Nine Year Old Chinese Slate Floor Renovated in Chepstow

The tiles pictured are Chinese Slate which were laid in the Kitchen of a house in Chepstow around nine years ago. The town of Chepstow is located on the Welsh side of the River Seven and has the River Wye running through it.

Chinese Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning Chepstow

The floor had not been professionally cleaned and sealed since installation. During this time the old sealer had mostly worn off allowing dirt to get into the pores of the stone leaving it looking dull, uninviting and dirty. The grout lines had also collected dirt and many of the lines had darkened.

Chinese Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning Chepstow

I discussed with the client the process to get the floor cleaned and restored and demonstrated the effectiveness of the process on a small test area. They were impressed and were happy to go ahead with my quote, so we scheduled in the work which would take two days.

Cleaning a Chinese Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor

To get the floor clean and remove what was left of the old sealer I first made the floor wet and then added a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean mixed with Tile Doctor Remove and Go to give it extra power. This cleaning cocktail was left to soak into the tiles for ten minutes before being scrubbed in with a black scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary machine and by hand where necessary. This combination works well on really dirty floors such as this.

The scrubbing action released the years of dirt from the pores of the Slate and it wasn’t long before the cleaning solution turned black. This was then extracted off the floor using a wet vacuum. We then gave the floor a thorough inspection. There were one or two areas that were particularly stubborn, so these areas were retreated using the same process and the grout scrubbed by hand using more Tile Doctor Pro Clean.

The floor was then given another rinse with water and then dried as much as possible with the wet vacuum. This got the floor dry, but it would need to be completely dry before sealing so it was then left to dry off fully overnight.

Sealing a Chinese Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor

I came back the next day to seal the floor first checking the moisture level of the stone by taking readings with a damp meter to ensure it was dry. I chose to use Tile Doctor Colour Grow for the sealer as the colour enhancing formula would be the best product to bring out the natural colours in the Chinese slate. Colour Grow is an impregnating sealer which will provides durable protection as well as allowing the surface to breath. Three coats were applied, allowing each to dry before applying the next one.

Chinese Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor After Cleaning Chepstow

The client was so happy, so much that she said it looked better than when first laid!

I discussed aftercare with her and recommended the use of Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner, it’s pH balanced so it won’t prematurely erode the sealer which can be the problem with stronger products you find in supermarkets. It comes in concentrated form so one bottle lasts a long time.

Chinese Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor After Cleaning Chepstow

 

Professional Restoration of a Chinese Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor in Monmouthshire

Victorian Tiled Floor Repaired and Restored in Newport

Our client had recently moved to a property in Newport, Gwent and when removing the carpet in the hallway she discovered this beautiful Victorian Tiled floor. The property had numerous period features and realising the value that the floor could add to the property she was keen to have it restored and so contacted Tile Doctor for help.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor Newport Before Cleaning

We popped round to survey the floor and except for a couple of broken tiles it had preserved well under the carpet. It was a shame the previous owner had covered the floor over but I was confident we could source some matching tiles to replace the broken ones and then restore the overall appearance. We gave the client a quote for the work which would take a couple of days. Pleased to hear that the floor could be restored and that it could soon be on show the quote was accepted and a date set to do the work.

Repairing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

We returned later the same month to renovate the floor and started by removing the broken tiles, cleaning out the old grout and adhesive and then relaying matching replacements. There are several specialist suppliers that can supply Victorian tiles so we can usually source reclaimed or reproduction tiles.

Some of the grout lines had dropped so as well as grouting around the replacement tiles more renovation work was needed to ensure the grout was level. We used quick setting products for this work, so I was able to move on to cleaning the floor later that afternoon.

Deep Cleaning a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

To restore the appearance of the Victorian Tiles I used a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean combined with Tile Doctor Remove and Go which was left to soak in for ten minutes before being scrubbed into the tiles. This created a powerful cleaner/stripper cocktail which gets to work at removing dirt, grime and breaking down old sealers paint splashes.

After extracting the soil using a wet vacuum the floor was inspected. There were a few stubborn areas which were treated to a repeat clean and a wire brush to get the floor as clean as possible.

The floor was rinsed with water to remove any trace of cleaning products and then as much moisture as possible was extracted using a wet vacuum. The floor was left to dry off overnight and we arranged to return the next day to apply a sealer.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

The following morning, we checked the floor was dry using a damp meter and this confirmed we were good to apply the sealer. The floor was sealed with Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that protects the floor and enhances the beautiful colours in the tile. Three coats of the sealer were applied allowing each coat to dry before applying the next.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor Newport After Cleaning

The client was very happy with the result and how beautiful the floor looked as you can see from the picture.

