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

Restoring a Terrazzo Porch in Newport

This was an unusual request to bring back to life a Terrazzo porch entrance that was installed by the customers father many years earlier at a house in Newport. The installation resembled very colourful crazy paving which was very popular in the 70’s but if you look closely you can see it has more in common with Terrazzo due to the inlaid stone which has been ground down within the concrete base.

Terrazzo Porch Entrance Before Cleaning

Years of exposure to the elements had left much of the stone and concrete discoloured and almost black in places. I discussed with the client how we would be able to clean the area and we agreed a price for the work which would take a day to complete assuming the weather held. Being an external job, I would need a warm day before coming back, this would ensure it dried easily.

Cleaning a Terrazzo Tiled Porch Floor

Thankfully for once the forecast was correct and the weather was good on the day, we had booked in to complete the job. To restore the appearance first I used a set of diamond burnishing pads with water to grind off the dirt and refine the appearance of the stone and aggregate. I used a variety of pads with different grades of grit to ensure the floor was as clean as possible rinsing the slurry off the floor after each pad. The transformation was dramatic. The patio was then rinsed with water to remove the slurry that was generated, and I used a wet vacuum to extract it.

This process took much of the morning, it made a pleasant change to work outside in the fresh air, most of our jobs tend to be indoors. After a final rinse I left the porch to dry out in the sun over lunch and came back in the afternoon to seal.

Sealing a Terrazzo Tiled Porch Floor

First, I checked the floor had dried out with a moisture meter, it was within the acceptable levels, so had the green light to processed and seal the floor. Since cleaning it really was starting to look like a nice feature.

To seal the patio, I used a couple of coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which works well externally as it copes with damp conditions. It’s a colour intensifying impregnating sealer that provides durable protection to the surface as well as allowing the floor to breath. You can see from the photograph below how just how well Colour Grow improved the colours in the stone. Once I had finished it looked like a new installation.

Terrazzo Porch Entrance After Cleaning

The client was over the moon I had managed to get the area looking this good. He said he could remember when it was laid, and his dad would be very proud of it now. It had definitely stood the test of time.

 

Professional Restoration of a Terrazzo Tiled Porch in Monmouthshire