Pitted Travertine Kitchen Floor Tiles Filled and Polished in Weston Favell


Travertine floor tiles are very appealing and very hardwearing, but without the protection of a sealer to stop dirt becoming ingrained in the pores of the stone their appearance will degrade. Fortunately, this can be remedied as demonstrated in these pictures of a Travertine floor I recently polished at a house in Weston Favell, Northampton.

Travertine Tiled Floor Weston Favell Before Polishing

This owner of the property had called me out as their kitchen floor was looking very sorry for itself and he was concerned that a lot of holes were appearing which was making cleaning the floor difficult as dirt was getting trapped in the holes. I went over and carried out a test clean on two separate tiles in the kitchen and the customer was amazed at how clean they came up and especially the grout.

Travertine Tiled Floor Weston Favell Before Polishing

The kitchen was stunning, but unfortunately the state of the Travertine tiled floor was bringing down its overall appearance. Impressed with the test clean they were keen to get the whole floor renovated so we agreed a price and I scheduled the work in for the following month.

Cleaning and Restoring Travertine Tiled Kitchen Floor

I returned on the agreed data and made a start by protecting the kitchen units by removing the plinths and covering base units and the appliances with a protective film. We then commenced the cleaning process to remove surface dirt by cleaning with Tile Doctor Pro-Clean paying special attention to the grout lines. The holes in the Travertine were filled with a stone resin, mixing it to closely match the colours of the stone.

The resin was allowed to dry before starting to re-polish the Travertine using a set of Tile Doctor Diamond encrusted burnishing pads. These pads are applied individually to each tile in sequence starting with a coarse 400-grit pad before moving onto the 800-grit and finishing with the fine 1500 grit pad. A little water is used to lubricate the process along the way and the floor is rinsed in between each pad with the resulting residue extracted from the floor using a wet vacuum. The process takes some time, but it really brings up the polished appearance of the stone and the results are well worth the effort. After a final rinse the floor was inspected and then left to dry off fully overnight.

Sealing a Travertine Tiled Kitchen Floor

When we returned the next day, the floor had dried, and we were able to give the floor a final polish with a very fine 3000-grit burnishing pad applied with a little water sprayed onto the tile. Finally, the floor was then sealed with two coats of Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal which provides excellent protection without changing the colour of the stone to provide a natural look.

Travertine Tiled Floor Weston Favell After Polishing

The client was over the moon with the outcome and surprised at the improvement. They were left with a floor that would be easy to clean and maintain.

 

Professional Restoration of a Travertine Tiled Kitchen Floor in Northamptonshire



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Craven Dunnill Victorian Floor Tile Clean and Repair Worcester


I received an enquiry for a clean and seal on this Victorian tiled floor in Worcester, so having spoken to the customer on the phone I arranged a time to make on-site visit to survey the floor and get a good look at the requirements, so I could advise on the cost.

On inspection I could see that not only was the floor pretty dirty, there was also an area of missing tiles. I managed to trace the tiles to Craven Dunnill a high-quality Victorian floor manufacturer based in nearby Bridgnorth that have been in business since 1872. Thankfully I knew I was able to source some more for them which would match nicely. The owner of the property was delighted to hear that not only would we clean the floor, but we could also source, supply and fit replacement tiles thus making the floor complete again.

Victorian Floor Before Restoration Worcester

After visiting the property, I sent the customer an accurate quote for the repairs and to clean and seal the hallway floor. They were happy with the price and my quote was accepted and a date arranged to complete the work.

Cleaning/Repairing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

On arrival the first step was to set up my equipment including a rotary floor scrubber/polisher, a wet and dry vacuum and my tile cutter.

I started with the floor edges first as they are difficult for floor machines to get into effectively. The process involved spraying the edges with Tile Doctor Remove and Go and then scrubbing it in with a a handheld diamond burnishing block. I then sprayed the rest of the floor with more Remove and Go and left it to dwell for ten minutes. I then proceeded to work the product into the floor with the rotary machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor During Cleaning Worcester

The floor was then rinsed with water and the soil extracted using a wet vacuum. My next step was to give the tiles an acid wash by scrubbing Tile Doctor Acid Gel into the floor effectively repeating the previous process. The Tile Doctor Acid Gel is especially effective on Victorian floor tiles to remove mineral salt deposits (efflorescence) and old grout smears. Once I was done the soil was rinsed off as before and extracted with a wet vacuum.

Once I was happy the floor was clean, I moved onto the repairs, carefully measuring and cutting the shapes and fixing the tiles into the gaps with rapid set adhesive. I then grouted the area and left the tiles and floor to dry for the rest of the day and would return the following day to seal.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor During Repair Worcester

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

I returned the next day and after checking the floor was dry with a moisture meter, I started with sealing. The product I used was Tile Doctor Seal and Go Extra, this is a fully breathable sealer with a semi-gloss finish which is ideal for old floors like these that won’t have a damp proof membrane installed. I worked the product into the floor leaving 30 minutes between coats and treated the floor to four coats before I was happy the floor was completely sealed.

Victorian Floor After Restoration Worcester

The customer was very happy with the finished floor and left some great feedback (see below) and has been asked by family and neighbours for our details.

“Very pleased with the result. Mark arrived on time every day and was sure to tidy away after himself, leaving no mess. Our Victorian tiled hallway now has a new lease of life and people are already asking who did it? I would have no hesitation in Recommending Mark.”

Victorian Floor After Restoration Worcester

 

Professional Restoration of a Victorian Tiled Hallway in Worcestershire



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Restoring a Damaged Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor in Sheffield


I received a request to take a look at renovating this old Victorian tiled hallway at a ground floor flat in Sheffield. The home owners had recently bought the property and had uncovered the floor under an old carpet. They wondered if the floor was fixable and worth getting repaired, cleaned and sealed.

Victorian Floor Restoration Sheffield Before

The floor was in quite a serious state with patches of sunken areas which had been covered in a levelling compound. There were many cracked and loose tiles and there were a lot of stains, carpet glue and paint on the tiles. The home owner had done some research into the property and had found out that it was once used as Doctors surgery and the hallway had been the waiting room which would make sense as it had certainly seen a fair amount of wear over the years, especially around the door thresholds.

