gloucestershire



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Victorian Quarry Tiled Floor Fully Restored in Nether Edge, Sheffield


We were called to this beautiful Victorian house in Nether Edge, Sheffield. The house sits on a tree lined street full of big Victorian homes and dates back to 1898. The current owners were keen to preserve the properties old charm and character and had made quite a few improvements sympathetic to the age of the property. They had begun by removing some tasteless ceramic tiles that had been installed sometime in the 1990’s and were shocked when the original quarry tiled floor was uncovered buried beneath two layers of tile adhesive and a layer of bitumen! They gave us a call and asked us to come and have a look and see if we could restore the floor.

Quarry Tiled Floor Sheffield Before Restoration

I went to the property and as they had described the floor was in need of some help.
After several test cleans we came to the conclusion that all the damage was repairable, and the floor was able to be rescued. I offered them a quote to complete this restoration work which they gladly accepted. Due to the nature of the work involved the job would take four days to complete.

Quarry Tiled Floor Sheffield Before Restoration

The client was also having their kitchen re fitted, so we discussed that we could use some of the original tiles that were going to be covered by a new island by lifting them up and storing them until we needed them to patch the holes up and replace the cracked tiles. The owners also managed to source some reclaimed tiles which were also a perfect match.

Quarry Tiled Floor Sheffield Before Restoration

Cleaning and Restoring a Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor

We began by removing the old adhesives and bitumen with a combination of Tile Doctor Grout Clean-up with Pro-Clean and assisted with steam, a heat gun and good old-fashioned elbow grease. It was painstaking work but after 2 days we had uncovered the floor.

Quarry Tiled Floor Sheffield During Restoration Day 2 After Steam Cleaning

There were areas of damage, areas with no tiles, patches of loose tiles and areas where tiles had never been, like the two doorways which weren’t original, so tiles were never placed there. We used the rescued tiles and the reclaimed tiles to repair these areas, once the tiles were in you wouldn’t have known any damage had existed. There were many areas of missing grout, so we installed new grout and gave the floor one last wash. As you can see from all the pictures there was a lot to do.

Quarry Tiled Floor Sheffield During Restoration Day 3 Removing More Damaged Tiles

Sealing a Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor

Once the floor had dried completely we returned to seal the floor, we applied one coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow, a colour enhancing impregnating sealer which we left to soak in and cure. Then we applied 5 coats of a satin breathable sealer Tile Doctor Seal & Go Extra leaving the floor with a beautiful natural finish.

Quarry Tiled Floor Sheffield During Restoration Day 4 Applying Colour Grow

It was a long job that took four days to completed but the transformation we achieved was well worth the effort. Our clients certainly thought so and were over the moon that an original and unknown part of their house was now restored back to its’ former glory and will hopefully last another 120 years. They even left the following comment on the Tile Doctor feedback system.

”We found a layer of quarry tiles under our kitchen floor – covered in bitumen and tile adhesive. After four days of cleaning, patching gaps & replacing cracked quarry tiles we have a shiny, characterful and ‘new Victorian floor!”

Quarry Tiled Floor Sheffield During Restoration Day 4 After Sealing

 

Professional Restoration of a Quarry Tiled Kitchen in South Yorkshire



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Grade A Tumbled Travertine Floor Transformed in Ripon


My client gave Tile Doctor a call to discuss their hallway floor which was in a poor state, they thought the tiles were Travertine but weren’t 100% sure as it was installed before they acquired the property. I arranged a time to do a site survey to see what we could do for them.

The property was in Ripon which is a lovely Yorkshire cathedral city just North of Harrogate. I took a look at the floor and confirmed the tiles were indeed Travertine, in fact I identified it as Bullnose Grade A Tumbled Travertine which is a premium product and well worth renovating. Travertine is a natural stone material that has unique features and colouring that no other stone can offer. The distinctive design and natural patterns found within the stone make it very popular as a flooring material and is often used as bathroom wall tiles too. Travertine’s durability makes it ideal for all manner of projects and it is often used externally.

Like any stone floor it’s important to maintain the sealer if you want it to look its best and from what I could see the sealer had now failed and was letting dirt get into the pores of the Travertine making it very difficult to keep clean. The owners also had two dogs which may have contributed to the wear and tear. I discussed with them the prognosis and we agreed a quote for completing the work to renovate the tile and grout.

Tumbled Travertine Ripon Before Cleaning Tumbled Travertine Ripon Before Cleaning

Cleaning Tumbled Travertine Floor Tiles in Ripon

I arrived the following week and started by protecting the skirting boards etc. with tape to protect them from splashing during the cleaning process. Once that was done I started burnishing the Travertine with a set of diamond burnishing pads which are run over the floor with water to remove dirt, old sealers and restore the polished appearance of the stone. Using a rotary floor machine, you start with the coarse 400-grit pad before moving onto the 800 and 1500 grit pads rinsing the floor in between each pad to remove the slurry that is generated.

My next task was to tackle the cream coloured grout which had become dark with dirt. To do this I used a cleaning product called Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which is a concentrated, multi-purpose high-alkaline cleaner that’s particularly good on heavily soiled and neglected grout. You dilute it into different strengths depending on the nature of the problem and it works best when left to dwell and soak in for about ten minutes first. I scrubbed all the grout lines by hand with a scrubbing brush to get them really clean and then rinsed with water and removed the slurry with a wet vacuum.

Finally, the cleaning process was completed using the last of the four burnishing pads which is a 3000-grit polishing pad which is applied dry with only a little water sprayed on the tile.

Tumbled Travertine Ripon During Cleaning

Given the size of the floor I had to work in sections and the photograph above shows the difference in the tile and grout between two of the sections. Once done the floor was left overnight to completely dry out, the warm weather made this a quick process.

Sealing a Tumbled Travertine Floor in Ripon

Returning the following morning, I used my moisture meter to test the moisture levels in the floor. Applying the sealant to a floor that is still damp prevents it from curing. I had selected to use the Tile Doctor Ultra Seal on this job, this is a premium product, which gives a no-sheen, natural-look, penetrating sealer made to provide maximum stain protection. You can also use it as a pre-grouting sealer. The customer didn’t want the floor to be shiny, so this was the perfect product for them.

The customers were really satisfied with the massive transformation in the floor returning the floor to almost new. They were so pleased that the floor didn’t look tired any longer and it would now be able to withstand the traffic of their two dogs. The floor would be much easier for them to clean and maintain.

Tumbled Travertine Ripon After Cleaning Tumbled Travertine Ripon After Cleaning

 

Professional Restoration of a Tumbled Travertine Floor in Yorkshire



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Limestone Tiled Floor with Grout Haze Cleaned in Clipston


These photos are of a Limestone tiled floor which was installed in the Kitchen approximately at a property in the small parish of Clipston, which is close to the towns of Market Harborough and Daventry, three years ago. The customer was never very happy with it since it was laid as it never seemed to look clean asked me to cover over and work out what could be done.

