Grout Cleaning

Deep Cleaning Flagstone Flooring in Vines Cross

This customer who lived in the old Sussex village of Vines Cross near Horam, had a lovely Flagstone floor installed in the Kitchen some years earlier but because they wanted a completely natural look no sealer had been applied. With no protection in place dirt had become ingrained into the pores of the stone over time making it dull and difficult to clean effectively.

Flagstone floor before restoration Vines Cross
Their beautiful flagstone floor no longer looked as it should and the owner of the house was keen to have it deep cleaned and looking its best again. I was happy to do the work and before starting I made sure to discuss the topic of sealing and recommended one called Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal which is a natural look sealer that doesn’t change the look of the stone yet protects it from dirt becoming ingrained.

Flagstone floor before restoration Vines Cross

Deep Cleaning a Lapicida Sandstone Floor

With no sealer evident on the stone there was no need to use a coatings remover on the tiles, so after protecting the Kitchen units and skirting board with plastic tape I started with a combination of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean tile and grout cleaner mixed with a small amount of another Tile Doctor product called NanoTech HBU. HBU stands for Heavy Build-Up and this product utilises nano-sized abrasive particles to assist in the cleaning process.

The solution was left to dwell and soak into the stone for ten minutes before being scrubbed in using a rotary buffing machine fitted with a black pad. With the cleaning solution on the floor I also took the time to run a stiff brush along the grout lines to make sure they were also scrubbed clean. After a while the cleaning solution became dirty with all the soil that was being released from the tile and was then extracted using a wet vacuum. The floor was then rinsed with water and stubborn areas re-treated using the same process until I was satisfied it was thoroughly clean.

Flagstone floor during restoration Vines Cross
After giving the floor a final rinse and drying it as much as possible with a wet vacuum it was left to dry off fully overnight.

Flagstone floor during restoration Vines Cross

Sealing a Flagstone Floor

I returned the next day to seal the floor first checking it for dampness using a damp meter. All was well, and the flagstones were dry, so I was able to proceed with sealing the stone.

As I mentioned earlier my client liked the natural look but having experienced the problems of maintaining an un-sealed floor had agreed for me to seal it with Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal. I applied a single base coat of Tile Doctor Ultra Seal as agreed and then recommended that we add a coat of Tile Doctor Seal and Go as well, just to brighten up the floor and add a slight sheen.

Flagstone floor after restoration Vines Cross
I knew from experience this would work well on Flagstones and my client was happy to trust me. As suspected the combination of the two sealers was a winner and my client was overjoyed with the resulting effect and more so that she can now maintain it satisfactorily.

Flagstone floor after restoration Vines Cross
 

Deep Cleaning a Flagstone Kitchen Floor in East Sussex

Cleaning and Grout Colouring of a Porcelain Tiled Kitchen Floor in Lewes

Recently, I was called to a work on a Porcelain tiled floor in the kitchen of a house in the East Sussex market town of Lewes where the grout was looking tired. Lewes has a long history that dates all the way back to the Saxons and has many old buildings as a result; this house of course with its modern kitchen and Porcelain tiles wasn’t one of them however the grout certainly looked old.

Cleaning Porcelain Tile and Grout floor

The floor was in good physical condition and Porcelain tiles being very robust as they are didn’t need much maintenance however the grout was very stained, and the house owner wanted it freshening up.

Porcelain Kitchen Tiles Before Grout Colouring in Lewes Kitchen Porcelain Kitchen Tiles Before Grout Colouring in Lewes Kitchen

My first course of action was to give the whole floor a good clean with a medium dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean scrubbed in with a black pad attached to a floor buffer machine. I paid particular attention to the grout and gave it a good scrub using a narrow brush that was run along the grout lines. The now dirty cleaning solution was rinsed off the floor with water and extracted with a wet vacuum, so I could see the improvement. I could then see the difference the cleaning process had made to the look of the Tile and Grout, but it was clear that some of the staining had gone deep into the grout and no amount of scrubbing would get it looking new again.

Recolouring the Grout

It was clear to me that the only course of action to get back a uniform appearance to the grout would be to recolour it so as an initial step I set about drying the grout.

Once dry I began to recolour the grout using a white Tile Doctor Grout Colourant which was applied using a small brush. I was careful to apply thin, even coats and any excess was removed.

Porcelain Kitchen Tiles During Grout Colouring in Lewes Kitchen Porcelain Kitchen Tiles During Grout Colouring in Lewes Kitchen

The tiles were of the large format type, so it only took a few hours to colour the grout lines so the whole job took less than a day to complete.

Porcelain Kitchen Tiles After Grout Colouring in Lewes Kitchen
Once done I revealed the rejuvenated Kitchen floor to the client who was delighted with the results as it lifted the whole look of the kitchen.

Restoration of Porcelain Tiled Kitchen Floor in Sussex

Badly Stained Grout in Porcelain Tiled Shower Cubicle Recoloured in Hove

Hove is a town in East Sussex which is confused with – and somewhat overshadowed by – its larger, more well-known neighbour, Brighton. In fact, the tendency for people to confuse Hove and Brighton is such that a running joke in the area amongst residents of Hove is to reply “Hove, actually” when they are asked if they live in Brighton.