Victorian Floor Restoration Sheffield Before

Our client wanted the existing floor repairing, cleaning and sealing, ideally without replacing the cracked and sunken tiles. They were very keen to try and restore the floor as an original feature which I’m sure you will appreciate are very sought after. I discussed the work that would be needed and how we would proceed. They accepted the price for the work and worked out a date for the work to start.

Victorian Floor Restoration Sheffield Before

Cleaning/Repairing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

We were able to commence work the following week and started by removing all the self-levelling compound that had been applied to the areas of sunken tiles. The tiles were also removed in these areas and a new sub floor created to lift the floor in-line with the rest of the hallway.

Victorian Floor Restoration Sheffield Chipping Away Self=Leveller Compound

The original tiles were then cleaned up and installed back in place. Nearly all the many loose tiles were removed and re fixed in place, unfortunately a few loose tiles were left as removing these would have caused more damage to the floor.

Victorian Floor Restoration Sheffield During Repair

There were many areas of discoloured and stained tiles so after the fixed areas of damage had been left to set overnight, we returned the next day to start on cleaning the tiles. To get the tiles clean we used a combination of Tile Doctor Remove & Go and Acid Gel agitated with a 17-inch 200 grit diamond burnishing pad fitted to a slow speed rotary floor polisher.

Victorian Floor Restoration Sheffield Cleaning with Acid Gel

Combined this created a powerful cleaner/stripping action that can remove sealers, epoxy grout haze, urethane coatings, synthetic finishes, glue adhesives and paints. The resulting slurry was removed with a wet vacuum and rinsed off thoroughly with water. The immediate result showed a marked improvement and you could now get a real impression of how beautiful the floor actually was.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

The floor was left to dry overnight, and we returned the next day to complete the restoration with the application of a sealer. Beforehand he floor was tested with the moisture meter to ensure the it was fully dried. We then sealed the floor with three coats of Tile Doctor Seal & Go Extra which is a full breathable sealer and gives the floor a nice satin finish. It’s important to use a breathable sealer on these old floors where no damp proof membrane has been installed otherwise moisture can become trapped under the floor and will find its way up the walls instead.

Victorian Floor Restoration Sheffield After Sealing with Seal and Go Extra

The floor looked fantastic, the client was very pleased, the natural pattern and beauty had been restored to its’ former glory.

Victorian Hallway Floor Sheffield After Restoration

 

Professional Restoration of a Victorian Tiled Hallway in South Yorkshire



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Stained Limestone Tiled Wet Room Renovated in Sonning Eye


This enquiry came from a theatre buff at a house in Sonning Eye near Reading who regularly hosted cast members playing at the local Mill Theatre. Five years prior he had a Limestone tiled wet room installed and unfortunately the floor tiles were laid unevenly and the fall on the tiles didn’t allow the water to drain off efficiently. The water would therefore tend to pool in the centre and overtime heavy limescale built-up and mould had also started to appear.

Limestone Shower Before Renovation Sonning Eye

Cast members staying at his house although grateful of the hospitality had often mention the state of the unsightly shower and so we were asked to pop round and see what could be done to renovate it and restore its appearance.

Shower Tile and Grout Cleaning

The first task was to remove the mould that had ingrained the Limestone, to do this I used Tile Doctor Duo Clean and scrubbed it into the tile with assistance from a steamer. I repeated this action three times, after each time I could see a visible improvement in the affected area and once it had lightened to a very faint grey, I knew that the next cleaning process to burnish the stone would see it disappear completely so left it at that.

Limestone Shower During Renovation Sonning Eye Limestone Shower During Steam Cleaning Sonning Eye

Next job was to remove the limescale build-up and re polish the Limestone tiles. I found the best way to do this was with a small hand-held machine, this allowed me to get into all the edges and groves that would have been impossible with a larger machine which would have struggled to cope with the uneven tiles.

Limestone Shower During Polishing Sonning Eye

I started with a 400-grit burnishing pad, but this struggled to cut into the years limescale build-up, so I switched this for 100-grit soft milling pad which did the trick. Once all the limescale had been removed it was time to rebuild the polish on the surface of the stone, so the process was repeated working through finer and finer burnishing pads 200, 400, 800,1500 and finally 3000-grit until the appearance of the Limestone was restored. This is quite a time-consuming process as the pad are quite small, additionally each pad is applied with water to provide lubrication which turns into a slurry that has to be rinsed off before applying the next pad. The result however is worth at as it really restores the polished appearance of the Limestone.
The last part of the cleaning process was to give the grout a quick clean I did this by scrubbing in Tile Doctor Pro-Clean along the grout lines with a grout brush, again rinsing off the slurry afterwards. Pro-Clean is a strong alkaline tile and grout cleaner that’s safe to use on natural stone.

Sealing Limestone Tiles in a Wet Room

The final task was to seal the Limestone and replace the worn mastic/silicon sealant around the edges. Usually I would leave the stone to dry out overnight but as it was a small area, I was able to thoroughly dry it out using a heat gun. Once dry two good coats of Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal were applied to provide on-going protection. Ultra-Seal is an impregnating sealer that works by occupying the small pores in the stone thereby preventing dirt from becoming ingrained, also it doesn’t change the colour of the stone in any way leaving a very natural appearance.

Last step before finishing was to apply a fresh application of white mastic sealant along the edges of the tiling to ensure a good seal and no leaks.

Limestone Shower After Renovation Sonning Eye

My customer was over the moon with the result as initially he thought he might have to have it replaced. He was so pleased in fact that he left the following feedback on the Tile Doctor feedback system.

“Excellent prompt and courteous service from Dennis who I cannot recommend too highly. After completion of the work a previously very tired looking wet-room looked better than it did when new.”

