Edwardian Tiled Hallway Rebuilt and Restored in Harpenden

The owners of this property in Harpenden asked us to come and clean and reseal their Edwardian Tiled hallway floor and return it to its’ former glory whilst carrying out a few minor repairs to missing, broken and cracked tiles around the edge.

On visiting the property at this popular commuter town within the St Albans district, it was clear the floor was looking a little neglected and in need of some care and attention. They were keen to retain this feature of their Edwardian property. We discussed what could be done to restore the floor and the client was given a quote and a timescale for the work. They were happy to go ahead.

Edwardian Hallway Before Rebuild Harpenden Edwardian Hallway Before Rebuild Harpenden

Cleaning and Repairing an Edwardian Tiled Hallway Floor

The first step was to give the floor a deep clean with a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean. This product is designed for use on Tile, Stone and Grout and when used in a strong dilution can strip away any old sealers without harming the tile itself. The product is left to dwell on the tiles for short time and then scrubbed in using a rotary brush. We then rinsed with water to remove the slurry produced and using a wet vacuum we removed the residue.

Once this was finished and with the floor looking cleaner the next step was to tackle the cracks in a few of the tiles under the stairs. This is when we discovered that the floor had become loose. When removing some of the broken tiles adjacent to the skirting we discovered a whole section of floor, about 1/3 of sqm had become loose and dropped slightly.

Edwardian Hallway During Rebuild Harpenden Edwardian Hallway During Rebuild Harpenden

The client was concerned with this setback and wasn’t sure what we would be able to do. However, the need not have worried, we have come across this situation before! To tackle the problem, we carefully excavated the area and re built the sub floor below the tiles in concrete. We then levelled the floor in preparation for tiling. Luckily, we were able to salvage the existing tiles and they were individually cleaned using a diamond wet cutter before being re-laid into the original pattern.

Edwardian Hallway During Rebuild Harpenden

Sealing an Edwardian Tiled Hallway Floor

With the original tiles laid back down clean and the flooring rebuilt under the stairs we re-grouted the floor before we were ready to apply a protective sealer. Before doing that however the floor needed to be dry, so we left it to dry off fully overnight.

Returning the following morning, we checked with a moisture meter that the floor was dry, which it was. Firstly, we applied a primer seal using Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer to protect the tiles and enhance their colour. Once the first coat of sealer was dry it was followed by five coats of Tile Doctor Seal & Go which adds further protection and leaves a glorious sheen.

Edwardian Hallway After Rebuild Harpenden Edwardian Hallway After Rebuild Harpenden

The floor looks amazing and the client was over the moon with the end result. It far exceeded their expectations particularly after finding an area of the floor had collapsed.

Edwardian Hallway After Rebuild Harpenden

 

Restoration of an Edwardian Tiled Hallway in Hertfordshire

Bathroom Deep Clean and Re-grout in St.Albans

The photographs on this page were taken at a property in St. Albans, Hertfordshire or Verulamium as it was known in Roman times. St. Albans is roughly 20 miles north-west of central London and a popular choice for commuters who work in London. The owners were fed up with the discoloured grouting and their bathroom looking tired and had tried lots of products on the market to get the grout looking clean. The results had been disappointing, and they were starting to despair.

St Albans Bath Tile Grout Before Renovation

They contacted me to see if I could help and after visiting the property I recommended deep cleaning the Ceramic tile and grout and then removing and re-grouting those areas that were badly stained. I explained that this would take one day to complete and by using a series of products we would soon have the bathroom looking more pleasing. Happy with the quote which was far less expensive than installing a new bathroom I scheduled the work in for an agreed date.

St Albans Bath Tile Grout Before Renovation

Deep Cleaning and Re-grouting a Tiled Bathroom

We started out by preparing the area with protective sheets and tape to threshold edges. This was then followed by giving the tile and especially the grout a deep clean using Tile Doctor Oxy-Gel and aa steam cleaner to get the grout as clean as possible. Oxy-Gel is a strong alkaline gel cleaner and degreaser which works well on vertical surfaces where a long dwell time is required. Being a gel, it stays in place allowing it to really get to work on the dirt making it an ideal choice for this situation.

The top layer of grout is porous and, as a result, it easily absorbs grease, dirt and limescale. Grout between wall-tiles, particularly in damp areas like bathrooms, will become dirty and unattractive and if the ventilation is inadequate Mould and Mildew can develop. The grout was scrubbed with Oxy-Gel several times to get it as clean as possible and then rinsed off with water.

At this stage we were able to identify all those areas of grout that were badly stained and we set about carefully removing the old grout using a special tool. This work takes a bit of time, but we felt it was the best solution in this instance

Next, using a craft blade we carefully removed all the old silicone sealant, so it could be replaced later. This was followed by re-grouting using a white grout to match the existing.

St Albans Bath Tile Grout After Renovation

Whilst the grout was drying the final step was to replace the silicone sealant around the bath edge with fresh sealant. We always use high quality mould resistant silicone for this as we don’t want any call backs later when the sealant goes mouldy or water leaks through.

After making some final checks and ensuing excess grout was polished off the tiles the bathroom transformation was complete. Even I was amazed at how much cleaner and tidier the bathroom now looked. The important thing was the customer who was equally impressed and left the following comment on our Tile Doctor feedback system.

‘Excellent and friendly service – would recommend to others’

St Albans Bath Tile Grout After Renovation

 

Bathroom Deep Clean and Re-Grout in Hertfordshire

Ceramic Tiled Bathroom Refresh in St Albans

This was a small family bathroom at a house in St Albans with white ceramic glazed tiles and what was once white grout. The grout was now stained and proving difficult to keep clean, additionally the silicone seal between the tile and the bathtub was perishing. The bathroom needed cleaning and restoring to give it a new lease of life as well as making it easier to maintain for the busy family.

