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

Limestone tiled floor Damaged by Citric Acid Restored in a Wokingham

The photographs on this page show the spot restoration of an acid damaged newly installed Limestone tiled floor at a medieval cottage in the historic town on Wokingham, Berkshire. It seems the customer accidentally spilled lime cordial on honed surface leaving dull stain spots on about six to eight tiles.

Acid Damaged Polished Limestone Floor Wokingham Before Restoration

After attempting to remove the damage themselves using a variation of different sealers the customer accepted defeat and contacted Tile Doctor to see if the issue could be resolved. If not, they were considering replacing the floor.

Acid Damaged Polished Limestone Floor Before Restoration Wokingham

Being the local Tile Doctor for the area I was asked to take a look and advise the customer. I explained that the dull spots had appeared because the surface tension of the limestone had been damaged from the citric acidic in the cordial. The affected tiles would essentially need to be re-polished; the customer was eager to see if I could resolve the issue and get all the tiles to be as uniform as possible.

Spot Polishing a Limestone tiled floor

My first task was to identify which tiles needed re-polishing with burnishing pads as once I got going it would be tricky to spot them; I did this by simply leaving post it notes on the affected areas.

Acid Damaged Polished Limestone Floor Wokingham Before Restoration

To restore the appearance of the Limestone tiles I started with a 400 grit 3-inch pad fitted to a handheld flex machine. You can’t actually buy these 3 inch pads, they are found in the centre of the large 17 inch floor pads. The 400-grit pad is quite abrasive and needs to be applied with water to lubricate. I then followed the 4-stage burnishing process increasing the surface tension with each pad used this to leave the tile with a good sheen and most importantly a uniform appearance with the surrounding tiles.

Acid Damaged Polished Limestone Floor Wokingham During Restoration

The Burnishing pads are actually loaded with industrial diamonds and you apply them in sequence starting with the coarse 400 grit pad before moving onto the medium 800 grit pad, fine 1,500 grit pad and then finally the super fine 3,000 grit pad which really brings up the shine. You have to rinse with water between each pad to remove the slurry that is generated. The final 3,000 grit pad is applied with very little water and so the floor is dry when completed.

Spot Sealing a Limestone Tiled Floor

The last step was to carefully re-seal the tiles that had been burnished so they would blend in with the rest of the floor. I decided on Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal for this, it’s an impregnating sealer that doesn’t alter the colour of the stone leaving them with a natural look.

The process went well and was completed in around four hours, my customer was very happy with the result and left the following testimonial on the Tile Doctor feedback system

“We felt very comfortable with the recommended course of action and Mr Buckland inspired confidence so we were happy to let him get on with the remedy.”

Acid Damaged Polished Limestone Floor During Restoration Wokingham

 
 

Spot Treating Acid Damaged Limestone Floor Tiles in Berkshire

Filthy Limestone Tiled Floor Restored in a Maidenhead Kitchen

Recently I visited a client in the town of Maidenhead, Berkshire who needed assistance restoring a very dirty pitted Limestone tiled floor which had suffered over the years due to poor maintenance choices. The pressures of a busy family life had, understandably, prevented my client from undertaking regular cleaning and the products and methods used for cleaning were by and large unsuitable for this type of natural stone. In addition, the pits in the tiles had been filled with grout; however, they were not flush to the tile and therefore a large amount of soil had collected in the pockets. The result was a Limestone tiled floor in considerably poor condition that was increasingly difficult to keep clean.

Limestone Floor Before Cleaning Maidenhead Limestone Floor Before Cleaning Maidenhead

My client had tried and tried to get the floor clean, using methods such as scrubbing with toothbrushes, steam cleaners, and mopping – but they weren’t getting anywhere! I explained to my client that steaming is, in fact, one of the worst cleaning systems to use on natural stone floors. Steam not only damages sealers, it also thins out greasy soils. Some of these soils are absorbed onto the domestic microfiber pads, however a lot of the soil becomes thinner allowing it to penetrate deeper into the pours of the stone and grout. This in itself starts the vicious circle to rapidly soiled and dirty tiles and grout. This happens because the grease soils magnetise dirt!

