Edwardian Geometric Tiled Office Hallway Floor Renovated in Newark

Here we have a small Edwardian Tiled Hallway located in a busy office building in the market town of Newark in Nottinghamshire. We were asked to come over and inspect the floor for renovation. Our subsequent survey highlighted inherent damage, historic wear and staining as well as salt staining from efflorescence. On top of that there were some loose tiles along a door threshold that would need fixing.

Keen to get the floor restored we were given the approval to start the work and agreed on a date to return.

Restoring an Edwardian Tiled Hallway Floor

On our return we started by lifting the loose tiles and cleaning up the recess of debris before re-fixing the tiles using fast setting adhesive & grout. Within half an hour the tiles were set and we were able to start our intensive cleaning process.

Edwardian Geometric Tiled Hallway Floor Newark Before Cleaning

The first part of the cleaning process was to apply a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Remove & Go coatings remover allowing it to dwell and soak into the tiles for thirty minutes. The solution was then agitated using a black scrubbing pad to help break down the historic-soiling that had been hiding the original colour of the tiles and also remove any old sealers.

There were paint spots and adhesive residues on the surface of the tile which we were now able to scrape off the after being softened by Remove & Go. The resulting slurry was vacuumed away and the floor was cleaned down with water to remove the suspended soils and cleaning product residues.

To deal with the salt staining Tile Doctor Acid Gel was liberally to the tiles and left to dwell for a long time in order to neutralize both the cleaning residues and to dissolve the efflorescence salts. We had warned the customer that because efflorescence salt staining was present it was a likely indication of inherent moisture under some of the tiles and we were able to confirm this with the use of a damp meter.

It worth noting that these old floors did not have damp proof membranes installed and were designed to allow moisture vapour to pass from the sub floor to the surface of the tiles. Under normal use this was manageable by the Victorians & Edwardians. Unfortunately since that date a lot of these floors have at some point been covered by other floor coverings such as modern hard floors or carpet etc. This causes a build up of moisture to develop and efflorescence to form. Over time this causes crystalline salt capillaries to form a foothold in the tile causing damages that can affect the tiles physically as well as a loss of colour.

Once the tiles were cleaned of Acid Gel and rinsed with water again to remove any trace of product the floor was then dried as much as possible with a wet vacuum to remove moisture.

Sealing an Edwardian Tiled Floor

After leaving the floor to dry off overnight I came back the following day to apply a sealer which would protect them from staining, ingrained dirt and make them easier to clean and going forward.

Knowing that efflorescence would be an issue I had already decided to use a fully breathable sealer to aid moisture transmission from the sub floor. In this instance we used our low maintenance Impregnating sealer Tile Doctors Colour Grow applying 3 coats to provide long term protection to the floor.

Edwardian Geometric Tiled Hallway Floor Newark After Cleaning

The work took us two days to complete and before leaving our customer was given instructions on how to clean the floor in future using Tile Doctors pH Neutral Floor Cleaning Solution which is highly effective on soiling but most importantly it’s not acidic and so will not damage the integrity of the sealer. It’s worth pointing out that many household cleaning products, and also high-street branded cleaning products, can quickly damage floor coatings; they can also leave residues on floors that contribute to rapid re-soiling.
 
 

Original Edwardian Hallway Office Floor Restored in Newark, Nottingham

Slate Tiled Floor Contaminated with Topical Coating Restored in Gamston

This is an interesting example of a Slate tiled floor that was the unfortunate recipient of a solvent-based topical coating which had become contaminated over time which completely altered its appearance. So much so, in fact, that the new owners of the property located in the village ofGamston, had not realised that this wasn’t what the floor was actually supposed to look like!

Slate Floor Gamston Nottingham Before Cleaning

The coating was hiding the natural beauty and character of the high mineral content Slate tiles. A previous tile cleaning company had tried and failed to remove this coating and clean the floor, having no real impact on the condition and appearance of the floor. This is because solvent-based topical floor coatings can only be removed using specialist chemical and mechanical techniques.

I knew that Tile Doctor’s range of products, combined with my knowledge of cleaning techniques, would be effective, and I was booked in to complete the job. Here’s how I did it.

Removing Solvent-Based Coatings and Cleaning a Slate Tiled Floor

To remove the solvent-based topical coating, I applied a heavy-duty coating remover from the Tile Doctor range, known as Tile Doctor Remove and Go. Remove and Go is, in fact, a highly versatile remover, formulated with a long dwell-time to strip away most coatings and sealers, epoxy grout haze, urethane coatings, synthetic finishes, adhesives and even paints.

