Cleaning Sealing Red and Black Quarry Floor Tiles Buxton

The photographs below are from a client who lives in an older property in Buxton which you may have heard of due to its famous spa and popular spring water. Buxton is situated in the county of Derbyshire, in the East Midlands and has the highest elevation of any market town in England.

The property had Red and Black Quarry tiles laid throughout the Kitchen and the downstairs in a diamond pattern. Quarry tiles are very hard wearing and thus a popular and traditional flooring option for high traffic areas in the past. Certainly, in this case they were in good physical condition given their age and they looked very much in-keeping with the period property along with the fireplaces.

Red Black Quarry Tiled Floor Before Cleaning Buxton
The client loved the feature floor but felt the tiles were looking neglected and they were struggling to keep them clean. This is a common problem with quarry tiles which are porous and need to be sealed to keep them looking good, however over time the sealer wears down with use and dirt becomes ingrained in the pores of the tile making them impossible to clean effectively. The client just wanted them to look clean and ensure they could be easily maintained.

Red Black Quarry Tiled Floor Before Cleaning Buxton
I recommended deep cleaning the tiles to remove the dirt and the sealing them to protect them going forward a process which usually takes around two days.

Cleaning and Restoring Quarry tiles

My quote was accepted, and I returned on the agreed date to complete the work starting with the first part of the process which involved removing the ingrained dirt, grime and any remaining sealer that may be present on the floor. To do this I applied a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and left it to dwell for ten minutes. The Pro-Clean was then worked into the tile and grout using a black buffing pad fitted to a rotary machine. Once done the now soiled cleaning solution was rinsed off the floor with water and a wet vacuum was used to extract it from the floor. Some areas of tile were stained with paint slashes from decorating and these was spot treated with Tile Doctor Nanotech HBU which stands for Heavy Build-Up remover and is pretty good at dealing with all sorts of stains and tough soiling on tiled floors. The floor was then dried using the wet vacuum and left overnight to allow it to dry out thoroughly.

Sealing Quarry Floor Tiles

The client had left the radiators on overnight to aid the drying process and by the next morning the floor was nice and dry. I tested the moisture content to be sure and it was well within acceptable levels and therefore ready for the next stage. It’s important to ensure the tiles are dry before applying a sealer as the sealant won’t cure and the result will be compromised.

I sealed the floor a couple of coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow sealer. I chose this product because the house had some damp problems due to its’ age and I decided a breathable fully sealer was the best option for this situation as this will allow moisture to rise-up through the tile and evaporate without causing any problems. Colour Grow works by soaking into the pores of the tile protecting it from within and improving the natural colours of the tile in the process.

Red Black Quarry Tiled Floor After Cleaning Buxton
The end result was the floor looked much cleaner and colours in the tiles were more vibrant, needless to say my client was very pleased with the result and the sealer will ensure the floor is easy to maintain floor for the future as per their brief.

Red Black Quarry Tiled Floor After Cleaning Buxton
 

Professional Restoration of Quarry Tiles in Derbyshire

Brown and Cream Victorian Tiled Hallway Refreshed with a Deep Clean and Seal in Buxton

When we encounter original Victorian tiles we can be assured of one thing – and that is that they are very likely be at least 100 years old. However, what we can’t typically be assured of is the maintenance history of these tiles. Over the course of a century, these tiles can be exposed to a variety of cleaning and sealing methods, repairs and modifications, and very often coverings such as carpet and linoleum. Fortunately, Victorian Tiles are very robust which is just as well as many customers of ours want their Victorian tiles to be restored their former glory despite years of neglect and poor maintenance.

This example is of an unusual Brown and Cream Victorian Tiled hallway I restored recently in Buxton, a wonderful area which is sometimes referred to as “The Gateway to the Peak District”.

Victorian Tiles Before Cleaning Buxton Victorian Tiles Before Cleaning Buxton

Cleaning Original Victorian Hallway Tiles

To begin the restoration, I applied Tile Doctor Remove and Go liberally across the floor and worked it into the tiles using a black buffing pad fitted to a rotary machine. Remove and Go is a multi-functional product which both strips old sealers and coatings as well as drawing out ingrained dirt and stains.

Victorian Tiles During Cleaning Buxton

Next, I treated the area with Tile Doctor Acid Gel, which is a blend of phosphoric and hydrochloric acids in gel form, and is used to eliminate efflorescence and mineral deposits. These problems are commonly caused by damp issues which affect old Victorian floors that lack a damp-proof membrane.

I rinsed off the acid gel with water to remove any trace of cleaning product. The floor in question was only around 2m2 and since it was a very warm and sunny day the tiles quickly dried out (assisted with a little help from a heat gun). It’s important the tiles are dry before sealing so later that afternoon I was able to confirm this with the aid of a damp meter.

Sealing Original Victorian Hallway Tiles

To seal the tiles, I used Tile Doctor Seal and Go, which is a topical sealer which provides both robust protection and leaves a smooth, glossy finish on the floor. Some customers choose to opt for a sealer which provides a natural-look, matte finish, but in this case the customer really wanted the floor to shine.

Since the floor is so old it’s hard to achieve a ‘perfect’ outcome, but the improvements we can make are still hugely significant. Happily, the customer was very pleased with the result and left the following testimonial on the Tile Doctor feedback system:

”Very well mannered, polite and genuine young man. The finished work is good, although only time will tell how long it lasts and continues to shine. Ask me again for feedback in 3 months’ time.”

I’m confident she will not be disappointed.

Victorian Tiles After Cleaning Buxton Victorian Tiles After Cleaning Buxton

 
 

Professional Restoration of Original Victorian Hallway Tiles in the Peak District