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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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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Restoring Polish to a Travertine Tiled Kitchen Floor Cheltenham


These photos are of a Travertine Tiled Floor installed in the Kitchen and Dining area of a property in Cheltenham also known as Cheltenham Spa. The property is situated in a lovely location with Cheltenham being located on the edge of the Cotswolds, which is well known as an ‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’ in Gloucestershire.

The floor which was installed 15 years prior had sadly not been maintained correctly over the years and was not looking its best, any sealer that may have been present on the floor had long since worn off with wear and now dirt had penetrated the pores of the Travertine making it difficult to keep clean and giving it a flat uninteresting appearance. The customer was specifically unhappy with what appeared dull looking marks all over the floor and the grout lines which were heavily ingrained with dirt and had now become black.

Travertine Floor Cheltenham Before Cleaning

Travertine is a natural stone material that has unique colours and features that no other stone can offer. The distinctive designs and natural patterns found within Travertine make it very popular as a flooring material and if treated properly it can look beautiful. I discussed with the client what Tile Doctor could do to improve the appearance of the floor, we agreed the cost and organised a date to get started.

Travertine Floor Cheltenham Before Cleaning

Cleaning Travertine Kitchen Floor Cheltenham

Before starting I protected the wooden skirting and kitchen units with plastic sheeting to ensure they did not get damaged. The floor was then burnished using a set of diamond encrusted burnishing pads of different grits using our usual process of lubricating with water and rinsing between each pad. Working my way through the different pads I started with the coarse 400-grit pad, then the 800-grit and finished on the 1500-grit.

The grout lines were then cleaned with Tile Doctor Remove and Go this is a multi-purpose stripper formulated with a long dwell-time that can clean whilst removing most sealers, coatings, synthetic finishes, adhesives and paints; pretty much most things that could have be left on the floor over 15 years! I then rinsed of the now soiled cleaning solution off the floor with water which was then extracted using the wet vacuum. I then left the floor to dry off fully overnight.

Sealing Travertine Kitchen Floor Cheltenham

On my return the next day I applied the last of the burnishing pads which is an extra fine 3000-grit pad really bring up the polish on the stone. This pad is applied dry with a little water sprayed onto the stone using a method we call a Spray Burnish.

The floor was then sealed with two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow, this product is a colour intensifying sealer which enhances the natural colours in the Travertine whilst adding durable stain protection. I highly recommend colour grow for sealing Travertine as it really does bring out the natural brown shades in the stone. The floor was left to dry and then buffed with a soft white buffing pad to bring the shine further.

Travertine Floor Cheltenham After Cleaning

My customer was very impressed with the result and left the following comment on the Tile Doctor feedback system:

“Our travertine floor has been transformed from a dull, impossible to clean surface to one that looks better than it did fifteen years ago. Every time I walk into the kitchen I stop just to look at it. I am delighted with what you have achieved! Thank you.
Laura C. “

Travertine Floor Cheltenham After Cleaning

 

Polishing & Sealing Travertine Kitchen Floor Tiles in Gloucestershire



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French Limestone Tiled Floor Cleaned and Polished in Eldwick


I was recently contacted by a lady in the small village of Eldwick near Bingley who wasn’t happy with the condition of her French Limestone floor which had hadn’t been professionally cleaned for some time. The French Limestone tiles had been laid throughout the kitchen and dining room and as you can see in the photograph below now looked dull, dirty and uninviting.

French Limestone Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning and Polishing Eldwick

The floor needed a deep clean and seal to bring it back to its’ best however before I could do that I needed to determine the best method to use. I duly carried out a survey and test clean which showed how the floor could be improved and discussed the quote for the work with the client, they were really pleased with the test area, accepted the quote and we arranged a convenient time to carry out the work the following week.

Deep Cleaning a French Limestone Tiled Floor

Arriving on site a week later, my first task was to cover all the kitchen units with protective covering to protect against splashing. The last thing we want is to cause any damage to the surrounding areas.

