Nottingham Tile Cleaning

Nottingham Tile Cleaning

Welcome to my Work History archive where you will find examples of the cleaning and renovation of tiles carried out in Nottingham.

Terrazzo Hallway Floor Renovation Mapperley Nottingham

Edwardian Terrazzo Hallway Floor Renovated in Mapperley Nottingham

Here we have an Edwardian Era Terrazzo floor in the hallway of a property in Mapperley Nottingham. I was asked to retore the floor which would involve a restorative deep cleaning to remove years of ingrained dirt and then seal it to add protection going forward.

Terrazzo Hallway Floor Before Renovation Mapperley Nottingham

I went over to the property to survey the Terrazzo and create a quotation for the work. Whilst there I noticed the floor has had experienced some structural movement at some point in its 100-year history which has resulted in several cracks. I have a system for repairing this using marble & granite chips with colour matched Portland cement however this can take longer and does increase the cost, so I put it as an option.

After the reviewing the quote, they decided to go ahead with the restorative clean and then call me back later to deal with the cracks if they felt it was needed.

Cleaning and Repairing a Terrazzo Tiled Hallway Floor

To deep clean the Terrazzo, I started with the application of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean diluted four parts with water to make a strong cleaning solution that breaks down both soiling, and old coatings. The was allowed to dwell on the Terrazzo for fifteen to twenty minutes before being worked in, this gives it time to soak to get to work. Then I started on cleaning the edges first using 100 and 200-grit hand burnishing blocks which are metal bonded diamond abrasives.

Once I was satisfied the edges were clean, I proceeded to mechanically hone the floor with a 400-grit diamond burnishing pad fitted to a weighted Italian Floor rotary grinding machine. The resulting slurry was removed with a wet vacuum, and the floor checked to ensure contamination, including paint spots were fully removed.

Terrazzo Hallway Floor During Renovation Mapperley Nottingham

I then repeated this process with finer 800 and 1500-grit diamond pads that slowly burnish the stone and restores the polished lustre of the floor, these pads also close down the porosity of the stone, making it more hard wearing to foot traffic. As before the resulting slurry was rinsed and extracted after each pad.

Sealing a Terrazzo Tiled Hallway Floor

The next step would be to seal and protect the floor however it needed to be fully dry first, so it was left to dry overnight and when I returned the next day, I took several moisture readings with a damp meter to confirm it was ready.

The sealer of choice for this floor was Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is a fully breathable impregnating sealer which also enhances the colour of the stone chippings in the Terrazzo. This sealer is an impregnator that works by soaking into the pores of the floor rather than sittings on the surface, thus protecting it from ingrained dirt. Hallways are by their very nature a high traffic area so the sealer will provide adequate protection from both ingrained dirt and moisture and keep the floor in good condition.

The final process was to complete the polishing of the Terrazzo with the last pad in the set which is 3000-grit. This creates a lustrous hard wearing polished finish to the stone and is applied with a fine mist of water using a process we call a spray burnish.

Terrazzo Hallway Floor After Renovation Mapperley Nottingham

Once cleaned, sealed and polished the Terrazzo look great and the colours in particular really came to life. The new sealer will keep the dirt on the surface where it can be easily cleaned away and if maintained correctly should last for up to five years.

On the subject of maintenance, I recommend the use of Tile Doctors Stone Soap for this floor. It’s an effect sealer friendly product that will also help maintain the patina. There are many products you can use for cleaning floors, but you do have to be careful as many are simply too strong for the sealer, always check the label.

Terrazzo Hallway Floor After Renovation Mapperley Nottingham


Professional Restoration of a Terrazzo Tiled Hallway in Nottinghamshire

Edwardian Terrazzo Hallway Floor Renovated in Mapperley Nottingham Read More »

Victorian Hallway Floor Before After Restoration Nottingham City

Restoration of a Victorian Geometric Tiled Floor in Nottingham City

This Victorian Tiled Hallway at a property in Nottingham City is a fantastic example of what can be done to restore an old floor. If you take a good look at the before photographs on this page, you will see not only was the floor dirty but there were many missing tiles that needed replacing to make the geometric pattern whole again.

Victorian Geometric Tiled Floor Before Restoration Nottingham City Victorian Geometric Tiled Floor Before Restoration Nottingham City

We were contacted by the property ownerto repair the floor and the clean and seal to protect them. Initially the customer thought that only small repairs were required, however after inspection our survey highlightedextensive repairs were required. As part of the survey the missing, loose, and damaged tiles were counted to work out how many replacements would be required. Fortunately, I was able to source a good match from The Vintage Tile Company.

