Putting the Polish back on a Dull Limestone Floor in Gloucestershire

The photographs below are of a Polished limestone floor that had been installed in the Kitchen of a house in Cheltenham approximately eight years prior. The polish and sealer had worn off over that time allowing dirt to become ingrained into the pores of the stone making it difficult to clean.

This is a common problem with all types of porous stone and tile which need to be sealed to maintain their appearance. Sealers do wear down over time with use however and need to be maintained, this is why Tile Doctor have created a maintenance program whereby we pop by every 12 months to give the floor a light clean and top-up the sealer, it only takes a few hours, but it keeps your sealer in good condition.

Polished Limestone Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning in Cheltenham Polished Limestone Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning in Cheltenham

Cheltenham by the way is a lovely town situated on the edge of the Cotswolds which is an area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It has a racecourse and is well known for the mineral springs which were discovered here in 1716.

Burnishing a Dull and Dirty Limestone Tiled Floor

My first job was to protect the wooden kitchen units from any splashes by covering them some cotton sheets. Next, I set about restoring the Limestone’s appearance using a set of Burnishing Pads which is a form of polishing which involves the sequential application of four diamond encrusted pads of different grit levels.

The first pad applied is a Coarse 400 grit pad which is applied to the floor with a buffing machine and lubricated with water. This process grinds away the top layer of dirt and staining from the stone, along with any old sealer, the floor is then rinsed to remove the soil that is generated. I then move through the system, applying the Medium and then Fine pads using less and less water as you go but rinsing in-between and extracting the water with a wet-vac machine.

Once I was happy with the stone I scrubbed the grout lines to remove any soiling that the pads had failed to pick up. The floor was then given a final rinse and the wet vacuum used to extract as much moisture as possible. The floor was then left to dry out completely overnight.

Sealing a Limestone Tiled Floor

The next day I gave the floor a polish with the Very Fine 3,000 grit diamond burnishing pad, this is applied using a technique we call a “spray burnish” due to the fact that very little water is used during its application.

The next step was to seal the stone using for which I used Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that protects the stone from within by occupying its pores. Colour Grow also has the added benefit of intensifying the natural colours in the stone. The floor was then left to dry for an hour before I gave it one final dry polish using the Very Fine burnishing pad.

Polished Limestone Kitchen Floor After Cleaning in Cheltenham

My customer was very happy with the final result and made the comment that they thought the floor looked brand new.

Polished Limestone Kitchen Floor After Cleaning in Cheltenham

 
 
Source: Limestone Tile Cleaning and Polishing Service in Cheltenham, Gloucester

Limestone Tiles Polished in Burton Upon Trent

This Limestone tiled floor was installed in a Kitchen at a house near Burton on Trent. You can see from the photographs below that the Limestone had lost its polished appearance and was trapping dirt on the surface including a few stubborn marks; the grout was also looking grubby and dark.

Limestone Floor Before Limestone Floor Before

Cleaning a Limestone Tiled Floor

Restoring the shine on a polished stone such as Limestone, Travertine or Marble requires the surface to be stripped back and then buffed, which we did by using a set of burnishing pads. These diamond encrusted pads come in different grade sand each one does a different job from scrubbing to polishing. I started with the course red pad together with a little water and then carried on with the white, then yellow pads again using a little water removing the soiled water along the way. Finally when I had dried the floor I used a green pad to buff the floor up. This activity took most of the day so left the floor to dry off overnight.

Sealing Limestone Tile

On our return the next day the floor was given a quick wipe with a damp mop to get remove any debris or dust that may have landed on the floor overnight. This soon dried and we were able to apply two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is a specially designed stone sealer that brings out the deep colour of the stone. Once this had dried it was given a quick once over with a white buffing pad fitted to a rotary machine on a slow speed, this step ensures any excess sealant is removed off the tiles.

The floor was then left for about one hour to dry before working in Tile Doctor Shine powder with a buffing pad to give a really deep finish. We were still not finished however; the grout was still looking grubby so we agreed with the customer to pop back the next day and apply Tile Doctor Grout Colourant in a Sandstone colour.

Limestone Floor After Limestone Floor After

When we had finished the customer was very happy with the work we done and even commented that it looked better than when they first had the floor laid. I recommended that for future maintenance and to extend the life of the sealer they should use Tile Doctor neutral cleaner, it’s a PH neutral cleaner and so is safe to use on sealed stone.
 
 
Source: Polishing Limestone Floor tiles in Staffordshire