Sealing Tips for Sandstone Kitchen Floor Tiles

I can’t stress how important a sealer is when it comes to maintaining the look of a stone floor and although they can protect a floor for many years if not maintained they will all but disappear in high traffic areas allowing dirt and stains to penetrate the pores of the stone. This gradual degradation occurs over such a long period it usually happens without being noticed.

This Sandstone tiled kitchen floor and entrance hall at a barn conversion property in Sleaford had not been sealed in eight years. Since Sandstone is naturally highly porous, dirt and staining had easily become easily ingrained in the tiles. The result? A very dull and poor looking set of tiles.

Sandstone Floor Before Cleaning Sleaford Sandstone Floor Before Cleaning Sleaford

After difficulties trying to resolve the situation by themselves, the property owners asked me to deep clean the tiles to restore the appearance of the Sandstone which had faded over the years. Thankfully we have the right products, equipment, and experience to be able to carry out the restoration quickly and efficiently.

Cleaning a Dull and Dirty Sandstone Tiled Floor

The first day of work involved preparing the area by protecting other surfaces and removing the kickboards form under the kitchen units. This was followed by a deep clean of the floor firstly with our high pressure Rotovac system which applies hot water under high pressure to force out ingrained dirt and muck from the stone whilst simultaneously extracting the soil back to a tank on our van. I followed this by scrubbing and rinsing the tiles and grout with a solution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, a high alkaline powerful cleaner we use on natural stone floors. This helped to tackle any particularly deeply ingrained dirt and clean up the grout.

Sandstone Floor During Cleaning Sleaford Sandstone Floor During Cleaning Sleaford

Following the clean, I installed turbo dryers and used the already in-built underfloor heating to dry the Sandstone, which was necessary as it is naturally a very porous stone and easily absorbs moisture.

Sandstone Floor After Cleaning Sleaford

Sealing a Sandstone Tiled Floor

On the second day, the tiles were completely dry and ready to be sealed however before sealing I asked for the underfloor heating to be switched off so the fresh sealer would cure more naturally. To seal the floor, I opted to use Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that occupies the pores in the Sandstone so dirt can’t, additionally it’s formulated to enhance the naturally occurring colours in the Sandstone – those which after such a long time the customer was keen to see again.

Sandstone Floor During Sealing Sleaford

After two coats of Colour Grow were applied, the transformation was well and truly complete. The customer was also well and truly happy. After eight years, the Sandstone tiles were restored to better than their original condition.

Sandstone Floor After Sealing Sleaford

One question I often get asked is how do you know when your sealer has worn down. The answer is to conduct a water test on your tiles, if the water forms a bubble on the surface of the tile as in the photo below then it shows the sealer is doing its job.

Sandstone Floor After Cleaning Sleaford

 
 
Source: Sandstone Tile and Grout Cleaning and Restoration Service in Lincolnshire

Repairing Cracks in Sandstone Tiles

We often get called out when other trades with less experience in stone cleaning fail to make a difference which was the case with these Red Jurassic Sandstone Stone steps at a house in Preston which had been stained with paint splashes and years of grime. The customer had tried several solutions to restore these steps including having a go themselves buy applying some Chemicals from a local Tile Shop, however again this didn’t achieve the results the customer wanted so they called us after we were recommended to them.

Red jurassic sandstone steps before Red jurassic sandstone landing before cleaning

Burnishing Red Jurassic Sandstone

I took a look at the Sandstone and tested a few methods before deciding to go with a process called Burnishing which involves the application of diamond encrusted burnishing pads. The pads come in a set of four and are applied in sequence from Coarse, through medium, fine and super fine; you need to use a little water to lubricate as you go and also rinse with water between the application of each pad. Naturally due to the tight space I couldn’t use a set of full size pads, only he smaller 6 inch pads which fit a small hand buffer.

Red jurassic sandstone steps after burnishing

Sealing an Indian Sandstone Tiled Floor

The floor was left to dry off overnight and then I returned the next day to seal the whole floor with two coats of our impregnating sealer Tile Doctor Colour Grow. The sealer fills the pores of the stone to prevent ingrained dirt and stains, while also emphasising the natural colours in the stone.

Red jurassic sandstone steps after sealing Red jurassic sandstone landing after sealing

The full process successfully restored the red colour in the Sandstone and have come up quite well considering they are over 300 years old.
 
 
Source: Sandstone Cleaning and Restoration Service in Lancashire

Deep Cleaning an Unsealed Sandstone Floor

The owners of this barn conversion in Rugeley had got to breaking point with their large Sandstone tiled kitchen and utility floor. They had tried various different cleaning methods without success to clean the floor, but it always appeared grimy, and they suspected it had not been sealed following installation.

Sandstone kitchen floor before cleaning Rugeley

This would make sense: a lack of sealer would have allowed the dirt to become ingrained in the stone, making it impossible to clean. Interestingly their next door neighbour had suffered the same problem and decided to replace the floor entirely. The property owners were seriously considering the same as a solution, that is until they as found Tile Doctor. I was called down to the property to see what could be done.

Sandstone kitchen floor before cleaning Rugeley

Removing Ingrained Dirt from Sandstone Tiles

To begin the cleaning process, I applied a strong, undiluted quantity of Tile Doctor Pro Clean to the floor and left it to dwell for a few minutes. This allows the high alkaline cleaner to seep into the pores of the stone to begin to break down the ingrained dirt. After the short dwelling period, I scrubbed the floor using a rotary machine with a black pad attached.

With the tiles clean, I then focused specifically on cleaning the grout lines and edges of the floor using a grout brush in combination with a steamer. Finally, I rinsed the floor with cold water, before vacuuming up the resulting cleaning slurry before leaving the tiles to dry completely overnight. The drying period is exceptionally important because excess moisture can cloud any new sealers and damage their performance.

