This Customer moved into a property in High Wycombe around a year or so ago and the Black Slate floor in the kitchen was more grey than black. The slate looked tired and had clearly not been well maintained. They had recently had a new kitchen fitted and had decided to retain the existing floor, so I was asked to bring it back to life. High Wycombe is a large town in Buckinghamshire well situated as close to London with great links to nearby Reading and Maidenhead.
I initially went to survey the floor and confirmed my suspicion that any sealer that was once present on the floor had now completely worn off. This is a typical problem with stone floors and without a sealer in place the Slate had lost its protection allowing dirt to become ingrained in the pores of the stone and difficult to remove. I carried out a test clean which went well, my quote was accepted and arranged a date to return to renovate the floor.
Cleaning a Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor
First, I taped up the plinths on the new kitchen and the skirting boards to ensure no solution would be splashed on them. I then applied a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean to the tiles, I left this to dwell for a short time so it could start working on breaking down the dirt and any old sealer. I then worked it in with a large black scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary buffing machine to get the dirt out of the slate. I also used a stiff hand brush along the grout lines with neat Tile Doctor Pro-Clean to really get the grout clean. The floor was then rinsed off with water and the slurry extracted with a wet vacuum.
There were a few problem tiles with stubborn marks which I managed to resolve with a further application of neat Tile Doctor Pro Clean and some assistance from a steamer. The floor was then inspected again and once I was happy it was left to dry off over the weekend.
Sealing a Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor
I returned the following Monday to seal the Slate tiles first checking they were dry with a moisture meter; all was so I started applying the sealer. I selected to use Tile Doctor Seal and Go for this floor as it works really well on Slate. Seal and Go is a specially formulated water-based blend of acrylic polymers that provides both a stain resistant surface seal and a durable low-sheen finish. Four coats of Seal and Go were applied allowing each coat to dry before starting on the next one. Once done you could see the floor looked amazing and the new sealer gave the floor a lovely subtle sheen finish without being over shiny.
The client was very happy with the result, the floor now appeared brand new and looked great under the new kitchen.
Before leaving I took time to discuss aftercare with the client and advised her to use Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner, this is a pH neutral product that won’t prematurely erode the sealer which is a big problem with most supermarket cleaning products. This should make it easy for the client to maintain the floor and only a small amount of product it needed to clean the floor.