Tile and Grout Refresh for Neglected Bathroom in Stockport

If you’re a landlord, it can be quite difficult to know what your tenants are getting up to and whether they are taking good care of your property. It’s usually only when major problems emerge that a landlord will get involved.

Such was the case with a recent customer of mine who owns a property in Stockport, a large town in Greater Manchester not too far south from the main city centre. The tenants of the property either neglected or didn’t know how to take care of the tiled shower walls in the bathroom. Over time, the condition of the tiles and grout had become so appalling that the landlord had to call Tile Doctor to see about restoring them.

Bath Shower Tile Before Refresh Stockport

Cleaning Dirty Shower Tiles

I began the restoration by cleaning the grout lines, which were truly filthy. This was done using a strong solution of Tile Doctor Pro Clean. Pro-Clean is an ideal product for cleaning up neglected tiles and grout, since it removes all manner of dirt, including the soap scum and grease which had built up on these shower walls over the course of several months.

The product was left to dwell for a couple of minutes before being scrubbed deep into the grout. The area was subsequently rinsed with fresh water to remove the soil. In some stubborn places, I didn’t achieve the desired result right away, so I repeated the cleaning process a couple of times.

When the grout and tiles were cleaned to the best of my abilities, I used my heat gun to dry the walls quickly. Next, I removed all the mouldy silicone around the shower, a process which proved quite tricky because the tiles were all quite small, and there was newer silicone on top of old, very mouldy silicone, so I had to dig in deep to get it all out.

After doing this, I had to clean and dry the gap between the tiles and the bath because the old mouldy silicone didn’t leave it in a pretty state.

Sealing Shower Tiles

After everything was cleaned and dried, I sealed the walls using Tile Doctor Wall Tile and Grout Sealer Aerosol Spray. What makes this such a brilliant product is how easy it is to use. It is a spray-on sealer that adds long lasting protection against water, dirt, grease, mould and limescale. This reduces the amount of maintenance required.

When I had finished sealing the tiles and grout, I applied new, high quality and mould resistant silicone. With that, the restoration was complete. The whole process took only a day’s work, but you must agree that a fantastic outcome was achieved. The landlord and tenants were very happy with it, remarking that if they didn’t know any better, they would’ve thought it was a brand-new installation.

Bath Shower Tile After Refresh Stockport

 
 
Source: Dirty Bath Tile and Grout Cleaned and Sealed in Stockport

Renovating a Quarry Tiled Hearth in Lindow End

We received an inquiry from a client in Lindow End near Wilmslow Golf Club in the Cheshire stockbroker belt. They were restoring their home and were unhappy with the state of the Quarry tiled hearth under their log burning stove. We arranged a site visit to survey the tile and grout and provide a quote for restoring the appearance. The village is situated in what’s known as the ‘Cheshire Golden Triangle’ which is one of the most sought-after places to live in the UK after London. As a result, we often find ourselves in this area working on some very nice properties, so it wasn’t long before we were able to call in and survey the tiles.

Quarry Tiled Hearth Before Grout Colouring Lindow End

As you can see from the pictures the hearth was quite dirty and the grouting had discoloured from years of use of the wood burner. The work here was a minor part of their restoration which had included significant building work. We agreed a price to carry out the work, which should only take a day and were able to return the following week.

Cleaning a Quarry Tiled Hearth

Our first job was to cover the newly sanded and sealed wooden floors with dust sheets, so we didn’t mark them as we came in the front door to the lounge. We always try and make as little mess as possible and we are always as careful as possible.

We then sprayed Tile Doctor Pro-Clean on the fire hearth tiles. This is a multi-purpose tile and grout cleaner which would make light work of the dirty tiles. The product was left to soak into the Quarry tile and grout for about twenty minutes before being scrubbed in. The hearth was a small area, so this was done by hand and then washed down with clean water.

The dirty residue was removed using a wet vacuum then the tiles where wiped down with a clean micro fibre cloth. We then dried off the tiles using a little encouragement with a heat gun to speed up the drying process. Speed drying the tile and grout in this manor would allow us to complete the work in one visit.

Applying Sandstone Grout Colourant

Once the tiles and grout lines were dry it was clear that years of dirt and soiling had stained the grout, so although no much cleaner it was clear more work would be needed to give the grout a fresh and consistent appearance.

To address this issue with the grout we selected to apply a Sandstone Tile Doctor Grout Colourant. This is applied with a small brush and brushed it into the grout lines. It is quite a precise job but any colourant that goes onto the tiles is removed with a baby wipe before it dries. This process really transformed the look of the grout, the colourant also forms a barrier over the grout which will protect it going forward and make it easier to clean.

Sealing Quarry Tiles

The Quarry tiles were then given a coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating colour enhancing sealer. This brings out the best in the quarry tiles and adds protection against future staining which will be needed given its location.

Quarry Tiled Hearth After Grout Colouring Lindow End

The client was very happy with the finish, in fact the hearth looked like it had been newly tiled, the impact of the recoloured grout was that striking. Sometimes the smallest jobs can be the most rewarding.

 

Professional Restoration of a Quarry Tiled Hearth in Cheshire

Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Deep Cleaned in Goostrey

Pictured below is an old Quarry tiled floor in the Kitchen of a house in the small farming village of Goostrey. I went over to survey the floor at the request of the owner who felt it was overdue a deep clean and seal.

Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning Goostrey

It was a classic floor that suited the kitchen and its Aga well however I’m sure it could tell a story. There were patches of white efflorescent salts in front of the Aga itself and another section of floor where the tiles were a slightly darker shade. I assume some replacements were made in this section at some point in the past. Efflorescence occurs when damp in the subfloor rises through the tiles depositing white alkaline salts on the surface of the tile as the moisture evaporates. This is quite a common problem in older properties where no damp proof membrane is present under the floor and more so where you have a warm Aga heating the space and encouraging evaporation.

As per usual the floor was survey noting all the points above and then I carried out a test clean on a small part of the floor. This helps me understand what products and process I need to follow in order to renovate the floor and thereby product an accurate quote for the work. This went well and the owner was happy for us to process so we agreed a date to start the work which would take two days.

Cleaning a Quarry Tiled Floor

To clean the floor and strip off any remaining sealer I first created a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go which was sprayed onto the tiles and then left to soak in. Remove and go is a powerful stripper and cleaner that is safe to use on tile and stone. The product is designed to loosen paint stains, adhesives and many types of urethane and wax coatings so they can be easily removed.

After thirty minutes the solution was scrubbed into the tile and grout using a weighted rotary machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad and running at a slow speed. The resulting cleaning slurry was rinsed off with water and then extracted from the floor using a wet vacuum. I repeated this process until I was confident the tiles were clean and free of old sealer.

The next step was to neutralise the alkaline salts in the floor which could later lead to efflorescence by treating it to an acid wash using Tile Doctor Acid Gel. The gel was left to soak in for five minutes before washing it off using the wet vacuum to get the floor as dry as possible.

Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor During Cleaning Goostrey

Sealing a Quarry Tiled Floor

The floor was left to dry out overnight and the next morning I returned to the property and took some readings from the floor with a damp meter. It’s important to check the floor is dry before sealing because any excess moisture can cloud the sealer and prevent it from doing its job properly.

Once satisfied that the floor was dry, I applied a single coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is a breathable impregnating sealer that enhances colour and protects from within. I left the floor to dry for one hour and then followed up with four coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go which provides both a robust surface seal and a long-lasting low sheen finish. The new sealer transformed the tiles and gave the whole floor a uniform appearance

Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor After Cleaning Goostrey

The customer was very impressed with our work and asked if we can come back later to remove the white tiles in front of the Aga and replace with Quarry tiles to match the rest of the floor.

Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor After Cleaning Goostrey

 

Professional Quarry Tiled Floor Restoration in East Cheshire

Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Hidden Under Screed Restored in Mobberley

We were asked to take a look at restoring a Red and Black Quarry tiled kitchen floor that at some time in the past had been covered in a floor levelling screed. The house was in the old village of Mobberly on the East side of Cheshire and was undergoing significant renovation works. The compound was up to one inch thick in places and underneath the screen was a lovely red and black quarry tiled floor that was just about visible in the thinner parts of the screed. The owner was keen to understand if they could be restored.

After inspecting the floor, I offered to do a test clean and given the state of the floor decided to tackle it with a strong batch of tile doctor remove and go mixed 50/50 with Tile Doctor HBU Remover. This was applied to the floor, left to soak for ten minutes and then scrubbed in. The process was successful and demonstrated the screed could be removed and tiles cleaned and so we were booked into to do the job a couple of weeks later.

Red and Black Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Covered in Screed Test Clean in Mobberly

Cleaning a Quarry Tiled Floor Hidden Under Screed

On our return to the property I took a couple of photographs before we began removing the screed.

Red and Black Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Covered in Screed Before Cleaning in Mobberly Red and Black Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Covered in Screed Before Cleaning in Mobberly

I then setup about removing the screed starting with the application of a fresh batch of Tile Doctor Remove and Go mixed 50:50 with HBU Remover. HBU stands for Heavy Build-Up and therefore just the thing for this floor. The solution was applied to the floor and left to soak in for some time. This had the action of softening the floor levelling screed and we were able to remove it using a combination of wallpaper steamer and scrapers taking care not to scratch the quarry tiles. In some of the more stubborn areas the floor was covered in a plastic sheet and the solution left to sweat into the screed overnight to soften it further.

Red and Black Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Covered in Screed During Cleaning in Mobberly Red and Black Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Covered in Screed During Cleaning in Mobberly

When all the screed was removed we washed the tile and grout down with Tile Doctor Pro-Clean worked in with a rotary buffing machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad. This brought out the ingrained dirt which was rinsed away with water and then extracted off the floor using a wet vacuum.

With the screed removed it revealed a couple of areas where the floor tiles had become lose and would need rebuilding, both areas were near doorways so I suspect past home improvement work had cause the tiles to lift.

Red and Black Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Showing Damaged Tile Section in Mobberly Red and Black Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Showing Damaged Tile Section in Mobberly

We were able to re-use all of the tiles and after rebuilding the subfloor they were laid and grouted in.

Red and Black Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Showing Repaired Tile Section in Mobberly Red and Black Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor Showing Repaired Tile Section in Mobberly

Sealing a Quarry Tiled Floor

With the floor now clean and lose tiles re-laid the next day we moved onto to the final job of sealing the Quarry tiles. First checking to ensure the floor was dry we then proceeded to apply three coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that leaves a matt effect and brings out the colour in the tile.

Red and Black Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor After Cleaning and Sealing in Mobberly

It was a long job spread over quite a few days but it was well worth the effort. The costumer couldn’t believe the transformation that had taken place to the floor.

Red and Black Quarry Tiled Kitchen Floor After Cleaning and Sealing in Mobberly

 
 

Professional Quarry Tiled Floor Restoration in Mobberley