On my initial visit I soon realised that the installer had not cleaned off all the grout from the tiles before applying the sealer. This effectively trapped the grout under the sealer and gave the whole floor a dirty appearance, this explained the problem the customer was frustrated with as she could never ever seem to get the floor looking clean.

Limestone Floor With Grout Haze Before Cleaing Clipston

This issue is known as Grout Haze or Grout Smears and is a problem we often come across where the floor has been laid without the excess grout residue being completely polished off the tiles after the grouting. Some manufacturers recommend the tiles are sealed before grouting to make it easier to polish the grout off later. After discussing how we could remedy this I issued a quote which the customer accepted, and we scheduled the work to be done.

Limestone Floor With Grout Haze Before Cleaning Clipston

Removing Grout Haze from Limestone Kitchen Tiles

I arrived on site on the arranged date, as it was a painted kitchen it was not possible to mask up the units, so I used a small hand-held polishing machine fitted with a six inch 400-grit burnishing pad to carefully clean around the edges and break through the sealant. This process was then repeated with a larger seventeen inch 400-grit burnishing pad fitted to a floor polishing machine throughout the rest of the area.

Once the original sealant had been removed using the burnishing pad the next step was to remove the Grout Haze by given the floor an acid wash with Tile Doctor Acid Gel. Being a gel, this product is easier to control than a liquid and sits on the surface where it’s needed to break down the unsightly Grout Haze. It’s left to dwell for a short period before being worked in with a special brush that is designed for this purpose. The resulting slurry is then removed with a professional wet pick up machine and the floor given a rinse with water to remove any trace of the product.

After treating the Grout Haze my next step was to refine the surface of the Limestone using a medium 800-grit and fine 1500-grit diamond encrusted burnishing pad which are applied with water and restore the polished appearance of the stone. The floor is rinsed with more water between the application of each pad to remove the slurry that is generated and then dried with the wet pickup machine.

Sealing a Limestone Tiled Kitchen Floor

I returned the following day to buff the tiles with a white polishing pad as the customer didn’t want a high shine finish which is normally achieved with the 3000-grit diamond burnishing pad, this gave a low sheen honed look as the customer had requested. The floor was then sealed with two coats of Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal which is a natural look sealer that and will protect the newly restored and polished tiles going forward.

Limestone Floor With Grout Haze After Cleaning Clipston

The customer was very happy with the results and has left the following positive feedback on our website.

‘Professional, floor looks much better’ – Vicki S, Clipston

I gave the customer some tips on maintenance and a complimentary bottle of Tile Doctor Stone Soap to enable her to keep the floor looking its best, this product is designed for the regular cleaning of polished stone floors and is pH neutral, so it won’t prematurely degrade the sealer.

Limestone Floor With Grout Haze After Cleaning Clipston

 

Professional Restoration of a Limestone Tiled Kitchen Floor in Northamptonshire



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Edwardian Tiled Hallway Rebuilt and Restored in Harpenden


The owners of this property in Harpenden asked us to come and clean and reseal their Edwardian Tiled hallway floor and return it to its’ former glory whilst carrying out a few minor repairs to missing, broken and cracked tiles around the edge.

On visiting the property at this popular commuter town within the St Albans district, it was clear the floor was looking a little neglected and in need of some care and attention. They were keen to retain this feature of their Edwardian property. We discussed what could be done to restore the floor and the client was given a quote and a timescale for the work. They were happy to go ahead.

Edwardian Hallway Before Rebuild Harpenden Edwardian Hallway Before Rebuild Harpenden

Cleaning and Repairing an Edwardian Tiled Hallway Floor

The first step was to give the floor a deep clean with a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean. This product is designed for use on Tile, Stone and Grout and when used in a strong dilution can strip away any old sealers without harming the tile itself. The product is left to dwell on the tiles for short time and then scrubbed in using a rotary brush. We then rinsed with water to remove the slurry produced and using a wet vacuum we removed the residue.

Once this was finished and with the floor looking cleaner the next step was to tackle the cracks in a few of the tiles under the stairs. This is when we discovered that the floor had become loose. When removing some of the broken tiles adjacent to the skirting we discovered a whole section of floor, about 1/3 of sqm had become loose and dropped slightly.

Edwardian Hallway During Rebuild Harpenden Edwardian Hallway During Rebuild Harpenden

The client was concerned with this setback and wasn’t sure what we would be able to do. However, the need not have worried, we have come across this situation before! To tackle the problem, we carefully excavated the area and re built the sub floor below the tiles in concrete. We then levelled the floor in preparation for tiling. Luckily, we were able to salvage the existing tiles and they were individually cleaned using a diamond wet cutter before being re-laid into the original pattern.

Edwardian Hallway During Rebuild Harpenden

Sealing an Edwardian Tiled Hallway Floor

With the original tiles laid back down clean and the flooring rebuilt under the stairs we re-grouted the floor before we were ready to apply a protective sealer. Before doing that however the floor needed to be dry, so we left it to dry off fully overnight.

Returning the following morning, we checked with a moisture meter that the floor was dry, which it was. Firstly, we applied a primer seal using Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer to protect the tiles and enhance their colour. Once the first coat of sealer was dry it was followed by five coats of Tile Doctor Seal & Go which adds further protection and leaves a glorious sheen.

Edwardian Hallway After Rebuild Harpenden Edwardian Hallway After Rebuild Harpenden

The floor looks amazing and the client was over the moon with the end result. It far exceeded their expectations particularly after finding an area of the floor had collapsed.

Edwardian Hallway After Rebuild Harpenden

 

Restoration of an Edwardian Tiled Hallway in Hertfordshire



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Grubby Sandstone Tiled Floor Transformed in Wolverhampton


This client had recently moved into a house in Wolverhampton and was hoping to improve the appearance of their Sandstone flagged kitchen/Diner floor which looked very unappealing. The client got in touch with us at Tile Doctor and asked us to take a look to see what could be done.

Sandstone Floor Before Cleaning Wolverhampton

I’m based very close by in Bliston, so I know Wolverhampton quite well; in-fact Wolverhampton was historically a part of Staffordshire but is best known as a city in the new very metropolitan West Midlands and did you know the ‘native’ people of Wolverhampton are actually known as ‘Wulfrunian’.

Being so close it wasn’t long before I was able to survey the floor which was looking quite grubby, there were paint stains and overall it was in need of a good deep clean and reseal. The floor was a large kitchen diner and in constant use, so it needed to be easier for them to look after and maintain. A test clean was done for them which came out well and showed what could be achieved. We agreed the price and organised a suitable date with the client to return and renovate the floor.