Sealing Sandstone Tiles

I returned to the property the next day to find the clean tiles showing some signs of damp. It’s possible that the property, being a barn conversion, does not have a damp proof membrane installed beneath the floor, making these sorts of issues inevitable.

To be on the safe side, I opted to seal the Sandstone tiles with Tile Doctor Seal and Go Extra, which allows full moisture vapour transmission, making it fully breathable and ideal for these situations. It also provides durable protection against ingrained dirt and stains and does a good job enhancing the look of the tiles.

Sandstone kitchen floor after cleaning Rugeley

The customers were very happy with the result, and left the comment below on the Tile Doctor Feedback system.

WONDERFUL, delight to have Trevor restoring my very tired flagstone kitchen floor, it is now beautiful. Many thanks Trevor a job very well done.

I’m sure they were also relieved that they won’t have to go to the expense of replacing their fantastic Sandstone tiled floor. What was Once a problem is now a real asset to the property.

Sandstone kitchen floor after cleaning Rugeley

 
 
Source: Stone and Grout Cleaning and Restoration Service in Staffordshire

Sandstone Patio Restoration in Rushden

Lichen, moss and other plant-based staining is a common sight on patios exposed to the UK climate. For many property owners, it’s a very difficult task to keep patios looking great in the face of the natural effects of the environment. However always happy to help Tile Doctor is available to provide the professional cleaning and sealing needed on a regular basis.

This Sandstone tiled patio in Rushden was certainly a prime candidate for restoration. Not only was it completely covered in lichen and moss, but it was also cracked in parts and missing grout. The patio would therefore need not only cleaning and sealing, but also re-grouting.

Sandstone patio slabs before cleaning Rushden Sandstone patio slabs before cleaning Rushden

Cleaning a Stained and Damaged Sandstone Patio

To begin the restoration, I opted to power jet wash the entire area to remove as much of the initial layers of moss. Then, I mixed a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro Clean, which is a powerful and reliable alkaline cleaner suitable for use on both internal and external natural stone tiles. This was applied liberally to the patio and scrubbed into the stone to cut through the particularly stubborn stains. The two photos below show the fantastic result.

Sandstone patio slabs after cleaning Rushden Sandstone patio slabs after cleaning Rushden

Re-grouting and Sealing a Sandstone Patio

After completing the cleaning phase, I allowed the patio to dry completely overnight before returning to re-grout the entire area with mortar. To finish off I applied a fresh sealer in the form of Tile Doctor Seal and Go Extra, which an acrylic-based, fully breathable sealer appropriate for outside use.

The below pictures show the final result. As you can see, it was a complete transformation – and my very happy customer will agree! With the right products and methods, it’s possible to bring new life back to weathered patios.

Sandstone patio slabs after cleaning Rushden Sandstone patio slabs after cleaning Rushden

 
 
Source: Stone Patio Cleaning and Restoration Service in Northamptonshire

Putting New Life Into a Yorkstone Floor Near Sheffield

This customer living at a property in Deepcar near Sheffield, experienced problems keeping their twenty year old Yorkstone floor clean and I was asked to take a look and see what could be done to resolve the situation.

After inspection I could see that the sealer had worn off and now dirt had become lodged in the pores of the stone, leaving the floor looked grey and dull to the extent even the customer couldn’t remember that their stone floor had some colour once! Due to all the problems the customer had with experienced with the floor, they had reached the point where they were thinking of ripping the floor up entirely.

Yorkstone floor before cleaning and sealing in Deepcar Sheffield

Luckily they had found Tile Doctor and I was more than happy to see what I could do to resolve the problem. Yorkstone is similar to Sandstone which I was very familiar with, so I assured them the floor could be rejuvenated and conducted a test clean on a patch of the floor. Seeing the result, the customer was happy to go ahead with the work.

Yorkstone floor before cleaning and sealing in Deepcar Sheffield

Cleaning a Dull and Dirty Yorkstone Tiled Floor

To clean the floor and strip away old sealers, I used a strong dilution of our alkaline cleaner known as Tile Doctor Pro Clean, working it into the stone with a black scrubbing pad fitted to my rotary machine. I followed by removing the dirty and chemical-infused water from the floor with a wet vax machine.

Although this combination worked really well, I still found some light traffic areas where some of the old sealer remained. In order to restore a floor properly you have to strip the floor right back and remove all the old treatments from the floor otherwise the final result can look patchy and you may find the new sealer isn’t compatible with the existing.

To these problem areas I applied Tile Doctor’s Remove & Go, which is a dedicated
stripper and coatings remover, applied with a long dwell-time it can remove sealers, draw out ingrained stains and eliminate heavy grease build-up. I left the Remove & Go to soak into the stone for about ten to fifteen minutes before scrubbing it in with the black scrubbing pad, following again by removing the resulting slurry from the floor with a wet wax machine and rinsing the area with water. After the floor was successfully cleaned I carefully rinsed it again to get any trace of cleaning product off the floor and then dried it as much as possible with the wet vacuum.

Sealing a Yorkstone Tiled Floor

I returned to the property the next day, starting by making sure that the floor was completely dry for sealing. Unfortunately, there were some areas that were still very damp. I worked on these damp areas with my heat gun, but couldn’t get them dry enough, so after consulting with the customer, I decided to leave it to dry for another day with heating on maximum and doors/windows opened.

Upon my return these problem areas were less severe, and I managed to get them dry by applying my heat gun for an hour. When the floor was ready to be sealed I applied six coats of Tile Doctor Seal & Go Sealer, which is a water based sealer (no smell) that provides durable protection and a high quality satin finish.

Yorkstone floor after cleaning and sealing in Deepcar Sheffield

The customer was really happy with the work carried out and left the following feedback:

“Tony has done a fantastic job on our kitchen floor, which I was considering ripping up due to the state of it – but now it looks like new! Tony was punctual and very hard working – excellent customer service. Have already recommended him to a colleague.”

