This client from Wilmslow contacted me regarding their Travertine floor tiles, requesting a deep clean and seal with particular focus on the grout which was very dirty. Sometimes it’s possible to give a quote over the phone with the pictures emailed over but in most cases I’m in the local area anyway so it’s not a problem to pop in, survey the floor and work out an accurate quote.
They had explained on the phone the grout was the biggest problem and I could see it had darkened a lot. The top layer of cementous grout is will trap dirt unless sealed along with the tiles, in fact what tends to happen is the dirt from the tiles is washed into the grout lines during cleaning. The Travertine tiles had lost a lot of their character and generally looked flat and in need of a good clean and polish.
Having taken a good look at the floor I was confident I could achieve a good finish, so I carried out a quick test clean on a small part of the floor to show what was possible. They were delighted with the test result and could now see the potential of the floor. Happy with the quote which included Grout cleaning and stone polishing a date was agreed for my return.
Cleaning and Polishing a Travertine Tiled Kitchen Floor
To start I focused on cleaning the grout lines using a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean scrubbed into the grout recess by hand to ensure it was as clean as could be. I couldn’t guarantee the grout would come up as well as it did, especially in the kitchen where it can be exposed to deep seated staining, so I had given the client the additional option of using a Grout Colourant. Fortunately, this wasn’t needed and after rinsing off the soil I could see it had responded well to treatment.
To renovate the large Travertine floor, I used a set of Tile Doctor Diamond Encrusted Burnishing Pads. I used the same process on a marble floor I renovated previously in Prestbury. Basically, the pads are applied to the floor using a rotary buffer in sequence from coarse 400-grit through to a fine 1500-grit.
The pads are fitted to a rotary machine and run over the floor until each tile has been burnished using only water to help lubricate. The first pad cleans up the stone and removes old sealers, this is then followed with the finer 800-grit, 1500-grit and finally a 3000-grit pad. Apart from the 3000-grit, each pad is applied with water and the floor is rinsed and the soil extracted afterwards with a wet vacuum. By now the floors appearance was already looking so much cleaner.
Sealing a Travertine Tiled Kitchen Floor
The Travertine and grout need to be dry before the next stage of sealing so once I was done polishing, I left the floor to dry off overnight with assistance from a couple of floor fans.
I came back the next day to seal the floor using Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal but before starting the tiles were checked for moisture using a damp meter. The readings were fine, so I started applying the first of two coats of sealer leaving the first to dry before applying the next. Ultra-Seal is natural look impregnating sealant that protects the floor by soaking into the stone and grout occupying the pores and preventing dirt from residing there. The floor came up a treat, with a lovely sheen and really transformed the kitchen.
My client was equally happy with their now clean and polished Travertine floor and even commented that they thought it “looked like new floor”.
For aftercare cleaning I left them with a complimentary bottle of Tile Doctor Stone Soap which will help keep the floor clean whilst maintaining the polished patina. Maintenance is key to keeping the floor looking this good.