Polished Travertine is a popular tile which can look stunning, however without the correct maintenance regime in place it can soon turn dull and flat as my customer in the small village of Old near Brixworth discovered. In this case they had 40m2 of Travertine tiling installed in the living room and breakfast room which in particular had become dull, sticky, and hard to clean. On top of that a couple of holes had appeared in the main kitchen walkway areas which was causing concern.
I visited the property to carry out a site survey and conduct a test clean on the stained areas. My customer was relieved to see how well the grout and staining responded to the cleaning and we moved on to discuss how to repairs the holes. We see this a lot with Travertine where natural holes or pitting are usually filed with a resin before being sold but the problem can be exacerbated with the use of acidic cleaning products. Holes also trap dirt which can accumulates quickly as dirt is washed into the holes during cleaning detracting from the appearance of the stone.
To resolve I planned on filling the holes with a resin and then re-polishing the floor to make it blend in. A quote was issued via e mail which was accepted, and a date booked in the diary for work to be carried.
Cleaning and Restoring Travertine Tiled Kitchen Floor
On the day I arrived the customer had prepared the work area by removing all small items of furniture. My first step was to brush and vacuum the area to remove any loose debris. I then sprayed the floor with a dilution of Tile doctor Pro-Clean focusing on the heavily soiled areas and grout lines throughout the breakfast area and then left to soak in for ten minutes. After scrubbing the grout with a grout brush the area was rinsed with a small amount of water and the area dried using a wet vacuum. This process was then repeated in the kitchen.
Tile Doctor has found the best way to renovate polished stone is to use a set of diamond encrusted burnishing pads to hone the stone and build back the polish. Usually this involved applying a set of for or five pads of different grits depending on the severity of soiling and any surface scratches. I started with the coarsest grit and worked through in sequence to the finer grits to achieve a polished finish. Water is used to lubricate the process and the floor is rinsed and extracted between pads.
Once this process was completed, I dried the damaged tiles with a heat gun so I could fill them. I mixed a resin that closely matched the white and brown colours of the Travertine and filled in the holes, smoothing, and polishing with handheld diamond blocks to achieve a smooth finish.
Sealing a Travertine Tiled Kitchen Floor
When we returned the next day, the floor had dried, and I was able to give the floor a final polish with a very fine 3000-grit burnishing pad applied with a little water sprayed onto the tile. Finally, the floor was then sealed with two coats of Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal which provides excellent protection without changing the colour of the stone to provide a natural look.
Last step was to provide some advice on how to maintain the floor going forward for which I recommend Tile Doctor Stone Soap which is designed for cleaning polished stone floors. The client was over the moon with the outcome and surprised at the improvement, they also left the following review for me which is always a nice surprise.