Solution: cleaning a Limestone tiled floor

My first task in the cleaning process was to mix a strong solution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, which is a high alkaline cleaner. This solution was applied liberally across the entire Limestone tiled floor and grout. It was allowed to dwell for 30-40 minutes, giving it time to seep into the stone to get underneath and lift the ingrained dirt to the surface. During this time, I scrubbed the grout lines using a specialist stiff grout brush. The Limestone tiles were then scrubbed with heavy mechanical rotary agitation machine.

Limestone Floor During Cleaning Maidenhead Limestone Floor During Cleaning Maidenhead

I then gave the floor a thorough rinse using the latest in cleaning and capture technology, which involves firing hot water at high pressure in a spinning motion across the floor, in effect blasting away the ingrained soils from the grout and pitting in the limestone. The high pressure is delivered from a system mounted inside my van which also contains waste tanks to capture the extracted soiled water.

Solution: sealing a Limestone tiled floor

After being allowed to dry thoroughly for 24 hours, I returned to seal the floor with Tile Doctor Colour Grow which would have brought out the deep colours in the stone, however after discussing the options with the client it became clear that they wanted to keep the floor looking as light as possible so Tile Doctor Ultra Seal was applied. Ultra Seal is a natural look impregnating sealer that soaks into the pores of the stone and protects it from within.

Limestone Floor After Cleaning Maidenhead Limestone Floor After Cleaning Maidenhead

The floor now looks fantastic and the sealer should ensure it remains looking that way for some time to come and before leaving I made sure to provide my client with some professional maintenance advice.
 
 

Restoring the appearance of a pitted Limestone tiled Kitchen in Berkshire

Soiled Limestone kitchen floor deep cleaned and sealed in Crookham

Recently, Berkshire tile doctor was asked to restore a pitted and heavily soiled limestone floor in the village of Crookham by a previous customer. I always like it when that happens as there’s no better testimonial that than being asked by a previous customer to do more work. This floor ran throughout the kitchen, utility and downstairs toilet and had a range of soils on the floor, especially in the kitchen. The floor had also lost its sheen and although the customer did not want a deep shine they did want the floor to have some reflection to it.

Limestone Kitchen Floor in Crookham before cleaning Limestone Kitchen Floor in Crookham before cleaning

Deep Cleaning the Limestone Tiled Floor

We used Tile Doctor Pro-Clean to get the floor clean again by applying a medium dilution which was spread liberally over the floor using a bucket and soft brush. The cleaning solution was allowed to dwell on the stone before being scrubbed into the tile and grout using a stiff brush and pad.

Limestone Kitchen Floor in Crookham during cleaning Limestone Kitchen Floor in Crookham during cleaning

A coarse diamond burnishing pad was then used to remove some surface soils and any remaining sealer from the surface of the limestone before giving the floor a rinse using our unique clean and capture system. This system combines, water, heat, pressure and powerful vacuum extraction and is highly effective at blasting away soils from the pits in the limestone. Once we were happy the floor was clean we set about restoring the finish to the stone with the medium, fine and very fine burnishing pads.

Limestone Kitchen Floor in Crookham during cleaning Limestone Kitchen Floor in Crookham during cleaning

The floor was given another rinse and the limestone left for 48 hours so it could thoroughly dry out before sealing.

Sealing the Limestone Floor

To seal the stone we applied a couple of coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is a durable sealer that impregnates the stone and enhances the deep natural colours in the stone.

Limestone Kitchen Floor in Crookham after cleaning

We believe it’s important to seal stone after deep cleaning and restoration as it helps prevent future soils and staining. There are many sealers available on the market for stealing stone, however, it’s important to recognise the importance of using a quality sealer and having used Tile Doctor products for some time now can confidently say they offer long term protection for your floor. We do however recommend an annual deep clean and touch up to ensure your floors stay looking as great as the day we leave and we offer a regular maintenance service to enable you achieve that.
 
 

Restoration of Solid Limestone Floor in Crookham

Limestone Kitchen Floor refinished near Staines

This wonderful Limestone tiled floor was installed in the kitchen of a house near the town Staines where it had become dirty and tired, helped I might add by the customers dog who loved to swim in rivers and get muddy at every opportunity. The customer was struggling to clean the floor, the grout lines wouldn’t come clean and after spending hours scrubbing with a tooth brush and getting nowhere she called Tile Doctor.

