The pictures below are of a Dark Green Riven Slate floor that was installed around twenty years ago in the kitchen of a property in Oldham. The floor was renovated about 12 years ago, but the client did not follow recommendations from the previous contractor about the use of a Neutral Cleaning product or topping up the sealer each year. As a result, the slate had become progressively dirtier as the sealer wore down and dirt became ingrained in the stone making it difficult to clean. The slate was now dull and had lost its character, the grout was also looking grubby and there was talk of having it removed and replaced.
I went over to Oldham to survey the floor and quote for renovating the floor. Whilst I was there, I discussed the fact that natural stone floors like this Slate floor need to be sealed in order to keep the dirt out of the pores of the stone. Once dirt becomes ingrained in the stone its very difficult to keep it clean and the only way to restore its original appearance is to give it a deep clean and apply a fresh sealer. Keen to have the floor restored and relieved to hear I could clean the grout they gave me the go ahead and we arranged a date for my return.
Cleaning a Natural Dark Green Riven Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor
To get the floor clean I followed my usual technique of applying a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go, leaving it to dwell for ten minutes and then working it in with a rotary machine fitted with a scrubbing pad. I also used more Tile Doctor Remove and Go along the grout lines and scrubbed it in with a scrubbing brush and a steam cleaner. The floor was then rinsed with water and all the soils extracted with a wet vacuum. The floor was inspected, and any stubborn areas re-treated with a repeat of the process until I was satisfied the Slate tile and grout was as clean as it could be.
One problem I had was cleaning behind the big American fridge freezer, I had to wait until the adjacent floor was clean and fairly dry before I could move the fridge onto it, allowing me to get behind and clean the floor. Fortunately, the water pipe going to the fridge was just long enough to be able to easy mover fridge backwards.
Getting the Slate tile and grout clean took up the whole of day one and before leaving I put several specialist floor fans in place to assist with the drying process.
Sealing a Dark Green Riven Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor
The next day the floor was clean and dry, in fact I always use a damp meter to check the moisture level in the stone to ensure its dry before sealing. The cleaning process had removed all the dirt from the stone but had also taken away some of the natural oils which now needed to be put back.
To do this I applied a coat of Tile Doctor Stone Oil which is an impregnating sealer designed to enhance the colour and texture of floors and improve mechanical strength once cured. Once the Stone Oil had dried, I followed with a coat of Tile Doctor Ultra Seal to add further protection. This is a no-sheen, natural-look sealer that provides maximum stain protection.
Once the sealer had dried the floor looked fantastic, certainly my customer thought so and left the following on-line review:
“Kamila was quick to contact me and was helpful, friendly and professional. She has done a fantastic job stripping, cleaning and resealing my kitchen slate floor. I would highly recommend her work! Katy, Oldham”
We discussed maintenance cleaning and I re-iterated the point about using a Neutral Tile cleaner for the regular cleaning of the floor and the benefits of using the Tile Doctor maintenance program which they are considering.