This job was to strip and re-seal these Quarry tiles installed in a commercial kitchen which was undergoing refurbishment at a canteen in Rushden, Northamptonshire. The tile finish had dulled and there was a lot of staining to the grout.
Cleaning Quarry Tiles
As there was little in the way of kitchen units to protect I go straight down to stripping down the floor using a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which is a multi-purpose cleaner/stripper that’s safe to use on stone, tile and grout. The solution was applied with a mop and left it to dwell on the floor for twenty minutes in order to give it chance to soak into the tile surface and get to work on the existing sealer and dirt. It was then worked into the floor using a rotary machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad and stiff hand brushes were used along the grout lines to get the grout clean. The resulting soiled solution was picked up with a wet and dry vacuum and the floor was then rinsed with clean water to neutralise the tile and stubborn areas re-treated. Once I was happy the floor was given a final rinse and then left to dry overnight ready for sealing the next day.
Sealing Quarry Tiles
After checking the tiles had dried I proceeded to seal the floor using four coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go which will protect the floor from staining going forward and also adds a nice shine to the tile.
Commercial Kitchen Quarry Tile cleaning in Northamptonshire
The following photos are from a Victorian tiled hallway floor at a residence in Kettering Northants which had been covered with carpet for the last thirty odd years; to make matters worse the carpet had been stuck down with adhesive which was proving very difficult to remove.
The customer phoned to see if it would be possible to restore the floor back to its former glory as it was very dirty and the colours were dull not to mention the glue. After a home visit and testing a small area to prove we could do the work, the customer booked us in to carry out the service before completing the decorating of the hallway. It’s always a good idea to have any heavy restoration work done before you decorate as heavy machinery is used and it can be a messy job.
Cleaning Victorian Tiles
To remove the glue and restore the tiles Tile Doctor Remove and Go was left to soak into the tile before being brushed in with a rotary machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad. This process also works to lift out the embedded dirt from the floor tile; once done the soiled solution was removed using a wet vacuum and the floor rinsed with clean water to remove the product from the tile.
To get the grout clean Tile Doctor Grout Clean-up was sprayed onto all the grout lines and then hand scrubbed in with stiff brushes; this was then followed by a second wash and rinse.
The hallway was still in general use so the floors were then sheeted up for three days to protect them whilst the floor tiles and grout were allowed to dry out assisted by a dehumidifier which we left on site.
Sealing Victorian Tiles
On our return we remove the sheeting and damp tested the tiles to make sure they had dried sufficiently; all was well so we sealed the floor by applying five coats of Tile Doctor High Shine as the customer had requested a high gloss finish in order to fully bring out the colours of the tiles.
I think you will agree from the photographs we have managed to achieve this, certainly the customer was very happy with the results.
Victorian Tile Restoration in Kettering, Northamptonshire
Apologies for the poor quality of these grainy Quarry Tile Cleaning photographs taken in the kitchen of a residential property in Daventry but it was the middle of winter and I was using my phone camera which doesn’t have an effective flash. Hopefully you can see from the photograph below how dirt had become ingrained into the tile and stains to the grout.
Cleaning Quarry Tiles
To get the floor clean I removed the kick boards around the base of the kitchen units and applied a dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean mixed with NanoTech Ultraclean which adds tiny abrasive particles to an already powerful alkaline cleaning product that is safe to use on tile and stone. It was applied with a mop and left it to dwell on the floor for twenty minutes first in order to give it chance to soak into the tile and get to work on the dirt. It was then worked into the floor using a rotary machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad, stiff hand brushes were along the grout lines. The soiled solution was picked up with a wet and dry vacuum and the floor was then rinsed with clean water to neutralise the tile and allow us to see which areas need further attention. Once I was happy the floor was given a final rinse and then left to dry overnight ready for sealing the next day.
Sealing Quarry Tiles
On my return the floor was checked in a number of places with a damp meter to confirm it had dried which it had and it was then sealed using numerous coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go which adds a nice shine to the floor as well as providing a surface seal that will help protect the tile from stains going forward. Sealing can take some time as you need to let the first coat dry before starting the second.
The photographs below are taken from a job in the village of Whilton near Daventry where we were asked to clean and seal a black Welsh Slate tiled floor that was installed in a Kitchen and adjacent dining area.