Once applied, the product was allowed to dwell for thirty minutes. Following this, I agitated the solution with a weighted heavy-duty rotary floor machine fitted with a restorative scrubbing brush. The resulting chemical slurry was vacuumed away and the floor was rinsed thoroughly to remove suspended residues.
Next, working in sections, I forced dried the floor with an air mover and left it to dry off fully overnight so I could come back the next day and seal it.

Sealing a Slate Tiled Floor

The customer didn’t want a polished finish for the floor – instead requesting a natural look – so I opted to seal the tiles using Tile Doctor Colour Grow, which both enhances the natural shades in the stone and provides a matte finish. Colour Grow is also an impregnating sealer, meaning that it penetrates the pores of the stone to fill them with sealer thus providing maximum protection against ingrained dirt and stains.

I applied three coats of the sealer to the floor, leaving 30-45 minutes between each coat. Once dry, the floor could be walked on within 45 minutes. I advised the customer not to subject the floor to heavy use for the next 48 hours whilst the sealer cured.

Slate Floor Gamston Nottingham After Restorative Cleaning

The sealer provides a low maintenance finish that should last for many years if proper care is provided. To clean the floor thereafter, I recommended that my very happy client use a damp mop in combination with Tile Doctor pH Neutral Tile Cleaner. The product needs to be diluted correctly and the floor mopped using a second bucket to rinse the mop so that the suspended soils are not deposited back on to the surface of the floor.
 
 

Restoration of Slate Floor with a Contaminated Coating in Gamston

Hidden Quarry tiled Floor Restored in Radcliffe-on-Trent

I recently completed a floor in the town of Radcliffe-on-Trent, Nottinghamshire where the owner of an old cottage which dated back to 1875 had lifted up a carpet to discover an original Quarry tiled floor from when the property was first constructed.

The underlay had been stuck down with adhesive, and grippers fitted at the wall edges secured with both tacks and resin glue. This had caused a small amount of damage to the tiles and since the floor had been hidden away for so many years there was evidence of efflorescence salt staining present in some parts which is not uncommon for floors of this age where no damp proof course would of been installed.

Quarry Tiled Floor Before Restoration Radcliffe-on-Trent

Cleaning an old Quarry tiled floor

My client had, thankfully, done a good job to remove as much of the underlay as possible. However, I still needed to deal with the inert carpet grippers, along with the adhesive contamination which covered more than 80 per cent of the floor.

The first task was to remove the carpet grippers and resin adhesive from the edge of the floor tiles. I then applied a liberal amount of Tile Doctor Remove & Go, a multi-purpose stripper, to the floor, and left it to dwell for an hour. Following the dwelling period, I fitted a special, abrasive scarifying brush to a weighted, low-speed rotary floor machine, and then used it to scrub the tiles, thereby breaking down the adhesive contamination. This time-consuming process was repeated for a second time to ensure a thorough clean.

Quarry Tiled Floor Before Restoration Radcliffe-on-Trent

The resulting slurry was vacuumed away using a wet-vac machine, and the inherent efflorescence contamination was treated with a solution of one part Tile Doctor Grout Clean-Up to five parts clean water. The solution was then scrubbed into the floor using the same scarifying brush. I then rinsed the entire area with clean water to remove any remaining product and soiled residue.

The cleaning process took two days of work to complete; once both my client and I were satisfied with the results, I left the floor to dry for a week before sealing. A whole room dryer was also installed before I left to speed up moisture removal.

Sealing a Quarry tiled floor

Upon my return, I sealed the Quarry tiled floor using four coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow, an impregnating and colour-enhancing sealer. This product was the best fit for the worn and uneven surface of the tiles, and will also help to tackle the floor’s inherent moisture issues; Colour Grow allows the floor to breathe and also protects it against soiling, as well as both water and oil-based spills.

Quarry Tiled Floor After Restoration Radcliffe-on-Trent

My client was very pleased with the result and before leaving the cottage, I made sure to give her some advice as to how to maintain her floor. I recommended that she use Tile Doctor pH Neutral Tile Cleaner, being pH neutral is will not damage the integrity of the sealer, whereas many acidic or strong alkaline everyday household cleaning products will erode the sealer over time.

Quarry Tiled Floor After Restoration Radcliffe-on-Trent

 
 

Old Quarry tiled floor restoration in Nottinghamshire

Dull and Tired Sandstone Flagstone Tiled Floor Refreshed in Newark

These photographs are from a fantastic barn conversion in the town of Newark, Nottinghamshire. The owners of the property, however, were unhappy with the state of their modern Sandstone Flagstone tiled floor, which was looking dull and tired. Flagstones are typically quite hard-wearing and durable but will need proper maintenance over time and I was called in get them looking like new again.

