This customer from Gerrards Cross contacted me about their Black Limestone patio which had not been laid that long ago but was already in need of attention. Having spoken to the owner on the phone I arranged to visit the property so I could assess the issues in full and prepare a quote.
I visited the property to survey the patio and could immediately see that the Black Limestone flags looked washed out and grey, nothing like the beautiful dark stone he was expecting. It was clear that the installers hadn’t done anything to the stone after laying the patio, excess grout (grout haze) needed removing and no protective sealer had been applied resulting in staining from plant pots and spillages.
I recommended a restorative treatment involving deep cleaning, removing the grout smears, oiling to restore texture and the application of a colour enhancing sealer. This process would restore its original appearance and get the patio looking as it should.
Happy to hear the situation could be resolved my quote was accepted and a date scheduled for the work to begin.
Cleaning and Restoring a Black Limestone Tiled Patio
I arrived on the first day and started by helping the customer move furniture off the patio so I had a clear work area. Then work started off by scrubbing the stone with a Rocky floor machine fitted with a silicon carbide brush. This action gets into the stone giving them a deep clean, with the brush I also applied Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which is a strong alkaline cleaner and left that down for fifteen minutes to soak in first. With the dirt released from the stone onto the surface a wet vacuum is used to hoover up the resultant slurry.
Once cleaned the patio was inspected and I could see there was still evidence of grout haze on the Limestone so I used a 400-grit burnishing pad with water to take if off and then left the patio to dry out overnight ready for sealing. This work as actually carried out in the summer of 2022 so the weather wasn’t a problem.
Sealing a Limestone Tiled Patio
On the second day work started by checking the moisture readings of the Limestone tiles using a damp meter. The readings were within tolerance so I was able to apply an initial coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow sealer which is a colour enhancing impregnator that soaks into the pores of the stone. A very thick first coat was applied and allowed to soak in which it did very quickly.
This was then followed by a thick coat of Tile Doctor Stone Oil and allowed to soak in for roughly an hour before buffing it with a cloth to collect any excess residue. The Stone Oil gave the tiles a very deep black colour which seeped into the stone and this is exactly the appearance my customer wanted. It was quite the transformation from the dull washed-out looking patio that was here before.
Finally, I applied a third and final coat of Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal resulting in a resilient sandwich of coatings that should keep the stones appearance for some time to come. This last coat was applied using a microfibre cloth allowing it to seep into the stone. Once I felt the Black Limestone had dried sufficiently, I used a white buffing pad to buff over the patio and remove any residue.
The customer was very happy with his new patio and recommended me to a neighbour who had a similar problem with their patio.