Yorkstone floor after cleaning and sealing in Deepcar Sheffield

 
 
Source: Yorkstone Floor Cleaning and Restoration Service in Derbyshire

Resurfacing Old and Flaking Sandstone Flagstone Floor in Lancashire

This Flagstone tiled floor at a cottage in the market town of Chorley was suffering from significant shaling issues, which came as no surprise when I heard that the stone was laid nearly 300 years ago. The floor is an original feature of the property, but over recent years it had started to flake and become very rough, making it very difficult to keep clean, uncomfortable to live with, and not very pleasing to look at.

The process is natural to the Flagstone, and some people are quick to assume nothing can be done to counter it. In fact, the cleaning company that the property owner had recruited was only able to give the stone a basic mop, and had suggested having the entire floor replaced. The property owner was about to give up on the floor, but instead contacted Tile Doctor to see what could be done.

Flagstone floor before restoration in Chorley Flagstone floor before restoration in Chorley

Milling a Flagstone Floor with Shaling Issues

At Tile Doctor, we have created a process known as Milling, which involves smoothing out the rough surface of the stone, making it easier to keep clean. To do this we attached several diamond encrusted disc shaped milling pads of varying coarse grits to a rotary machine before running the machine over the floor, effectively grinding down the stone to remove the rough and leave the worn floor polished and looking at its best again.

I used plain water to periodically wash away any residue from the Milling, and soaked up the excess moisture with a wet-bad machine. With the floor surface now serviceable, the customer’s preferred cleaning company can mop it effectively without the mops being shredded by the jagged and uneven stone!

Sealing a Flagstone Tiled Floor

To further ensure that the Flagstone would be easy to keep clean it would need to be sealed with an appropriate sealer. Once the floor had been allowed to dry fully, I applied two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow, an impregnating sealer which provides a matte, colour-enhancing finish. As you can see from the before and after photographs, this really brought out the natural shades in the Flagstone.

As a fully breathable sealer which allows for Vapour Moisture Transmission (VMT), Colour Grow is the best product for an old floor like this one which does not have a Damp Proof Membrane (DMP) fitted. Whereas a lot of other similar sealers will not suffice, Colour Grow is ideal in this particular situation.

Flagstone floor after restoration in Chorley Flagstone floor after restoration in Chorley

The results were fantastic, and the customer is really pleased that they will no longer have to replace the tiles. The appearance and condition of the Flagstone had been improved so much that most people would not believe it had been laid nearly three centuries ago!
 
 
Source: Restoring a Flaking Flagstone Floor in Lancashire

Smoothing Rough Indian Sandstone Tiles for Interior Use

Here we have a six year old Indian Sandstone tiled floor located a property on the outskirts of Lancaster. Measuring 100 metres squared, the very large floor had under floor heating in the concrete sub base. The type of stone used inside the property is what we commonly refer to as ‘patio Sandstone’, a material which is usually used outside because of its very rough texture. It’s not particularly comfortable to walk across in bare feet, hence why many people consider it be impractical for internal flooring.

Indian sandstone floor Lancashire before restoration

Nonetheless, the property owner was keen to make the rough textured floor as feet-friendly as possible for people walking over it. At Tile Doctor we have developed a process known as milling, which utilises diamond encrusted pads combined with a weighted rotary machine to smooth the rough surface, leaving it looking and feeling a lot nicer and more practical to live with. The milling process is only done once, but while the Sandstone will still need cleaning and sealing in the future, it won’t be nearly as difficult as when it was rough.

The job would take over two weeks to complete due to the fact that the existing grout needed to be removed and replaced with a flexible floor grout: a very time consuming process.

Milling an Indian Sandstone Tiled Floor

As mentioned, the surface of the Sandstone was very rough, and so needed to be milled down to make it a lot smoother to look after and make it easy to clean and seal. This was achieved by using Tile Doctor’s 50 Grit diamond encrusted burnishing pads, fitted to a weighed rotary machine and run along the entire surface area of the floor. Through this process the stone became much smoother and more aesthetic – completing one of our main objectives for the customer.

Indian sandstone floor Lancashire during restoration

Next, we started breaking out the already loose and badly applied grout with our grout removal tools. The builder who had installed the floor had used a sand/cement-based grout which wasn’t flexible. As a result, it started to crumble and loosen quite quickly after exposure to the underfloor heating. We removed this and replaced it with a far more flexible grout.

Indian sandstone floor Lancashire during restoration

Sealing an Indian Sandstone Tiled Floor

Once the whole area had been successfully milled and the grout replaced, the Sandstone floor was left to dry out over the weekend. Upon our return to the property, we cleaned off any dust and resin left over from the milling and grouting processes, before leaving it to dry for a further 24 hours.

Indian sandstone floor Lancashire after restoration

The next day we returned to seal the whole floor with two coats of our impregnating sealer Tile Doctor Colour Grow. The sealer fills the pores of the Sandstone to prevent ingrained dirt and stains, while also emphasising the natural colours in the stone. It also provides a robust matte finish, which is what the customer wished for.

Indian sandstone floor Lancashire after restoration

It wasn’t the easiest of processes to get the Indian Sandstone into a condition where it would be both suitable for internal flooring and aesthetically pleasing, but the results proved to be very much worth the time and effort invested. The customer was very pleased with the transformation.
 
 
Source: Sandstone Flooring Cleaning and Maintenance Service in Lancashire

Restoring Yorkstone Flagstones From the Industrial Age

For this job, I had the pleasure of visiting the historic Salts Mill, a former textile mill turned art gallery, shopping centre, and restaurant complex near Bingley, West Yorkshire. It was built in 1853 by the famous manufacturer and philanthropist, Sir Titus Salt, and was at one point the largest industrial building in the world by total floor area.