Repairing a Victorian Tiled Floor with Matching Replacements

To begin we focused on carrying out the extensive repairs which included rebuilding the sub floor with cement screed were necessary. Original tiles were repurposed where possible otherwise the replacements were carefully cut tiles to size to match the geometric pattern.

Victorian Geometric Tiled Floor During Restoration Nottingham City

Once a section of tiling was complete it was fixed in place with a rapid setting flexible adhesive. There was a lot of meticulous tiling to do so the repairs took some time to complete.

Deep Cleaning a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

Next, we set about cleaning the tiles using low-moisture cleaning products to remove the ingrained dirt from the pores of thetile. This was done using Tile Doctor Oxy-Gel, a strong alkaline-based gel cleaner that is used to break down dirt and grime. With these old floors, it’s important to keep the use of water to a minimum so not to exacerbate any inherent damp issues. The cleaner was left to dwell for a short period before being agitated with a scrubbing pad. This process releases the dirt and the resulting soiled cleaning solution is then extracted using a wet vacuum.

This was followed by giving the floor and acid wash using another gel product made by Tile Doctor called Acid Gel. The acidic content of the product counters any efflorescent salts in the floor and cleans up the tile even further by removing old grout smears.

Victorian Geometric Tiled Floor During Cleaning Nottingham City Victorian Geometric Tiled Floor During Cleaning Nottingham City

These products were used alongside Tile Doctors abrasive floor pads which use industrial diamonds of different grades. For the corners and difficult to reach places they also provide handheld Diamond blocks. The combination of products deep cleaned the floor removing old coatings, paint spots and ingrained historic soiling in the process.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

Once deep cleaning was completed the Tiles were sealed with Tile Doctor X-Tra Seal which is a specialist colour enhancing sealer that’s fully breathable which is an important feature when sealing old floors that don’t have a damp proof membrane.

Victorian Geometric Tiled Floor After Restoration Nottingham City

As you can see from the photographs, the restoration was a massive transformation making our customer very happy. Before leaving I took time to explain how to look after the floor including the importance of protecting the integrity of the sealer by using a ph. neutral tile cleaning product such as Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner for regular cleaning.


Professional Restoration of a Victorian Tiled Hallway in Nottinghamshire

Restoration of a Victorian Geometric Tiled Floor in Nottingham City Read More »

Damaged Edwardian Tesserae Floor Before After Restoration Nottingham City Centre

Edwardian Tesserae Mosaic Floor Restoration in Nottingham City Centre

Late last year we were awarded a contract to Repair and Restore a Tesserae Mosaic floor at prestigious property in the Lace Market area of Nottingham City Centre. The property was once Watson Fothergill’s office who is a famous Victorian architect who ran his business from the site in 1897 until 1912 when he retired. He designed over 100 Victorian & Edwardian buildings from 1864 mainly in Nottinghamshire and some further afield. They were mainly in the Gothic Revival and Old English Vernacular Style.

Tessera Mosaic Floor Restoration Waton Fothergill Building Lace Market Nottingham City Tessera Mosaic Floor Before Repair Lace Market Nottingham City

Inside the property is an Edwardian Tessera Mosaic Clay Floor on three small landing levels in the entrance & stairwell. Through historic building movement, inherent moisture issues, and a lorry crashing into the property a couple of years ago. The floor had developed structural movement cracks. This had resulted in sections of the tiles being raised or lowered and others becoming cracked, damaged and loose. Previous repairs to stabilise the damage had been carried before, but this has mainly involved just filling cracks.

Tessera Mosaic Floor Before Repair Lace Market Nottingham City Tessera Mosaic Floor Before Repair Lace Market Nottingham City

Repairing Edwardian Tesserae Mosaic Flooring

Repairing the damage to the floor was long and painstaking work which took three days. We started by removing the makeshift repairs and meticulously rebuilt the damaged areas replacing the damaged loose tiles, and levelling the floor were possible until it was back to a uniform appearance.

Tessera Mosaic Floor Before Repair Lace Market Nottingham City Tessera Mosaic Floor After Repair Lace Market Nottingham City

Once the repairs were complete, we carried out a low-moisture restorative cleaning process which took a further two days. The process involves using Tile Doctor Remove & Go coating and contamination removal product which is first sprayed onto the floor and left to dwell for ten minutes. The floor is then scrubbed with a set of Tile Doctor abrasive burnishing pads which level off the raised tiles and hone them to remove years of ingrained soiling. The resulting slurry is removed by vacuuming and lightly damp wiping with microfibres cloths to ensure the use of moisture was kept to a minimum. We use a low moisture cleaning system to minimise the risk of efflorescent salts appearing on the floor as it dries out; old floors are prone to this problem as they were installed without a damp proof membrane which is a relatively modern invention.

