Worn and Dirty Victorian Tiled Lobby Rejuvenated in Swindon

Victorian tiled floors are a popular feature in period houses and new builds trying to get that classic look. While they originated in the 19th century, they have a certain timeless quality that property owners love. Historically due to their hard wearing qualities they were most commonly used for flooring high traffic areas such as lobbies and hallways, however Victorian tiles are porous and without the correct maintenance the tiles can start to lose their appearance very quickly.

This customer from Swindon has an original Victorian tiled lobby at the front of their house that was suffering from this very same problem. Years worth of ingrained dirt and muck had completely sapped all colour and character from the tiles, and the customer was keen to get them back to looking their best.

Victorian Tiled Lobby Before Cleaning in Swindon

Whilst I was there inspecting the floor I agreed to run a test on the tiles to ascertain the results that could be achieved, this worked out well and the customer quickly booked me to carry out the full restoration.

Cleaning Dull and Dirty Victorian Tiles

To provide the deep clean these tiles desperately needed, I opted to use a strong solution of Tile Doctor Pro Clean. Pro Clean is our go-to cleaner for most natural stone tiles since it is highly versatile. It is alkaline-based and therefore can be used on acid-sensitive tiles to break down ingrained dirt and any existing seal.

We soaked the floor completely with the product and left it to dwell for roughly 15 minutes. This allows the Pro Clean to seep into the pores of the stone, get underneath and lift any ingrained dirt to the surface to be easily removed. I then attached a soft brush to a rotary machine and scrubbed the area throughly, with the tiles coming up very well. Once satisfied with the appearance of the tiles, I removed the dirty cleaning slurry with a wet vacuum and rinsed.

Having removed many layers of muck it came as a surprise to find that there were a number of paint splashes that have previously had been hidden. I was able to promptly remove them using a hand razor scraper, before rinsing the area again several times to remove any surface contaminants and neutralise the area. I then left it to dry fully overnight.

Sealing Victorian Tiles

Upon my return to the property the next day I ran a few damp tests to check for excess moisture in the area. This is really important to check for as excess moisture can cloud the sealer and damage its ability to provide protection for the tiles.

Once satisfied that the floor was completely dry, I sealed the floor with two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow. Colour Grow is an impregnating sealer that penetrates into the pores of the stone to act as a robust barrier against ingrained dirt. It also contains colour intensifying properties that really worked to enhance the fantastic coloured patterns of these Victorian tiles.

Victorian Tiled Lobby After Cleaning in Swindon

With a thorough clean and a fresh seal applied, these tiles are now well prepared to endure further wear and tear, which is especially important in this high traffic area of the house. Certainly the customer was relieved and pleased to know that their fantastic Victorian tiles are protected for the long-term. Another satisfied customer for the Wiltshire Tile Doctor.
 
 

Professional Victorian Tiled Entrance Restoration in Wiltshire

Recently Uncovered Victorian Tiled Hallway Restored to New in Warminster

It’s always a great surprise to find old tiled flooring hidden underneath carpet or linoleum which appears especially common with 19th century properties where it’s not unusual for the owners to uncover fantastically patterned, original Victorian tiled floors and, naturally, they want to restore them to their former glory. If you have a property of this type you might want to look under the carpets.

The majority of the time, however, these tiles have been covered up for decades, allowing for thick layers of muck to build-up and are invariably damaged carpet grippers, surface glue and adhesive tape.

This was pretty much the case with this customer who lives in the town of Warminster and was keen to have her own newly discovered Victorian hallway brought back to life, and called me down to see what could be done. Upon arrival at the property, I determined that the tiles would definitely require a very deep clean, including the remove of numerous glue stains, followed by the application of a new seal.

Victorian Floor Found Under Carpet Before Restoration in Warminster

Cleaning a Very Dirty Victorian Tiled Hallway

Before I could begin the deep cleaning process, I needed to remove the carpet grippers and surface glue, attempting to remove as much as possible by hand using a scraper.

For the particularly stubborn areas, I applied Tile Doctor Remove & Go, a powerful stripper specially designed to break down adhesives and solvents, and left it to dwell for 20 minutes to eat through the glue deposits. I then attached a black pad to a rotary machine and scrubbed the area thoroughly to clean the affected areas, before removing the resulting slurry using a wet vacuum and rinsed with clean water.