Sandstone Floor Before Cleaning Wolverhampton

Cleaning and Restoring a Sandstone Tiled Kitchen Floor

The floor was covered in a thick dirty grime and had paint splashes in areas, so the floor was deep cleaned with a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, this is a heavy-duty alkaline cleaner that also works as a stripper and degreaser when applied in concentrated form.

The solution was left to dwell for 15 minutes then scrubbed in using a weighted rotary machine with a black stripping pad. The floor was then rinsed with water and the resultant slurry rinsed off and extracted using a wet vacuum. The Sandstone floor was then inspected and the areas that needed more work were such as the corners and edges were completed with hand using hand burnishing pads. The cleaning solution had softened the paint splashes and were now able to carefully scrape them off.

Once we were satisfied that the floor was as clean as possible, the floor was given another rinse and then allowed to dry off fully over the weekend.

Sandstone Floor During Cleaning Wolverhampton

Sealing a Sandstone Tiled Kitchen Floor

On my return I first checked that the Sandstone floor was dry; all was well so I was able to move onto sealing with two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is a colour intensifying breathable sealer which provides a durable surface as well as enhancing the appearance of the stone. It worked really well on the Sandstone and brought out the natural colours of the stone which can be seen in the pictures.

Sandstone Floor After Sealing Wolverhampton

The client was amazed with the transformation as they hadn’t realised what colour the tiles actually were; impressed with the results they left a great testimonial on the Tile Doctor feedback system for me. The floor looked great and it is always lovely to receive good feedback as our business is built on our reputation.

“Kieron was fantastic, very knowledgeable and friendly. I’m over the moon with the work he did on the stone floor in our new house. I had no idea that it was a light coloured sandstone floor, I’d thought it was dark brown slate before he came over and gave it a proper clean! We would definitely recommend to anyone considering having a professional floor clean. It’s made a huge difference to our home and will last for years.”

Sandstone Floor After Sealing Wolverhampton

Before leaving I gave the customer a bottle of Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner to help maintain the tiles appearance. This product is especially formulated for the regular cleaning of stone tiles and has a pleasant smell. Most household cleaners are made for ceramic tiles and will prematurely erode the sealer, so it is important to use the correct product for the job.

Sandstone Floor After Sealing Wolverhampton

 

Professional Restoration of a Sandstone Tiled Floor in Birmingham



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Polishing a Travertine Table Top in Heswall


One of my customers for who I recently polished their Marble floor was over the moon with the results and wondered and if I could achieve the same effect with a Travertine table which had many scratches to the top. The table was at his house in Heswall which is located on the Wirral, on the Eastern side of the Dee Estuary with lovely views across the river towards North Wales.

Travertine Tabletop Before Polishing Heswall Wirral

The table was a lovely piece of stone furniture, but I could see it was badly marked, scratched and had lost much of its surface sheen. Whilst this was a slightly unusual request, the polishing process works equally well on any type of stone so apart from the physical issue of working on a raised surface, I couldn’t see a problem with working on the table and anticipated that it would come up quite well. We agreed a cost and I arranged a time to come back and complete the job.

Travertine Tabletop Before Polishing Heswall Wirral

Cleaning and Polishing a Travertine Table

When polishing floor tiles, I would normally use large Tile Doctor 17-inch diamond encrusted burnishing pads fitted to a rotary floor buffer, naturally that simply wouldn’t work on a table however, I do have a small hand-held buffing machine that’s perfect for getting into small spaces and polishing stone wall tiles which would be perfect for this situation.

To restore the polished finish on the table I was able to use the hand buffer together with a set of four 6-inch diamond encrusted burnishing pads of different grits from coarse to very fine. The process involves working through the pads in sequence. I started the polishing with the coarse 400-grit pad and a little water, this coarse pad removes the scratches and ingrained dirt. The table was rinsed down and then the 800-grit medium pad was applied which is the first step in the polishing process. Again, this pad is applied with water to lubricate and the table was rinsed down afterwards. The process was repeated with the 1500-grit fine pad and then the 3000-grit very fine pad to bring up a really nice shine to the Travertine table, I should mention the last pad is applied dry with only a tiny amount of water sprayed onto the surface.

Sealing a Travertine Table

The last step was to seal the stone to protect it going forward for which I used two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow. The sealer is rubbed into the top then the excess polished off after ten minutes. Once the sealer was dry the table surface was then buffed with a white pad to bring up the finish even further.

Travertine Tabletop After Polishing Heswall Wirral

The client was really pleased with the result, the table looked like new; he was so glad he had asked me to look at it following the work on his floors. Before leaving I talked to him about the best way to look after his table in the future and recommended for regular cleaning that he use Tile Doctor Stone Patina Spray which has been especially formulated for the regular cleaning of stone worktops.

Travertine Tabletop After Polishing Heswall Wirral

 

Professional Restoration of Travertine Table East Cheshire



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Renovating a Quarry Tiled Cloakroom Floor in Brotheridge Green


These photographs are from a beautiful farmhouse in the tranquil village of Brotheridge Green near the city of Worcester. Worcester is famous for many things, Royal Worcester Porcelain, Lea and Perrin Worcester Sauce, Berrow’s Worcester Journal which claims to be the oldest newspaper, and indeed it was also the hometown of the composer Edward Elgar.

Quarry Tiled WC Floor Brotheridge Green Farmhouse Before Cleaning

The owner of the farmhouse asked me to come and look at their downstairs cloakroom which had existing quarry tiles fitted. They were becoming frustrated that they couldn’t get the area to look clean and were considering replacing the floor. The owners of the property had used every cleaning product they could find and scrubbed for hours to try and get these quarry tiles in their cloakroom clean. The problem with the tiles was a build-up of ingrained dirt over time as the tiles had not been sealed, so no amount of cleaning with household products would have helped. There was also an issue with salts rising through the tiles which was making them look worse, common in properties of this age.

Quarry Tiled WC Floor Brotheridge Green Farmhouse Before Cleaning

Following my inspection, I explained to the customer what I could do to bring the tiles back to life. I completed a quote for the work that evening which they gladly accepted, and the work was scheduled in.

Cleaning a Quarry Tiled Cloakroom Floor

On day one of the job my first step was to sweep away any loose debris from the quarry tiles. I then tackled the floor with Tile Doctor Pro-Clean this is a heavy-duty alkaline cleaner which is safe to use on Tile and Stone, in concentrated form it can strip away sealers and grease and was perfect for this job. As I was working in a confined space I opted to complete the job by hand using a deck brush and scrubbing brush to work the solution in after leaving the Pro-Clean to dwell and soak into the floor for ten minutes. I then extracted the resultant slurry off the floor with my wet and dry vacuum and repeated this process until I was happy the floor was as clean as it could be given its age.

I then finished the cleaning of the floor with an acid rinse using Tile Doctor Acid Gel to remove grout stains and counter potential salt efflorescence issues which are a common problem with these old floors where no damp proof membrane has been installed. The floor was then rinsed again with water, dried with the wet vacuum and left to dry off fully overnight.

