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Phil Barrs
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Travertine Kitchen Tiles Deep Cleaned and Sealed in Lincoln

Travertine is a lovely beige and brown stone that looks fantastic when it’s first laid but needs work to maintain the appearance. This was exactly the problem my customer who lives near the historic Cathedral City of Lincoln had experienced. The sealer on their Travertine Kitchen floor was becoming worn in the more commonly used parts of the floor letting dirt become ingrained into the pores of the stone and the grout was also becoming darker where it was getting dirty. They also had pets that spent a lot of time in the Kitchen which didn’t help and there were also small holes in the Travertine that were trapping dirt and would need filling.

Cleaning and Burnishing a Travertine Tiled Floor

To deep clean the stone and grout I applied a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, left it to soak in for ten minutes and then worked it into the floor using a scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary floor machine. Pro-Clean is a strong reliable alkaline product which is safe to use on stone and grout including Travertine and Limestone.

I also ran a stiff grout brush along the edges of the floor and especially along the grout lines to get the grout as clean as possible; the scrubbing pad struggles to reach into the recesses of the grout so it’s best to do this by hand. The now dirty cleaning solution was extracted from the floor using a wet vacuum and rinsed with water to ensure the tile and grout was now clean and any stubborn stains spot treated.

After the deep clean we filled the holes as required using flexible filler which gives a really smooth look to the flooring. We then left our turbo dryer system on overnight to thoroughly dry out the floor before returning to seal the tiles on day two.

Sealing a Travertine Tiled Floor

The next day I returned to the property and proceeded to seal the Travertine tiles using two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow sealer to protect the tiles and also really enhance the natural colours in the stone. As an impregnating sealer, Colour Grow penetrates into the stone and fills its pores to safeguard it against ingrained dirt and stains from within.

As you can see from the photographs, the combination of a deep clean, high quality polish and fresh seal really transformed the appearance of the floor from dull and lifeless to a really asset to the kitchen. The customer was so happy with the results she has booked us in to carry out the same work to other flooring in the property.
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Mucky Travertine Tiled Floor Restored Near Woodhall Spa

Quite often our customers will be new property owners who have inherited fantastic tiled floors that are in need of smartening up. Typically the previous owners struggled to maintain the floor which is not unusual when it comes to high quality natural stone such as Travertine and this was the case with this Travertine tiled floor that I recently restored at a property near Woodhall Spa, on the southern edge of the Lincolnshire Wolds.

The customer not only needed a deep clean for the tiles and grout which had become dirty and discoloured over time, but also needed for many of the small holes caused by the natural process of pitting to be filled to give the Travertine tiles a smooth and polished finish. Finally, the floor would need a fresh seal to protect it and make it easier to cleangoing forward.

Cleaning and Repairing a Pitted Travertine Tiled Floor

To begin the restoration, I applied Tile Doctor Pro-Clean to the floor, which is our reliable high alkaline cleaner designed for use on stone floors, left it to soak in and break down the dirt and then used our hot pressure Rotovaccleaning system to clean the tiles. The Rotovac is an expensive machine but makes light work of the job by deep cleaning and scrubbing the stone whilst rinsing and extracting away all of the soiled cleaning residue at the same time. It allows us to get deep into the pores of the tile and grout to eradicate ingrained dirt and stains.

I then worked through our four-stage diamond encrusted burnishing pad system which hones and polishes the surface of the tiles with excellent results. Each of the four pads is applied in turn, moving from a coarse grit all the way to a Very Fine grit.

Once I was happy with the condition of the floor it was time to deal with the holes in the Travertine by applying a two-part colour matched resin to fill the small and large holes mentioned earlier.After completing the cleaning and filling was completed I left the tiles to dry off completely overnight aided with air movers to speed up the drying process.

Ensuring the floor is bone dry before sealing is important as I needed to seal the tiles the next day, and a small amount of excess moisture can cloud the sealer and damage its performance.