Limestone Shower After Renovation Sonning Eye

 

Professional Stone Tiled Wet Room Renovation in Berkshire



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Unpolished Limestone Hallway Deep Cleaned in Twickenham


These unpolished Limestone tiles were installed in the hallway of a property in Twickenham, Middlesex. The stone had not been cleaned or sealed for six years and being the main entrance to the house it was subject to a lot of foot traffic which had taken its toll on the stone over the years. As you can see from the photos, dirt was ingrained in the stone which happens when the protective sealer wears off with use. They had chosen to cover the floor with some rugs to improve the appearance and make the hall more inviting and as you can see especially where the rugs had been protecting the Limestone there was a visible difference in colour.

Limestone Tiled Hallway Before Cleaning Twickenham

Twickenham is a suburb of London and of course most famous for being the home of Rugby Union in England and a short distance from by base in Shepperton so it wasn’t long before I was able to pop in and survey the floor.

Limestone Tiled Hallway Before Cleaning Twickenham Limestone Tiled Hallway Before Cleaning Twickenham

I discussed with the client what could be done to clean the floor and demonstrated the products and technique I would use on a test patch. They were suitably impressed, and we agreed a price for the work and booked a time to complete the job. The job was scheduled for two days, one day to clean and the second to seal the floor.

Cleaning a Limestone Tiled Hallway Floor

To start with, we pre-sprayed the tiles with Tile Doctor Remove and Go and left it to soak in for ten minutes, this allows the product to break down any remaining sealant and greasy soils. Then we machine scrubbed the floor with our rotary cleaner fitted with a black scrubbing pad lubricated with another Tile Doctor product, Pro-Clean. This strong alkaline chemical breaks down the dirt and leaves it ready to be rinsed away.

The grout lines were also cleaned using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean but not with a machine as the pad struggles to reach down into the grout lines, so it was scrubbed by hand to give the best result.

Following the clean, we low pressure rinsed the floor with water and vacuumed all the residue away, leaving the floor ready for sealing. The Limestone tiles and grout looked much better already after cleaning and it was left to dry overnight.

Sealing a Limestone Tiled Hallway Floor

Returning to the property the next day our first action was to check the moisture levels in the floor with a damp meter. All was well so we to apply three coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow. This is an impregnating sealer that protects the stone from within by occupying the pores in the stone, so dirt can’t become lodged there. The sealer will make the floor much easier to keep clean in future and as the name of the product suggests it also enhances the natural colours in the tile.

For the aftercare of unpolished Limestone, I recommend Tile Doctor Neutral Cleaner which is designed for the cleaning of sealed Tile and Stone. If using a different product always read the label first as many cleaners are too strong for use on sealed surfaces and will strip off the sealer over time.

Limestone Tiled Hallway After Cleaning Twickenham

The client was very happy with the result and felt they could now keep on top of keeping it clean and looking fresh moving forward. They could now remove the rugs too! If you require a free quotation to clean and seal your stone floors do get in touch.

Limestone Tiled Hallway After Cleaning Twickenham

 

Professional Restoration of Limestone Floor Tiles in South Middlesex



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Textured Ceramic Flooring Deep Cleaned in Stirling Shop


The anti-slip nature of Textured Ceramic tiles make them a popular choice for public areas such as in this case a shop floor in my local city of Stirling. They do have a major drawback though, in that the rough textured surface which gives the tile its anti-slip property traps dirt over time making them look very unattractive and very difficult to clean effectively.

Textured Ceramic Tiled Shop Floor Before Deep Cleaning Stirling

The photograph below shows just how dirty my customers shop floor looked when I arrived to survey the floor. Despite cleaning the floor with all manner of supermarket products the tiles looked incredibly dirty and did not provide the clean inviting appearance they wanted to portray. The shop was due to open for the first time shortly and desperate to resolve the situation we were asked to come over and give the ceramic tile and grout a really deep clean.

If you’re not familiar with Stirling, then you should know its steeped in history and was once the capital of Scotland. It was also the location of several battles during the Scottish war of independence from England involving William Wallace and Robert the Bruce.

Deep Cleaning Textured Ceramic Shop Flooring

Normally on commercial projects we get involved in we have to work outside of normal opening times as its not practical to deep clean a floor with people coming and going fortunately however this was not a problem in this case.

After clearing the floor space, we set to work soaking the tile and grout in a medium dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which is our go to Tile and Grout cleaner. It was left to soak into the tile for about ten minutes before the floor was scrubbed, so it could get to work on breaking down the dirt. To make light work of scrubbing the solution into the floor we used a coarse diamond burnishing pad fitted to a rotary floor buffer. It was interesting to see the cleaning solution turning black with dirt as we moved across the floor.

Once done the soiled cleaning solution was rinsed off the floor with water and then extracted with a wet vacuum. Next step was to give the grout a good scrub using a repeat of the same process however we find a stiff scrubbing brush run over the grout lines works best for this as pads can struggle to reach into the recesses of the grout.

The process worked well and after rinsing and extracting again we did a final inspection spot treating any stubborn areas with a repeat of the same process until we were satisfied the tile and grout were as clean as they could be.

The floor looked really fresh by the time we had finished, and you can image my client was very pleased with the results and relieved that the floor looked clean again.

Textured Ceramic Tiled Shop Floor After Deep Cleaning Stirling

 

Professional Shop Floor Tile and Grout Cleaning in Stirling



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Textured Ceramic Tile Cleaning, Barnsley


This ceramic tiled floor at a house in the old coal mining town of Barnsley was trapping dirt and bothering our client who was finding it impossible to keep clean. In fact, she got in touch with Tile Doctor to explain that however they cleaned the floor they just couldn’t get the tiles cleaned and looking bright.

Textured Ceramic Tile Barnsley Before Cleaning

Barnsley is my local town, so it wasn’t long before I was able to pop over to the property and survey the floor. When I got there I could see that the tiles, which had been laid throughout the Hallway and Kitchen, were Textured Ceramic which have the advantage of being anti-slip but the disadvantage of being a pain to keep clean. The rougher textured surface traps dirt easily and in this case no amount of mopping was going to clean them.

