The Limestone floor was in good condition and had been treated to regular professional care, however, the customer wanted the floor to be pristine and I was asked to further refine the appearance of the floor. Limestone is a very tough stone so this is done primarily through the process of burnishing using diamond encrusted pads.
Burnishing Honed Limestone Tiles
I began with the dining room area, first shifting the furniture out of the way to allow space for the burnishing to take place, before bringing in my three main tools: the buffing machine, a set of four diamond burnishing pads, and the wet-vacuum.
To start the process, I attached the red coarse grit pad to the buffer, and then, using a litre of water per square metre as lubrication, I cleaned and stripped away any existing sealer. Since, Limestone is particularly porous, I limited myself to working on nine tiles at a time.
Once I’d removed any excess residue with the wet-vacuum, I changed to the blue medium grit pad, repeated the cleaning process, and again soaked up the soiled residue. Finally, I completed the process once more with the yellow fine grit pad. Once this was completed I buffed the floor with a soft white pad to clean up any dried residue, leaving it ready to be sealed.
Sealing Limestone Tiles
Two days later, once the floor was completely dry, I returned to the property to seal and polish the floor. To begin, I restored the shine to the tiles by applying the last of the four burnishing pads – the green very fine grit.
I then used the three cloth method to apply Tile Doctor Ultra Seal, a solvent-based, impregnating sealer that soaks into the pores of the Limestone to provide durable protection against ingrained dirt. Colour enhancing sealers such as Tile Doctor Colour Grow were available to the customer, but he stated that he was very happy with the current appearance and wanted the more natural look.
After an hour, the floor was ready to be buffered once again with the very fine pad, which I attached to a hand held buffing machine to work around the corners and electrical sockets.
Given the size of the property, this job took me three days – a day spent in each room. The customer was very exact with his requirements, and was very happy with the results, being left with fantastic looking Limestone tiles throughout the entire downstairs of the house.
Source: Limestone Tile and Stone Cleaning and Maintenance Service in East Sussex