Salts Mill Yorkshire Stone Before Cleaning
As you can imagine, a lot of the rooms at Salts Mill are over a century and a half old. Most of them also contained stone flooring made from Yorkstone – a type of Sandstone unique to Yorkshire, and easily distinguishable due to its rich, natural yellow colouring. Unfortunately, one such floor in the Salts Mill was in quite a bad state. It has completely lost its vibrance – appearing more grey than yellow – and was evidentially in need of a very deep clean and fresh seal.

Salts Mill Yorkshire Stone Before Cleaning

Cleaning an Old Yorkstone Floor

I started the Yorkstone tile restoration by soaking the floor in a strong dilution of our reliable alkaline-based tile cleaner, Tile Doctor Pro Clean, and scrubbing it in using a rotary machine fitted with a scrubbing pad. This quickly removed the initial layers of muck and, in the process, revealed oil-based paint and glue stains all over the floor.

Salts Mill Yorkshire Stone During Cleaning
To break down the oil and paint I applied Tile Doctor Remove & Go, which is our heavy duty stripper, remover and degreaser. This quickly ate through the paint and glue, and I followed by giving the floor another thorough clean with Pro Clean. Finally, I rinsed the floor with clean water before leaving it to dry for a full two days due to the amount of chemical cleaning product and water applied.

Sealing an Old Yorkstone Floor

Upon my return to the Salts Mill two days later, I ran some quick damp tests to check for any excess moisture which could’ve prevented me from sealing the floor. Thankfully, the floor was dry and ready to be sealed, but it is always recommended, especially with older floors, to be aware of damp issues as these can be very troublesome.

Salts Mill Yorkshire Stone After Cleaning
My choice of sealer was Tile Doctor Seal and Go, a topical sealer which provides a robust, stain resistant seal and a durable low sheen finish all in one product. Multiple coats of Seal and Go were applied, bringing the life and character back to these classic tiles.

Salts Mill Yorkshire Stone After Cleaning

Source: Yorkstone Tile Cleaning and Restoration Service in North West Yorkshire

Sealing Newly Installed Sandstone Tiles in Yorkshire

Yorkstone is a variety of Sandstone unique to Yorkshire, and is known for its hard wearing and durable qualities. It was first manufactured during medieval times, but is still used for a range of building and construction purposes including, of course, tiled floors in houses. Yorkstone comes in a variety of natural colours, depending on the mineral makeup of the stone, and means that the tiled floors often have a unique look to them.

Yorkshire Stone Floor Before Cleaning and Sealing Driffield

This customer, living in the small Yorkshire town of Driffield is the lucky owner of a fantastic new Yorkstone tiled living room floor. Unfortunately, the floor had been installed by an independent builder, as opposed to a professional tiling company, and had been left with no sealer to ensure it would stay looking great for a long time to come. Over time, the lack of a sealer has allowed the dirt to become ingrained in the stone, making it increasingly difficult for the customer to keep the tiles clean. I was called in to bring completion to what was an unfinished job!

Yorkshire Stone Floor Before Cleaning and Sealing Driffield

Cleaning a Yorkstone Tiled Living Room Floor

As you can see from the photographs, the entire floor was quite dusty and dull looking following the recent installation. To get the tiles clean, I mixed a strong 60-40 mix of Tile Doctor Pro Clean and clean water. Pro Clean is a reliable alkaline cleaner suitable for use on most natural stone floors, including Sandstone, Quarry, and Slate.

The cleaning solution was applied to the floor and left to dwell for 20 minutes, allowing it time to penetrate the stone. Then, using my 17” rotary machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad, I proceeded to deep clean the tiles, leaving them looking immediately cleaner and more vibrant. Any resulting cleaning residue was promptly soaked up using a wet vacuum.

Yorkshire Stone Floor After Deep Cleaning Driffield

The process was repeated in the more stubborn areas, and I gave the floor a final rinse with water and left it to dry. Typically, we would leave a 12 to 24 hour drying period, depending on whether there is a damp proof membrane installed. However, this floor had underfloor heating and so dried really quickly, allowing me to seal it on the same day.

Sealing a Yorkstone Tiled Living Room Floor

The customer wished to have a matt, natural finish for the Yorkstone tiled living room, so I applied two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow, our impregnating sealer which offers a natural, no-sheen look for textured floors, while providing durable protection against ingrained dirt and stains.

Yorkshire Stone Floor After Cleaning and Sealing Driffield

As the name of the product suggests, Colour Grow contains colour intensifying properties which really helped to accentuate the rich variety of colours in the customer’s Yorkstone tiles. The results were fantastic and you can see from the water test we performed after the sealer dried how water now bubbles up on the surface of the stone.

Yorkshire Stone Floor Cleaned and Sealed Water Test Driffield

 
 
Source: Sandstone Tile and Grout Cleaning and Sealing Service in Yorkshire

Restoring the Appearance of Old Yorkshire Flagstones

This Yorkshire flagstone floor was about 20m2 in size and was well overdue a deep clean, additionally a lot of the pointing was loose or missing which would need to be resolved. The location of this job was at a house in Haworth village which is situated at the edge of the Pennine moors in West Yorkshire, the area is known as Bronte country after the famous Bronte sisters who lived here in the local parsonage in the 19th century.

Old Yorkshire Flagstones Before Cleaning Haworth

Cleaning Yorkshire Stone

To deep clean the floor the sandstone flagstones were covered in a 1:3 dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which was left to dwell and soak into the stone for 15 minutes before being scrubbed clean using a rotary machine fitted with a black pad. The now dirty cleaning solution was then removed using a wet vacuum and then the whole floor washed down with water and stubborn areas re-treated until I was satisfied.

The next step was to rake out the loose pointing and re-point with a matching grey flexible wide joint grout. This is the advantage of using a Tile Doctor to work on your tiled floors as were not just a cleaning company.

Sealing Yorkshire Stone

The floor was left to dry overnight and I returned the next day to seal the floor first checking it for dampness using a Damp Meter. The flagstones were dry so I then proceeded to seal the floor using four coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go which adds a nice subtle sheen to natural stone, it also a water based sealer so there’s no smell.