Sandstone Flagstone Floor Before Cleaning Newark

Cleaning Sandstone Flagstones

Firstly, I mixed a solution of one part Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, which is a high alkaline cleaner, to 10 parts water; this was then applied to the floor and left it to dwell for 15 minutes before agitating the solution into the Flagstones with a scrubbing brush fitted to a low-speed weighted rotary machine. This helped to remove the soil build-up and also break down the old sealer, the resulting residue was promptly removed using a wet-vac machine and the entire floor rinsed with fresh water.

Following the clean, I installed two whole room air mover driers to accelerate the drying of the floor overnight. It is essential to ensure any tiled floor is completely dry before sealing, as excess moisture has the potential to upset the performance of the sealer.

Sealing a Sandstone Flagstone tiled floor

On my return the next day, I ran some damp tests to check for excess moisture. Once I was satisfied that the floor was ready to seal, I applied a total of four coats of Tile Doctor’s colour intensifying, topical sealer, Colour Grow.

The sealer impregnates the stone, providing durable protection from within, and thereby protecting the stone from soil ingress, and both oil and water based spills. Colour Grow was the ideal choice of sealer since my clients did not want a shiny finish, and this product dries matte in appearance whilst enriching the natural mineral colours in the stone.

Sandstone Flagstone Floor After Cleaning Newark

After completing the job, I made sure to offer my clients some day-to-day cleaning advice. The simplest form of maintenance is damp washing with a mop, using Tile Doctor pH Neutral Tile Cleaning Solution, providing that is has been correctly diluted. I also recommended changing the mop water every 7-10 metres squared, to help avoid suspended soils from being re-deposited back onto the surface of the floor.
 
 

Tile cleaning and sealing for a Sandstone Flagstone tiled floor restoration in Newark

Old York Stone Flagstones Deep Cleaned at Newark Office

The pictures below are from a York Stone flagged hallway floor in an old building in the historic and picturesque market town of Newark, Nottinghamshire. The building dates back to the late 17th Century so the flagstone were likely to be very old, additionally the building is now the busy offices of local solicitor and so does get a lot of wear. The flagstones had a heavy build-up of soiling and old worn down coatings, there was also evidence of remove paint spots and I suspect adhesive residues suggesting at some point the floor had been covered in a carpet.

York Stone Flagstone Hallway Floor Before Cleaning in Newark

Cleaning Old Flagstones

The first step was to remove any previous coating such as sealers so a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean was applied and left to soak into the stone for twenty minutes. Pro-Clean is a multi-purpose heavy duty cleaner & coating remover that due to its alkaline formula is safe to use of Tile, Stone and Grout. The cleaning solution was scrubbed by hand into the wall edges and corners and paint spots and adhesive contamination marks were spot treated whilst the solution on the main part of the floor was getting to work breaking down the years of soiling. Once the edges were done it was time to agitate the flagstones on the main part of the floor with a weighted low-speed rotary machine fitted with a special restoration brush.

After thoroughly scrubbing the floor, the resulting slurry was vacuumed away and stubborn areas re-treated. The floor was then given a further rinse and the floor then left to dry off overnight.

Sealing York Stone Flags

The following day I returned to seal the floor. As the property dates back to the 17th Century it’s unlikely the floor has a damp proof membrane installed so it would be important to choose a breathable sealer that will allow moisture to pass up through the stone. We chose Tile Doctor Colour Grow for the job, it’s a breathable impregnating sealer that occupies the pores in the stone preventing contaminates from staining the floor and also enhance the natural colours in the stone. The flagstones were quite porous so three coats were required to ensure complete protection.

York Stone Flagstone Hallway Floor After Cleaning in Newark York Stone Flagstone Hallway Floor After Cleaning in Newark

I think you will agree from the photographs that flagstones have been transformed and the Colour Grow sealer will provide a durable barrier to both water & oil based spills. Tracked in soiling is also easier to remove when damp mop cleaning for which I recommended the use of Tile Doctor Neutral Cleaner which unlike acidic cleaners will not impair the integrity of the sealer.
 
 

Old Flagstone Floor Restored in Newark, Nottingham

Victorian Geometric Tiled Hallway Floor Deep Cleaned in Mapperley

This original Victorian Geometric tiled floor was recently uncovered in the hallway of a house in Mapperley near Nottingham. These beautiful old floors built by Victorian Craftsmen are often neglected and sometimes hidden by other floor coverings. In this case we had to remove carpet, carpet grippers and underlay which had been stuck down and often we find vinyl tiles glued to the tile surface etc. This takes its toll on the floor causing it to lose its vitality however help is at and in the form of the specialist Tile Doctor Restorative Cleaning and Sealing Treatment.