Textured Ceramic Tile Barnsley Before Cleaning Textured Ceramic Tile Barnsley Before Cleaning

My customer explained they had tried numerous household cleaners but had been unable to get them really looking clean. I was confident the floor could be deep cleaned and brought back to life using Tile Doctor products and that the job should only take a day to complete. Happy with the quote, we worked out a mutually convenient date for me to return and clean the floor.

Deep Cleaning a Textured Ceramic Tiled Floor

I started by giving the floor a really long soak with a medium dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, the long dwell time allows the product to soak right into every bit of dirt that was clinging to the tiles and break it down. Pro-Clean is a concentrated, multi-purpose high-alkaline cleaner, stripper and degreaser which can be diluted in different ratios dependent on the situation. In this instance we diluted with 3 to 5 parts water to use as a very effective cleaner which is the recommended strength for removing inground dirt from areas that have been neglected or subjected to heavy use.

Textured Ceramic Tile Barnsley During Cleaning Textured Ceramic Tile Barnsley During Cleaning

A black scrubbing pad was then fitted to a rotary floor buffer and run over the floor at slow speed to attack the dirt. It wasn’t long before the Pro-Clean turned dark with the loose dirt and the tiles started looking lighter in colour. The now thick brown slurry was removed using a wet vacuum and then the floor was given a rinse with water which was also extracted with the wet vacuum. The process was repeated over the entire floor and doubly so where the muck was proving stubborn to remove. After we had finished the floor looked lighter and much cleaner, the grout lines also looked cleaner too.

Textured Ceramic Tile Barnsley During Cleaning Textured Ceramic Tile Barnsley During Cleaning

Our client was so relieved to have the floor looking like new again, it had been bothering her for quite some time. As you can see from the pictures the difference was quite apparent.

Textured Ceramic Tile Barnsley After Cleaning Textured Ceramic Tile Barnsley After Cleaning

Before leaving we discussed the best way to keep the floor clean. Normally I would recommend a pH neutral tile cleaning product for cleaning tiles however in this case with no sealer present (ceramic tiles don’t usually accept a sealer) and given the textured surface I felt the continued use of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean would be their best option.

 

Professional Cleaning of Textured Ceramic Tiles in South Yorkshire



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Cleaning 100 Year Old Mosaic Tiles in Abington Park


My customer recently got in touch and requested a site visit to look at her hallway floor.
The Edwardian property was situated in the Abington Park part of Northampton which is an area is steeped in history, with the nearby Manor House said to have been the home of William Shakespeare’s daughter Elizabeth Bernard. The house has since been turned into a museum.

As you can see from the photos, the floor which was laid when the house was built over 100 years ago using small square brown and beige mosaic tiles in a repeating. Although in good physical condition for its age the floor was looking a little tired and had lost its lustre and vibrant colour. The hallway also had stained wood panelling on one side which was another original feature and the owner of the property was keen to maintain the period feel.

Edwardian Mosaic Tiled Hallway Floor Before Cleaning Abington Park

I discussed with the customer what we could do to restore the floor, explaining the process, timescale and of course the cost. She was happy to go ahead so we scheduled the work in without delay.

Edwardian Mosaic Tiled Hallway Floor Before Cleaning Abington Park

Cleaning an Edwardian Mosaic Tiled Hallway Floor

In order to protect the wall panels and keep the moisture in the floor to a minimum I decided to keep the use of cleaning products to a minimum. This is always a concern with these old floors which have no damp proof membrane as the use of too much water can lead to efflorescence salts appearing later. With this in mid I decided to clean the floor using Tile Doctor burnishing pads as these pads only require a small amount of water and no products, this would also have the benefit of slightly levelling out the surface of the tiles.

My first course of action was to vacuum the floor to ensure there was no loose debris followed by masking up the bottom of the stairs carpet to protect it. I then started the restoration process by using a coarse 100-grit Tile Doctor burnishing pad attached to a 17” industrial rotary machine and a small amount of water to lubricate the process. The 100-grit pad is quite an aggressive pad which removes deeply imbedded stains and as mentioned before a small amount of unevenness. To remove the resultant slurry the floor was rinsed with a small amount of water which was then extracted using a wet pick up machine. This process was then repeated with a 200-grit burnishing pad to smooth out any scratches and polish the tile ready for sealing.

Although it was a relatively small area, 12 square metres this process took the whole day as we work in small sections at a time. Moving the machine slowly with multiple passes over each area.

Sealing an Edwardian Tiled Hallway Floor

I returned the following day and assessed the floor to ensure we were happy with the result from the previous days cleaning. I also took damp meter readings and was pleased to see they were within normal expectations for a floor of this age. Next, I applied Tile Doctor Colour Grow Sealant which is a breathable sealant that will allow any moisture in the sub floor to rise though the tile. This particular sealer is a colour enhancing sealer that protects and improves the natural colours in the tile and leaves a lovely natural finish. The floor now has a much more even finish and will be much easier for the client to maintain in the future.

Edwardian Mosaic Tiled Hallway Floor After Cleaning Abington Park

The customer was very happy with the results and left the following feedback on the Tile Doctor feedback system.

“Great communication about the work planned and quotation. A super job in bringing my Edwardian mosaic tiled floor back to life. Would highly recommend this service”
Karen M”

Edwardian Mosaic Tiled Hallway Floor After Cleaning Abington Park

 

Professional Restoration of Mosaic Hallway Tiles in Northamptonshire



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Textured Porcelain Tiles cleaned in Chelmsford


“Our Porcelain tiles are unclean-able, please help”

We are always happy to help someone in distress, and this was the opening sentence of a conversation between ourselves and a very distressed home owner in Chelmsford. Chelmsford is a London commuter town situated approximately 30 miles from London.

The tile in question was a Porcelain textured tile, the owners had tried to clean and maintain their floor but due to the nature of the tile, which was very textured and coupled with incorrect maintenance it had left the floor looking very dirty and unloved.

