Crowthorne

Large Sandstone Floor Renovated at Crowthorne Rental Property

I received an enquiry from a property in Crowthorne to come and survey an unknown Flagstone Floor in a converted barn that was ready to be rented out. The owners where concerned the stone was letting the rest of the property down due to it being dirty and heavily stained, particularly around the kitchen and entrance areas. If your selling or renting out a property it really needs to look its best if you want to achieve a good price. Having spoken over the phone we agreed a date for me to pop over to complete a survey.

Dirty Sandstone Floor Before Cleaning Crowthorne Barn Conversion

From further inspection I confirmed the stone was in fact a Sandstone, it was also clear that the sealer protecting the stone from ingrained dirt had worn away and was now allowing dirt and staining to ruin the appearance of the flagstones. It was a large floor so I measured up so I could work out the quantities of cleaning and sealing products needed and then walked the customer through the cleaning process. Later that day I sent over a detailed quotation which was accepted, and a date agreed for my return.

Dirty Sandstone Floor Before Cleaning Crowthorne Barn Conversion Dirty Sandstone Floor Before Cleaning Crowthorne Barn Conversion

I should mention this work took place during the Covid restrictions, fortunately being a rental property, I was able to work in the property alone.

Deep Cleaning the Sandstone Tiled Floor

To deep clean the floor and remove the ingrained dirt and staining I used a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean. It is sprayed onto the floor and left to soak in for five minutes before agitating with a Black scrubbing pad fitted to a weighted buffing machine. The resultant slurry was then wet extracted away using a powerful high-pressure van mounted extracting system.

This action cleaned up most of the stone nicely however certain areas where heavily stained, particularly in the kitchen area where food and drink stains were more apparent. To tackle this, I applied a stronger cleaner/stripper product called Tile Doctor Remove and Go this time allowing ten minutes for it to soak in before scrubbing the surface with a very coarse 100-grit soft milling pad. This took quite a few attempts each time extracting the slurry away and then inspecting the floor to see if more work was needed.

Happy the stains have been removed, I then focused on renovating the surface Sandstone after the application of the coarse pad. This involves the application of several finer grit burnishing pads which close the pores and adds a subtle polish to the Sandstone. As I started with 100-grit pad it was necessary to gradually refine the surface with an incremental series of pads that included 200, 400 and finally 800-grit pads. Then to ensure a uniform finish across the floor I continued the 400 and 800 grit pads throughout the property. Water is used to lubricate the process and this turns into a fine slurry that is rinse extracted as before.

The cleaning process took up the whole of the first day and I am pleased to say the Sandstone floor looked very clean after I had finished.

Sealing the Sandstone Floor

The stone was then allowed dry off overnight with the aid of an industrial air mover and I returned later the next day to apply a new protective seal. In the meantime, my customer had been over to check out the floor and were over the moon with how it looked and wanted to keep the finish as natural as possible.

Sandstone Floor After Cleaning Sealing Crowthorne Barn Conversion Sandstone Floor After Cleaning Sealing Crowthorne Barn Conversion

With this in mind, I applied Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal sealer to the Sandstone throughout, only two coats were needed. This is a premium sealer that is almost invisible and works by penetrating the stone thus preventing dirt from becoming ingrained. Once done the floor looked very clean and much brighter than before, it now had that wow factor which will help it attract a good yield in the rental market.

Sandstone Floor After Cleaning Sealing Crowthorne Barn Conversion

The trouble with rental properties of course is making sure the tenant uses the right product to maintain the floor and not a typical supermarket tile cleaner that are only designed for use on Ceramic and Porcelain tiles. In fact, these types of cleaning product can slowly strip the sealer off the floor so it’s always worth checking the label before purchasing. Fortunately Tile Doctor sells a product called Neutral Cleaner that is ideal for maintaining sealed stone floors, so I left them with a complimentary bottle and recommended they get some more to leave under the sink for the new tenant.

 

Professional Sandstone Floor Renovation in Crowthorne

Twenty Year Old Terracotta Floor Renovated in Crowthorne

I was asked to visit a property in Crowthorne near Sandhurst to take a look at a Terracotta tiled floor that was installed twenty years prior and had now become dull and dirty. The client had recently had the house redecorated and attempted to clean the terracotta tiles themselves, however they quickly discover the process was difficult and rather time consuming and thus got in touch with Tile Doctor.

Terracotta Tiled Floor Before Cleaning Crowthorne

As part of my visit I carried out a cleaning test on a small patch of Terracotta flooring which they could clearly see made a huge improvement. It was also an opportunity for me to see which products would work best on the tiles which is useful as it means I can create a more accurate quote for renovating the floor. This is specially useful when quoting for Terracotta floors as many are protected with wax coatings which can be a struggle to remove.

Terracotta Tiled Floor Before Cleaning Crowthorne

They were more than happy to go ahead with my quote, and a date was arranged to carry out the work. This was just before the COVID-19 epidemic broke out and I manged to get the work done before the lockdown started. Its worth knowing that we have now changed our working practices since then including risk assessments, new PPE and social distancing measures.

Deep Cleaning a Terracotta Tiled Kitchen Floor

To clean the floor and remove old coatings such as sealers etc a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go was sprayed onto the tiles and allowed to dwell for ten minutes. The grout lines were then given a good manual scrub with a stiff grout brush before turning my attention to the Terracotta tiles which were scrubbed mechanically. For this we use a black pad fitted to a rotary buffing machine adding more water as needed to help lubricate the process.

Terracotta Tiled Floor During Cleaning Crowthorne

The scrubbing released the dirt from the tiles and the soil was extracted with a low-pressure extraction machine. The client was amazed how much dirt was coming out of the floor. Some of the grout lines and textured inserts needed double treatment due to heavy build-up of sealer. I continued this process until the floor was completely stripped back and clean.

Sealing a Terracotta Tiled Kitchen Floor

Stripped back terracotta is very porous so I allowed the floor to dry out over the weekend to make sure it would be bone dry before sealing. Returning on the Monday I conducted a moisture test with a damp meter to check the floor was dry before starting to apply the sealer. Tile Doctor Seal and Go was used to seal the terracotta, a total of eight coats was applied leaving roughly twenty minutes between coats. Having air movers placed around the room helped with the drying time. Seal and Go is a water-based sealer so it doesn’t leave a smell as it dries, it works very well on Terracotta leaving a subtle sheen to the tile which puts new life in the floor.

Terracotta Tiled Floor After Cleaning Crowthorne

The client was delighted with their new floor and left a lovely testimonial which I have copied below:

“Dennis was punctual, professional and proficient. He was a pleasure to have around. We are delighted with the result of his work and we would have no hesitation in recommending him to friends and family “

Before leaving we discussed recommendations to keep the floor clean and what products to use. To this end a complimentary bottle of Tile Doctor Neutral Floor Cleaner was left for their use. This as its name implies is pH neutral so will ensure the newly applied seals stay in place unlike many acidic household cleaners that can strip the sealer from the floor. It is mild enough to use daily and has a nice fresh smell, so should ensure the integrity of the newly restored floor for some time to come.

Terracotta Tiled Floor After Cleaning Crowthorne

 

Professional Restoration of a Terracotta Tiled Kitchen in Berkshire

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