Once I was satisfied that all of the glue had been removed, I proceeded to soak the floor using a solution of the high alkaline cleaner known as Tile Doctor Pro Clean. This is a versatile product that can be used on a wide range of natural stone floors to deal with heavy soil build-up.

I left the Pro-Clean to dwell for ten minutes, and then scrubbed it into the tiles to remove the ingrained dirt and also to break down any old and ineffectual seals. The floor was then once again rinsed thoroughly with clean water which was then extracted using a wet vacuum before being left to dry for a couple of days.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway

Upon our return to the property I immediately tested the floor for damp using a damp meter. This is an extremely important test to carry out before sealing any kind of tiled flooring, due to the fact that excess moisture left over from cleaning can cloud the sealer and damage its ability to protect against dirt and stains.

Thankfully, the damp test revealed no excess moisture, and I was able to proceed with sealing the tiles. My choice of sealer was Tile Doctor Seal and Go, a water-based topical sealer that simultaneously provides both a stain resistant surface seal and a durable and aesthetically pleasing low sheen finish, also being water based it doesn’t give off a smell as it dries.

Victorian Floor Found Under Carpet After Restoration in Warminster

This is a very cost effective product that is highly suitable for use on Victorian and Quarry tiles, I applied five costs to achieve the desired finish.

The customer was very pleased with the final results. It’s always satisfying to restore original Victorian tiled floors to looking their best once again – and this one was no exception.
 
 

Restoring a Victorian Tiled Hallway in Wiltshire

Kitchen Quarry Tiles Floor Treated to a Deep Clean and Seal in Salisbury

When the sealer wears down on sealed tiled floor dirt will become ingrained in the pores of the tile and floor becomes more and more difficult to clean effectively. Even hard wearing tiles like Quarry tiles will experience this problem over time more so if you use acidic floor cleaning products to regularly clean your floor as they slowly eat away at the sealer.

This is a problem we come across relatively often and was the case this customer, living in the town of Salisbury contacted Tile Doctor for assistance. I paid them a visit to survey the floor and arranged a date to come back a give these brown Quarry kitchen tiles a thorough clean and fresh seal to provide durable protection against future soil build up.

Quarry Tiles Before Cleaning Salisbury

Cleaning a Dirty Quarry Tiled Floor

Taking a close look at the tiles, it was clear that they would need to be cleaned using a strong solution of the high alkaline Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, with special attention to be paid to the grout and to deal with some spots of grout haze.

To begin, Pro-Clean was applied across the floor and left it to dwell for 15 minutes to eat through any old sealer and dirt. A black pad was then to a rotary machine, and this was used to scrub the area throughly, lifting the muck away. Following this, a wet vacuum was used to remove the dirty cleaning slurry.

Next, I tackled the grout haze around the edges, by applying Tile Doctor Acid Gel to the affected areas, which is a mixture of Phosphoric and Hydrochloric acids in a handy gel form. This was scrubbed again with a black pad and rinsed with cold water to neutralise the area. Having successfully eliminated the dirt and grout haze, I left the floor to dry for a couple of days.

Sealing a Quarry Tiled Floor

Upon my return I tested the area for damp using a damp tester; this should always be carried out before sealing as excess moisture can negatively affect the performance of the sealer.

When satisfied with the results of the damp test, I proceeded to seal the floor with five coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go, which is a topical sealer suitable for sealing internal, unsealed porous surfaces. It works by building up a durable surface seal, preventing any dirt from becoming ingrained in the stone. Additionally, Seal and Go provides a subtle, but pleasant looking, low sheen finish and being water based no smell is given off as it dries.

Quarry Tiles After Cleaning Salisbury

The customer was very pleased with the results. Since she had struggled to keep the floor clean, I made sure before leaving the property to give the customer some maintenance tips to help her maintain the appearance of the Quarry tiles. I also assured her that Tile Doctor are always on hand to assist if any new problems occur.
 
 

Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Restoration in Wiltshire

Cleaning & Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway in Heytesbury

A client from the village of Heytesbury contacted me to see whether we could improve the look of her Victorian tiled hallway floor. It turns out that a competitor had previously cleaned and sealed it two years prior but she was disappointed with the result once she realised that the floor still had dirt ingrained in the tile. As per our normal practice we ran a test clean and she booked us in immediately.

