Cleaning, Polishing and Sealing Travertine Floors in Newton Heath

This customer in Newton Heath, just outside of Manchester, used to have a beautiful polished travertine floor on most of the ground floor and bathroom but over time it was getting duller and duller as the polish became worn down, not helped I might add by their choice of cleaning products which were not appropriate for this type of floor. Additionally, numerous cracks and holes had appeared in their floor and worried it was going to get worse they decided to call in some professional help and get the whole floor fully restored.

Travertine Tiled Floor Before Cleaning and Sealing Newton Heath

When I got the call I went over to the house to take a in-depth look at the problem and recommended that the floor was burnished using diamond pads of different grades. They also asked if I could apply the same treatment to the travertine bathroom floor and shower cubicle as well, which I was very happy to do so we agreed a price and scheduled a date to do the work.

Travertine Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning and Sealing Newton Heath

Dull Travertine Floor Cleaning/Polishing

To start the burnishing process, I applied the Coarse 400 grit burnishing pad to the floor using rotary machine and water as lubrication to break down and remove any old sealer from the stone. When finished with first burnishing pad I removed all the soiled water left on floor with a wet vacuum. This removal process of soiled residue was repeated after each use of a burnishing pad.

Next, I moved on to the Medium 800 grit pad which is less coarse, but still rough enough to break down layers of ingrained dirt. I followed this up with the application of a Fine 1500 grit pad, which started to smooth down the rough areas of the surface to prepare the floor for a final polish with 3000 grit. However before moving straight on to the final of the four pads, I took the time to carefully fill in the all the small cracks and holes in the stone, before leaving the floor to dry until the next day.

Sealing Travertine Floor

The next morning, I returned to the property to finish off the floor restoration. As soon as I arrived I used a damp tester to make sure the floor was completely dry.

All was well so I went over the floor with the final Very Fine 3000 grit burnishing pad, this time without any water lubricant, to finally achieve a high quality polished finish.

For polished floors, we recommend the use an impregnating sealer that penetrates the pores of the stone rather than sitting on the surface of the floor, as this ensures the quality of the polish isn’t damaged. With this in mind I applied Tile Doctor Colour Grow to seal the tiles. This is a colour enhancing sealer that provides durable surface protection and allows the surface to breathe whilst enhancing the natural colours in the stone. At this point it’s important that any sealer that doesn’t penetrate the stone is removed by polishing it off with a cloth.

Travertine Tiled Floor After Cleaning and sealing Newton Heath

After this I went on to repeat the cleaning, polishing and sealing process on their Travertine Tiled shower cubicle but I’ll detail that in a separate post.

Needless to say, the customer was very happy with the work carried out on the floor and shower cubicle and recommended me to his neighbour straight away.

Travertine Bathroom Floor After Cleaning and sealing Newton Heath

 
 

Professional Travertine Tile Restoration in Greater Manchester

Encaustic Cement Tiles Burnished and Sealed in Stockport

I’m often asked if you should seal a tile before grouting and the answer is a definite yes, and this Encaustic Cement tiled bathroom floor installation in Stockport is a great example as to why. The tiles had not been sealed before grouting and then, once the tiler went to grout the newly installed tiles with a grey grout, the colour ran into the tiles, staining them and leaving them looking grubby and dirty. Had the tiles been sealed it would of made the process of removing the grout from the surface of the tile much easier.

If you haven’t come across them before Encaustic cement tiles are often hand painted and are available in a range of beautifully artistic patterns, so it was a real shame that these tiles were allowed to be spoilt by an avoidable mistake. As you can imagine, the property owner was keen to have the tiles professionally restored, and she contacted me to get the job done. I took some photographs but I’m not sure that they do justice to the problem.

