Removing Limescale from Limestone Shower Tiles

Sometimes, Tile Doctor customers will have more than one tiled area in need of professional maintenance. At this house in Wandsworth, South London; I was commissioned to clean and seal firstly a Limestone tiled kitchen floor, and a Limestone tiled shower unit.

Limestone Floor Before Cleaning Wandsworth

Cleaning and Sealing a Limestone Kitchen Floor

I started with the Limestone tiled kitchen floor which, like many other stone floors had not been treated to the correct regular care and had become dull and dirty over time as a result.

My first task involved applying Tile Doctor Remove & Go stripper in order to break down any old surface sealant and dirt. Then, I began the burnishing process, which essentially involves polishing with pads of varying grit. I started with a Medium 800 grit burnishing pad to provide an initial polish and grind away ingrained dirt, before refining this with a Fine 1500 grit pad to achieve a smooth surface. The burnishing pads are used in combination with a small amount of water.

Limestone Floor During Cleaning Wandsworth

After leaving the floor to dry for 24 hours, I sealed the tiles with Tile Doctor Colour Grow. This will provide durable surface protection for the future and also further accentuate the great natural shades in the Limestone. To add the finishing touches, I buffed the floor with a soft white buffing pad.

Limestone Floor After Burnishing Wandsworth

Cleaning and Sealing a Limestone Tiled Shower Unit

During the time it took for the Limestone tiled kitchen floor to dry, I set my sights on tackling the shower unit. The unit was suffering from a terrible amount of limescale, which would need to be removed using a set of hand held burnishing pads. Limescale deposits build up on surfaces which come into contact with hard water, and can become very unsightly if not dealt with promptly.

Limestone Shower Tiles Before Cleaning Wandsworth

This proved to be a more awkward job thanks to the intricate Limestone fittings on the shower walls. I used the smaller 6-inch burnishing pads fitted to a hand buffer, while for the kitchen floor I naturally used the larger sized pads attached to a heavy weight buffing machine.

With the limescale as bad as it was, I started to grind it off with a Very Coarse 120 grit burnishing pad, before working my way up gradually through the system of pads – each time using a slightly finer grit pad until I finished with the Ultra Fine 3000 grit pad and the surface finish had been restored.

Limestone Shower Tiles After Cleaning Wandsworth

Following this, I removed the silicone sealant around the shower fittings, and dealt with the mould growing behind it.

On the second day of work, I sealed both the kitchen floor and the shower unit. Much like the kitchen floor, the shower unit was sealed using Colour Grow to ensure long lasting protection, and fresh silicon was also fitted.

Two days of work and two rejuvenated Limestone features later, I was left with a very happy customer.

Limestone Shower Tiles Before and After Cleaning Wandsworth

 
 
Source: Limestone Tile and Stone Cleaning and Restoration Service in Surrey

Restoring damaged Limestone shower tiles

This call actually came from a cleaning company where one of their cleaners had been to a customer in the village of West Hanney near Wantage and tried to clean the walls of this Limestone Shower using a supermarket Limescale remover, which as you can see from the photograph below didn’t work out very well.

I should point out that Limescale removers contain some strong acids which should never be used on stone or sealed surfaces as the acid will etch the surface. Even weak acid cleaners used over time will have an effect so do take care and always read the label.

Damaged Limestone Shower Wall West Hanney Before

Resurfacing Limestone Shower Tiles

To restore the surface I realised it would need to be treated like a polished stone floor and burnished. So with this in mind I started burning the tiles with a little water and a coarse 6 inch diamond burnishing pad fitted to a hand held rotary machine before moving onto a medium pad. Normally to bring up the polish you would move onto the fine and super-fine pads but it was evident that the other shower walls had a matt finish so there was no need.

Sealing Limestone Shower Tiles

I waited for the Limestone tiles to dry and applied two coats of Tile Doctor Ultra Seal which is a penetrating sealer that will protect the stone from staining.

Damaged Limestone Shower Wall West Hanney After

The owners of the house were very pleased that the wall was not ruined and the cleaning company relieved that the problem had been resolved.
 
 
Source: Professional Tile, Stone and Grout maintenance service in Oxfordshire