Victorian Floor Heytesbury Before Cleaning

Cleaning a Victorian Tiled Floor

We started by wetting the floor using a strong solution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and left it dwell for ten minutes. We then attached a black stripping pad to a rotary machine and slowly covered the whole area to remove ingrained dirt and any existing seals that may be evident. The dirty slurry was then removed with a wet vacuum and then floor rinsed with the aid of a deck brush and a wet vacuum.

Next we used a heavy duty scraper to remove paint splashes around the edges from years of decorating. Once we were satisfied we’d removed all evident dirt, seal and paint we rinsed the floor thoroughly several times to make sure all contaminants are removed again using the wet vacuum to remove the water.

Sealing a Victorian Floor Sealing

We returned five days later to let the floor dry out thoroughly. Upon our return we tested with a damp meter which tested fine so we proceeded to seal the floor using six coats of Tile Doctor Seal & Go to provide protection and add a nice sheen to the floor which I think you will agree now looks amazing

Victorian Floor Heytesbury After Cleaning

 
 

Restoring the appearance of a Victorian tiled hallway in Wiltshire

Slate Tiled Kitchen Cleaned and Sealed in Trowbridge

This floor was installed in the house of a client in the town of Trowbridge, Wiltshire, I was asked if I could restore the Slate tiled kitchen floor back to its former glory. The client was having trouble cleaning the floor themselves due to the sealer being worn away and dirt now becoming ingrained into the pores of the slate. I suspect the life of the sealer had been reduced by the use of in-appropriate cleaning products; anything even mildly acidic will overtime eat away at the sealer and reduce its life.

Upon arriving at the house, I undertook some test cleaning to demonstrate to the client the results I would be able to achieve. Seeing how quickly I would be able to make a marked difference to the appearance of the tiles, the client quickly commissioned me to undertake a clean and seal for the entire floor.

Slate Floor Before Cleaning and Sealing in Trowbridge

Cleaning a Slate tiled floor

My first task was to mix a solution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and clean water. This was then applied evenly onto the floor and left to dwell for 15 minutes, allowing for the strong alkaline cleaner to soak into the stone to get underneath any ingrained dirt, and lift it to the surface.

Once the solution had rested on the surface for a short while, I paid particular attention to the grout lines, scrubbing them with a stiff grout brush. Next, I attached a polybrush to a rotary machine and scrubbed all of the tiles thoroughly. I then used a wet-vac machine to soak up any resulting residue.

However, upon further inspection, I noticed some further paint splashes and grout haze. I applied Tile Doctor Grout Clean-Up to tackle the evident grout haze, and used a heavy duty scraper to remove the paint splashes. Once my client and I were happy with the result, I vacuumed up the slurry and gave the entire floor a thorough rinse. It was then left to dry completely overnight.

Sealing a Slate tiled floor

I returned the next day to seal the floor. Firstly, I tested the floor for evidence of damp using a damp meter and, once I was happy that there was no excess moisture to potentially damage the performance of the sealer, I proceeded to seal the floor using Tile Doctor Seal & Go, which provides a durable surface seal and leaves an aesthetically pleasing sheen finish.

Slate Floor After Cleaning and Sealing in Trowbridge

I applied a total of six coatings of the sealer, resulting in a marked difference in the appearance of the tiles (as you can see from the photos). She was very happy with her refreshed floor, and I left her with some cleaning and maintenance advice for the future, before making my departure.
 
 

Slate Kitchen Tiled Floor rejuvenated in Wiltshire

Polished Travertine Floor Restored in Lower Woodrow

Polished stone floors will lose their shine over time depending on the amount of wear and cleaning products used and this Travertine Tiled Floor in Lower Woodrow had basically experienced this problem. The solution is to burnish the floor with diamond encrusted pads, a process that will remove any dirt and bring back the polish.

Travertine Floor Before Polishing in Lower Woodrow

Cleaning and Polishing Travertine Floor Tiles

We started by smothering the floor is a mild dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and left it to dwell for ten minutes. We then scrubbed the grout lines using a stiff grout brush to get the grout clean. Next we fitted a course diamond burnishing pad to a rotary machine and slowly burnished each and every tile. We then extracted the slurry using a wet vacuum and rinsed. We continued this procedure with the medium, fine and very fine pads rinsing in-between until the shine had been restored. We then left the floor overnight to dry.