The customer was concerned that the floor was very dull and proving difficult to keep clean additionally she was having a new kitchen fitted and didn’t want to replace the floor but wanted to achieve a shiny finish that was easy to maintain.
On the initial survey I found the sealant was of a poor quality and had all but worn off allowing stain and soil to seep into the grout and stain the tiles, stains which were difficult to remove with normal household cleaning products.
Cleaning Welsh Slate Tiles
After fully masking up the areas to protect the skirting boards and wooden steps I carried out a deep clean with a dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go worked in with a rotary machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad in order to strip the floor and remove the old wax sealer and tackle the ingrained stains and grime. Additionally the grout lines were scrubbed using stiff hand brushes to bring them back to an acceptable appearance. The soiled cleaning solution was removed using a wet vacuum and then washed down with clean water so we could see the areas that needed further work and repeated the process.
Once I was happy with the overall appearance the entire area was given a thorough rinse and wash to remove any chemical and neutralise the floor before sealing. We left a dehumidifier in place to assist in the drying process as we wanted to ensure the tile and grout was fully dry prior to application of a sealer.
Sealing the Slate Tiled Floor
We came back two days later and checked the floor was dry which it was so we proceeded to apply the sealer for which we chose Tile Doctor Seal and Go which is a water based sealer (no smell) that is recommended for Slate tiles and provides good stain protection with a low sheen finish that really does bring the floor alive. It took five coats before the slate tiles were fully sealed.
Cleaning and Sealing a Welsh Slate Tiled Floor in Wilton Village near Daventry
The photograph below is from a Victorian tiled hallway floor that we were asked to restore in the historic town of Towcester, Northamptonshire; the owner wanted the tiles restored as an original feature. You can see from the photograph below how dull and neglected the tiles were so we had our work cut out.
Cleaning Victorian Tiles
We set about cleaning the tile using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which is a powerful alkaline cleaning product that is safe to use on tile and stone. It was applied with a mop and left it to dwell on the floor for ten minutes first in order to give it chance to soak into the tile and get to work on the dirt. It was then worked into the floor using a rotary machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad, stiff hand brushes were used in difficult to get to places and along the grout lines requiring a substantial amount of elbow grease. The soiled water was picked up with a wet and dry vacuum and the floor was rinsed with clean water so we could see the result.
Unfortunately there were a number of stubborn areas and a stronger product was needed to shift them so we applied a dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go which is a coating remover that can shift most issues, again this was applied and left to dwell for a while before working it into the stubborn stains using hand brushes. The dirty solution was removed again using the wet and dry vacuum and we could see the tiles were now clean so the floor was given a thorough rinse several times with fresh water to remove any leftover chemical and then left to dry overnight.
Sealing Victorian Tiles
The next day the floor had dried so we were able to seal it using four coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go which adds a nice shine to the floor as well as providing a surface seal that will help protect the tile from stains going forward.
A lot of effort but what a transformation and well worth the work that went into it as you can see from the photograph above.
This house in Brixworth near Northampton had Travertine tiles fitted in the kitchen and Ceramic tiles in the hallway, both of which were in need of a deep clean. It was clear that the sealer on the Travertine tiles had stopped working allowing dirt to become ingrained in the surface causing it to become very difficult to clean, you can see this quite clearly in the photographs below, the grout had also become darker.
Cleaning Travertine Tile
Travertine is a very hard surface so normally it’s necessary to use diamond encrusted burnishing pad system to clean, strip and polish the floor, in this case however I decided to try a combination of stripping and high pressure clean instead. I started by applying a dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which is a multi-purpose tile cleaner safe to use on natural stone. This was left to dwell on the floor so it could get to work on the dirt before being worked in to the stone using a black stripping pad fitted to a rotary machine. This was then rinsed off with high pressure spinning tool operating at 1200 PSI to blast out the dirt from the pitted tiles and badly soiled grout lines.
Sealing Travertine Tile
The tiles were left to dry overnight and we came back the next day to seal the Travertine tile with two coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go which will provide on-going stain protection as well as giving the tiles the glossy finish the customer had requested.
Cleaning Ceramic Tile
To tackle the Ceramic tiles in the hallway we used a similar system involving the use of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and a scrubbing pad to get the tiles clean; Ceramic tiles however are usually glazed and won’t take a sealer the top layer of Grout however is porous and to protect that we applied Tile Doctor Seal and Go along the grout lines.
Travertine and Cermaic Tiles maintenance in Northampton