Victorian Tiled Hallway Restoration at Jodrell Bank Farmhouse

We received an enquiry from a client who had just brought a farmhouse with a Victorian Tiled floor close to Jodrell Bank near the village of Goostrey. Jodrell Bank is a few miles north of Homes Chapel and famous around the world for the nearby Jodrell Bank Observatory which is an astrophysics centre and part of the University of Manchester.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Before Restoration Jodrell Bank

On restoring the farmhouse, the client discovered a Victorian tiled floor hidden under their hall carpet and wondered if it was worth saving. I rang the client up to arrange a day to do a test clean and talk through the process of restoring the floor. Turns out the floor was looking washed out and there were a few tiles that would need replacing. I went over to survey the floor and complete a test clean which worked out well. Certainly, the client was happy with the result and could now see the floors potential, so a date was arranged to start work.

Victorian Tiled Hallway Before Restoration Jodrell Bank Zoom

Cleaning/Repairing a Farmhouse Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

The first job was to cut out the damaged tiles and replace them, this was done using spare tiles I had been saving over the years for replacements and they were fixed using rapid set tile adhesive which meant I was able to start cleaning the floor after two hours.

To get the years of ingrained dirt out of the tiles I used Tile Doctor Acid Gel which is a blend of phosphoric and hydrochloric acids in a gel form, so it stays on top of the tiles and does not run off. This was left to dwell for a good ten minutes before scrubbing the floor using a weighted floor buffer fitted with a 200-grit resurfacing pad. A little water was used to lubricate the resurfacing pad and dilute the acid gel which helps stop efflorescence which is often a problem with floors of this age. The solution soon turned into a dark slurry which was then removed using a vet vacuum.

The next step was to repeat the process using more water and a 400-grit burnishing pad which refines the surface after the application of the coarser 200-grit pad. After more rinsing and extracting the floor was wiped using a microfibre cloth and then left to dry out overnight so it would be ready for sealing the next day.

Sealing a Farmhouse Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

The next morning, I took a couple of moisture readings with a damp meter to make sure the floor was dry and ready to seal. The results were good so three coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go Extra were applied using a clean microfibre cloth rubbing in circles to blend the polymers together to leave a semi sheen to the floor. I chose Seal and Go Extra due to the fact that it’s a breathable sealer that will cope with any moisture rising through the floor, this is an important consideration with old floors as they don’t have a damp-proof membrane installed under the floor.

Victorian Tiled Hallway After Restoration Jodrell Bank Zoom

The client was very satisfied with the restoration, it looked better than they had expected and of course a lot nicer than the previous hall carpet! I recommended they should use Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner to maintain the floor which is pH neutral and will ensure the longevity of the seal we had applied.

Victorian Tiled Hallway After Restoration Jodrell Bank

 

Professional Restoration of a Victorian Tiled Hallway in East 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

Grouting Wood Effect Porcelain floor tiles in Homes Chapel

I thought I would do a quick post on this request I received to finish off the grouting of these wood effect Porcelain floor tiles at a house in Homes Chapel. The owner is a DIY enthusiast and had been making some renovations to the property including the laying of this long format distressed wood effect tiles which are really realistic.

Porcelain wood effect tiles before grouting in Holmes Chapel

Grouting a Porcelain Floor

The owner had done a good job laying a level floor but was unsure how to apply the grout so put in a request for some assistance. Always happy to help what ever the situation I popped down and finished the job.

Grouting is relatively straight forward however it was made a little more complex as the grout had to be mixed with a dark gray grout powder to provide a better colour match with the tiles. Once the grout batch was made up it was just a question of pushing it into the gaps between the tiles and the using a float the sponge to remove the excess grout from the tile.

Porcelain wood effect tiles after grouting in Holmes Chapel

Once the grout had dried I washed the floor once more and left the happy customer.

Porcelain wood effect tiles before grouting in Holmes Chapel Porcelain wood effect tiles after grouting in Holmes Chapel

 
 

Grouting Porcelain Wood Effect Tiles in Cheshire