Sealing Travertine Floor Tiles

Upon our return we sealed the floor using Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that soaks into he pores of the stone protecting it from within and enhancing the natural colours in the stone. Once the seal had dried I used a white buffing pad attached to the rotary machine and buffed the travertine to a nice shine.

Travertine Floor After Polishing in Lower Woodrow

 
 

Travertine Floor and Grout Cleaned, Burnished and Sealed in Wiltshire

Victorian Tiled Hallway Cleaned and Sealed in Swindon

We were contacted by a home owner in Swindon who had discovered a black and white Victorian tiled floor underneath carpet in their hallway and wanted to make it a feature. I took a look at the floor and can see it was in good condition considering the carpet glue and arranged an appointment to come back and do the work.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Swindon Before Cleaning

Cleaning Victorian Tiles

First we started with a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which was smothered over the floor and left to dwell for twenty minutes so it could get to work breaking down any remaining sealer and dirt build up etc. Then after we attached a black scrubbing pad to a rotary machine and worked the solution into the tile to release the dirt. This caused the cleaning solution to become black with the soil which was removed using a wet vacuum and the floor rinsed thoroughly with cold water.

Upon further inspection it had become evident that the edges still had a build-up of carpet adhesives and yellowing sealer so something stronger would be required to get rid of it. These areas were spot treated with Tile Doctor Remove and Go which was brushed to the edges and let it dwell as before. A hand scraper was then used to remove the adhesive and stubborn sealer. The floor was rinsed thoroughly once more using the wet vacuum to remove as much water as possible.

Another inspection of the tiles revealed slight staining which was most evident on the white tiles so we used a 120grit hand pad with a little water to remove as much staining as possible and rinsed several times. Once we were satisfied we then left the floor to dry over 3 days.

Sealing Victorian Tiles

Upon our return we tested the floor for damp by using a damp meter; the test was fine so we proceeded to seal the floor using five coats of Tile Doctor Seal & Go which will protect the floor from further staining and also adds a nice subtle sheen to the tiles which always looks attractive on Victorian tiles.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Swindon After Cleaning

Our customer said that the tiles had come up cleaner than she had ever imagined possible and was so happy that they now have a ‘feature’ hallway.
 
 

Maintaining Victorian Tiles in Swindon

Cleaning & Sealing Terracotta Tiles in Osbourne St. Georges

The owner of this Terracotta tiled floor installed in a house in the village of Osbourne St. Georges several years earlier contacted us as the floor had become ingrained with dirt and was now proving impossible to keep clean. We popped round to take a look and ran a small test clean to show what could be achieved, the test area came up really well and we were immediately booked to do the rest of the floor.

Terracotta Tiled Floor Before Cleaning in Osbourne St. Georges

Terracotta Tile Cleaning

We started by smothering the floor in a dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and left it to dwell for about twenty minutes. Once the dwell time had been reached we scrubbed the grout lines by hand with a grout brush before scrubbing the whole floor thoroughly with a black pad fitted to a rotary machine. The cleaning solution soon became soiled with the released dirt and was removed the using a wet vacuum and rinsing with cold water.

At this point it became apparent that the edges needed attention, the machine always struggles here so we used a stiff hand brush to remove the ingrained dirt and also some paint spots with the aid of a razor edged floor.

Once we were satisfied we had removed all existing dirt and sealer we rinsed again thoroughly with clean water and a scrubbed with a deck brush several times to make sure we had removed all traces of cleaning product. The floor was then dried as much as possible using a wet vacuum and left to dry agreeing to return a week later to seal the floor.

Terracotta Tiled Floor After Cleaning in Osbourne St. Georges

Sealing Terracotta Tiles

Upon our return we tested the floor was dry with a moisture meter, the test came back fine so we proceeded to seal the floor using six coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go which works really well on Terracotta and adds a nice subtle sheen to the tile.

Terracotta Tiled Floor After Sealing in Osbourne St. Georges

The customer was so happy to have her floor back to the appearance when it was first laid and before leaving I give her some cleaning advice to help prolong the life of the sealer. It’s a fact that a lot of commercial tile cleaning products are designed for cleaning ceramic tiles and contain acid which slowly erodes the sealer so to maximise the life of the sealer use a low alkaline/neutral PH product such as Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner.
 