We visited the property to see how we could help. The floor was across a large area in a kitchen diner so was subject to heavy usage, it had been down for some time and the new owners had inherited it from the previous owners who apparently had also had no joy in getting it clean. The floor looked very tired and in need of some attention. We discussed with the client what could be done and agreed a price for the work, booking a date for the following week.

Cleaning a Porcelain Tiled Kitchen Floor

Fortunately, dirt and grease are no match for the power of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, it’s a multi-purpose high-alkaline cleaner, stripper and degreaser that’s a very effective tile and grout cleaner. On this occasion I applied a strong dilution using two parts water and left it to soak into the tiles first.

Working in areas of around 2 to 3 square meters at a time the solution was scrubbed into the floor using a rotary buffing machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad. We then rinsed the floor thoroughly with water and used a wet pick up vacuum to extract not only the dirt but also any product residue leaving the tiles clean and fresh.

Textured Porcelain Tile Cleaning in Chelmsford

Apologies on only taking one photo, I usually take more but it slipped my mind on this occasion, however if you look closely it clearly shows the difference the cleaning process was making. The client was very satisfied with the work carried out, they knew the floor should have looked a lot better than it had and now it finally looked clean!

Before leaving we explained how to maintain the floor and left a bottle of Tile Doctor Neutral Cleaner to keep the floor looking fresh. Tile Doctor concentrated Neutral Tile and Stone cleaner has been especially formulated for the regular cleaning of Tile and Grout.

 

Professional Clean of a Porcelain Tiled Kitchen Floor in North Essex



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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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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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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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Victorian Hallway Floor Tiles, Mumbles, Swansea


I was called to a property in the Mumbles area of Swansea, one of my favourite places and in fact listed in 2018 Best Places to Live. In the UK report, The Sunday Times listed Mumbles as the best in Wales, so it is always a pleasure to visit this area.

The hallway at the property had a lovely example of a classic Victorian Tiled floor containing a very detailed pattern consisting of expensive blue square and triangular shaped tiles. The tiles were a lovely and unusual pattern and in good physical condition with no cracked or replacement tiles required. It had however, been some time since the floor was last cleaned and sealed and so they contacted me, their local Tile Doctor representative to renovate the floor for them. The owners of the house recognised that it’s well worth preserving original features like Victorian tiled floors as period floors like this are in demand and add value to a property. They were therefore keen to get it back to its’ near original state.

Victorian Hallway Floor Tiles Before Cleaning The Mumbles

Cleaning/Repairing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

To restore the appearance of the tiles I used a 200-Grit diamond encrusted burnishing pad to remove the dirt and restore the condition of the tiles. This is run over the floor using water to lubricate and then rinsed off with water afterwards to remove the soil that is generated. This was then followed up with a 400-Grit pad which cleans and restores the surface which is left roughened after the application of the coarse 200-grit pad. This pad is again applied with water and then the floor rinsed afterwards to remove the soiling and the water is extracted using a wet vacuum.

The next step was to acid rinse the floor using Tile Doctor Acid-Gel, this is an important step for old Victorian tiled floors which have no damp proof membrane. It neutralises any inherent salts in the floor which rise through the tile from evaporation leaving unsightly white deposits on the surface. The acid gel is left to dwell for a short time and then it is scrubbed into the tile with a deck brush and then removed using the wet vacuum, the floor was then given a final rinse to neutralise it before sealing. However, for that to happen I needed the floor to be dry so after cleaning the floor I left it to dry off overnight.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

The next day I came back to the house to seal the floor. The floor had dried out nicely due to the fine weather, I quickly did a moisture test to be sure, then I was ready to move on to the sealing process.

The Mumbles area is close to the coast, so for this project I decided to use Tile Doctor Colour Grow which being an impregnating fully breathable sealer would cope better with the salty sea air. Colour Grow is a matt finish sealer that seeps into the tile occupying the small pores and in doing so prevents dirt from becoming ingrained there, it’s also a colour enhancing product that improves the colour in the tile.

After I had finished the floor was left looking restored, fresh and the vibrantly coloured pattern shone through. The client was very happy with the end result.

Victorian Hallway Floor Tiles After Cleaning The Mumbles

 

Professional Restoration of a Victorian Tiled Hallway in Swansea



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Reclaimed Painted Quarry Tile Floor Basildon


We suspect that the Old Quarry tiles laid in the conservatory of this Victorian house in Basildon, had been reclaimed from other areas of the property as the age of the tile didn’t match the time the conservatory was installed. Not only were the quarry tiles old but they had been covered in layers of red tile paint by previous home owners. This had now begun to crack and chip and look unpleasant, so the customer wanted the old paint removed and the tiles sealed for a more natural look.

Reclaimed Painted Quarry Tile Basildon Before Restoration

I headed over to Basildon to take a look at the Quarry Tiled Floor; Basildon in Berkshire is not to be confused with the large town of Basildon in Essex, this Basildon is approximately 7 miles west of reading and is made up of the two small villages of Upper and Lower Basildon. Having taken a look at the tiles and run some tests I was confident that the floor could be restored successfully I gave them a quote for the work, which was accepted, and a date agreed for me to return and get the work done.

Reclaimed Painted Quarry Tile Basildon Before Restoration

Removing Tile Paint From a Quarry Tiled Conservatory Floor

The first job was to tackle the layers of tile paint. Fortunately for me the paint had weakened over time and was fairly flaky in places which meant I could carefully peel away the dry paint with a blade attached to a scraper. This was a slow process but reduced the amount of mess that would have been produced if I was to use chemicals from the start.

Reclaimed Painted Quarry Tile Basildon During Restoration

Once I had removed all I could by hand the remaining paint that had fallen into the grooves and grout joints had to be removed using a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go which is a coatings remover designed for use on tile, stone and grout. The process worked well but I had issues with the product drying out due to the sheer heat in the conservatory (must have been 30 degrees and above!). The Tile Doctor Remove and Go works best when it is left to dwell on the tiles for some time. To overcome this obstacle, I applied Tile Doctor Nanotech HBU Remover and covered it over with plastic sheeting to stop it drying out too quickly.

