This Terracotta tiled floor was installed throughout the kitchen, diner, and hallway of a cottage in the village of Towcester. You can see from the photographs on this page that the floor had not been properly maintained, the grout lines had turned dark with ingrained dirt and the whole floor was now well overdue a renovation.
My client liked the floor and its character but as he was going to the expense of fitting a new kitchen he wanted to know if the floor could be restored to its former glory as his wife wanted a high shine finish and an easy to maintain floor.
Renovating the Terracotta and Grout would involve completely striping the floor of any previous sealants, deep cleaning the tiles and then applying a fresh seal. They were happy for me to do the work and it was agreed that the best time for this to be carried out would be after the old kitchen had been removed and before the new kitchen units were fitted. This would allow for a uniform wall to wall finish, and it would also make my work easier as I wouldn’t have to navigate around the kitchen units.
Cleaning a Terracotta Tiled Kitchen Floor
To get the floor clean and remove previous sealers and coatings I applied a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean. I had tried a few products on the tiles and had discovered after conducting a few tests that this had the right impact when it came to removing the many layers of old sealant. Tile Doctor Pro-Clean has an alkaline formula which makes it ideal for cleaning natural products such as Terracotta.
The Pro-Clean was left to soak into the tiles for ten minutes and then scrubbed into the floor using a 17” rotary floor buffer fitted with a black scrubbing pad and running at slow speed to reduce splashing. This activity soon brought the dirt out of the tiles and the now soiled cleaning solution was removed using a wet vacuum. The floor was then rinsed down with water and the process repeated a couple of times until I was happy with the results.
To clean up the grout a stiff grout brush was run along the grout lines in combination with more Pro-Clean. There were a few stubborn stains on the floor, and these were removed by spot cleaning the affected area with another product called Tile Doctor Remove and Go employed with a steamer to lift the stain out of the clay tile.
Once happy the floor was clean, the floor was given an acid wash using a using a 10:1 dilution of Tile Doctor Grout Clean-up. This final step in the cleaning produce removes old grout smears, alkaline salts that can lead to efflorescence and will neutralise the use of alkaline cleaning products used earlier.
Sealing Terracotta Tiles in Towcester
After more rinsing with water and extraction with the wet vacuum the floor was left to dry for four days before returning to seal the Terracotta. To achieve the desired glossy finish the Terracotta was sealed using Tile Doctor Seal and Go which is an ideal sealer for Terracotta and provides durable stain protection together with a silk finish. The more coats you apply the higher shine finish you are able to achieve depending on the porosity of the tile and in this case seven coats were applied.
The client was extremely impressed with the results achieved in the kitchen, diner and hallway and left the following 5-star feedback.