Rejuvenating a Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor in Windsor

If you’ve ever rented out a property for a long period of time, you’ll likely to have been concerned, at one point or another, about whether the tenant can be relied on to maintain the condition of carpets, walls and, of course, tiled floors.

This customer, who owns a property in Windsor (home to Windsor Castle, one of the official residences of the Royal Family) had encountered this very problem. The property had been rented out to a tenant for the last five years, but the Slate tiled floor in the kitchen, which was itself only 10 years old, had not been maintained correctly.

Consequently, the sealer on the tiles was worn out and no longer capable of protecting the stone against ingrained dirt and stains. There were also lots of efflorescent salts on the floor, predominantly contained in the high trafficked areas of the kitchen. I was contacted to correct the situation and restore the entire floor by providing a deep clean and seal.

Slate Kitchen Floor Before Restoration in Windsor

Cleaning Dirty Slate Kitchen Tiles

To begin the restoration, I mixed a strong solution of Tile Doctor Pro Clean and water. Pro Clean is a high alkaline cleaner capable of stripping away any old sealer and eradicating any soils and grease on the floor.

The solution was spread liberally across the entire floor and left to dwell for a short period of time before being agitated and worked into the stone using a scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary machine.

This process left the stone fresh and clean, but the grout lines were still suffering from efflorescent salts. Efflorescence is the deposit of salts on the surface of porous materials such as natural stone tiles as moisture rises through the floor, causing unsightly stains. These alkali salts were neutralised by acid washing the floor using Tile Doctor Grout Clean-Up, which is a concentrated phosphoric acid cleaner.

Slate Kitchen Floor After Cleaning in Windsor

After deep cleaning the tiles, I left the floor to dry thoroughly for 24 hours, which is usually the minimum drying period that we would suggest.

Sealing Slate Kitchen Tiles

Returning to the property the next day, I ran some quick damp tests to check for any excess moisture that might have prevented me from sealing the floor. We will always do this as a precaution – especially with older floors that lack a damp proof membrane – because damp issues can damage the performance of the sealer and render it ineffectual.

Thankfully, the floor proved try and I sealed the floor with Tile Doctor Seal and Go, which is an acrylic polymer sealer that provides an aesthetically pleasing low-sheen finish, as well as, of course, strong stain and ingrained dirt protection.

Slate Kitchen Floor After Restoration in Windsor

As you can see from the photos above, the restoration really brought this Slate tiled floor back to life after five years of poor maintenance. The customer was very pleased to have it restored back to its optimum condition – ready for the property to be rented out again!
 
 

End of Tenancy Clean and Seal of a Dirty Slated Tiled Kitchen Floor 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

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

Replacing Damaged Travertine floor tiles and Polish in Ascot

This job involved removing and replacing five damaged Travertine floor tiles which can be tricky if you have under floor heating. The travertine floor was laid in the kitchen of a house in the town of Ascot which is famous for horse racing.

Removing the Damaged Travertine floor tiles

As you can see from the photograph below we set about marking up the damaged tiles and then proceeded to cut along the lines with an angle grinder which was fitted with a dust free extraction system. Once the bulk of the travertine was removed we used a hammer and chisel to carefully chop out the remaining edges, grout and tile adhesive. This left large holes to take the replacement tiles which were still available and were secured in place with tile adhesive and matching grout, we left the floor at this point to allow the adhesive and grout to dry.

Damaged Travertine Tile

Cleaning and Polishing Travertine Tiles

The next step was to strip and polish the entire floor using a set of diamond encrusted Burnishing Pads fitted to a rotary machine. You start with a Red stripper pad with water to remove any sealers, moving onto the White, Yellow and finally Green pad which polishes the floor to a high shine. The last step was to seal the floor using two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which brings out the colour in natural stone as well as providing durable stain protection.

The re-polishing and sealing really helped to let the new Travertine tiles blend into the floor, take a look at the finished result in the photograph below and see if you can spot the replaced tiles.

Travertine Tile Replaced and Polished
 

Broken Travertine Tile Replacement in Berkshire

Travertine Floor Re-polish in Hook

Photographs below of a Travertine tiled floor we were asked to re-polish in the kitchen of a house in the village of Hook in Hampshire. The main problem was the floor had been sealed very badly and made worse when the tiler tried to rectify the problem leaving a dull and stained floor.

Travertine Floor Before Repolishing

Stripping and Re-Polishing Travertine

To strip the sealer from the floor and get it back to the original condition we used a set of diamond encrusted Burnishing Pads fitted to a rotary machine. You start with a Red stripper pad with water to remove the sealer, moving onto the White, Yellow and Green pads which polish the floor. Once the surface was restored we applied two coats of Tile Doctor Pro-Seal which is a premium, no-sheen, natural look, water based, penetrating sealer formulated to provide maximum stain protection to the Travertine and the Grout.

The customer was over the moon at the finish and I’m sure the tiler breathed a big sigh of relief as well.

Travertine Floor After Repolishing
 

Re-Polishing a Travertine tiled kitchen floor in Hook, Hampshire