Polishing Black “Negro Marquina” Marble Shower Tiles in Thame

I received a call regarding a Black Marble tiled shower that the customer thought he would clean himself and ended up unfortunately making worse. Black Marble adds a very opulent and elegant look to a bathroom, and I suspect this particular variety with the white veins is known as “Negro Marquina” which comes from the Basque region of Spain. I did a quick price check on-line and these tiles are priced around £60 each!

Black Negro Marquina Marble Shower Tiles Before Polishing Thame

If you look closely at the before picture you can see the Marble has lost its shine and has a cloudy appearance. This was due to the use of an acid based cleaner. Thame and Oxford lie in a hard water area, so we often find customers seek to remove Limescale deposits off tile using household products such as Vikal or Cillit Bang. The trouble with these products is they are acidic, and marble is acid sensitive so is easily marked and damaged by their use. You should always read the label before using any cleaner to check if its safe to use on natural stone.

The client was desperate to get the shower room looking how it should when he had selected this beautiful stone.

Cleaning a Marble Tiled Shower

To rectify the problem and restore the polished appearance of the marble I burnished the stone using a small 6 inch 200-grit diamond pad attached to a handheld buffer. This coarse pad cuts back the stone surface to remove the etching, I then used a 400-grit pad which removed the fine scratches made by the first pad. This was followed up with an 800-grit pad which starts the honing process which restores the polished appearance. Water is used to lubricate the process and the tiles are rinsed with water after each stage to remove the fine slurry that is generated.

This is further followed by 1500 and 3000 grit pads the last pad is applied dry with only a little bit of water and leaves the tiles dry and ready for the next stage.

Polishing a Marble Tiled Shower

To further build the polish and protect the stone I applied Tile Doctor Shine Powder buffed in with a white pad. This was applied to the marble wall tiles and then rinsed with water and wiped dry with a clean cloth. When the tiles were fully dry, I buffed the tiles with a clean white pad to show the final polished finish. The tiles looked much improved and very shiny.

Black Negro Marquina Marble Shower Tiles After Polishing Thame

The job was completed in a day and the customer was much relieved that I was able to restore the appearance of the marble. I suggested that he should use Tile Doctor Aqua Pro as his tile cleaner of choice in future. This is pH neutral so will not damage the tiles like the acidic products he had used previously, and it should help him keep the shower room looking sparkling and opulent as initially intended!

 

Professional Restoration of a Marble Tiled Shower in Oxfordshire

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Dirty and Stained Marble Kitchen Tiles Rejuvenated in St Neots

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St Neots is the largest town in Cambridgeshire, with a population of approximately 40,000 (Cambridge is after all a city). This is unsurprising, since the town has a long and rich history. In fact, archaeological evidence indicates that the area was home to settlements as early as the prehistoric Mesolithic period.

I was recently called out to a property in the area – which itself was relatively old – to see what could be done to restore the condition and appearance of a Marble tiled kitchen floor, stylised in a small and uniform square pattern. It appeared to me that the tiles had been installed for a long time – perhaps even laid down in the original construction of the property – and, in any case, had suffered many years’ worth of neglect.

The result? A very dirty and unappealing appearance and a very unhappy owner.

Marble Tiled Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning St Neots Marble Tiled Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning St Neots

Cleaning a Dirty Marble Tiled Kitchen Floor

Before beginning the restoration of the floor, I covered up the walls and kitchen units to protect from exposure to any of the cleaning products I would be using. I then started by cleaning the floor with Tile Doctor Remove and Go, which is a multi-purpose product. Remove and Go both cleans the stone and strips away any old sealer.

However, there were several areas of the floor which were affected by more deeply ingrained dirt and stains. To remove these, I needed to use a process which we call burnishing. This involves the application of diamond encrusted burnishing pads to grind away the damage layer of stone. I then used a truck-mounted pressure washing system to rinse the floor and remove all the excess slurry and chemicals.

Sealing a Marble Tiled Kitchen Floor

While burnishing can be used to achieve a high quality polished finish on stone such as Marble, Limestone and Travertine, the customer decided instead to have a more natural look for the floor.

Therefore, to seal the freshly cleaned Marble tiles, I applied two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow, which is an impregnating sealer that offers maximum protection and a matte finish that matches nicely with the rustic characteristics of the floor. As an impregnating sealer, Colour Grow penetrate deep into the pores of the stone to fill them and prevent dirt from becoming ingrained in the future.

Marble Tiled Kitchen Floor After Cleaning St Neots Marble Tiled Kitchen Floor After Cleaning St Neots

The customer was amazed by the difference made to the condition and appearance of the floor, so much so that he has queried about getting more areas of the property cleaned in the future. Another satisfied customer.
 