Reclaimed Painted Quarry Tile Basildon During Restoration

The HBU Remover which stands for Heavy Build Up, did the trick and after a couple of hours the tiles where ready to be cleaned using a black scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary machine and then rinsed off. The soiled water was then removed using a wet vacuum and after a further rinse was left to dry off overnight. Thankfully the high temperatures worked in our favour and helped dry the floor out and when I returned the next day it was ready to seal.

Sealing a Reclaimed Painted Quarry Tiled Conservatory Floor

The customer had decided on a matt finish, so I applied three coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is a impregnating sealer that leaves the desired finish and has the advantage of intensifying the natural colour of the quarry tiles.

Reclaimed Painted Quarry Tile Basildon After Restoration

Overall the customer was very happy with the outcome and left the following feedback:

“Very happy with the end product, the tiles came up very clean once the paint was removed. Dennis was very professional and kept the working area clean and tidy. He kept us informed throughout the work. Will certainly use again and recommend to friends”

Reclaimed Painted Quarry Tile Basildon After Restoration

 

Professional Restoration of a Painted Quarry Tiled Conservatory in Berkshire



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Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor Renovated in Swansea


This is a great example of a classic Victorian Tiled Hallway and shows just how hard wearing and durable these floors are. The floor had been installed at a house in Swansea what must have been well over a hundred years ago and was now very badly soiled however I knew from experience that with the right techniques and products they can be given a new lease of life.

Victorian Tiled hallway floor before cleaning Swansea

We mainly use diamond burnishing pads on original Victorian tiles these days, the alternative is to use cleaning products however that method tends to use a lot of water and can aggravate an issue known as efflorescence whereby salts from the sub floor are carried up through the tile as moisture evaporates leaving white salt stains on the surface of the floor. This is not a problem with modern floors as they are usually have a damp proof membrane installed under the floor which prevents damp.

Deep Cleaning Victorian Hallway Tiles

To restore the appearance of the Victorian tiles I started with the application of a coarse 200-Grit diamond encrusted burnishing pad which cuts through the dirt and removes surface staining. The pad is run over the tiles using water to lubricate and then the floor rinsed afterwards to remove the soil that is generated. The soil is then extracted off the floor with a wet vacuum. This is then followed up with a 400-Grit pad which cleans and restores the surface which is left roughened after the application of the coarse 200-grit pad, again the pad is applied with water and then the flor rinsed afterwards to remove the soiling and the water is extracted using a wet vacuum.

The next step was to give the floor an acid wash using Tile Doctor Acid Gel, the acid neutralises the alkaline mineral salts in the floor and reduces the chance of efflorescence occurring, After being scrubbed into the floor the gel is rinsed off the floor using water which is then quickly extracted with the wet vacuum.

The floor was left to dry off overnight and I came back the next day to apply the sealer.

Sealing Victorian Floor Tiles

Before starting the sealing process it’s important to check the floor is dry first for which I use a hand-help damp tester. I find it’s a good idea to take readings from various parts of the floor before I start a job so I can establish a normal background level for the floor.

All was well so the floor was sealed using a couple of coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that works by occupying the pores in the clay tile thus preventing dirt from becoming ingrained there. This particular sealer also enhances the natural colours in the tile and is fully breathable which is important in these situations where you need moisture to evaporate through the tile and not become trapped underneath where it could work its way into the walls of the house.

Victorian Tiled hallway floor after cleaning Swansea

It’s worth knowing that if you do experience effluence salts which are more likely in the damp winter weather, then they can be mopped off the floor before they harden without any damage to the sealer itself.

 

Victorian Tiled Floor Rejuvenated in Glamorgan



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Victorian Tiled Hallway Restoration in Bearwood, Smethwick


This customer got in touch with me to see if there was anything I could do to restore a Victorian tiled floor they had discovered under carpet in their hallway. Interestingly they had been told previously that the floor was beyond repair and had been quoted thousands of pounds to have it completely ripped up and replaced.

Victorian Hallway Before Restoration Bearwood Victorian Hallway Before Restoration Bearwood

I visited the property in Bearwood near Smethwick, to take a look and could see that there was a section under a cement screed. The floor was in a truly sorry state, so I could see why the other company were not keen on restoring it. Undeterred I did a test clean to see if I could remove the screed which was encouraging however without removing all the screed it would not be possible to see what condition the tiles underneath were in. I agreed with the customer to order some replacement tiles which were needed along with extra ones just in case. The job would take a few days to allow for cleaning, repairing, drying out and sealing. The client wasn’t too optimistic, but I reassured them we could definitely get a good result.

Victorian Hallway Before Restoration Bearwood

Cleaning and Repairing a Victorian Tiled Hallway

The first day was spent removing the cement screed which was quite thick in parts, so I went down the route of steaming it first to help soften the covering and then carefully scraping it off. This was quite labour intensive, but it did the job. Once the cement was removed I was left with some tiles that were ok but quite a few needed to be replaced.

Victorian Hallway Before Restoration Bearwood Victorian Hallway During Restoration Bearwood

There were also two doorways, one that needed completely relaying and one needed part relaying. Some of the tiles needed to be cut to size, there were many tiles that needed resetting and re-grouting along with grout being applied to the new tiles.

Victorian Hallway During Restoration Bearwood

The next day the tiles were deep cleaned with a 50:50 combination of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean mixed with Nanotech HBU which stands for Heavy Build-Up Remover, which was quite appropriate in this case. This cocktail of tile cleaning products was left to dwell on the tiles for a while then worked in with a black scrubbing pad fitted to a weighted rotary machine. The floor was then rinsed off with water and then the soil extracted with a wet vacuum.