Sealing a Quarry Tiled Cloakroom Floor

When I returned the following morning, I checked the floor was dry using my moisture meter; this is important step as a damp floor will effect the ability of the sealer to cure.

I decided to seal the Quarry tiles with Tile Doctor Seal and Go Extra, which is a semi-gloss breathable sealer to allow for any damp issues and applied four coats allowing each coat to dry for approximately 30 minutes before adding the next. This gave a nice natural finish letting the colour of the quarry tiles shine through.

Quarry Tiled WC Floor Brotheridge Green Farmhouse After Cleaning

The customer was very happy with the result and is looking to get the rest of the Quarry tiles in the house cleaned and sealed in the future. They were very happy that the floor didn’t need to be replaced.

Quarry Tiled WC Floor Brotheridge Green Farmhouse After Cleaning

 

Professional Restoration of a Quarry Tiled Cloakroom in Worcestershire



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Geometric Victorian Tiled Hallway Repaired and Restored in Palmers Green


It is not uncommon for the owners of houses built in this era to discover original Victorian tiled floors and hallways. Sometimes they have been covered up with carpet or linoleum to match the trend of the day and sometimes they get covered up because they have been neglected and though beyond economical repair. Trends have now been reversed and its becoming increasingly popular to restore them and bringing them back to their former glory and who can blame them, period features are in demand and they add value to a property.

This was the case with this floor at a house in Palmers Green, North London, affectionately known by the locals as ‘Little Cyprus or Palmers Greek’. The house is situated in a street with similar properties of the same age, so it’s likely there are a few hidden Victorian tiled floors on this street!

Victorian Tiled Hallway Before Cleaning Palmers Green

The client asked me to visit and survey what could be done to restore the floor. As you can see from the photographs the floor in the hall is a lovely example of geometric black and white tiles. However, it is in quite a state with, cracked and missing tiles and many years of built up dirt. I discussed with the client the options and we agreed a price to carry the work out, over a couple of days.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Before Cleaning Palmers Green

Cleaning and Repairing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

Our first task was to protect the woodwork with protective tape including the doorway threshold edges, skirting and doors. Next, we began the cleaning the tile and grout including stripping off old coatings including sealers and waxes. To do this we applied a strong solution of Tile Doctor Pro Clean mixed 50:50 with Tile Doctor Remove & Go; when you have a combination of unknown contaminates, stubborn stains and dirt, a combination of products can be the best option. The solution was left on the floor around fifteen minutes before being worked into the floor, I find a longer dwell time makes the removal of sealers, adhesives, paints and grime easier. We then agitated the wet area using a black scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary floor buffer and used detail brushes for the more the intricate areas.

This process turned the cleaning solution in a black slurry which was extracted off the floor using a wet vacuum and the floor then steam cleaned to remove any remaining product residue and believe me there really was a lot of dirt to remove. A thorough rinse followed, and the floor was left for a short while to dry.

Next up we tackled the repairs, starting with the removal loose, cracked and broken tiles. Luckily, I had managed to source some new and reclaimed tiles locally and so we replaced these and then re-grouted. We then left the tiles overnight to dry.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

Returning in the morning a consolidator primer seal was then applied using Tile Doctor Colour Grow which improves colour followed by four applications of Tile Doctor Seal & Go this is a specially formulated water-based blend of acrylic polymers that provides both a stain resistant surface and a protective seal as well as a lovely natural satin finish.

Victorian Tiled Hallway After Cleaning Palmers Green Victorian Tiled Hallway After Cleaning Palmers Green

The floor looked so much better and the black and white tiles are now very vibrant, the client is pleased they ripped up the carpet and now have a feature hallway which is in keeping with the property.

Victorian Tiled Hallway After Cleaning Palmers Green

 

Professional Restoration of a Victorian Tiled Hallway in North London



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Dull Riven Black Slate Floor Transfored in High Bentham


We were asked to come and advise a customer regarding their stone floor which the customer was struggling to keep clean. The property was in High Bentham which lies on the River Wenning, just West of the Yorkshire Dales National Park.

Slate Floor Before Cleaning High Bentham

We often get customers who give up looking after their tiles after a while as some stone like this Black Riven Slate need quite a bit of upkeep to keep them looking good and a standard mop and bucket at times isn’t enough to keep them looking pristine. In this case the sealant had worn away in the high traffic areas and the floor had a slightly rough texture to the surface which meant it was holding onto dirt making it difficult to keep clean. We proposed the floor should be cleaned and resealed, discussed the cost and agreed a time for the work to be carried out.

Slate Floor Before Cleaning High Bentham

Cleaning a Black Riven Slate Tiled Floor

To get the tiles clean we burnished the stone floor with a coarse 200-Grit Diamond pad fitted to a weighted buffing machine using water for lubrication. The floor was then rinsed and then the process repeated using a series of different graded pads, namely the 400 and 800 grit burnishing pads which further cleaned and resurface the appearance of the stone.

The grout was cleaned using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which was scrubbed into the grout lines by hand; Pro-Clean is a heavy-duty cleaner which gets to the really stubborn stains and it did a great job at getting the grout looking like it should. The cleaning process was then finished off by rinsing the floor with water and extracted the slurry with a wet vacuum. The floor was inspected and retreated to the same process where more work was required. We usually find leaving Pro-Clean on a stain for longer and assisting with a bit of steam helps to lift the dirt out of the pores of the stone.

Once cleaned thoroughly we rinsed the floor again and then extracted as much moisture from the floor as possible with a wet vacuum before leaving it to dry off fully overnight.

Sealing a Riven Black Slate Tiled Floor

We called back the following day to apply a sealer first checking the floor was dry using a moisture meter. All was well, so we started to apply the first of two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow, a third coat was attempted but the slate would not accept any more sealer, and this was removed with a cloth. It is important to know if you have reached FCS (Full Cure Sealability) if not then the pores of the tiles will still be open to accepting dirt and the job won’t last long. Over a very short period of time the tiles will diminish in stature and finish.

Slate Floor During Sealing High Bentham

The sealer really restored the black colour to the Slate and transformed the look of the floor. As always, we left the customer a free bottle of Tile Doctor Neutral Cleaner, using the correct cleaning product in future will ensure they get maximum life out of the sealer.

Slate Floor After Sealing High Bentham Slate Floor After Sealing High Bentham

The floor looked lovely when finished and the customer was very happy with the overall result.

 

Professional Renovation of a Black Riven Slate Tiled Floor in Lancashire



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Enhancing a Chinese Slate Tiled Hallway Floor in Cirencester


This client from Cirencester got in contact about his Slate Tiled hallway floor which was now looking dull following renovations to the property by the owner who was a builder. If you have never been I can recommend you pay Cirencester visit, it’s a lovely old market town that dates to the Roman times and is incidentally is the largest town in the Cotswold District.