The next step was to use a set of diamond burnishing pads from Grits 400 to 1500 to clean and polish the Limestone tiles. The pads are fitted to a rotary buffer and applied in sequence with water to lubricate, the process removes inground dirt and rebuilds the polish on the Limestone. Small hand-held burnishing blocks are used to reach the more intricate areas. The floor is then rinsed with more water after each pad has been used and the resultant residue is removed with a wet vacuum.

Once I was satisfied that the dirt had been removed from the floor, I then worked on the more stubborn grout lines with a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and a stiff grout brush to get any remaining deposits out of the grout lines. This is a great multi-purpose high alkaline cleaning and stripping product brilliant for heavily soiled and stubborn neglected tiles and very good on very dirty grout. With the grout clean I then applied the last 3000 grit burnishing pad to really bring up the polish on the Limestone floor, this pad is applied dry with a little water sprayed onto the surface of the stone. The floor was then left to dry off completely overnight.

Sealing a French Limestone Tiled Kitchen Floor

The following day I checked that the floor was dry using a moisture meter before applying Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal to the floor. This is a premium, no-sheen, natural-look penetrating sealer which is formulated to provide maximum stain protection, it’s also recommended for busy kitchen areas and is an excellent grout sealer. Once the sealant was dry I did a water drop test to confirm that the floor was properly sealed.

French Limestone Kitchen Floor After Cleaning and Polishing Eldwick

I hope that you can see from the photos the improvement in the appearance of the floor. The client was really happy with the floor which lifted the whole room and made the kitchen like new again.

 

Professional Renovation of a French Limestone Tiled Floor in West Yorkshire



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Cleaning Sealing Red and Black Quarry Floor Tiles Buxton


The photographs below are from a client who lives in an older property in Buxton which you may have heard of due to its famous spa and popular spring water. Buxton is situated in the county of Derbyshire, in the East Midlands and has the highest elevation of any market town in England.

The property had Red and Black Quarry tiles laid throughout the Kitchen and the downstairs in a diamond pattern. Quarry tiles are very hard wearing and thus a popular and traditional flooring option for high traffic areas in the past. Certainly, in this case they were in good physical condition given their age and they looked very much in-keeping with the period property along with the fireplaces.

Red Black Quarry Tiled Floor Before Cleaning Buxton

The client loved the feature floor but felt the tiles were looking neglected and they were struggling to keep them clean. This is a common problem with quarry tiles which are porous and need to be sealed to keep them looking good, however over time the sealer wears down with use and dirt becomes ingrained in the pores of the tile making them impossible to clean effectively. The client just wanted them to look clean and ensure they could be easily maintained.

Red Black Quarry Tiled Floor Before Cleaning Buxton

I recommended deep cleaning the tiles to remove the dirt and the sealing them to protect them going forward a process which usually takes around two days.

Cleaning and Restoring Quarry tiles

My quote was accepted, and I returned on the agreed date to complete the work starting with the first part of the process which involved removing the ingrained dirt, grime and any remaining sealer that may be present on the floor. To do this I applied a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and left it to dwell for ten minutes. The Pro-Clean was then worked into the tile and grout using a black buffing pad fitted to a rotary machine. Once done the now soiled cleaning solution was rinsed off the floor with water and a wet vacuum was used to extract it from the floor. Some areas of tile were stained with paint slashes from decorating and these was spot treated with Tile Doctor Nanotech HBU which stands for Heavy Build-Up remover and is pretty good at dealing with all sorts of stains and tough soiling on tiled floors. The floor was then dried using the wet vacuum and left overnight to allow it to dry out thoroughly.

Sealing Quarry Floor Tiles

The client had left the radiators on overnight to aid the drying process and by the next morning the floor was nice and dry. I tested the moisture content to be sure and it was well within acceptable levels and therefore ready for the next stage. It’s important to ensure the tiles are dry before applying a sealer as the sealant won’t cure and the result will be compromised.

