Floor Tiles

Tile Restoration at Fishmongers Shop in Kingston

And now for something different. A customer called me in a flap before Christmas. He had just taken over the lease of a former fishmongers in Kingston Upon Thames and needed help renovating the white ceramic wall tiles and vinyl flooring which was in a state. But that was only part of the problem, his business was selling rugs and with the previous tenant being a fishmonger there was a fishy odour that also needed dealing with.

Fishmonger Shop Unit Wall Tile Before Renovation For Kingston Retailer

The previous shop fittings had been glued and screwed to the wall so when they were ripped out it took some of the ceramic wall tiles with them, leaving gaps in the tiling, glue staining and trapped dirt.

I popped in to have a look and was able to give him a quote for the cleaning and restoration work, he was happy with the cost and wanted to me to get started as soon as possible.

Restoring Ceramic Wall Tiles in a Fishmongers Retail Unit

I started by tackling the glue using sharp blades and a chisel combined with plenty of elbow grease. Then the ceramic tile and grout was cleaned with Tile Doctor Pro Clean which was diluted with water and decanted into a spray bottle so it could be sprayed onto the wall tiles. Doing it this way mixes it with air making it lighter and allowing it to stick to the vertical tiling for longer. After ten minutes of soaking into the dirt it was scrubbed in by hand into the tile and especially the grout lines with a stiff brush. There was a lot to do and so more elbow grease needed. Afterwards the walls were carefully rinsed off with water to remove the soiling.

The next task was to replace many tiles near the ceiling and electric sockets using rapid setting adhesive so they could be grouted later the same day. All holes and verticals were then filled with mastic. They were a generic white tile, so I was able to blend the replacement tiles in without too much trouble.

Fishmonger Shop Unit Wall Tile After Renovation For Kingston Retailer

Deep Cleaning Vinyl Flooring in a Fishmongers Retail Unit

Once the wall tiles were done, I moved my attention to the vinyl flooring which was in good physical condition but in need of a deep clean. To resolve this, I applied more Tile Doctor Pro-Clean solution which was scrubbed in with a rotating floor buffing machine fitted with a black scrubbing pad.

Fishmonger Shop Unit Vinyl Tile During Renovation For Kingston Retailer

The soil was then extracted with a wet vacuum and left to dry off. There was a huge amount of dirt removed which had obviously built up over a long period of time.

Fishmonger Shop Unit Vinyl Tile After Renovation For Kingston Retailer

The wall tiles were glazed ceramic so do not require a sealer to be applied, similarly the vinyl did not warrant any further treatment either so once everything was fully dry, I was done. I handed the unit back over to the new tenant who was ready to cover my carefully cleaned wall with rugs and start trading. Thankfully, the shop now smells good too.

 

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Terracotta Floor Restored at 400-Year-Old Cottage in Leatherhead

This client had acquired a 400-year old cottage in Leatherhead as part of his divorce agreement. The front room was tiled with Terracotta which is a soft stone and particularly porous. The tiles had seen a lot of wear and use over the years and were now in need of some love.

Terracotta Tiled Floor Before Restoration Leatherhead

He emailed over some photographs however it’s difficult to tell the best remedy without doing any testing, so I arranged visit the property and take a proper look. It was immediately clear the Terracotta had become badly discoloured in places some of which was from burning logs which had previously fallen from the fireplace onto the tiles. There was also a considerable amount of red paint around the edges that would need removing.

This work would take two days with at least 48 hours in-between days to allow for evaporation as a wet tile cannot be sealed. The client was happy to go ahead with my quote and we arranged a suitable time to complete the work for him.

Cleaning a Terracotta Tiled Living Room Floor

Firstly, as the terracotta is soft and more importantly red it can make a mess of the woodwork when cleaning with water, so I covered the kickboards with sticky plastic coating to ensure they were protected.

Then I removed the edging paint by softening it with an application of a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go. Once left for half an hour the paint starts to soften and this makes it easier to remove, although this is a manual process carefully scrapping the remains of the paint away.

Next, I coated the floor with Tile Doctor Oxy-Gel. This strong cleaning product is left for half an hour to work into the pores of the Terracotta. With some water I gently cleaned the floor with a rotary machine fitted with a nylon pad. This is a wet process, so no dust is created.

For the next few hours, I cleaned the whole room. The areas damaged by burning wood were worked on with a diamond encrusted pad to get deep into the tile. When finished, the tiles were clean and more consistent in appearance and colour. I left the floor for the weekend to fully dry.

Sealing a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor

On the Monday I returned to seal the Terracotta first checking the tiles had dried out using a damp meter. The customer didn’t want either a shiny finish or a matte finish. He did want a strong, protective sealer so we agreed on using Tile Doctor Seal and Go Extra which leaves a sheen finish and will last for years. The floor was now fully protected and should be durable for the foreseeable future.

Terracotta Tiled Floor After Restoration Leatherhead

The client was very happy with the work we had carried out, it had really transformed the room and he was looking forward to getting the furniture back in to position.

 

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