Old Yorkshire Flagstones After Cleaning Haworth

You can see from the photo that as well as protecting the floor the sealer adds to the appearance of the tiles and brings out the natural colours that were not visible earlier.
 
 
Source: Flagstone Tile Cleaning and Maintenance Service in Yorkshire

Maintaining Sandstone Floor Tiles

These Indian Fossil Sandstone tiles (sometimes known as ‘Yorkstone’ tiles) at a property in the small town of Swanland near Hull were, on initial inspection, in great condition, with no cracks or damaged tiles. However, thanks to a lack of sealer, the tiles had become ingrained with dirt, resulting in a heavy soil buildup that dulled the appearance of the stone. Also noticeable were some unsightly cement splashes around the grout lines.

Indian Sandstone Floor Before Cleaning Swanland

The property owner contacted me with the problem and I recommended that the tiles were simply in need of a deep clean and seal and after arranging a date I went over to carry out the job.

Cleaning an Indian Fossil Sandstone Floor

I started the job by tackling the cement splashes around the grout lines. In this case I opted to carefully break them down manually using a good old fashioned hammer and chisel, whereas when it comes to stubborn adhesive and paint stains I would recommend a specialised cleaner such as Tile Doctor Remove & Go.

The first step of cleaning the main area of Sandstone tiles was to mix a solution of one part Tile Doctor Pro Clean to four parts water, before applying it to the stone and scrubbing it in with a black pad fitted to a rotary machine. This helped to break down the heavy soil build up, and is an effective method for doing so on most types of natural stone floor.

Indian Sandstone Floor During Cleaning Swanland

The second step involved rinsing the floor with Tile Doctor Neutral Cleaner to neutralise the floor (after exposure to the high alkaline Pro Clean) and remove the other products used to clean the surface. This also helped to shift any remaining ingrained dirt caused by a lack of sealer, leaving the tiles clean and ready to receive a new seal.

Sealing an Indian Fossil Sandstone Floor

After completing the clean, I left the property to allow the floor to dry overnight. Upon my return the next day, I checked for excess moisture and, once satisfied the floor was dry, I proceeded to seal the floor with four coats of Tile Doctor Seal & Go. Checking for excess moisture prior to sealing is essential as it can cloud the sealer and damage its performance.

Seal & Go is a water-based topical sealer designed to build up stain resistant
protection on the surface of the floor and to allow moisture vapour transmission. It
is typically used to seal internal, unsealed porous surfaces, including Sandstone,
Quarry and Victorian tiled floors and being water based you don’t get a smell as it dries.

Indian Sandstone Floor After Cleaning Swanland

These once dull and dirty Sandstone tiles are now restored back to looking their best thanks to a deep clean. With the addition of a fresh seal, the tiles are protected against future soil build up and spillages, and have an aesthetically pleasing low-sheen finish.
 
 
Source: Sandstone Tile and Stone Cleaning and Sealing Service in East Yorkshire

Removing Floor Leveling Screed from a Red Sandstone Floor

The Red Sandstone flagstones at this property in the historic market town of Kirkby Lonsdale had been covered with carpet and underlay and to make matters worse it had a screed level laid on top of the stone to make the floor smoother to walk on before the carpet went down. The current owner of the property had discovered the floor under the carpet and was now keen on having it restored back to its former beauty as a period feature.

Red Sandstone Floor before cleaning in Kirby Lonsdale

Restoring Sandstone

Stone is difficult enough to restore with the conventional chemical approach as it is so instead we opted to use a full diamond pad cutting system which is designed to cut back the screed to the stone underneath. This involves applying a very coarse 50 grit Diamond pad, followed by a 100 Grit and so on to the 200 grit. As you can see from the results this not only removed the Screed/Self levelling compound but also revealed the true red colour of the Sandstone.

Sealing a Sandstone Tiled Floor

We had to leave to the stone to dry out for several days as the diamond system uses a lot of water to lubricate the process which can saturate the stone making it take longer to dry out. Once fully dry we applied three coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow for a nice even matt finish, colour grow also accentuates the deep colours in the natural stone.

Red Sandstone Floor after cleaning in Kirby Lonsdale

I think you will agree; this was quite the transformation.
 
 
Source: Sandstone Tile and Stone Cleaning and Sealing Service in South Cumbria

Cleaning and Sealing Indian Fossil Sandstone Floor Tiles

The pictures below are of an Indian Fossil Sandstone tiled floor at a house in the small town of Hessle which as you can see was in a need of a deep clean and seal. The tiles themselves where in good physical condition with no cracks, just a lack of sealer and a heavy build up of dirt.

Indian Fossil Sandstone Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning Hessle

Cleaning dirty Flagstone floor tiles

I started the job by dealing with some unsightly cement splashes that had been left around the grout lines, breaking them down manually using a good old fashioned hammer and chisel.

Once that was taken care of step one was to mix a solution of one part Tile Doctor Pro-Clean to four parts clean water, applying it to the tiles and scrubbing it in with a black pad fitted to a rotary machine. The second step involved rinsing the floor with Tile Doctor Neutral Cleaner to neutralise the floor and remove any trace of product used to clean the surface. This process removed the ingrained dirt caused by a lack of sealer and clean the area ready to receive a fresh seal.

Indian Fossil Sandstone Kitchen Floor During Cleaning Hessle

Sealing the Flagstone tiled floor

I left the property to allow the floor to dry over night. Upon my return the next day, I checked for excess moisture and, once satisfied the floor was dry, I proceeded to seal the floor with four coats of Tile Doctor Seal & Go. Seal & Go is a water-based topical sealer designed to build up stain resistant protection on the surface of the floor and to allow moisture vapour transmission. It is typically used to seal internal, unsealed porous surfaces, including Sandstone, Quarry and Victorian tiled floors.