Chinese Slate Floor Cirencester Before Cleaning

I arrived at the property and could see immediately that the floor had never been sealed properly and so the appearance had just got worse over the few years since it was laid. Dirt had become ingrained in the pores of the slate making it impossible to clean effectively. The client realised that the only way to fix the problem was to have the floor properly treated. We agreed a price for the work and popped a date in the diary to come back.

Chinese Slate Floor Cirencester Before Cleaning Chinese Slate Floor Cirencester Before Cleaning

Cleaning a Chinese Slate Tiled Hallway Floor

As the floor was in the hallway, we needed to protect the stairs and skirting with plastic sheeting before we started. I then started cleaning the tiles with a strong concentration of Tile Doctor Remove and Go, this is a multi-purpose stripper which can remove most coatings and sealers and works best it left to dwell and soak into the stone for a long time before scrubbing it in. This also helps it work on ingrained stains and remove heavy grease build-up. My primary reason for choosing Remove and Go was to remove what was left of the sealer so after applying it to the floor I left it to soak in for ten minutes before being scrubbed it into the tiles with a black pad scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary floor buffer. The dirt soon turned the cleaning solution black and the slurry was extracted using a wet vacuum.

Next, I worked on cleaning up the grout using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, this is good for neglected and heavily soiled areas and it makes short work of cleaning dirty grout. I had to scrub the grout by hand and once I was happy that the slate and grout was as clean as it could be the floor was given several rinses with water to remove the remaining dirt and remove any traces of cleaning products. Once this was done this completed the cleaning process, I was satisfied with our efforts and the floor was left to dry off overnight.

Sealing a Chinese Slate Tiled Hallway Floor

The next day I checked the moisture level of the stone in several areas with a damp meter to check that the floor was dry. The sealer will not cure if the floor is not properly dried out. I chose a combination of sealers to achieve the look we were after. First, I sealed with one coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow this is an impregnating sealer that occupies the pores in the stone thereby preventing dirt from becoming ingrained there. It’s also a colour enhancing sealer that works really well on Chinese slate to highlight all the colours. Once this was dry I followed with three coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go which is water-based blend of acrylic polymers that provides both a stain resistant surface seal and a durable low-sheen finish, which was perfect for finishing this floor.

Chinese Slate Floor Cirencester After Cleaning Chinese Slate Floor Cirencester After Cleaning

The customers response was ‘It never looked as good as that’, and he now realised the importance of sealing the floor correctly! I love the natural patterns in this type of floor, it is one of my favourites.

Chinese Slate Floor Cirencester After Cleaning

 

Professional Restoration of a Chinese Slate Tiled Hallway in Gloucestershire



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Neglected Tumbled Travertine Floor Renovated in Saffron Walden


We recently visited a property in Saffron Walden, a pretty market town in Essex, where the owner asked us to look at her Tumbled Travertine kitchen floor. The floor had been laid and sealed around 10 years prior and the pits in the Travertine had become very dirty with trapped dirt, the floor now had a grubby neglected look about it. No matter how much they tried to clean with a multitude of household cleaners, the floor had become worse and worse which is not unusual as strong chemicals can strip off the sealer completely which protects the floor.

Tumbled Travertine Before Cleaning Saffron Walden Tumbled Travertine Before Cleaning Saffron Walden

It was clear that the original sealer was no longer doing its job and so I discussed the options for renovating the floor whilst carrying out a test clean. Sealers rarely last ten years, in my experience three years is about the maximum you can expect regardless of manufacturers claims. The test clean went well and we agreed a price and a timescale for the work and scheduled it for the following week.

Cleaning a Tumbled Travertine Tiled Kitchen Floor

It’s not a good idea to apply a different sealer on top of the original unless you know they are compatible, also you can end up with uneven layers so our first step was to strip off any remaining sealer and clean the floor. To do this we used Tile Doctor Remove and Go which is designed for the removal of coatings on tiles such as sealers, adhesives and paints. This product is also great for drawing out ingrained stains and removing heavy grease build-up. It can be used on both vertical and horizontal surfaces. We applied and let it soak into the pores of the Travertine for ten minutes before working it in.

To work the product into the stone and get deep into the pits a coarse 200-grit burnishing pad fitted to a rotary buffing machine was run over the floor and lubricated with plenty of water. After than the floor was rinsed with water and the slurry extracted with a wet vacuum. With the floor clean the process was repeated with finer grades of pads from 800-grit through to 1500-grit. As before between pad the floor was rinsed thoroughly to remove any trace of slurry off the tiles and the slurry extracted with the wet vacuum; the more thorough the rinse the better the finish. By the end of day one the cleaning process was completed, stripped of any coatings and the floor looked much better and lighter in appearance which made the room seem bigger.

Sealing a Tumbled Travertine Tiled Kitchen Floor

The Travertine tiles were left to dry off fully overnight and I started on the second day with a floor inspection to ensure the floor was ready for sealing. At that point I could see that there were a few small areas that needed further attention, so I spot treated them with Hand Burnishing Block. This was followed by spray-burnishing the floor with a very fine 3000-grit polishing pad which is applied using a little water sprayed on to the Travertine. This very fine pad left the floor with a natural looking sheen.

Once we completed this and were satisfied with the finish, all that remained was the sealing of the floor, this will protect it and prevent the dirt from impregnating the pores in the stone. Three coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow were applied, leaving thirty minutes drying time between each coat. Colour Grow is an impregnating and colour enhancing sealer which leaves the floor resistant to staining and spills whilst improving the natural brown shades in the Travertine resulting in a lovely finish.

The client was very satisfied with the finish, the whole room had been lifted, looking much lighter and brighter.

Tumbled Travertine After Cleaning Saffron Walden Tumbled Travertine After Cleaning Saffron Walden

 

Professional Restoration of Tumbled Travertine Tiled Kitchen in North Essex



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Deep Cleaning a Sandstone Flagstone Floor in Burscough


This customer had just moved into a lovely property in the small Lancashire town of Burscough and wanted to have the Sandstone Kitchen floor professionally renovated as it was not looking its best.

I arranged an appointment to visit the property after discussing the floor over the phone, some customers like to get a quote over the phone and although I’m happy to give someone a ball park figure I really need to see the floor in order to give them an accurate price as you simply don’t know what your going to find.

Upon inspecting the floor inspect the floor I could see the previous owner had sealed the floor with multiple layers of Varnish which is not a suitable agent for protecting Sandstone floors. The stone was the riven variety and was trapping dirt across its veins and was now proving difficult to clean, the grout had also gone black with dirt. Undeterred I did a test clean on part of the floor and the results proved promising, so we agreed a price and date to return and complete the job.