But Hove is no small town – in fact, its home to more than 90,000 people. As the East Sussex Tile Doctor I am a frequent visitor to the Brighton and Hove area. Most recently, I was called to a property to address a Porcelain tiled shower cubicle which was really starting to annoy the owner.

She felt like she could never seem to keep it clean of grime and the dyes in soaps that invariably stain the grouting. As a result, the whole cubicle looked worse for wear – you can see this in the photo below.

Shower Room Tiles Before Grout Colouring in Hove Shower Room Tiles Before Grout Colouring in Hove

Not only did the customer want the tiles and grout cleaned up, but she had been impressed by some subway tiles she had seen where a darker grout had been used, she liked the effect it gave and wanted to see if it could be replicated. I suggested that we could clean up the tiles and recolour the grout using a Black Tile Doctor Grout Colourant. She accepted the quote for the work and I was able to get started soon after.

Cleaning Porcelain Shower Tiles and Grout

To begin the restoration, I gave the tile and grout a deep clean using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, which is a highly effective alkaline-based cleaner for Tile, Stone and Grout.

This left the tiles looking fresher, but the grout lines – which were very badly stained – would as need to be recoloured for the best result. Before applying the Grout Colourant, the grout needed to be prepped in order to achieve a strong bond with the colourant. To do this I applied Tile Doctor Grout Clean-Up which is an acidic product normally used for removing grout smears but in this case, I used it to etch the surface of the grout. Once done I gave the grout a rinse with water to remove any trace of cleaning product.

Recolouring Shower Tile Grout

The final step in the restoration was to recolour the grout in black to achieve that subway effect the customer desired. There are actually ten different colours in the Tile Doctor Grout Colourant range, including Charcoal Grey, White, and Chocolate, as well as Black.
The colourant in basically painted onto the grout using an applicator brush, you then let it dry for a while and then wipe off any excess from the tile surface. It looks a little horrendous in the photographs above but wait until you see the final result.

Shower Room Tiles During Grout Colouring in Hove Shower Room Tiles During Grout Colouring in Hove

Once the grout colourant sets you find that not only does it effectively recolour and rejuvenate the grout, but it also makes a barrier over the grout effectively sealing it in and making it easier to clean in future.

The last step was to strip out the mould stained silicone sealant from around the base of the shower cubicle and replace with a quality mould resistant sealant. This final step really finished off the renovation and the photographs below show the outcome, which I think you will agree was quite a transformation. Thankfully, it was exactly what the customer was looking for!

Shower Room Tiles During Grout Colouring in Hove Shower Room Tiles After Grout Colouring in Hove

 

Professional Renovation of a Porcelain Tiled Shower Cubicle in East Sussex

Porcelain Shower Cubicle Grout Refreshed and Recoloured in Eastbourne

Anyone who wants to put their house up for sale should consider refurbishment projects that can help increase the value of the property and make it more appealing to potential buyers. This is especially the case in rooms with tiled floors or features, which many buyers find particularly attractive. If you’ve left your tiles – whether they’re in the bathroom, kitchen or elsewhere – in a bit of a state, chances are that it’ll put people off.

Recently, I was contacted by a customer who was in the process of refurbishing their house in Eastbourne prior to putting it up for sale. As part of the refurbishment, the customer wanted the Porcelain bathroom tiles to look ts absolute best for anyone viewing the property. While the bathroom room had been installed not too long ago, the grout was not looking very attractive.

Grout Before Changing Colour in Eastbourne Bathroom
This was due mainly to the fact that the grout was looking dark and stained. I was asked to give the tiles and grout a thorough clean before recolouring the grout to make it lighter and more appealing.

Cleaning and Re-Colouring Porcelain Shower Tiles and Grout

To achieve the best results, the grouting in shower cubicles needs to be cleaned before it can be recoloured. To do this, I used Tile Doctor Duo Clean, a product which acts fast to removes any mould and black spots from the grout. If necessary, it can also be used to clean plastic or enamel baths and showers.

The product was applied and then scrubbed into the grout carefully using a specialised grout brush, and the area was left to dry. Once the cubicle was dry, I applied the Tile Doctor Grout Colourant in small sections, so that I could wipe off any excess from the tile surface before it dried.

Grout During Changing Colour in Eastbourne Bathroom
Tile Doctor Grout Colourants are available in 10 different colours, but in this case the customer opted for a normal white as it contrasts nicely with the grey tiles. The Colourant not only recolours the grout lines; it also seals and rejuvenates them.

Grout After Changing Colour in Eastbourne Bathroom
The shower room was quite large, so the job took most of the day to complete. But it was certainly worth it. The customer was very pleased with the results, and we wish them the best of luck with selling the property.

Grout After Changing Colour in Eastbourne Bathroom
 

Professional Renovation of a Porcelain Tiled Bathroom in Eastbourne

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East Sussex Tile Doctor

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