 

Professional Restoration of a Victorian Tiled Hallway in Monmouthshire

Large Format Slate Kitchen Floor Tiles Renovated in Blackwood

A client of ours recently moved into a relatively new property in the town of Blackwood where the black slate floor looked dull and the grout was stained. Large format slate tiles were installed though the kitchen and adjacent dining and utility room and they were keen to see if the floor could be brought back to life.

Dull Slate Kitchen Floor Tiles Before Renovation in Blackwood

I went over to survey the floor and could see that the old sealer was failing and letting dirt into the pores of the stone which was especially notable in the busier parts of the floor which had seen the most foot traffic. The solution would be to strip the floor of the old sealer, clean up the grout and reseal. I conducted a number of test cleans to work out the best way to how best to strip off the old seal and get back down to the natural stone. However, as it turns out removing the old sealer was proving to be quite a job and I was concerned that this task alone could potentially take days.

Unhappy with the way things were going I consulted the Tile Doctor help line and we deduced that the sealer applied previously was most likely a heavy duty/industrial product. My client had only just moved into the property and didn’t know the history of the floor so couldn’t help pin point what was used before. The way forward was to strip the old sealer off the floor using abrasive pads.

Now I had an efficient strategy for renovating the floor I was able to provide the customer with an accurate quote which was accepted, and we agreed a date to return and complete the floor.

Cleaning a Dull Slate Tiled Floor

To begin the restoration, I pre-wet the floor with water and using a weighted floor buffer ran a coarse 100-grit milling pad several times across each tile. This process strips the dirt and sealer off the stone slowly turning the water into a grey slurry. Once the whole floor had been treated in this way, I rinsed the slurry off the floor and extracted it using a wet vacuum. The next step was to repeat the process using a 200-grit burnishing pad which being finer closes the pores in the stone and refines the surface further.

The next step was to clean up the grout using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which is a strong alkaline cleaner. You apply a strong dilution to the grout lines and then scrub it in with a stiff brush. Fortunately, the slate tiles were large format size so there was less grout to deal with than usual. Once that was done the tile and of course grout was rinsed again with more water and then dried again using the wet vacuum.

Dull Slate Kitchen Floor Tiles During Renovation in Blackwood

I have to admit the stripped slate looked pretty awful at this stage in the restoration, but we were now back to the natural stone which was clean and free of all sealers. I left the floor to dry off fully overnight confident in the knowledge that with the application of a fresh sealer it would look a lot different.

Sealing a Slate Tiled Floor

The next day I returned to the property to seal the floor. Before doing so, however, I needed to test the Slate for moisture as you shouldn’t apply a sealer to a damp floor. The results were fine, so I proceeded to apply the sealer which for this installation I used several coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go.

I chose Seal and Go for this floor as it works well on Slate resulting in a deep durable satin finish that the customer wanted. Additionally, being a water-based product, it doesn’t leave a smell as it dries.

Dull Slate Kitchen Floor Tiles After Renovation in Blackwood

Within two days the floor was transformed, the grout looked much cleaner and the stone looked new. My client was very happy with the work and left the following message on the Tile Doctor feedback system.

Professional, polite and courteous. Paul went beyond the call of duty to help rejuvenate our slate tiled kitchen and utility room floor. He explained each step of the job and provided advice on aftercare and future maintenance. The results are great and I would gladly recommend the services available.
Andy E, Blackwood

 

Renovation of a Dull Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor in Monmouthshire

Beautiful Black and White Victorian Tiled Hallway Renovation in Monmouth

This beautiful black & white Victorian tiled hallway was recently discovered hidden under carpet at a house near Monmouth. As well as the years of grime that had become ingrained in the tile, the carpet had been secured with carpet grippers which had been fixed on top of the tiles and the owner was keen to recruit my help in its restoration.

It’s a lovely drive up through the Wye Valley from my base in Caldicot to the town of Monmouth which has a long history that goes back to the Roman times. In fact it’s famous for its “Monnow Bridge” which dates back to medieval times and is the only remaining stone gated bridge of its type left in Britain. Needles to say it has a strong mixture of architecture with many old houses built during Victorian times.