Sandstone Floor Before Renovation Burscough

Deep Cleaning a Sandstone Kitchen Floor

To deep clean the floor the sandstone flagstones were covered in a strong 1:3 dilution of Tile Doctor NanoTech HBU Remover which stands for Heavy Build-Up Remover. It was left to dwell and soak into the stone for ten minutes before being scrubbed clean using a rotary buffing machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad. The now dirty cleaning solution was then removed using a wet vacuum and then the whole floor rinsed with water.

Sandstone Floor During Renovation Burscough

I had to repeat the process on stubborn stains assisted with a steam cleaner to lift the dirt out of the pores of the stone. Once I was happy with the floor I gave it a final rinse to with water to neutralise the floor and remove any trace of cleaning products. It was then dried as much as possible with a wet vacuum and then left to dry off fully overnight.

Sealing a Sandstone Kitchen Floor

I returned the next day to seal the floor first checking it for dampness using a damp meter, the flagstones were dry, so I was able to proceed as planned. To seal the stone, I used multiple coats of Tile Doctor Seal & Go Extra which is a breathable acrylic sealer that can be used on internal and external Sandstone flagstone floors and does a nice job of lifting the appearance of the stone.

Sandstone Floor After Renovation Burscough

You can see from the final photograph that the Sandstone flagstones and grout now looks so much better. My Customer was amazed with the transformation and the floor now looks brand new, they even left the following comment on the Tile Doctor feedback system.

Extremely happy with the end result. Kamila was knowledgeable & professional. We cant recommend her enough. Paul B., Burscough

 

Deep Cleaning a Sandstone Kitchen Floor in Lancashire



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Finishing a Victorian Hallway Floor in Hebden Bridge


The photographs below are of a lovely Victorian tiled hallway that had been repaired and cleaned by another tradesman a his a few months earlier. The workman had left the customer to seal the floor himself, which he had done but the floor ended up looking patchy and dull and he wasn’t happy with the results which didn’t highlight the beautiful colours in the tile. Realising he needed help to achieve the correct finish I was given a call and asked to finish the floor.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Before Cleaning Hebden Bridge

The property was in Hebden Bridge a market town situated between Halifax and Rochdale. After carrying out a survey, I advised that the floor would need re-cleaning to strip off the sealant he had applied and to remove the marks from the floor. We would then be able to re-seal the floor correctly for him. We agreed a price for the job and set a date to carry out the work.

Cleaning a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

On the first day we started preparing the hallway to be cleaned by covering the stair carpet and new and expensive wood panelling and skirting boards to protect them from any possible marking during the cleaning process. I then used a 200-grit Diamond burnishing pad attached to a rotary buffing machine to remove the sealant and dirt from the floor. In this instance the pad was applied just with water which is used to lubricate the pad, the resultant slurry is then removed with a wet vacuum. The advantage of using this process as opposed to a chemical clean is that moisture is kept to a minimum which is important on old floors like this where no damp proof membrane exists.

After making sure that the floor was to a standard that I was happy with, I then repeated the process along the edges with a set of hand-held diamond blocks which makes it easier to get into the corners and edges where the machine struggles to reach effectively.

Still concerned about the moisture levels in the floor I decided to give the floor an acid wash using Tile Doctor Acid Gel which will neutralise any alkaline salts in the floor. As I mentioned earlier this is a common problem on floors of this age, they do not usually have a Damp Proof Membrane fitted so moisture is able to rise through the tiles bringing with it salt which gets left on the surface of the tile, this process is more commonly known as Efflorescence. The floor was then rinsed with water and the floor dried as much as possible using the wet vacuum. Finally, I tidied up before leaving for the day and allowing the floor to fully dry out overnight.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

Returning the next day, I first took moisture readings to ensure that the floor was dry enough to seal. If a floor is too damp the seal won’t cure properly and therefore won’t be effective. Fortunately, on this occasion the floor was within limits and I could proceed to apply four coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow sealer allowing around thirty minutes between coats for drying.

Colour Grow is a breathable impregnating sealer that allow moisture to evaporate from the floor whilst also protecting it from dirt and stains. This sealer leaves a matt finish which is what the owner wanted but it also enhances the colours in the tile which really being the floor alive.

Victorian Tiled Hallway After Cleaning Hebden Bridge

The customer was very pleased with the results, the floor looked much cleaner and will be easy for them to maintain. I hope that you can see the difference from the before and after pictures.

 

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway in West Yorkshire



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Ceramic Tiled Shower Cubicle Revamp in Hillsborough, Sheffield


We were contacted by a family from Hillsborough, which is a suburb of Sheffield, who had seen some of the work we do renovating shower cubicles on the internet and wanted to know if I would do the same for their shower.

Ceramic Shower Tile and Grout Before Revamp Sheffield Ceramic Shower Tile and Grout Before Revamp Sheffield

One of the biggest problems affecting bathrooms is mould which thrives in a warm damp environment, the best way to prevent it is to extract the moisture created when having a shower with adequate ventilation. Other steps you can take to reduce mould include always leaving the door open after a shower to improve cross ventilation and rinsing the shower down with cold water afterwards. Tile Doctor also have a product called Aqua-Pro that you can spray on your tiles after use.

I went over to take a look and could see that the Ceramic tiles were only slightly stained and would no doubt clean-up easily however the grout had gone black in places with mould and orange in others due to the dyes in shampoos and soaps. Ceramic tiles are glazed and so usually very easy to keep clean however grout and silicone is more vulnerable and if you now cleaned on a regular basis mould can get a grip and it can prove very stubborn to remove.

Ceramic Shower Tile and Grout Before Revamp Sheffield

Cleaning Ceramic Bathroom Tile and Grout

The home owners had tried to rectify the problem before by applying more grout and silicone to the affected areas however this hadn’t cured the ventilation issue, so it wasn’t long before the problem resurfaced. I recommended replacing all the badly affected grout and the silicone sealer strip around the base of the shower to give the cubicle a fresh look.

My first task was to see how far we could get by cleaning the tile and grout using Tile Doctor Duo-Clean which is designed for use in bathrooms where it’s effective at cleaning grout and removing mould. It comes in a spray bottle so it’s just a question of spraying it onto the tile, grout and silicone and leaving it for ten minutes before scrubbing it in with a stiff brush or scouring pad. The soil was then rinsed off the tile and grout and the shower left to dry off for a while, so we could see which areas were so badly stained would need re-grouting.

The next step was to carefully remove the old silicone sealant from around the edges of the shower cubicle using a sharp knife, then using a combination of power tools and blades we removed the grout in the affected areas and put in new white grout to match the exiting.

While the grout was drying, the shower tray was cleaned up and new silicone sealant has added around the base of the shower cubicle using a premium mould resistant silicone that should be more resistant to staining.