Indian Fossil Sandstone Kitchen Floor After Cleaning Hessle

 
 
Source: Sandstone Tile and Stone Cleaning and Sealing Service in Yorkshire

Restoring Yorkstone Tiled Flooring after Builders

This Yorkstone tiled kitchen floor at a house in Brightonhad been hidden under 18 months worth of accumulated builders work, intended to get the property ready for new occupancy. As you might expect, the tiles were extremely dirty, caked in layers of dust and muck left over from months of brickwork. The site manager asked me to come down to the house on the South Coast to clean and seal the Yorkstone tiles before the new homeowner moved in.

Yorkstone Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning Brighton

It should be noted that Yorkstone is a tightly grained variation of Sandstone, named as such due to being worked in Yorkshire quarries since medieval times. Thanks to its hard wearing nature and being reasonably inexpensive, it is still popularly used for interior and exterior furnishing, construction and landscaping across the globe.

Cleaning a Filthy Yorkstone Tiled Floor

To clear the floor ready to be cleaned, I firstly vacuumed up the excess layers of dust and muck using my strong wet/dry vacuum. Then, I applied a solution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go stripper, mixed with a dash of Tile Doctor Grout Clean Up. This would break down any old sealer and remove the stubbornest muck, while also cleansing the grout at the same time.

Next, I attached a coarse 200 grit pad to my buffing machine and set to work eradicating the subsequent layers of muck. Almost immediately a brown sludge developed, which I promptly removed with the wet/dry vacuum. Stopping first to rinse the floor with clean water, I proceeded with the buffering process, this time with my bristly patio cleaner attachment, which was coarser still to ensure the difficult dirt was completely broken down. Finally, I rinsed the floor again with more clean water to remove any excess cleaning slurry, and then left it to dry.

Yorkstone Kitchen Floor During Cleaning Brighton

Sealing a Yorkstone Tiled Floor

Three days later, once all moisture had evaporated, I returned to the property to seal the floor. I did so by applying an initial coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow sealer, which is designed enhanced the depth of colours. Colour Grow soaks into the pores of the stone to prevent dirt from becoming trapped within, making it particularly suitable for use on other types of porous stone, such as Limestone.

As the stones were particularly riven, I carefully filled in the gaps with a paint brush, thus ensuring that the sealer covered the entire surface area. After the first coat had dried, I applied another. An hour later this too was dry and the site manager appeared, quite evidently pleased with the results.

Yorkstone Kitchen Floor After Sealing Brighton

He commented that it looked amazing and he couldn’t believe the colour range on show, especially since they had the tiles had been hidden for so longer under thick layers of muck. Thankfully, this is no longer the case, and this floor is ready to be enjoyed by the new homeowner.
 
 
Source: Yorkstone Tile and Stone Cleaning and Maintenance Service in East Sussex

Getting the Best From Indian Fosil Flagstones

This Indian Fossil Sandstone tiled floor in Skipton was in a terrible state. Indian Sandstone, sometimes known as Indian Sandstone Flags, are an alternative to Yorkshire Sandstone (or ‘Yorkstone’), which is known for being particular hard wearing and high quality.

Indian Fossil Stone floor Before Cleaning in Skipton

Nonetheless, the problems with the floor were not due to the quality of the stone, per say. Rather, the floor’s poor condition was caused by a lack of sealer, allowing the floor – and by extension the entire house – to become very dusty. In addition, the grout lines had been pointed with cement and sand instead of normal grout, which simply made the floor look messy and poorly cared for.

Indian Fossil Stone floor Before Cleaning in Skipton

I was called down to the property to set the situation right by providing a deep clean and fresh seal.

Cleaning an Indian Fossil Sandstone Floor

I started the job by dealing with the unsightly cement splashes around the grout lines, breaking them down manually using a good old fashioned hammer and chisel.

Nonetheless, my main concern around the grout lines was the grout haze caused by the excess cement. To neutralise the haze I carefully treated the grout lines with a phosphoric acid cleaner known as Tile Doctor Grout Clean Up, this product removes mineral deposits such as excess cement leaving the surface looking a lot tidier. The floor was then rinsed with water to remove the acid cleaner.

To round off the cleaning process, I mixed a solution of one part Tile Doctor Pro Clean to four parts clean water, before applying it to the tiles and scrubbing it in with a black pad fitted to a rotary machine. This helped to remove the ingrained dirt caused by a lack of sealer and clean the area ready to receive a fresh seal.

Sealing an Indian Fossil Sandstone Floor

I left the property to allow the floor to dry over night. Upon my return the next day, I checked for excess moisture and, once satisfied the floor was dry, I proceeded to seal the floor with four coats of Tile Doctor Seal & Go.

Indian Fossil Stone floor After Cleaning in Skipton

Seal & Go is a water-based topical sealer designed to build up stain resistant protection on the surface of the floor and to allow moisture vapour transmission. It is typically used to seal internal, unsealed porous surfaces, including Sandstone, Quarry and Victorian tiled floors.

Indian Fossil Stone floor After Cleaning in Skipton

Given the awful original condition of this floor, the results achieved over the space of two days were very good. Certainly my customer was very pleased with the transformation. The addition of a robust surface seal will go a long way to ensure the floor doesn’t fall back into such a bad state again.
 
 
Source: Sandstone Tile and Stone Cleaning and Maintenance Service in North Yorkshire

Sandstone Kitchen Floor Deep Cleaned

Tiled floors are a popular choice for people with large household pets – particularly dogs. Compared to carpeted floor they are hard wearing and reasonably easy to keep clean, with the right methods. At this property near the Northamptonshire village of Brockhall, my customer’s Sandstone tiled floor had been very badly stained thanks to her two large dogs – a problem exacerbated by the fact that the tiles had not been professionally cleaned or sealed for a very long time.

Sandstone Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning Brockhall

If you have read some of my previous posts you may remember a post detailing the cleaning of a large Sandstone patio with swimming pool, well this kitchen belonged to the same customer, who was so impressed by the results that he opted to have the kitchen cleaned as well.