Victorian Floor Before Renovation in Monmouth

Cleaning an Original Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

The first step in cleaning the floor was to prepare it for cleaning by carefully removing the old carpet grippers and adhesive deposits using a handheld scraper. This was followed by creating a mixture of two powerful cleaning products namely Tile Doctor Remove and Go and NanoTech HBU remover. Remove and Go is a coatings remover designed to strip off old sealers whilst NanoTech HBU is a powerful Heavy Build-Up Remover that uses tiny abrasive particles to clean up tile and stone.

The floor was smothered in the cleaning solution and it was allowed to soak into the tile for about twenty minutes before scrubbing it in. It was not an exceptionally large hallway so a lot of hand scrubbing was required to get the floor as clean as possible. The cleaning solution was rinsed off with water and then extracted using a wet vacuum or wet vac as my colleagues often refer to it.

To finish off the cleaning process I scrubbed a dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean into the grout lines to get them as clean as possible and then gave the floor a final rinse. I need the floor to be dry before sealing so using the wet vac I extracted as much moisture from the floor as possible.

Sealing an Original Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

I left the floor to dry completely overnight and returned the next day to finish the floor off with a few coats of sealer. On my arrival I started by taking a few reading with a damp meter to ensure the floor was ready to be sealed. Fortunately by efforts with the Wet Vac the night before had paid off and it confirmed the tiles were dry and ready to be sealed.

To do this, I used multiple coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go which works really well on Victorian Tiles and adds a nice low sheen that brings them up nicely. Naturally the sealer not only improves the way they look it also makes them much easier to clean and will protect them against ingrained dirt and staining.

Victorian Floor After Renovation in Monmouth

I think you will agree this old floor has been transformed and now has a new lease of life.
 
 

Professional Renovation of a Carpet Covered Original Victorian Tiled Hallway in Monmouthshire

Dull Slate Tiles Rejuvenated with Deep Cleaning and Sealing in Ross-on-Wye

Ross-on-Wye, an area located in South Hertfordshire and close to the Monmouthshire border in Wales, is known as the “birthplace of the British tourist industry” due to the Wye Valley’s picturesque river scenery, landscapes, and castles and abbeys. It is also known for the famous Ross and Monmouth Railway, which opened in 1873 and closed in 1959, and ran through the valley.

I visited an old cottage in the area to assist a customer with restoring a Slate tiled kitchen floor. Slate tiles are particularly popular because of their versatility and durability, and truly they can be an asset to any property if the sealer is maintained correctly. Slate tiles need to be sealed to prevent dirt penetrating the pores of the stone as ingrained dirt is difficult to remove and causes the stone to lose its appearance. In this case the floor had been laid around five years earlier and the sealer had worn off in places and was wearing very thin in others. As you would expect dirt had now become ingrained in the tile and the grout had also become stained in places. Overall this problem had left the floor looking very dull and unappealing, as you can see from the photograph below.

Slate Floor Before Cleaning and Sealing Ross-on-Wye Cottage

Cleaning a Dull Slate Tiled Floor

To begin the restoration, I applied Tile Doctor Remove and Go liberally across the floor to strip away any remaining old sealer that was likely to be ineffectual and not preventing dirt from becoming ingrained in the stone. Next, I applied our strong alkaline cleaner, known as Tile Doctor Pro Clean to tackle that ingrained dirt. This was left to dwell on the floor and then agitated using a 17-inch rotary machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad.

After cleaning the floor, I rinsed the tiles thoroughly with water and used a wet vacuum to clear the area of the resulting slurry. Following this I concentrated on cleaning the grout lines using Pro Clean in combination with a wire brush, before leaving the floor to dry out completely for the next couple of days.

Sealing a Slate Tiled Floor

Later in the week, I returned to the property to seal the floor. Before doing so, however, I needed to test the floor for damp issues, especially since this was an old property and was unlikely to have a damp proof membrane installed. Running these damp tests are very important because excess moisture can cloud the sealer and damage its performance.

Thankfully, there proved to be no issues, and the floor was fine to seal. I did this using eight coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go, which is a water based product (so no smell) that provides a durable, satin finish, and is recommended for use on a variety of tiles, including Quarry, Victorian, Sandstone and Terracotta.

Slate Floor Deep Cleaned and Sealed Ross-on-Wye Cottage

As you can see from the photo above, the restoration was transformative and really restored the lustre to this Slate tiled floor. Another satisfied customer!
 
