This black and red Victorian tiled hallway at a property in Newport, the third largest city in Wales, had a timeless charm about it, and a classic diamond pattern. Unfortunately, the tiles had lost their colour, leaving them looking dull and lifeless. It was clear to me, upon further inspection, that the existing sealer had failed, allowing dirt to become trapped in the pores of tile.
This can be a very difficult problem to rectify without the right professional assistance; everyday household cleaners are rarely suitable for sealed floors and acidic cleaners can actually male the problem worse. The tiles needed a deep clean with strong products, followed by a fresh, robust surface seal to prevent dirt from becoming trapped again in the future.
Cleaning a Dirty Victorian Tiled Floor
I started cleaning the tiles with a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro Clean, worked in to the stone as per usual by using a rotary machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad. Pro Clean is a reliable alkaline cleaner that works well on most kinds of natural stone, and while I could see it made a difference here, it was clear something stronger was required to remove what was left of the old sealer.
To remove this, I applied a dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go, which is a dedicated stripper that is safe to use on tile and stone for the purposes of breaking down old sealers, waxes, paints, and adhesives, and this proved effective in getting rid of all the old sealer.
Once the cleaning was complete, I rinsed the floor thoroughly to remove any trace of chemicals left over from the cleaning products, before leaving it to dry overnight.
Sealing a Victorian Tiled Floor
I came back to the property the next day and, after checking the floor was completely dry, I proceeded to seal the floor using eight coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go. This types of sealer is known as ‘topical’, which means that it builds up a solid layer of protection on the surface of the tile. Topical sealers tend to be more suitable to Victorian and Quarry tiles as they typically require a lot of sealer due to their porosity and these types of sealer are less costly. Seal and Go also adds a nice aesthetically pleasing low sheen finish.