Sealing a Travertine Tiled Floor

When I came back the next day I tested the floor for moisture to confirm it was dry before applying two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow, which is an impregnating sealer that intensifies and enhances the natural shades in the Travertine while also providing it with protection against dirt and stains.

With the restoration complete I left the customer with a bottle of Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner for regular future maintenance, along with an aftercare leaflet. We recommend this product for the regular cleaning of sealed tiles as the neutral pH will help to maximise the life of the sealer and not erode it like many acid cleaning products.

I think you will agree the floor now looks much better, certainly the customer was very happy with the work and left the following feedback:

“Phil and his colleague worked their magic to transform our tired looking, grimy Travertine floors into bright, shiny new look floors. Thank you so much.”
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Dull and Dirty Sandstone Tiles Revitalised in Sleaford

I can’t stress how important a sealer is when it comes to maintaining the look of a stone floor and although they can protect a floor for many years if not maintained they will all but disappear in high traffic areas allowing dirt and stains to penetrate the pores of the stone. This gradual degradation occurs over such a long period it usually happens without being noticed.

This Sandstone tiled kitchen floor and entrance hall at a barn conversion property in Sleaford had not been sealed in eight years. Since Sandstone is naturally highly porous, dirt and staining had easily become easily ingrained in the tiles. The result? A very dull and poor looking set of tiles.

After difficulties trying to resolve the situation by themselves, the property owners asked me to deep clean the tiles to restore the appearance of the Sandstone which had faded over the years. Thankfully we have the right products, equipment, and experience to be able to carry out the restoration quickly and efficiently.

Cleaning a Dull and Dirty Sandstone Tiled Floor

The first day of work involved preparing the area by protecting other surfaces and removing the kickboards form under the kitchen units. This was followed by a deep clean of the floor firstly with our high pressure Rotovac system which applies hot water under high pressure to force out ingrained dirt and muck from the stone whilst simultaneously extracting the soil back to a tank on our van. I followed this by scrubbing and rinsing the tiles and grout with a solution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, a high alkaline powerful cleaner we use on natural stone floors. This helped to tackle any particularly deeply ingrained dirt and clean up the grout.

Following the clean, I installed turbo dryers and used the already in-built underfloor heating to dry the Sandstone, which was necessary as it is naturally a very porous stone and easily absorbs moisture.

Sealing a Sandstone Tiled Floor

On the second day, the tiles were completely dry and ready to be sealed however before sealing I asked for the underfloor heating to be switched off so the fresh sealer would cure more naturally. To seal the floor, I opted to use Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that occupies the pores in the Sandstone so dirt can’t, additionally it’s formulated to enhance the naturally occurring colours in the Sandstone – those which after such a long time the customer was keen to see again.

After two coats of Colour Grow were applied, the transformation was well and truly complete. The customer was also well and truly happy. After eight years, the Sandstone tiles were restored to better than their original condition.

One question I often get asked is how do you know when your sealer has worn down. The answer is to conduct a water test on your tiles, if the water forms a bubble on the surface of the tile as in the photo below then it shows the sealer is doing its job.
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Riven Slate Tiles Rejuvenated by Deep Clean and Seal in Boston

While fantastic to look at, Riven Slate tiles can be particularly difficult to keep clean. The natural unevenness of the stone causes dirt to become more easily trapped and more difficult to remove. Over time, heavy buildup of ingrained dirt can have the effect of dulling the colours in the stone. This was the case with this large area of Riven Slate tiles at a very busy farmhouse in the Lincolnshire port town of Boston, the original namesake for the perhaps more famous city in Massachusetts, USA.

The property owner couldn’t figure out the best way to improve the situation and so called me in to see what could be done. Upon inspecting the tiles first hand I decided that the best course of action would be a very deep clean and the application of a fresh sealant to offer long-term protection against ingrained dirt.