 

Professional Tile Cleaning and Sealing for a Dirty and Stained Marble Kitchen Tiled Floor Restoration in St Neots

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Ruined Marble Shower Tiles Restored in Sharnbrook

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I was contacted by the owner of a cleaning company in Milton Keynes, after an end of tenancy clean at a house in Sharnbrook went wrong. Unfortunately a member of their staff had incorrectly applied an acid based cleaning product to the Marble shower tiles which like most natural stone is acid sensitive. The cleaning product had etched the stone causing the damage you can see below. Being a reputable company they were determined to put the situation right and we were asked to step in.

Marble Shower Cubicle Before Cleaning in Sharnbrook

We have had a few issues of this type before where customers keen to remove unsightly Limescale marks from their stone tiles use a household cleaner without reading the bottle label first to see if it’s safe to use. Issues of this nature on Marble cannot be easily resolved with chemical products; it takes specialist knowledge and equipment.

Marble Shower Cubicle Before Cleaning in Sharnbrook

The quote was given and accepted and the work was booked in with the letting company for a few weeks later.

Cleaning and Polishing a Marble Shower Cubicle

The first photos show the extent of the damage which had not only damaged the immediate area but as the cleaning product was in liquid form it had ran down the wall had totally ruined the surface of the tiles in the lower half of the shower.

The first thing I did was to protect the shower tray with towels and then began assembling the equipment needed for this job which consisted of a wet polisher, a variable speed polisher, one set of 6” Tile Doctor burnishing pads from 100 grit to 3,000 grit and one full set of diamond blocks from 80 grit upwards.

I then went about testing how far down the scale I would have to go to get the best results. I found that in most areas the application of a 200 grit burnishing pad was adequate to resurface the tile and remove damage but in some areas I had to go down the scale as low as 80 grit to achieve the desired result.

Marble Shower Cubicle During Cleaning in Sharnbrook

One the damage had been removed the higher grit pads are used in sequence to restore the polish finishing with the 3,000 grit pad. No chemicals are used in this process, just water and the small six inch diamond encrusted burnishing pads which fit to a hand buffer.

Although only a small area, no more than 4 m2 this job took most of the day. However, as the whole shower room was tiled in the same tiles it was a much more cost effective to restore the damaged tiles than replace them.

Marble Shower Cubicle After Cleaning in Sharnbrook

We were able to achieve an excellent result which the client was very happy with, no doubt saving the cleaning company thousands of pounds in replacement costs.

Marble Shower Cubicle After Cleaning in Sharnbrook
 
 

Professional Restoration of a Damaged Marble Tiled Shower Cubicle in Bedfordshire

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Acid-Damaged Marble Shower Cubicle Restored in Leatherhead

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Marble tiles are a fantastic choice of stone for a shower cubicle because of its distinctive characteristics and quality. It can really add a luxurious feel and when used in a bathroom take it to the next level.

However, it’s extremely important to note that Marble like all natural stone is a porous and acid-sensitive material. It must therefore be cleaned with care using suitable products. This particular Marble tiled shower cubicle at a property in Leatherhead is a good example of this done wrong. The owner had used an acid-based cleaning product to clean the stone, resulting in damage to the sealer and causing unappealing streaks to form.

Marble Shower Wall Leatherhead Before Cleaning

This type of damage can appear irreparable but, with the right combination of cleaning methods and products, it can be fixed. Once the old sealer has been removed, and the tiles have been cleaned, polished and re-sealed, they can look as a good as new. Here’s how I helped this customer restore the Marble shower cubicle.

Cleaning and Polishing a Marble Shower Cubicle

To begin the restoration, I scrubbed the dirty grout lines using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, which is a highly reliable and multi-purpose alkaline-based product. I then rinsed the tiles with water to remove the traces of cleaning product.

Next, I moved on to the polishing stage of the restoration – what we often refer to as burnishing. This involved the use of small six-inch diamond-encrusted burnishing pads applied with a hand buffer and with different levels of grit – ranging from Coarse to Very Fine. I started with the Coarse grit pad and worked my way sequentially through our four-pad system, polishing the stone with Medium, Fine and eventually the Very Fine pad to really bring up the polish.

Sealing a Marble Shower Cubicle

Once the shine had returned to the Marble and the damage had been removed, I re-sealed the tiles using two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow, a penetrating sealer designed to enhance the natural colours and patina of the stone. Once dry, I gave the tiles a final polish with a white buffing pad to put the finishing touches on the restoration.

Marble Shower Wall Leatherhead After Cleaning

The customer was thrilled with the results, saying:
“I’m really happy with the result and we will make sure we don’t use supermarket cleaners again on natural stone. Rupert was a very personable tradesman who took pride in what he was doing. He has identified Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner as being the product we should have used in the first place and has sent me the website details.”
Another satisfied customer!
 
 

Professional Restoration of a Damaged Marble Tiled Shower Cubicle in Surrey

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