My next step was to give the floor and acid wash to remove any old grout smears and neutralise other mineral contaminates such as salts that can get deposited on the surface of the tiles as moisture evaporates as the floor dries. This is always a risk with old floors where no damp proof membrane exists. To do this I applied a dilution of Tile Doctor Grout Clean-Up which is scrubbed into the tiles with a deck brush and then rinsed off the floor with water and a wet vacuum. The floor was then left to dry out for a couple of days.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

I returned to seal the floor and after check it had dried sufficiently applied three coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow sealer. This sealer seeps into the pores of the tile enhancing the colours and leaves a matt finish which the customer had previously specified. The floor was then buffed with a white pad and the customer left with a bottle of Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner to clean the floor with moving forward.

Victorian Hallway After Restoration Bearwood Victorian Hallway After Restoration Bearwood

The customer was delighted with the results and left the following feedback on the Tile Doctor feedback system.

“Kieron has done a fantastic job of our Victorian hallway tiles. We had been quoted several really high prices by other companies, but Kieron’s quote was a fraction of these. I initially wondered whether this meant the job wouldn’t be as good but after 3 days of solid work the results are fantastic! He managed to transform it to its former glory, a hallway that was partly cemented over, had missing and loose tiles all over the place and was filthy. He definitely does a lot more than just cleaning! We couldn’t be happier with the results!”

Victorian Hallway After Restoration Bearwood

 

Professional Restoration of a Victorian Tiled Hallway in Birmingham



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Grout Clean and Silicone Replaced Oxford


Our clients contacted us in despair with their bathroom. The request was to renovate their ceramic tiled bathroom at a house in Oxford, a beautiful location, as most will know the city is known worldwide as the home of the University of Oxford, which is in fact the oldest university in the English-speaking world, also known as the “city of dreaming spires”. They had tried many supermarket solutions to clean up the grout and sort out the silicone trim, to no avail. The ceramic tiles were in good condition so the specific focus for the client was on treating the dirty grout and silicone trim around the bath.

Bathroom Before Grout Clean and Silicone Replaced Oxford

The grout has gone black with mould in some places and this is a very common problem in UK bathrooms where it thrives in the warm damp conditions and is usually related to a lack of ventilation. The simple action of leaving a window and door ajar after having a shower helps to cross ventilate and can reduce the problem. Of course, this is not always desirable during cold weather so improved mechanical extraction is always better. Another option is to run the shower cold for a few minutes afterwards, in fact some modern showers have this feature built in for that purpose. I discussed the causes with the client, we agreed a quote and arranged a day to complete the work.

Cleaning and Grouting Ceramic Tiled Bathroom in Oxford

I started by spraying the grout with Tile Doctor Duo-Clean, this is a fast and effective double action grout cleaner and mould remover. It cleans up grout and can remove mould and blackspot from grout and silicone and is suitable for use on plastic and enamel baths and showers. I left this to soak in for about 30 minutes, and then worked in sections spraying more Duo-Clean and scrubbing with a grout brush and rinsing each section with water. After cleaning the whole bathroom, I left it for an hour so that the grout had dried. I could then see if there were any places needing a second clean, in this case there were a few stubborn areas and so the process was repeated. Once I was satisfied I had fully cleaned the grout and tiles I took a break and left the bathroom so that the grout would completely dry out. At this stage the tile and grout were already looking much better.

Resealing Ceramic Tiled Bathroom in Oxford

After lunch I carefully removed all the silicone between the bath, sink and the wall tiles with a sharp knife. This is a little time consuming, but it is important to remove all of the old sealant in order to achieve the best finish. This was then cleaned up and then fresh mould resistant silicone put back in its place. This ensures everything is water tight

For aftercare we recommend the regular application of Tile Doctor Oxy-Pro, this is a powerful alkaline product especially formulated for cleaning shower Tile and Grout. It’s a highly effective cleaner that removes soap scum, body oil, mildew and algae from areas that have been neglected or subjected to frequent use. This will keep on top of the problem and ensure the bathroom continues to look nice and clean.

Bathroom After Grout Clean and Silicone Replaced Oxford

The client was very happy with the result which was completed in one day. The bathroom was certainly left looking very fresh, clean and much more appealing.

 

Re Grouting and Sealing Ceramic Tiles in Bathroom Oxfordshire



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Mid Victorian Farmhouse Hallway Clyst Hydon


The owners of this floor in the hallway of their Mid-Victorian farmhouse in Clyde Hydon just outside of Honiton, in Devon asked me to visit shortly after they had moved in. Whilst ripping out the old carpet throughout the house they had come across this stunning Victorian tiled floor. Honiton is a market town, more well known for its lace making. As it is my home town, it was a very short commute to work for me, so I was able to visit the property quickly and take a look.

Mid Victorian Tiled Farmhouse Hallway Clyst Hydon Before Cleaning

During my visit I took some moisture readings because these old floors will not have had a damp proof membrane installed and if the moisture levels are too high it can restrict when this type of work can be done due to the sealers needing the floor to be dry(ish), in order to cure. I also did a test clean to show the customers what level of cleaning could be achieved and looked at areas of loose tiles to see if any replacement tiles would need to be sourced. I always like to do a test clean as it demonstrates what can be achieved and it also allows me to work out which methods and products work best.

Cleaning and Repairing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

With the customers happy with the quote I returned to complete the work starting by covering the wooden skirting and bottom of the stairs to protect the paint and carpet from splashing. I then applied a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean on to the floor, ensuring even coverage and keeping an eye on the floor to make sure that it didn’t dry out. Pro-Clean is quite a flexible product than can strip off old sealers when applied in a strong dilution.

After a short time, I set to work scrubbing the Pro-Clean into the floor with a 400-grit diamond pad fitted to a rotary floor buffer. I also used 400-grit hand held burnishing block to cover the corners and any edges not reached by my machine. Once I was satisfied that the tiles were as good as they could be I rinsed the floor to remove the now soiled alkaline cleaner before giving the floor an acid wash with Acid Gel to neutralise with any inherent salts in the tiles.