Sealing an Edwardian Tesserae Mosaic Floor

The building is being converted into accommodation and heating had not yet been installed when we carried out the work in December 2018. As a result, it was necessary to force dry the floor with portable heaters and air movers.

Only when we were happy the floor was dry did we apply a sealer. For this situation I used four coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is a colour enhancing impregnating sealer that seeps into the pores of the clay tile protecting it from within. This restored colour to the tiles and being a fully breathable product will allow the floor to breath and pass moisture vapour from the sub floor. Again, this is a very important consideration due to the lack of a damp proof membrane, if moisture was trapped below the tile then it would slowly spread out towards the walls resulting in rising damp.

Tessera Mosaic Floor After Restoration Lace Market Nottingham City Tessera Mosaic Floor After Restoration Lace Market Nottingham City


Historic Tesserae Mosaic Floor Restoration in Nottingham

Edwardian Tesserae Mosaic Floor Restoration in Nottingham City Centre Read More »

Geometric Edwardian Tiled Hallway Before and After Renovation West Bridgford

Restorative Cleaning of a Edwardian Geometric Tiled Hallway in West Bridgford

The pictures below detail the restorative clean and seal of a Black & White Edwardian Geometric Tiled Hallway at a residence in West Bridgford near Nottingham. The tiles had previously been covered in carpet trapping years of dirt and soiling into the pores of the tile which were also stained with paint spots and traces of carpet adhesive.

These floors are amazing to look at, and it’s a shame that due to changing fashion trends over the decades, that many became covered with other inappropriate floor coverings. At least in the case the carpet was fixed with glue, I have worked on others before were tiles were smashed in order to secure gripper rods.

Edwardian Black and White Geometric Hall Floor Before Restorative Clean and Seal
I could see a lot of work would be needed to bring it back, however having restored countless number of Victorian and Edwardian tiled floors before I was confident we could achieve a good result and was pleased to get the go ahead to complete the work.

Restoring an Edwardian Tiled Hallway Floor

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 and break down the adhesive and paint stains. The solution was then agitated using a black scrubbing pad to help break down the historic-soiling and soften the glue and paint so they could be carefully scraped off. This process generated a lot of soil which was rinsed off and extracted using a wet vacuum.

Old tile installations such as these were never designed to be covered as damp proof membranes were unheard of at the time. Instead the tilers of the day used a breathable lime screed to allow moisture to pass freely from the sub floor. This combined with coal fires of the day, and air movement kept a controlled temperature to ensure moisture didn’t build-up.

Covering these floors stops them from breathing and moisture inevitably can build-up and potentially lead to white salts to be deposited on the surface of the tile as it dries. To avoid this problem, which is known as Efflorescence, the salts need to be counteracted with the application of an acid. To this end my next step was to liberally apply Tile Doctor Acid Gel to the tiles and leave it to dwell for time. This process dissolves the efflorescence salts and also removes any other unwanted deposits such as grout smears from the tile.

The last phase of the cleaning process was to remove the Acid Gel and then rinse 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 and then left for a few days to fully dry out.

Sealing an Edwardian Tiled Floor

On our return the floor was checked for dampness using a damp meter in a number of different places. All was well so the floor was then sealed in two stages, starting with an application of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that improves colour. Once the sealer had dried it was followed with a number of coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go Extra which works really well on Victorian and Edwardian tiles adding a lovely subtle shine. Both these products are fully breathable which is vitally important where efflorescence is a concern. Otherwise, moisture will build up and causing staining and direct moisture into the supporting walls.

Edwardian Black and White Geometric Hall Floor After Restorative Clean and Seal
Once our Restorative Cleaning & Sealing process is complete you should avoid the use of steam cleaners and strong cleaning products as they can prematurely erode the sealer. Ideally we recommend you maintain the floor with Tile Doctors Neutral Tile Cleaning Solution which is pH neutral once it has been correctly diluted.

Original Edwardian Hallway Floor Professionally Restored in Nottingham

Restorative Cleaning of a Edwardian Geometric Tiled Hallway in West Bridgford Read More »

Slate Floor Gamston Nottingham Before and After Restorative Cleaning

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

Slate Tiled Floor Contaminated with Topical Coating Restored in Gamston Read More »

Victorian Geometric Tiled Hallway Floor Mapperley Before and After Cleaning

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

Victorian Geometric Tiled Hallway Floor Deep Cleaned in Mapperley Read More »

Honed Limestone Tiled Floor in Bingham Before and After Cleaning

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

Grout Haze on honed Limestone tiles in Bingham Read More »


Nottinghamshire Tile Doctor

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