Deep Cleaning the Limestone Tiled Floor

The floor was clearly in need of a deep clean and re-seal a very mild dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean applied liberally across the floor and allowed to dwell and penetrate through the soils engrained into the grout. The grout lines were scrubbed with a specialist grout brush to release the soil and a rotary machine with a nylon deck scrubbing brush was used to release the soils from the Limestone tiles.

Limestone Kitchen Floor Stains Before Cleaning Limestone Kitchen Floor Stains Before Cleaning

After approximately half an hour of scrubbing, the Limestone floor was extraction cleaned using our truck mounted clean and capture system. This system combines heat, pressure, and vacuum extraction to gently blast engrained soils away from the limestone and the grout lines.

Limestone Kitchen Floor Stains During Cleaning Limestone Kitchen Floor Stains High Pressure Machine

To get the Limestone really clean a two pad diamond burnishing process was used; normally we use four pads however the customer did not want the stone to be too shiny and reflection was already starting to happen after the second pad had been applied. Using diamonds to refinish calcium stone such as marble, travertine and limestone is the modern chemical free solution to restoring the surface of sedimentary stones.

Limestone Kitchen Floor Stains During Cleaning Limestone Kitchen Floor Stains During Cleaning

Sealing the Limestone Floor

After deep clean and refinishing the surface of the limestone, it was allowed to dry for a period of 36 hours, after this a liberal coat of Colour Grow which is a solvent based impregnator was applied to the stone. The sealer was allowed to sit on the surface of the stone for approximately 5 minutes before the excess was buffed away. Buffing the excess away is important to ensure a great, smear free finish.

Limestone Kitchen Floor Stains During Sealing Limestone Kitchen Floor Stains After Sealing

Before leaving we recommended a system to care for the floor to ensure is continues to look as good as the day we left. Also we recently contact the client to check everything was ok and I’m proud to confirm they are still really pleased with the floor and after professional cleaning and sealing is now finding the floor is much easier to clean and maintain herself.
 
 

Deep Cleaning Limestone Floor Near Stains

Limestone Sign Wall Cleaning at Reading Business Park

This was an unusual request to clean a large Limestone wall used to mount a sign at a Reading Business Park that had been installed approximately 8 to 10 years prior and never cleaned. The old sign had been removed from the stone which had exposed the unprotected areas of stone leaving a shadow. Pollutants, carbon soils, road dirt and weathering had discoloured the Limestone and the client was unable to get it satisfactorily clean. You can see from the photo below how obviously dirty the stone had become.

Limestone sign before cleaning reading

Deep Cleaning a Limestone Wall

To get the Limestone cleaned I applied a liberal 50:50 dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean with a roller brush and allowed it to dwell for on the stone for around twenty minutes.

Limestone sign during cleaning reading

The chemicals got to work on the dirt whilst I set up our truck mounted medium pressure hot water clean and capture system which uses a twin rotary jet system to fire hot water at 90 degrees at 1200psi onto the stone in a circular spinning motion. It’s a great tool that immediately vacuums the waste water away to a separate tank in the van. This mess free clean and capture system is self-contained and doesn’t require the disposal of hot water or dirty water on site either. Using the tool I was able to blast away the soils and pollutants from the stone and then left it to dry.

Limestone sign after cleaning reading

Sealing the Limestone Wall

When I returned I checked the stone was dry, fortunately it hadn’t rained and the sun and wind had dried it out well. To seal the Limestone I used Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that occupies the pores in the stone to prevent contaminates discolouring it, additionally it’s suitable for internal and external applications and has the added effect of enhancing the natural colour in the stone. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to take a final photograph once it was sealed due to a rather irritating traffic warden.
 
 

Cleaning and Sealing Limestone Sign Wall in Reading

Stained Limestone Tiled Floor Stripped and Sealed in Slough

This 50 m2 Limestone tiled floor at an old thatched cottage in Slough had unfortunately been stained following a radiator system leak which covered the tiles in dirty radiator water and sludge. The limestone tiles had been laid on a floor without a screed damp proofing membrane which resulted in the release of efflorescent mineral salts rising up through the stone from the soil beneath. This left a constant layer of reforming fine salt on the surface of the stone which looked like fine dust. The water had also damaged the surface of the stone leaving patches of dull etched stone next to clean polished areas.