Cleaning a Heavily Soiled Sandstone Tiled Kitchen Floor

As the photographs below show, my first course of action was to apply Tile Doctor Remove & Go to the edges of the floor. Remove & Go is a powerful stripper designed to break down layers of old sealer and dirt, along with any adhesive and paint marks. It can be used to great effect on most types of natural stone floor.

Sandstone Kitchen Floor During Cleaning Brockhall

I did this before I unloaded the rest of my equipment, since the product needs time to dwell. The edges were then cleaned carefully by hand so as not to damage the customer’s painted kitchen units.

Following this, I divided the room into four separate sections and, working one section at a time, applied Remove & Go before agitating it with a black stripped pad fitted to a rotary machine. The resulting slurry was promptly soaked up using a wet-vac machine.

Sandstone Kitchen Floor During Cleaning Brockhall

Certain areas proved particularly difficult to get clean, so in these cases I repeated the process once over, before following up with an application of Tile Doctor Pro Clean, worked into the stone with a scrubbing brush on the rotary machine. I rounded off the cleaning process with a second wet-vaxing.

Sealing a Sandstone Tiled Floor

After being thoroughly cleaned, the floor was left to dry, with process being sped up using an industrial fan left on site overnight. Adequate drying is essential as excess moisture can damage the performance of freshly applied surface sealer.

I returned to the house the next day and ran some quick tests to check the floor had dried completely. Then, to accentuate the subtle natural shades in the Sandstone, I sealed the floor using two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow. This colour intensifying sealer improves the appearance of natural stone one step further, while also providing a long lasting and robust surface seal.

Sandstone Kitchen Floor After Sealing Brockhall

It is also important that Colour Grow can provide a matt finish, as a sealant which offers a gloss finish would not have been as hard wearing, especially with two large dogs roaming around.

Sandstone Kitchen Floor After Sealing Brockhall

My customer was very pleased with the results. He can now enjoy his great looking Sandstone tiled kitchen floor, reassured in the knowledge that its rejuvenated appearance will be protected long-term against future dog-related stains and soil.
 
 
Source: Sandstone Cleaning and Sealing Service in Northamptonshire

Annual Sandstone Patio Cleaning

As the summer slowly approaches thoughts turn to sorting out those outside areas ready for use again, so it’s about this time of year I get asked to look at cleaning external tiled surfaces such as patio areas driveways. These external surfaces suffer from a heavily build-up of soils due to the general wear and tear caused by exposure to harsh weather conditions. We have all the high pressure equipment and fantastic results can be achieved by pressure washing in combination with quality products.

The photographs below were taken in January at a lovely property in the small village of Brockhall, near the market town of Daventry in Northamptonshire; my customer has a large Sandstone tiled patio and swimming pool area and as you can see the weather had certainly taken its toll and it was now in need of a thorough deep clean.

Sandstone Patio Brockhall Before Cleaning Sandstone Patio Brockhall Before Cleaning

Sandstone is typically a hard wearing tile, but if neglected for a long time it can, much like any other type of stone, very easily lose its appearance without regular maintenance.

Pressure Cleaning a Sandstone Flagged Swimming Pool Area

My first thought when dealing with swimming pool areas is to protect the pool from contaminates thrown up by the cleaning process, fortunately in this case the pool was well secured with a black cover which was tightly strapped down.

Sandstone Patio Brockhall Before Cleaning

The next step was to deal with the particularly stubborn areas of dirt with an application of a high alkaline cleaner, known as Tile Doctor Pro Clean. Being an alkaline based product Pro-Clean is suitable for use on many different types of natural stone tiles, including Sandstone, Granite, Limestone, Slate and Travertine, and can be applied to both internal as well as external surfaces.

The cleaning solution was applied to the problem areas agitated so it could get to work on the dirt. This was then followed up with the application of a special circular pressure washing spinning tool running at very high pressure.

Sandstone Patio Brockhall During Cleaning Sandstone Patio Brockhall Cleaning Equipment

I have a truck mounted pressure system on the van however in this case it was easier to use a standalone industrial petrol jet washer to drive the spinning tool.

Sandstone Patio Brockhall During Cleaning

The spinning tool allows the water to be applied under high pressure, and removes dirt and stains at the same time.

Sandstone Patio Brockhall After Cleaning

As you can see from the photographs, the results achieved were amazing. My customer was so impressed, in fact, that he booked me in to restore his Sandstone tiled kitchen as well the following week!

Sandstone Patio Brockhall After Cleaning

 
 
Source: Patio and Driveway Cleaning Service in Northamptonshire

Dealing with Patchy Sandstone Flagstones

Sandstone is a particularly popular choice for kitchen and hallway floors amongst home owners in the UK. It not only possesses beautiful natural shades and features, but it is also typically hard wearing, making it an ideal stone for tiled flooring in high traffic areas of a house and can often be found laid as large riven flagstones in pubs and other commercial premises.

Naturally, just like any other type of tiled floor, Sandstone needs to be maintained using appropriate products and methods. A lack of adequate surface sealer in particular leaves Sandstone susceptible to ingrained dirt, and can leave distinct, unsightly patches such as those in the photograph below.

Sandstone Floor Before Cleaning in Thaxted

In this instance, I visited a client in the old Essex town of Thaxted, who believed that her four square meter Sandstone tiled floor might be suffering from damp issues after lifting up the mats covering the area.

However, when I arrived at the property and ran damp tests, I found the issue to be superficial. The Sandstone floor however did require attention in the form of a deep clean and a fresh seal to tackle the white patches and prevent further discolouration.

Cleaning a Sandstone tiled floor

To begin the cleaning process I spread Tile Doctor Remove & Go evenly across the floor. It was left to dwell for approximately 15 minutes, during which time it worked to break down the old sealer remaining on the tiles. I then agitated the area twice over with both a black scrubbing pad fitted to a rotation machine lift away any dirt.