Cleaning Dirty and a Dull Riven Slate Tiles

The cleaning process was split into two main components. Firstly, I scrubbed a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro Clean into the tiles to remove the initial layers of soil buildup. Pro Clean is our go-to cleaner for most natural stone due to its reliability and the fact that, unlike a lot of supermarket floor cleaners, it isn’t acid-based and so won’t damage the stone.

Since the ingrained dirt problem was quite severe, I opted to also clean the tiles using our van-mounted pressure cleaning system. This very efficient system applies hot water under pressure to the to stone to penetrate deeply and eradicate particularly stubborn ingrained dirt. It then automatically extracts the soiled water back into a tank in our van.

Satisfied that the floor had been cleaned as throughly as possible, I then installed several turbo dryers to thoroughly dry the flooring, allowing it to be ready for sealing the next day. Efficient drying was especially important here due to the amount of water used in the cleaning process; many tiled floor owners will already know that sealant cannot be applied if any moisture remains.

Sealing Riven Slate Tiles

To seal the tiles I used four costs of Tile Doctor Seal and Go. This is a topical sealer, meaning it forms a robust layer of protection on the surface of the tiles. Seal and Go also helps to enhance colour while providing a natural look matte finish that complements the natural stone.

Looking at the photos of the floor before and after my work you can really get an idea of the transformation achieved in a short space of time. What a difference! The property owners were very pleased with the results, especially now that they are aware of the best way to keep their lovely Riven Slate tiles clean and protected.
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Travertine Kitchen Tiles Transformed in Sleaford

This fantastic Travertine tiled kitchen floor was in a bad way. Not only had it not been treated to a proper clean and seal in a long while, but it has also suffered from natural pitting, leaving lots of little holes that damaged the overall appearance of the floor. Travertine is very aesthetic, but suffers from the drawback of being quite soft compared to other types of stone (typically it sits between 3-4 on the Moh’s scale of mineral hardness).

The customer, who lives in the town of Sleaford a small Lincolnshire market town, was keen to have the situation remedied through a complete restoration. This would need to include small repairs, along with a deep clean and a fresh seal.

Cleaning and Burnishing a Travertine Tiled Floor

My first job was to deep clean the whole area, which I did using a solution of Tile Doctor Pro Clean and clean water. Pro Clean is a strong alkaline product which has a long history of producing reliable results of a wide range of natural stone floors, including Travertine, Granite, Limestone, and Slate. I applied the solution to both the tiles and the grout lines, and proceeded to scrub it in using a scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary floor machine.

This left the floor fresh and clean, but I would also need to restore the polish to the Travertine to really take its appearance to the next level. To do this I used the process known as burnishing, which essentially involves the consecutive application of different gritted pads to achieve a high quality polish on tiles. Our burnishing system, which consists of four pads, achieves fantastic results on high-end polished stone like Limestone, Marble and, of course, Travertine. I started by applying the Coarse grit burnishing pad, before gradually working my way through to the Medium, Fine, and finally Very Fine pads to achieve a brilliant shine and light reflection finish.

To round off the first day of the restoration, I used a flexible matching filler to fill up any pitted holes present on the surface of the tiles. Following this, I installed a turbo dryer to make sure the floor would dry fully overnight, and be ready to seal the following day.

Sealing a Travertine Tiled Floor

The next day I returned to the property and proceeded to seal the Travertine tiles using several costs of Tile Doctor Colour Grow sealer to protect the tiles and also really enhance the natural colours in the stone. As an impregnating sealer, Colour Grow penetrates into the stone and fills its pores to safeguard it against ingrained dirt and stains from within.

As you can see from the photographs, the combination of a deep clean, high quality polish and fresh seal really transformed the appearance of the floor from dull and lifeless to a really asset to the kitchen. The customer was absolutely delighted with the results, leaving the following feedback: “Very good job – delighted! Thank you Phil!”
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Restoration procedure on damaged Travertine kitchen tiles in Sleaford.
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