I sealed the floor a couple of coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow sealer. I chose this product because the house had some damp problems due to its’ age and I decided a breathable fully sealer was the best option for this situation as this will allow moisture to rise-up through the tile and evaporate without causing any problems. Colour Grow works by soaking into the pores of the tile protecting it from within and improving the natural colours of the tile in the process.

Red Black Quarry Tiled Floor After Cleaning Buxton

The end result was the floor looked much cleaner and colours in the tiles were more vibrant, needless to say my client was very pleased with the result and the sealer will ensure the floor is easy to maintain floor for the future as per their brief.

Red Black Quarry Tiled Floor After Cleaning Buxton

 

Professional Restoration of Quarry Tiles in Derbyshire



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Brazilian Grey/Green Semi-Riven Slate Floor Hornby Kitchen


Rough Slate is notorious for homeowners to maintain as dirt can quickly become trapped in the rough surfaces. The example on this page is that of Brazilian Semi Riven Slate installed in the Kitchen of a house in the village of Hornby, which while naturally cleft from the rock loses none of its texture and style and yet has a much smother appearance than the typical rough Slates from China. Less processing means it’s not quite completely smooth but it is a lot less expensive to buy than say a honed or polished Slate which is more difficult to maintain due to various polishing techniques required to keep up the appearance. Brazilian Slate is in fact one of my favourite slates to clean and also one of the most rewarding of Slates to seal as the sealer really does bring out the colour and character of the stone.

Sealers provide a protective barrier on natural stone floors and without it dirt can penetrate into the pores of the stone making it more and more difficult to clean effectively. Unfortunately on this floor the new homeowners were unaware on what sort of Stone it was and had no idea how to look after it which resulted in the sealer wearing down prematurely and the floor becoming dull and un-inviting.

Semi-Riven Slate floor Before Cleaning Hornby Semi-Riven Slate floor Before Cleaning Hornby

Cleaning Black Semi-Riven Brazilian Slate Tiles

To restore the appearance of the Slate floor we started by taping up the edges of the new kitchen units to protect the wood from splashing. This was followed with an application of a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-clean worked in with a black buffing pad fitted to a buffing machine running at slow speed (working at a slower speed results in less splashing). The pads can struggle to reach the edges and corners so these were cleaned by hand.

Once we had finished on the main floor area we then concentrated on the grout using a steam cleaner and more Pro-clean scrubbed in with a narrow stiff brush.

Last step of the cleaning was to rinse the floor with water to remove any trace of cleaning products from the Slate and then dried off the floor the best we could with our high wattage wet vacuum machine and left the floor to dry off naturally over night.

Sealing Black Semi-Riven Brazilian Slate Tiles

The next day we returned to seal the floor checking first that the floor had completely dried. The customer had requested a matt finish however we have worked on Brazilian Slate many times before and we knew how good they can look with this Satin finish sealer. Naturally its the customers decision so we offered to do a test piece and let them decide if they didn’t like it we would strip off the test piece and apply a Matt finish sealer like Tile Doctor Colour Grow instead.

The floor was dry so a couple of coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go were applied to one Tile so that they could appreciate how it would look. Luckily the customer agreed with us and so we set about sealing the whole floor with Seal and Go.

To speed up the drying process Air Blowers were installed as we worked and it wasn’t long before the sealer was dry and the customers were able to walk on the floor and inspect every area before we left. I’m please to report that they were over the moon with the floor and my recommendation of sealer.

Semi-Riven Slate floor After Cleaning Hornby Semi-Riven Slate floor After Cleaning Hornby

To maintain the slate tiles going forward we always give our customers a free bottle of Tile Doctor pH neutral tile cleaner, which is a little incentive for them to provide some feedback via our website.
 
 

Professional Semi Riven Slate Floor Renovation in Lancashire



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