We were asked by our client in Ollerton, near Sherwood Forest, to renovate a couple of original brick floors that dated to the Georgian period. The floors were in a recently renovated cloakroom and the utility room and had been left to the end of the works.
Both floors had been painted at some point in their long history hiding some of the original features of the property. We can improve old floors like these, but I do have to set the expectations of the client. We can definitely make big improvements, but floors of this age can rarely not be restored to their original appearance. The other problem of course is its impossible to see what we are dealing with until all the paint is removed, and the floor is uncovered. The client was very keen to try and gave us the go ahead to do the renovation, they agreed to my quote and we booked in a suitable date in to carry out the work.
18th century floors like these do not have damp proof membranes and can be laid directly onto compacted soil, as a result efflorescence where moisture rises through the floor can be a common problem. Normally I use a lot of water to clean a floor but in this case, I didn’t want to exacerbate any damp issues and introduce more moisture into the sub flooring, so I used gel cleaning products.
Removing Paint from Georgian Brick Flooring
To remove the numerous latest of paint from the bricks they were covered in a strong paint stripper and then covered with a plastic sheet, leaving it overnight. The following day with the paint softened the bricks were deep cleaned with Tile Doctors Oxy-Gel and Acid Gel combined and worked in with light diamond abrasive pads. This stripped the paint from the brick flooring along with old worn coatings allowing it to be lightly rinsed with water and the soiling removed with a wet vacuum.
The process had to be repeated in a couple of areas that were particularly stubborn but eventually we got there. The floor we uncovered was quite different and was then to dry out for a few days before we could tackle the sealing.
Sealing Georgian Brick Flooring
On our return the day the brick flooring was sealed with Tile Doctor X-Tra Seal to saturation point. This is a colour enhancing impregnating sealer that forms a protective breathable finish that will cope with the excess moisture and help manage the efflorescence problem.
For aftercare I left the client with a bottle of Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner and advised them how to maintain. This product is pH neutral so will not damage the newly applied seal unlike some of the household cleaners on the market. It should keep the floor in good condition and ensure that maintenance is minimal moving forward.
Our client was very happy with the work we carried out and delighted with the improvement of the floor particularly the colour!