The resultant slurry was removed using a wet vacuum and the floor was then rinsed with water and then mixed a strong solution of one part Tile Doctor Pro Clean to three parts water which was used to give the floor a final clean and scrub the grout clean before using the wet vacuum again and giving the floor a final rinse with water.

Sealing a Sandstone tiled floor

After completing the cleaning process I left the floor to dry over the weekend. Upon my return to the house I proceeded to seal the tiles with three coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that soaks into the pores of the stone and provide durable surface protection going forward. Colour Grow is also specially designed to let the floor breathe and enhance the natural colours in the stone and, in this case, really helped to intensify the natural sand-coloured shades in the tiles.

Sandstone Floor After Cleaning in Thaxted

The difference made to these Sandstone tiles was really noticeable, with the white patches completely removed and the surface more generally back to looking like new, needless to say, my client was very happy with the results.
 
 
Source: Restoring Sandstone Tiled Flooring in Essex

Removing Grout Haze Left from Sandstone After Tiling

It’s not that uncommon for newly installed tiled floors to suffer from grout haze. This occurs where builder or tiler fails to remove all the excess grout from the surface of the tile after installation. It’s not always immediately obvious as the grout has to dry before it shows up and if the tiles are sealed afterward the grout is trapped on the surface of the tile under the sealer which makes it even more difficult to remove. Not too long ago, I was called to address this exact problem experienced on my client’s Sandstone tiled floor at her house Wappenham, Northamptonshire.

This first picture shows how the builder had left the floor after sealing (note how all the tiles have a similar colour). Also shown in the picture is the equipment I use to remove grout haze should you wish to do this yourself.

Grout Haze Removal from Sandstone Wappenham

The second picture shows a close-up of the white grout haze deposits on the surface of the tile; the issue is probably difficult to appreciate if you haven’t come across this type of problem yourself however you will find ordinary household cleaning products will be largely ineffectual.

Grout Haze Removal from Sandstone Wappenham

Removing Sealer from Sandstone Floor Tiles

The third picture shows the first stage of the cleaning process which required stripping off the sealer so I could then treat the Grout Haze. To do this I applied Tile Doctor Remove & Go liberally across the floor, before agitating with a black stripping pad fitted to a rotary machine to break down the old surface sealer. I followed this by using a wet-vac machine to remove any soiled residue. As you can see in the next photograph, the colours are already starting to show.

Grout Haze Removal from Sandstone Wappenham

Treating Grout Haze on Sandstone

The next photo shows the second stage of the process, which involved the application of a new product in the Tile Doctor range called Acid Gel. The acid based formula is required to remove the cement/grout and being a gel you find the product remains in situ breaking down the grout haze instead of spreading around as you would expect with a liquid.

Grout Haze Removal from Sandstone Wappenham

I left the Acid Gel to dwell for approximately ten minutes, before mixing it with water and scrubbing it into the tiles with an industrial brush. This was followed by a second wet vacuum to ensure all the residue was removed. A turbo dryer was used on the treated area to speed up the drying process whilst I moved onto the next section.

Grout Haze Removal from Sandstone Wappenham Grout Haze Removal from Sandstone Wappenham

Sealing Sandstone Floor Tiles

Once the floor was fully dry I was able to seal it again with a couple of coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow. Sealing will protect the floor from staining and make it easier to clean, additionally Colour Grow soaks into the pores of the stone protecting it from within and enhancing the natural colours of the stone in the process.

Grout Haze Removal from Sandstone Wappenham

The final photograph shows an area which has been fully sealed and the tiles restored to their natural beauty. I achieved this result across the entirety of the floor.
 
 
Source: Sandstone Floor Cleaning and Restoration Service in Northamptonshire

Refreshing the Sealer on a Flagstone Floor

This property was situated in the tiny, yet picturesque village of Grafton Underwood in Kettering, Northamptonshire. The village has only a population numbering a few hundred and, interestingly enough, is the childhood home of the famous ‘Bridget Jones’ character. I have previously worked on a number of floors in Grafton Underwood, and on this particular occasion I was called to complete the job through a recommendation – which is always welcome!

This particular customer had two floors that needed re-finishing; the first was a polished Limestone tiled conservatory (which I will cover in a separate post as the process was different) and the second a Flagstone tiled living room; so on a rather dull day in November, I began my work.

Stripping a Flagstone tiled floor

The sealer on the Flagstone tiled living room had failed in certain places, resulting in the floor becoming difficult to clean due to dirt becoming ingrained in the stone. The decline in the sealer is not uncommon, as they do wear down over time – especially in an area of high traffic like a living room. To resolve this issue, the old surface seal needed to be stripped back and re-sealed.

Flagstone Sitting Room Grafton Underwood Before Cleaning

To remove what was left of the old sealer, I applied a dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go and scrubbed it into the floor using a rotary machine fitted with black stripping pads. I then gave the floor an initial rinse, before paying special attention to scrubbing the stubborn spots, making sure all of the sealer was removed.

I then gave the floor an acid wash using Tile Doctor Grout Clean-Up in order to remove grout haze and other mineral deposits which were evident. Due to its acidic properties, you have to be very careful with this product on any type of stone, so I didn’t let it dwell for too long and made sure the floor was thoroughly rinsed down afterwards, with all solutions extracted using a wet-vac machine.

Sealing a Flagstone tiled floor

The floor was left to dry for more than 24 hours, before I returned to re-seal it using Tile Doctor Seal & Go. This product provides both a stain resistant surface seal and the durable low-sheen finish requested by my client. Seal & Go is suitable for use on internal unsealed, porous surfaces.

Flagstone Sitting Room Grafton Underwood After Cleaning

I guess the photographs don’t really do the transformation justice however the freshly re-sealed Flagstone living room certainly brightened up what was a very dreary autumn day!
 
 
Source: Sandstone Floor Cleaning and Sealing service in Northamptonshire