Waterleak Stains on Limestone Tiles Slough Before Cleaning Waterleak Stains on Limestone Tiles Slough Before Cleaning

Stripping the Limestone Tiled Floor

To encourage the stone to dry out thoroughly we left a number of dehumidifiers in the room for a week and increased the room temperature. Once the stone was dry, it stopped releasing effloresce salts and we were able to restore the surface polish by burnishing the floor.

Waterleak Stains on Limestone Tiles Slough During Cleaning
Burnishing involves stripping back the Limestone surface using a set of burnishing pads, these diamond encrusted pads come in a number of grades and each one does a different job. I started with the coarse pad together with water removed the slurry with a wet vacuum, rinsed the floor and then carried on with the medium, fine and super fine pads using the same processes until the surface was polished again. Finally when I had dried the floor I used a green buffing pad to buff the floor up.

Sealing the Limestone Floor

The next step was to seal the Limestone with a couple of coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which will provide a durable protective sealer against future staining. The result was an even, polished limestone tiled floor with a durable sealing to protect against future soiling and staining.

Waterleak Stains on Limestone Tiles Slough After Cleaning Waterleak Stains on Limestone Tiles Slough After Cleaning

 

Water damaged Limestone floor restored in Berkshire

Cleaning Antalya Limestone Tiles in Reading

I don’t mind a few stairs but these Antalya Limestone tiles were installed in a flat at the top of a three storey residential block in Reading with no lift. The sealer had worn down over time which was making the floor hard to clean and always looking dirty.

Cleaning a Limestone Tiled Floor

To clean the floor we applied a solution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which is a heavy duty alkaline cleaning product specially designed for cleaning stone floors. This was left to dwell for a while and then agitated using a rotary machine fitted with a Black Scrubbing pad. The soiled solution was then removed using a wet vacuum and the floor was then rinsed down with fresh clean water.

Antalya Limestone During Cleaning

Limestone Tiled Floor Polishing

We used a set of diamond encrusted Twister Burnishing Pads fitted to a rotary buffing machine to polish the Limestone floor. These pads are ideal for restoring the shine on hard stone surfaces such as Limestone and Marble, the come in a set of four and you start with the Red pad together with plain water and this cuts through and removes surface grime and any surface seal. You then progress through one by one until you get to the final Green pad which provides a high polish.

Sealing Limestone Tiles

Once the floor was dry I sealed it using two coats of Tile Doctor Pro-Seal which is a penetrating sealer that provides a natural look and will help protect the floor going forward.

Antalya Limestone After Cleaning
 

Restoring Antalya Limestone Tile in Berkshire

Restoring Moroccan Leather Limestone Tiles in Salisbury

We were asked to sort out these beautiful “Moroccan Leather” Limestone floor tiles in the kitchen and WC of a house in Salisbury which had had been badly installed by the contractor. If you look closely at the photographs you can see grout residue (also known as Grout Haze) had been left on the surface of the tile ruining its appearance.

Removing Grout Haze

The most effective way to remove grout from the tile surface is with an acidic product such as Tile Doctor Grout Clean-up, you have to be careful not to leave it on the surface too long and wash the floor down with water afterwards as acids can eat through natural stone.

Moroccan Leather Limestone Kitchen Before Cleaning Moroccan Leather Limestone WC Before Cleaning

Cleaning and Sealing Limestone Tiles

Once the grout haze was removed we set about giving the tiles a good clean using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean washing it down again with clean water before giving it a polish using a Green polishing pad to get a high shine finish.

There are a numbers of sealers you can use on Limestone each one can give a different effect, in this case we used two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which really enhances the natural colours in the stone.

Moroccan Leather Limestone Kitchen After Cleaning Moroccan Leather Limestone WC After Cleaning

The floor was completely transformed and think you will agree now looks amazing

Grout Haze removed from Limestone Tiles restored in Salisbury