Before I left for the day I fixed the loose tiles back in place, re-grouted the areas that I had replaced tiles and left an air mover on the floor to aid in the drying process. I also suggested that the radiators in the hallway were turned on overnight to further aid the drying process. Occasionally these types of floors need to be left for several days to dry but it is worth the wait and the floors can be used in the meantime provided only socks and indoor shoes are used and care is taken not to get the floor dirty.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

Upon returning the next day I tested the moisture content of the floor and was pleased to find that it was well within acceptable levels for the application of the sealer that I was planning to use. I quickly checked the floor for areas that I felt may be able to be improved and once satisfied a single coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow sealer was applied to the floor. Colour Grow is a colour enhancing impregnating sealer that occupies the pores in the tile thus preventing dirt from becoming ingrained there.

Once this was dry it was followed up by applying two further coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go Extra which is a compatible surface sealer that leaves a nice subtle sheen finish. Both sealers are fully breathable and able to cope with any damp issues that may impact the floor over time.

Mid Victorian Tiled Farmhouse Hallway Clyst Hydon After Cleaning

The customers were thrilled and said that they were going to reinstate the hallway as the main entrance to the farmhouse in order to show it off to all their visitors!

 

Professional Restoration of a Victorian Tiled Hallway in Devon



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Rough Copper Slate Tiled Floor Renovated in Heysham


This customer in the coastal village of Heysham had recently had these beautiful Copper Slate Tiles laid by a builder who had been working on the house. As part of the work he also sealed them with a solvent aerosol sealer. Floor tiles experience a lot of wear from foot traffic and as a result the sealer only lasted about two weeks before it had worn off and dirt had started to penetrate the pores of the stone. The photos below were taken two months after they were sealed.

Rough Slate Before Cleaning HeyshamAerosol sealers are only good for wall Tiles where they experience minimum contact, we usually only recommend their use for shower cubicle or wet rooms and they need constant topping up every 6 months or so. In our experience floor surfaces receive a lot of abrasion from the traffic of shoes and so on which will diminish an aerosol applied sealer very quickly.

Rough Slate Before Cleaning Heysham

Cleaning Rough Copper Slate Tiles

It makes sense to clean tiled floors before applying a sealer otherwise you simply trap the dirt under the seal which will reduce its appearance. So before re-sealing the floor with something more effective it was treated to an abrasive clean using a 200-grit diamond encrusted floor burnishing pad fitted to a weighted buffer machine. The pad was run over the whole floor using water to lubricate and with the machine running at slow speed to reduce splashing.

Next step was to clean the recessed grout which pads can struggle to reach, this was done by applying a dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean along the grout lines and then scrubbing it in with a stiff grout brush by hand. Once done the residue from the tile and grout cleaning was rinsed off the floor with water and then extracted with a wet vacuum.

Sealing Rough Copper Slate Tiles

The floor was left to dry off completely overnight and I returned the next day to re-seal, this time with a more suitable product. My sealer of choice for Slate is Tile Doctor Seal and Go which will not only protect the stone from dirt and staining but also adds a very pleasing sheen finish. The new sealer really brought out the black and copper colours in the stone and now looks amazing.

Rough Slate After Cleaning HeyshamFor long-term care I always recommend customers avoid the use of steam cleaners and acidic or strong alkaline cleaning products which can prematurely reduce the life of the sealer resulting in dirt becoming trapped in the pores of the stone again. Naturally Tile Doctor have designed a product for this which is called Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner, supplied in concentrated form when diluted with water it becomes pH neutral and safe to use on sealed surfaces. I always leave my customers with a complimentary bottle after cleaning their floor, so they are reminded what to use.

Rough Copper Slate After Cleaning Heysham

Professional Slate Floor Maintenance in Lancashire



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Deep Cleaning Dirty Ceramic Kitchen Tiles in Henley-on-Thames


This customer from the picturesque town of Henley on Thames got in touch to ask about cleaning and sealing her Ceramic tiled kitchen floor. Now Ceramic tiles are glazed and so normally won’t absorb a sealer so intrigued I scheduled a time to pop over and take a look. When I got here I could see the tiles were in deed dirty but as I suspected they were not Ceramic but micro porous Porcelain which does need to be sealed. In this case the sealer had worn off and dirt had become ingrained in the tiny pores of the tile.

Porcelain Tiled Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning Henley on Thames

The tiles were a Terracotta style Porcelain, but this was hardly recognisable due to the accumulation of dirt. I discussed all of this with the owner and agreed I would give the tile and grout a thorough deep clean and then reseal them to ensure the dirt was kept out of the pores in the Porcelain going forward.

Deep Cleaning a Terracotta Style Porcelain Tiled Kitchen Floor

As well as cleaning the floor I would need to remove any trace of original sealer if I was to achieve a consistent appearance later. To achieve this, I soaked the tile in a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which was then left it to dwell for ten minutes, so it could get to work on breaking down old sealers and dirt.

The next stage was to work the Pro-Clean into the floor with a rotary floor buffer running on slow speed fitted with a black scrubbing pad. The cleaning solution soon changed colour with the dirt that became released. The floor was rinsed with water and the soiled cleaning solution extracted using a wet vacuum. The grout given the same treatment but this time by hand using a stiff brush and more Pro-Clean.

The floor was then rinsed again with water and then dried with a wet vacuum. Being micro-porous Porcelain, this didn’t take as long as clay tiles such natural Terracotta or Victorian.

Sealing a Terracotta Style Porcelain Tiled Kitchen Floor

The floor was then left to dry and I returned later to re-seal it for which I used a couple of coats of Tile Doctor Ultra Seal which is a natural look sealer that protects the tile from within by impregnating the pores in the tile with sealant thus preventing dirt from becoming trapped there.

Porcelain Tiled Kitchen Floor After Cleaning Henley on Thames

I think you will agree the floor now looks much cleaner and fresher, certainly my customer was happy with transformation and left the following note on the Tile Doctor feedback system.

“My manky old kitchen floor is absolutely transformed. So much easier, quicker and cheaper than getting the floor replaced. Andrew did an amazing job, highly recommended. Yvonne B, Henley”

 

Deep Cleaning and Sealing a Micro-Porous Porcelain Tiled Kitchen Floor in Buckinghamshire



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