 

Restorative Cleaning and Sealing of a Dull Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor in the Wye Valley

Dull Slate Tiled Kitchen Dinning Room brought back to life in Pontypool

This Slate tiled floor at this house in the Pontypool was laid over ten years ago in the kitchen/dining room. The floor had ground in dirt into the tiles and grout which the client wanted brought back to life.

Slate floor before cleaning Pontypool Slate floor before cleaning Pontypool

Repairing and Cleaning Dirty Slate Tiles

I could see the tiles would need to be deep cleaned so I started the cleaning process with a strong combination of Tile Doctor Remove and Go to strip away the old sealer and Tile Doctor Pro-Clean to get the tiles as clean as possible. The solution was scrubbed into the tile and grout using a rotary machine fitted with a black 17” scrubbing pad. The floor was then rinsed with water and the soiled residue was extracted with a wet vacuum.

This process was repeated until I was satisfied all the sealer and dirt had been removed from the tile and then I concentrated my attention on the grout lines using more Pro-Clean and a stiff wire brush to get them as clean as possible.

With the tile and grout as clean as it was possible to get it, I gave the whole floor a final rinse to neutralise the cleaning products and then extracted as much moisture as possible from the floor with a wet vacuum and left the floor to dry overnight.

Sealing Slate Tiles

When I returned to the property I made sure the floor had dried by checking for any dampness with a damp meter. If you neglect to remove all excess moisture from the surface of the tiles before sealing it will impact the effectiveness of the sealer.

Once satisfied that the floor was completely dry, I proceeded to seal the tiles using Tile Doctor Seal and Go which will protect the floor from staining in the future and adds a nice sheen to the surface. The Slate was quite porous so I found eight coats of sealer were needed to fully seal the floor.

Slate floor after cleaning Pontypool Slate floor after cleaning Pontypool

I think you will agree the floor now looks amazing!
 
 

Dull Slate Tiled Floor Restored to health in Monmouthshire

Black and White Patterned Victorian Tiles Restored in Newport

At Tile Doctor, we often come across Victorian tiled hallways in need of restoration. They’re very popular due to their timeless and unique patterns – and as a result are still in production, having first being produced in the 19th century. While many have been maintained in their original state since first being laid (which is sometimes over a century ago), others have been hidden by carpet or linoleum for many years, only to be uncovered by new property owners.

In this case, at a property in Newport – the port city of South East Wales – the Victorian tiled hallway had not been subject to an effective cleaning plan leaving the fantastic white and black checkered pattern grubby and unsightly. I was asked if I could help bring it back to life – and I was happy to oblige!

Victorian floor before cleaning Newport

Cleaning a Dirty Victorian Tiled Hallway

I started the restoration by applying a strong cleaning solution combined from mixing two Tile Doctor products in equal parts namely Remove and Go and Pro Clean. Together they create a powerful sealer remover and cleaner to break down any remaining old sealers, paint whilst lifting ingrained dirt and muck from the pores of the tile.

The two products were worked into the tiles using firstly a 17 inch black buffing pad to remove the initial layer of dirt, followed by a 6 inch buffing pad, wire brush, and hand-held scrapper to remove the more stubborn specks of paint and dirt. The resultant slurry was then rinsed away with water and a wet vacuum and stubborn areas retreated until I was satisfied. The results were great so after a final rinse I left tiles to dry off.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway

A couple of days later, after leaving the tiles to dry completely, I went back to the property to seal the floor. I checked first for any excess moisture as this can cloud the sealer and prevent it from acting an effective barrier against dirt and stains.

My choice of sealer included one coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow to restore the rich colour to the black and white tiles, followed by seven coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go to provide an aesthetically pleasing sheen finish. Colour Grow is an impregnating sealer that penetrates the pores of the tile to fill them and prevent dirt becoming trapped, while Seal and Go is a topical sealer that builds up an additional layer of protection on the surface of the tiles.

Victorian floor after cleaning Newport

The combination of fresh sealers, preceded by a deep and thorough clean, really helped to restore these Victorian tiles to a condition in which they could be easily mistaken for newly laid! The customer was very pleased and undoubtedly will be looking forward to showing off the tiles to friends and family.
 
 

Professional Victorian Tiled Floor Restoration by Monmouthshire Tile Doctor

Lifeless Victorian Tiled Hallway Rejuvenated in the Caldicot

I was asked to take a look at this fantastic classic Victorian tiled floor at an old vicarage in Caldicot which was built in the early 1800s, the floor was structurally sound but was now looking washed out and overdue some TLC.

