Limestone Kitchen Tiles Cleaned, Polished and Sealed in Ashton

It’s always nice when one of our former customers refers their family and friends to Tile Doctor as it’s a testament to the great work we do. As the Tile Doctor for Northamptonshire, I often carry out tile cleaning and restoration jobs in the Oundle area.

Recently, a customer from the nearby village of Ashton was referred to me by a friend. Her friend has the same type of floor in the same type of barn conversion in the area, and had chosen to use our services both last year and this year for their annual maintenance clean.

This new customer had a polished Limestone kitchen floor that was proving difficult to keep clean. The grout had become extremely dirty and – in the absence of an effective sealer – dirt and general muck had easily penetrated the pores of the Limestone itself. The result was a very dull appearance – not one that any property owner wants to suffer!

Polished Limestone Floor Before Cleaning Ashton Polished Limestone Floor Before Cleaning Ashton

On our initial inspection visit, we always carry out a test clean within a small area of the floor to give the customer an idea of the final results they can expect. Upon my first visit to this property, I carried out the test clean and the customer couldn’t believe the difference made to the appearance of the grout lines. In fact, she had even forgotten their original colour!

Cleaning and Burnishing Polished Limestone Kitchen Tiles


When I next visited the property, it was time to carry out the full restoration. The work was carried out in sections of around 10m2 each, with two Tile Doctor technicians on site using the latest Tile Doctor products and machinery.

The issue of the extremely dirty grout lines was tackled first. We cleaned them with Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, which is a high alkaline tile and grout cleaner. We will use Tile Doctor Pro-Clean on all types of natural stone – it’s just that reliable for cutting through the grime. The product was applied using specialised grout brushes and the resulting chemical slurry was rinsed away using fresh water and extracted with a wet vacuum.

Polished Limestone Floor During Cleaning Ashton

Satisfied with the cleanliness of the grout lines, we moved onto improving the appearance of the polished Limestone tiles. When it comes to restoring polished stone, including Limestone, Travertine and Marble, we typically use a process we have developed known as ‘burnishing’. Burnishing involves both cleaning the tile and gradually polishing it to achieve a high-quality, long-lasting sheen finish.

We use a set of four diamond-encrusted burnishing pads fitted to a rotary machine to do this. The first to be applied is a pad with a Coarse grit, which breaks down any old sealer and shaves off the very top layer of the dirty stone, leaving a fresh surface beneath.

Next, burnishing pads with Medium, Fine and Very Fine grits are applied to slowly but surely polish the stone, achieving a very pleasant and shiny appearance. In most cases, the tiles come out looking better than they did when they were originally installed!

Once burnished, the floor was left overnight.

Sealing Polished Limestone Kitchen Tiles


The following day, we returned to seal the tiles. We did this using two coats of Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal, a sealant which is formulated to protect the floor and grout lines against dirt build-up and staining.

Polished Limestone Floor After Cleaning Ashton

The very happy customer was given a complimentary bottle of Tile Doctor Stone Soap, which is a highly concentrated neutral stone cleaner that helps to maintain the patina on polished stone. This will help her keep the appearance of the floor maintained until her next maintenance clean with Tile Doctor.

Polished Limestone Floor After Cleaning Ashton

 
 

Professional Renovation of a Dirty Limestone Tiled Floor in Northamptonshire

Cleaning and Sealing a Victorian Quarry Tiled Hallway Floor in Stamford

This hallway floor was actually at a house in the town of Stamford which is just over the northern border of Northamptonshire and slightly out of my area; however I was recommended to the owner by another client which is always welcome and a testimonial in itself. I work right across the county so it wasn’t long before I was in the general area and arranged a visit to carry out an inspection of the Victorian Quarry tiled floor and provide a quote for a full restoration.

The owner of the house had just moved in recently and although the floor was in good overall physical, it was in need of a thorough clean and new seal to bring back some life to the tiles. Additionally she was having lots of other building work done to the house and she wanted to retain this as an original feature of the property. My quote was accepted and I was able to book the work in for the following week.

These first photos show how dull the floor looked due to a build-up of builder’s dust and general wear and tear. They also show some of the equipment needed to undertake the following cleaning process.

Victorian Tiles Stamford Before Cleaning Victorian Tiles Stamford Before Cleaning

Cleaning a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

I used a brush and vacuum to remove as much loose debris and dust from the surface of the floor as possible. I then applied a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro Clean to the floor which is a strong alkaline cleaner which can also be used to remove sealers; the solution was left it to dwell for roughly ten minutes before agitating it with scrubbing pads and brushes to remove the muck that was lifted to the surface. This was then wet-vacuumed twice to remove all the slurry and neutralise any chemicals.

Victorian Tiles Stamford Before Cleaning

As it was such an old property I then used a steamer to heat up the tiles and draw up any contaminants and assist with the drying process. I also chose to install two fans and a dehumidifier to dry the floor even further.

Victorian Tiles Stamford After Stripping and cleaning

With the cleaning process complete – and achieving a marked difference to the appearance of the floor – I left the tiles to finish drying for 24 hours.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

Upon my return to the house, I checked for any excess moisture by running damp tests as this has the potential to affect the performance of the sealer. Once satisfied with the results, I sealed the floor with two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow, a colour enhancing sealant which offers both a robust surface seal and an aesthetically pleasing finish.

I also carried out water repellency tests to ensure the sealer was working as expected and the floor had sufficient protection and will be hard-wearing for a hallway which is a high traffic area.

Victorian Tiles Stamford After Cleaning Victorian Tiles Stamford After Cleaning

On my client’s return to the house she was very happy with the final results – in fact, she was also in contact about some further work in the New Year!
 
 

Professional Victorian Quarry Tile Floor Stripping, Cleaning and Sealing