 

Maintaining Terracotta Tiles in Osbourne St. Georges

Cleaning Wax and Oil from Terracotta Floor Tiles in Urchfont

This customer in rural village of Urchfont contacted us because a competitor had attempted to restore their floor but ended up ruining it due to the over application of linseed oil which had left it both brown and sticky. I warned the customer that we may not be able to get rid of the Linseed oil as we don’t know what products had been used previously however they were happy to proceed and they booked us in immediately after conducting a successful test.

Terracotta Tiled Floor Urchfont Before

Cleaning Oil and Wax from Terracotta Tile

We started by smothering the floor with Tile Doctor Remove & Go leaving it to dwell and soak into the floor. After thirty minutes the product was scrubbed into the grout lines using a stiff grout brush. We then attached a black scrubbing pad to a rotary machine and set about trying to bust through the top layer of wax and oil. It became apparent that this particular terracotta floor was very porous indeed and that it was going to take quite a few attempts to got a section clear we rinsed the tiles thoroughly and started again. This process was repeated every five square metres so that the slurry didn’t drop back into the tile. Once we were satisfied that we had removed as much of the wax and oil as possible we then used a steamer on the areas that had an increased amount of linseed oil and scrubbed vigorously with a deck brush until happy. Once the entire floor was clear we rinsed the area thoroughly with fresh water to remove any trace of cleaning product using a wet vacuum to remove as much of the water as possible before leaving it to dry for 7 days.

Sealing Terracotta Tiles

Upon our return we tested the floor using a damp meter, this is important as adding sealer to a damp floor can have unexpected results. The test was OK so we began to seal the floor with Tile Doctor Seal and Go eventually applying nine coats until the tile was fully sealed. You can see from the photographs below that the floor looks much better and the sealer enhanced the look of the tile and will continue to protect it against day to day wear.

Terracotta Tiled Floor Urchfont Sealed
Our customer was over the moon with the result we had achieved even though not all the linseed oil could be removed due to its porosity.

Terracotta Tiled Floor Urchfont Sealed
 

Terracotta Floor Cleaned and Sealed in Urchfont

Limestone and Travertine Floor Restored in Nunton

The owner of this house in Nunton near Salisbury got in touch to take a look at the grout lines on their Travertine and Limestone tiled floors which were becoming increasingly dirty and the tiles has started to take on dirt also. We offer a free no obligation survey so I went along to take a look and whilst there did a test clean which worked out really well so they booked us in straight away.

Limestone Floor Restored in Nunton Before Limestone Floor Restored in Nunton Before

Cleaning Travertine and Limestone Tiles

We started by applying a mild dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which was spread over the floor with particular attention paid to getting the solution into the grout lines. The solution was left to dwell for 10 minutes in order for it to soak in and eat through any dirt and existing sealer; we then used a stiff grout brush to scrub each and every grout line. Next we removed any trace of product by using a wet vacuum and rinsing thoroughly with clean water.

Our next step was to use our diamond encrusted burnishing pads which attach to a rotary machine and burnish the floor with four different grits from coarse to super fine. First using course pad number 1 we put some clean water on the floor and using our rotary machine slowly burnished the area making sure that we passed over each tile 4 times, this coarse pad cuts into the surface grime of the floor and also removes sealers. The resultant slurry is rinsed away with clean water which in turn is removed using a wet vacuum. This process is then repeated with the remaining pads, rinsing between each pad until a nice polish is built up on the tile. The floor is then given a final rinse and once we were satisfied that all the slurry had been removed we left the floor to dry overnight.

Cleaning Travertine and Limestone Tiles

Upon our return we first completed a damp test using a damp meter to make sure the floor had dried sufficiently for sealing. The floor was fine so we started by polishing the surface using a green polishing pad attached to a rotary machine. We then sealed the floor using single coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that will occupy the pores in the stone to prevent other contaminates getting in there, Colour Grow also brings out the colours in the stone especially the browns in Travertine. Once the sealer had dried a white buffing pad was attached to the rotary machine and the floor buffed to a nice shine.

Limestone-Floor-Restored-in-Nunton-After Limestone Floor Restored in Nunton After

 
 

Limestone and Travertine Floors Burnished, Buffed and Sealed in Wiltshire