Victorian floor tile before deep cleaning Caldicot

Repairing and Cleaning Dirty Victorian Tiles

I started by using a 50/50 mixture of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and Remove and Go diluted with water to create a powerful stripper/cleaner that would take off any remaining old sealer and many years’ worth of dirt. I followed the usual process of applying the solution, allowing it to dwell for then minutes and then scrubbing it in with a scrbubbing pad fitted to a rotary floor machine.

The thin grout lines were also treated with the same solution but scrubbed with a stiff brush by hand. This process released the dirt from the tile which was then rinsed away using more water and a wet vacuum to extract the solution from the floor. I then repeated the process until satisfied the floor was clean.

A couple of days later I went back to seal the floor but on removing the dust sheets I could see much of the floor was covered in effervescence from the salts that had risen up through the tile as it dried. I could not seal the floor like that so I applied tile doctor’s new Acid Gel product to get rid the problem.

Sealing Victorian Tiles

A couple of days later I returned again and this time I was able to proceed and sealed the Victorian tiles using eight coats of Seal and Go which adds a nice subtle sheen to the tiles and will protect the floor going forward.

Victorian floor tile after cleaning and sealing Caldicot

The floor now looks much fresher and the sealer should keep it looking that way for some time to come.
 
 

Professional Victorian Tiled Floor Cleaning in Monmouthshire

Classic Victorian Patterned Tiles Rejuvenated in Newport

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.

Victorian Hallway Floor Newport Before

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.

Victorian Hallway Floor Newport After

As you can see from the second photo, this did wonders to the tiles and really brought this classic Victorian pattern back to life. Another satisfied client for the Monmouthshire Tile Doctor.
 
 

Professional Cleaning and Sealing of a Victorian Tiled Hallway in Monmouthshire

Terracotta Tiles Ingrained with Dirt Cleaned and Sealed in the Forest of Dean

Terracotta may be one of the most aesthetically pleasing types of tiled floor, but as many of our customers will tell you can be particularly difficult to keep clean. This is due to the naturally high porosity of clay, which allows dirt to become very easily trapped. Quite commonly this situation is made worse by a lack of an adequate sealer to block the intrusion of muck. Of course, poor quality cleaning products also make it difficult for property owners to keep their Terracotta tiles clean, and a combination of the two problems can leave these floors looking a lot like this one, located in the kitchen of a house in the beautiful Forest of Dean.

Terracotta Kitchen Floor Forest of Dean Before

The property owner was keen to have me restore some character to her dull Terracotta tiles. It was proving increasingly difficult for her to keep them clean due to the reasons described before, and the grout had also become very dirty. So, the customer turned to me for some professional assistance.

Cleaning a Dirty Terracotta Tiled Floor in the Forest of Dean

While these Terracotta tiles had been sealed previously it had, over time, lost its ability to protect the stone against ingrained dirt. To remove the old excess sealer my product of choice was the heavy duty soil remover and stripper, Tile Doctor Remove & Go, which I applied liberally across the surface and scrubbed in to the tile used a rotary machine fitted with a scrubbing pad. This also helped to remove the trapped dirt and left the stone looking fresher.

Once the old sealer was removed – to be replaced with a fresh sealer once cleaning was complete – I was free to focus on the troublesome grout lines with Tile Doctor Pro Clean, an alkaline cleaner that reliably breaks down dirt. When cleaning the grout, I opted to use a handheld grout brush that allowed for more precise, careful application of the product.

As per usual, the floor was given a good rinse and left to dry for 24 hours.

Sealing a Terracotta Tiled Floor

Upon returning to the property I checked the floor was completely dry, ready for sealing. My process for sealing actually involved the application of two different kinds of sealer; initially I applied a single coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which has soaks into the pores of the tile and has the added bonus of enhancing its natural colours.

Once this had dried I then applied ix coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go, a product which forms a durable layer of protection of the surface of the tiles and at the same time provides a lovely sheen finish.

Terracotta Kitchen Floor Forest of Dean After

The combination of the two sealers will certainly offer a long-term solution to the ingrained dirt problem, and the appearance-enhancing properties in the products really helped to transform the tiles from dull and dirty to lively and eye-catching. Nonetheless, before departing the property, I also left my very pleased customer with some cleaning advice for the future.
 
 

Professional Terracotta Floor Cleaning and Sealing in Monmouthshire