Ceramic Shower Tile and Grout After Revamp Sheffield

The combination of cleaning and grout replacement worked a treat and the shower looks like a brand-new installation. This doesn’t resolve the ventilation issue, so I left the customer with a bottle of Tile Doctor Aqua-Pro with instructions to spray the tiles down regularly in order to keep it looking fresh and clean.

Ceramic Shower Tile and Grout After Revamp Sheffield Ceramic Shower Tile and Grout After Revamp Sheffield

 

Professional Shower Tile and Grout Cleaning in Cheshire



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Maintaining Amtico Vinyl at Wimbledon Hair Salon


Most people don’t realise this but Amtico recommend their floors are protected against scuffs and scratches with a sealer or floor care dressing as they call it and like any product you apply to a floor it will wear off over time due to the constant abrasion of floor traffic. This is very similar to the problem we face with tile and stone most of which also benefit from the protection of a sealer.

With this in mind I was asked to visit a Hair Salon in Wimbledon which as well as being famous for its annual Tennis tournament is a large town to the southwest of London. Their Amtico flooring had lost a lot of its appearance and a recent redesign had exposed a few obvious areas where equipment was once positioned. It was clear that the whole floor would need to be stripped of what was left of its protective coating and resealed.

Amtico Floor Wimbledon Hair Salon Before Cleaning

Deep Cleaning Amtico Flooring

It was necessary to strip the floor of its old coating first as to apply a fresh sealer would simply have locked in the dirt and led to different layers of sealer on the floor which can leave some areas looking darker than others.

To strip off the old coating and clean the we used Tile Doctor Vinyl Strip mixed with hot water. This was left to sit on the floor for a short while before being scrubbed in with a scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary floor buffer and then the soil was removed using a wet and dry vacuum. It’s worth noting that to scrub this floor we used a finer scrubbing pad than normal because using a black stripping pad would have scratched the Vinyl. We then rinsed the floor twice with water to remove any residue and extracted the water with a wet vacuum.

Normally we these jobs we would look to let the floor dry off overnight and come back the next day to seal the floor, however given the commercial nature of the business this was not a practical option so the Amtico floor was force dried using industrial air movers.

Sealing Amtico Flooring

Once the floor was dry we were able to press on with the application of the sealer which for Amtico and other Vinyl flooring we recommend Tile Doctor Vinyl Shine floor polish which leaves a nice subtle shine. You have to wait for a coat to dry (approx. 30 minutes) before applying the next, so this process can take a while to complete, in this case three coats were applied to achieve the desired finish.

Amtico Floor Wimbledon Hair Salon After Cleaning

We managed to strip and seal the whole floor in a day, so the owner was able to open for business on the Monday.

Amtico Floor Wimbledon Hair Salon After Cleaning

 

Dirty Vinyl Flooring Cleaned and Sealed at a Hair Salon in South London



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Shower Cubicle Cleaning Chapel-en-le-Frith


This client lives in Chapel-en-le-Frith which is a small town dubbed the ‘Capital of the Peak’ with parts of the parish lying in the Peak District National Park. They were trying to sell the house, but the shower cubicle was looking very bad and all the potential purchasers were being put off. They wanted to restore a new and fresh look, without spending a fortune, so they could finally sell it and move to their new property. With this in mind they had given me a call to come and take a look and see what could be done.

As you can see from the photos the grout was very badly discoloured in places, so I agreed with the client that the best course of action would be to clean the grout as much as possible and then recolour it with a white Grout Colourant followed by stripping off the old silicone and replacing with new. We discussed the cost and a timescale and booked the job in.

Shower Cubicle Before Cleaning Chapel-en-le-Frith

Shower Cubicle Tile Cleaning

The Tile Doctor Grout Colourant Kit comes with everything you need to change the colour of your grout including a Pre-Treat cleaner which is a slightly acidic product that cleans and etches your grout at the same time. This means you can get a better bond with the colourant when it is applied afterwards and ensures the best finish.

I set about cleaning the grout with the pre-treat cleaner which is sprayed on to the tile and then scrubbed in with an abrasive pad. This was then rinsed off with water and re-applied where necessary, some areas were worse than others and needed more work, so I persevered until I was happy the grout was as clean as it could be.

Applying White Grout Colourant

The job could be completed in one day, so the next job was to remove the silicone sealant between the tiles and the shower tray, the sealant was black with mould and dirt and generally in very bad condition.

Once the grout had dried I was able to start the application of the grout colourant using a small brush, wiping any excess off the tiles as I went. A steady hand is required for this job along with a little patience! Two coats of colourant were required to achieve the right finish.

Finally, the last step to complete was to put back a new white silicone sealant using a high-quality mould resistant product. There are many on the market, but the cheaper brands are not usually mould resistant and tend to turn black very quickly. Applying the sealant ensures the shower is waterproof and no water can get behind the tiles.

Shower Cubicle After Cleaning Chapel-en-le-Frith

The shower cubicle had a new look and my client was really surprised about the end result. They now felt more confident that potential purchasers wouldn’t be put off by a grubby looking bathroom. Thankfully it had not cost them too much to make it look a whole lot more appealing.

Shower Cubicle After Cleaning Chapel-en-le-Frith

 

Professional Clean and Re Grout of a Shower Cubicle in Derbyshire



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Worn Sealer Replaced on a Slate Tiled Floor in York


The photographs below are of a Slate Tiled floor in a house in York, a walled city in North West Yorkshire which is very famous for its Viking heritage and its many landmarks, including the stunning York Minster. I visited the client to discuss what could be done to improve the look of the slate tiles which were installed in the kitchen and run into the downstairs cloakroom WC.

Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor York Before Cleaning

I could see that the floor was suffering from the usual problem of dirt becoming ingrained into the pores of the stone making it difficult to clean effectively. This happens as the protection provided by the sealer wears off with use and the stone becomes dull and lifeless with the trapped dirt; additionally, the floor had some bad scratches from chairs being dragged across the floor. Being a Kitchen, the area was in used to high family traffic, so it was in need of some care and attention. The client was happy to go ahead with my quote.

Slate Tiled WC Floor York Before Cleaning

Cleaning a Slate Tiled Floor

I arrived the following week and started by taping up and protecting the surrounding areas and thresholds. Then working in sections, I applied a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean (1 part Pro-Clean to 3 parts water) to the floor and left it to soak in and get to work breaking down what was left of the old sealer and dirt. This is a multi-purpose cleaner which works hard on stubborn areas. It was then scrubbed in using a black scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary floor buffer. I then used more Tile Doctor Pro-Clean on the grout which was stained in places and this was scrubbed in by hand using a thin stiff grout brush.

The floor was then rinsed with water, and the now soiled cleaning solution removed with a wet vacuum before moving onto the next section. We try and keep the mess to the absolute minimum. One area included a downstairs WC which was too tight to get the floor buffer in so there was no option but to scrub the tiles and grout by hand.