Encaustic Cement Floor Tiles Before Cleaning Stockport

Burnishing and Sealing Encaustic Cement Tiles

Rather than use a liquid cleaning product, I opted to use diamond encrusted handheld burnishing pads to remove the grout stains. Our burnishing system comprises four pads of varying grits. I started with the Coarse grit burnishing pads applying to the tiles it with a small amount of water as lubricant to grind down the grubby marks. Following this I worked my way through the system, applying Medium, Fine and Very Fine pads to gradually restore the appearance of the floor. Once the burnishing process has been completed I rinsed the tiles and then accelerated the drying process using a heat gun to prepare them to be sealed.

Sealing Encaustic Cement Tiles

Removing any excess moisture before sealing is essential as even a small amount can cloud the sealer and prevent it from properly protecting the tiles from dirt and stains. Once satisfied that the floor was dry, I proceeded to seal it using Tile Doctor Colour Grow. As an impregnating sealer Colour Grow penetrates deep into the pores of the stone to fill them and thus prevent dirt from becoming ingrained. Colour Grow’s colour intensifying properties also really accentuated the patterns of the Encaustic Cement tiles.

Encaustic Cement Floor Tiles After Cleaning Stockport

Now that these fantastic tiles have been properly sealed it will be far easier for the customer to keep them clean in future. Needless to say, she was very happy with the result. We recommend topping up your sealer on a regular basis to ensure problems like those which occurred here do not damage the appearance of your tiles.
 
 

Professional Tile Burnishing, Cleaning and Sealing for an Encaustic Cement Tiles Bathroom Floor Restoration in Stockport

Bathroom Tile and Grout Facelift in Didsbury

This Ceramic tiled bath with shower was installed at house in Didsbury, this customer wanted to give the bathroom a facelift and not usually it was the grout rather than the ceramic tile that had discoloured, the silicone also needed to be replaced due to the mould build-up and if you get mould on silicone it’s impossible to remove and can only be replaced. Unfortunately mould build-up in bathrooms is quite common in the UK due to our damp climate and modern insulated homes that restrict air flow. If you’re having this problem yourself consider installing a more powerful extractor fan or simply leaving the door to the bathroom open more often.

Disbury-bathroom-tile-and-grout-refresh-before

Cleaning Tile and Grout

The Ceramic tiles and grout were treated using a strong 2:1 dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which is a highly recommended Tile and Grout cleaning product; being alkaline it’s safe to use on all sorts of tile and stone surfaces. For vertical tiled surfaces I recommend the mixture is decanted into a bottle with a trigger spray attachment which when sprayed onto the wall allows the cleaner to mix with air making it lighter and allowing it to stick better. The solution was then worked in using a stiff scrubbing brush by hand before being rinsed off with water; this process was repeated a number of times until we had managed to clean all the areas and then left to dry. If you’re doing this work yourself then you should know that Tile Doctor produces a product that comes with a spray attachment called col=”http://www.TileDoctor.co.uk/Oxy-Pro-Shower-Tile-Grout-Cleaner.asp” target=”_blank”>Oxy Pro that is ready to use and can save you some time.

Whilst waiting for the tile and grout to dry the Silicone Sealer was removed using a sharp knife, as I mentioned before once mould gets a grip on silicone it will need to be replaced. It’s also worth mentioning at this point that silicone will last longer if the residue from soaps, shampoos and body washes etc. are rinsed away with clean water after having a shower as it’s the chemical and not the water that damages the silicone in the first place.

Grout Colouring

Cleaning the grout had made a visible difference and improved the overall look of the bathroom but it wasn’t showroom condition so to improve it further it was necessary to apply a white Grout Colourant. The product we use is epoxy based and forms a thin impermeable barrier over the grout so not only does it look good it protects the grout as well; it’s very easily applied using a small brush along the grout lines and you just wipe of the excess so it wasn’t long before the grout was looking like new.

Last step was to re-new the silicone sealant around the top of the bath and the job was finished; my customer was very pleased with the results and made the comment that she thought it looked like new.

Disbury-bathroom-tile-and-grout-refresh-after
 

Refreshing a Ceramic Tiled Bathroom in Didsbury