Victorian Geometric Tiled Hallway Floor Mapperley Before Cleaning

Cleaning the Victorian Tiled Floor

The first job was to protect the adjacent carpets and wood flooring, before starting the cleaning process. Then I applied a strong solution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which is a heavy duty cleaning solution mixed with Remove and Go which is a coating remover. This helps to remove old and worn coatings along, with the many years of soiling which was hiding the vibrant colours of the Victorian tiles beneath.

This unique cleaning solution along with a combination of dwell time and mechanical agitation breaks down the many years of contamination on the tiles. During this stage of the cleaning process, we also sometimes have to remove paint and adhesive residues. The cleaning process is intensive to ensure maximum soil removal and is achieved as above by using a weighted rotary floor cleaning machine, along with Tile Doctors restoration floor pads.

The resulting slurry created by the cleaning process above is vacuumed away with a wet vacuum and the floor was then rinsed with a dilution of Tile Doctors Grout Clean-Up product which removes any inherent efflorescence contamination that is common on old floors without damp proof membranes.

The floor is then given a thorough rinse with clean water to neutralise the floor and removing any trace of cleaning solution from the previous treatments which could affect the sealer, again a wet vacuum was used to get the floor as dry as possible.

The cleaning was completed in a day and to ensure the floor would be dry for sealing the next day I installed a couple of air movers and left it to dry out overnight.

Sealing the Victorian Tiled Floor

The following day I sealed the tiles to saturation point with Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is a ‘Colour Enhancing’ Impregnating Sealer. It’s an advanced sealer that allows the floor to breath, and also protects from both water and oil based spills and if maintained correctly will act as a long lasting treatment that will last many years!

With regards to maintenance I recommend that customers use a damp mop with a neutral PH cleaning product such as Tile Doctor Neutral Cleaner. This is highly effective on soiling but most importantly it’s not acidic and so will not damage the integrity of the sealer. Many household cleaning products, and also high-street branded cleaning products, can quickly damage floor coatings; they can also leave residues on floors that contribute to rapid re-soiling.

Victorian Geometric Tiled Hallway Floor Mapperley After Cleaning

 
 

Original Victorian Floor Restored in Mapperley, Nottingham

Grout Haze on honed Limestone tiles in Bingham

The photographs below are of a honed Limestone floor in the kitchen/diner of a house in Bingham, Nottinghamshire which had been contaminated with heavy grout haze from dark grout that had penetrated into the surface of the natural stone tiles due to the face that they had not been properly sealed prior to grouting. The customer had asked the tiler to rectify the issue, but without the proper equipment and knowledge he was unable make any impact on the problem and so we got the call.

Honed Limestone Tiled Floor in Bingham Before Cleaning Honed Limestone Tiled Floor in Bingham Before Cleaning

Milling a Limestone Tiled Floor

Before starting we cleared any furniture from the area and masked skirting boards and kitchen units. We then set about rectifying the problem with a set of Milling Pads that which remove a layer off the surface of the stone; this also has the added advantage of removing any lippage issues between the tiles.

Milling natural stone flooring is a controlled process using water, and specially manufactured diamond milling pads. We have a special low speed rotary floor machine for this purpose which is weighted with 65kg to ensure the right level of tension on the floor.

A rotary hand polisher and oscillating multi-tool fitted with smaller milling pads were used to remove the grout haze from the wall edges and wall corners of the tiled kitchen. Once satisfied the contamination had been removed, then the floor was thoroughly rinsed with fresh water to remove the resulting slurry created by the milling process and then left to dry off overnight.

Sealing the Limestone Floor

The next morning I arrived to find the floor had dried out enough for me to seal it which was done using a couple of coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an advanced sealer from the Tile Doctor range that impregnates into the stone and lifts the natural colours in the Limestone floor as well as providing stain protection from both water and oils spills. Once the sealer had dried I then finished it all off with a quick buff using a white buffing pad.

Honed Limestone Tiled Floor in Bingham After Cleaning

After an hour of sealing the floor can be walked on, but impregnating sealers take up to 48 hours to fully care so care should be taken before the floor is subjected to normal use. For maintenance I recommended regular cleaning with a damp mop using a diluted solution (1:100) of Tile Doctors Stone Soap which is PH neutral and won’t affect the sealer.
 
 

Grout Haze Removal on Limestone Floor in Bingham