After cleaning all the slate and grout I inspected the floor and was pleased to see that the scratches were a lot less obvious after cleaning, so I suspect it was the old sealer that had been mostly affected. Had the scratches been deeper we would be looking at resurfacing the stone with milling pads which is a messy and more expensive process. The client was very pleased to hear that wouldn’t be required.

After a final rinse the floor was looking much better already and was left to dry off overnight aided by the hot summer weather.

Sealing a Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor

I returned the next day and checked the floor was fully dried out by using my moisture meter. All the readings were fine so the lovely weather had done its job which was much appreciated by myself as this greatly helps the floor cleaning process.

I applied four coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go which is a water-based sealer (so no smell) that leaves a lovely deep lustre to the floor. The scratches had all but disappeared and I was able to get on with the job quite quickly due to the bonus weather that helped he sealer dried a lot quicker than usual between each coat.

Slate Tiled WC Floor York After Cleaning

The customer was very pleased with the finished floor, and I think you can see from the pictures how much better it looks. It will be much easier for them to clean and maintain in the future.

Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor York After Cleaning

 

Professional Restoration of a Slate Tiled Kitchen and Cloakroom in North West Yorkshire



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Stained Quarry Tiled Hallway Floor Restored in Hitchin


Details below of a small Quarry Tiled floor we deep cleaned which included a lobby and adjacent toilet. The property was located in Hitchin which is a market town in North Hertfordshire it is notable for St. Mary’s Church, which is remarkably large for a town of its size.

Quarry Tiled Entrance Lobby Restoration Hitchin Before Cleaning

The tiles were in good physical condition, but were looking a little tired, they just needed a good clean and seal. Also, if you look closely at the photographs you will see the grout was stained with the remains of some red paint which needed to be removed.

Quarry Tiled Entrance Lobby Restoration Hitchin Before Cleaning Showing Paint Staining

They had tried some household solutions but had not managed to remove the marks and the floor had lost its’ sheen. We discussed the process, agreed a price and I arranged a date to return and carry out the work.

Quarry Tiled Entrance Lobby Restoration Hitchin Before Cleaning

<Restoring Quarry Tiled Entrance Hallway Floor

On our return our first task was to prepare the areas with protective tape to threshold edges surrounding the floor, adjacent doors and anywhere that we didn’t want our solutions to touch.

The paint stains were spot treated using a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go which was scrubbed into the grout by hand. This is a multi-purpose stripper made with a long dwell-time to remove most coatings and sealers, but particularly good on paints. It is also the perfect product to draw out ingrained stains and remove any heavy grease build-up.

Then the tiles and grout were cleaned using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, this one is a concentrated, multi-purpose high-alkaline cleaner, stripper and degreaser. Dependent on the needs of the tiles we dilute it to suit. We usually dilute with 3 to 5 parts water to use as a very effective cleaner that removes grease, from areas that have been neglected or subjected to heavy use. Alternatively, and as in this situation, we diluted with 2 parts water to strip the synthetic and acrylic waxes that had built up on the floor over the years.

The entrance and porch were then wet vacuumed, and the water rinsed, then allowed to dry off overnight ahead of the sealing process the following day.

Sealing a Quarry Tiled Hallway Floor

On returning to the property the following day, I used a moisture meter to ensure the floor was completely dry and ready for the next stage. Once satisfied I started to apply a single coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow this is an impregnating sealer which is applied to protect the tiles and offers a durable surface whilst enhancing their natural colour. Finally, to complete, this was followed by three coats of Seal and Go to add a lasting protective seal and a low sheen durable finish.

Quarry Tiled Entrance Lobby Restoration Hitchin After Cleaning

The client was very happy with the completed floor, it had brightened up the whole area, particularly the downstairs cloakroom. She was also pleased it was now going to be easier to maintain and keep clean and she had finally got rid of the offending red paint!

Quarry Tiled Entrance Lobby Restoration Hitchin After Cleaning

 

Professional Restoration of Quarry Tiled Hallway in Hertfordshire



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Removing Wax Scratches from Victorian Hallway Tiles in Rushden


This customer called me as she was concerned about the scratches on her hallway tiles, they were not only unsightly but were also starting to trap dirt. The Victorian property in Rushden which lies between Bedford and Kettering on the east side of Northamptonshire.

We always offer a site visit to take a look at the job before doing any work, that way we can discuss what the cleaning options are, and it also demonstrates to the customer that we know what we’re talking about.

The hallway floor was a lovely and intricate example of Victorian tile installation and I could see that overall it was in good condition for its age. On closer inspection the customer was relieved to find out that it was the old wax sealant breaking down and not actually scratches on the tiles. I carried out a test on a small area to ascertain how difficult it would be to remove this wax. I realised I would be able to use Tile Doctors new product for the removal of the wax sealant, Tile Doctor Wax Away which is a fast and effective formula that is designed just for this type of job, it offers safe removal of wax and polish from tile and natural stone. We agreed the quote and the work was booked in for the following month.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor Before Wax Removal Rushden

Cleaning/Repairing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

On our return we started to remove the wax coating using the Tile Doctor Wax Away product. It was applied neat and left to dwell for ten to fifteen minutes before working it into the floor with a small amount of water and a black stripping pad attached to a rotary machine. The resulting slurry was then removed using a wet vacuum. The floor was then inspected, and I decided to repeat this process with a hand brush in a couple of small areas and around the edges to ensure the old wax sealant was fully removed in these stubborn areas. The floor was then rinsed with water to remove any remaining slurry and trace of cleaning product and the wet vacuum was used to dry the floor again.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor During Wax Removal Rushden

My next course of action was to run over the floor with a 400-grit burnishing pad to remove imbedded dirt and stains from the tiles, this was followed by a second rinse with water. After removing the water with wet vacuum, the floor was then left to dry out fully for a few days aided by a large fan that I left on site. It’s important that the tiles are fully dry before applying a sealer and this is even more important on older floors where no damp proof membrane has been installed.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

I returned three days later and started by giving the floor a light vacuum and clean. I also took damp meter readings to check the floor was fully dry. Once I was satisfied I started to apply 2 coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow Sealant, this is a breathable sealant which will allow the tiles to breath and allow moisture vapour from the sub floor to rise through the tiles which is important in these old houses where no damp proof membrane exists. Colour Grow is an impregnating sealer that works by occupying the pores in the tile thus preventing dirt from becoming ingrained there, the sealant enhances the natural colours in the tile and dries to a lovely natural matt finish.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor After Cleaning Rushden

Once finished the floor looked great and the customer was hugely relieved that the tiles could be restored easily and cost effectively, she had thought the damage may have been irreversible. Moving forward it will now be easier for her to maintain and keep clean. The floor is now back to its’ true self and properly in keeping with the rest of the period features in the house.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor After Cleaning Rushden

 

Professional Restoration of a Victorian Tiled Hallway in Northamptonshire



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