Bathroom Tiles Before Cleaning St Albans

Were actually based in St Albans so always a pleasure to pop round and meet fellow residents. The city dates to the Romans when it was known as Verulamium and these days its popular with commuters working in London.

Cleaning a Ceramic Bathroom Tile and Grout

On arrival I inspected the tiles around the bath and could see they were going to be problematic, the silicone sealant was starting to perish, and I was concerned that the bottom row may be not be watertight. I like to do a job right the first time round so I decided the best thing to do would be to remove the row around the bathroom edge, clean them up and refit them with fresh adhesive, grout and reseal with silicone.

With that in mind my first job was to give the ceramic tile and grout a deep clean by spaying on Tile Doctor Aqua-Pro and then scrubbing it in with polypropylene brushes and pads. This product is designed for the regular cleaning of bathroom tiles as is Tile Doctor Duo-Clean which is a stronger product that can tackle mould as well. The tile and grout were then given a high-pressure steam clean using a special machine we usually use on floor tiles and then let to dry off over lunch.

Ensuring a Tight Bath Seal

After lunch the old silicone was stripped off between the bathtub and wall tile and this was followed by the careful removal of the bottom row of ceramic tiles. This is done by removing the grout first with an oscillating hand tool and then carefully prising the tiles off the wall without damaging them.

Bathroom Tiles Replacement St Albans

The old adhesive was then scrapped off the exposed area to prepare the wall for re-tiling and the tiles were re-installed with fresh. Once the adhesive and gone off the tiles were re-grouted and the grout left to dry before applying a fresh silicone sealant between the tile and bathtub. During the various drying phases, the ceramic bathroom tiles were buffed using a soft white buffing pad to give them an as new appearance.

Bathroom Tiles After Cleaning St Albans

The job was completed in one day and the bathroom now looks like it was recently installed.
 
 

Rejuvenating Ceramic Bathroom Tiles and Grout in Hertfordshire

St Albans Slate Floor Renovation

The Slate floor in the kitchen and conservatory of a house in St. Albans was laid around five to six years old and now required deep cleaning and re-sealing. Previously a grout repair had been carried out but unfortunately after the initial clean the grout applied was the wrong colour and needed to be replaced.

Slate floor before restoration

Cleaning the Slate Floor

The Slate floor was pre-cleaned using a diluted solution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean mixed with Nanotech Ultra-Clean scrubbed with a buffing machines fitted with a polypropylene brush running at a slow speed. The dirty solution was removed using a wet vacuum, floor rinsed with clean water and left to dry.

It’s not a good idea to apply new sealer on top of a different product so it was necessary to ensure all the old sealer had been completely removed. Sealers are by nature stubborn to remove so it was necessary to apply Remove & Go (a product designed for the removal of sealers) which we left to dwell on the surface for an hour. Often a strong solution of Pro-Clean is sufficient but not in this case.

The dirty solution was removed with the wet vacuum and rinsed with water to remove any residues and neutralise the floor.

Removing Grout

To remove the grout we used a specialist “Oscillating Grout Tool”, if there was a large area to do we would normally recommend the user of an epoxy Grout Colourant however there wasn’t a great deal to remove so it was quicker to cut out the offending Grey grout and replace with a matching sandstone.

Grout removal and repair Cutting out with an Oscillating grout tool

Sealing the Slate Floor

We sealed the floor with a single coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which really helps bring out the deep colour from the slate. To finish and build up the lustre and richness of the colour we then applied seven coats of Seal & Go.

Finished Slate floor with new grout
All of the job took two full days and was ready for soft foot traffic after two hours of completion and fully dry in 24 hours. For maintenance we recommended the use of Tile Doctor Neutral Cleaner, diluted 1:30 with water and applied with a microfibre flat mop, rinse with water and then remove with a clean microfibre flat mop.

The customer was very pleased with the results and left the following comment:

We are delighted with the results achieved by the Tile Doctor on our slate floor. It looks like we have laid a completely new floor in our kitchen and conservatory! Rob was a true professional and we would thoroughly recommend the Tile Doctor to anyone considering using their services

Ms. S. Hiller, St Albans, Hertfordshire

 

Slate Floor Renovation in St. Albans

Cleaning Mexican Terracotta Tiles, St Albans

Mexican Terracotta tiled floor laid several years ago in the kitchen of a property in Wheathampstead near St Albans. It had originally been laid and sealed in the classic method with a wax and was becoming increasingly impossible to clean.

Mexican Terracotta before prepped for cleaning

Cleaning Mexican Terracotta Tiles

We started the cleaning process using a solution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean in order to remove excess dirt and soil from the surface of the tile. This was followed by the application of Tile Doctor Remove and Go combined 50/50 with NanoTech Ultra Clean agitated with a brush fitted to a scrubbing machine running at slow speed. This worked to breakdown and remove the remaining wax sealer returning the Mexican Terracotta back to its original condition. The resulting solution was rinsed off with water and a cleaned with Neutral Tile cleaner followed by two further water rinses. A wet vacuum comes in very useful at this point for removing the liquids from the floor.

Mexican Terracotta Cleaning and wax removal Mexican Terracotta After cleaning ready for sealing

Sealing Mexican Terracotta Tiles

We left the floor to dry and returned some days later to seal. We started this process with a single coat of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which really helps to bring out the colour in the tile followed by six to seven coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go. Terracotta is by its nature a very porous tile and so it’s not unusual for it to need seven coats.

Cleaned and Sealed Mexican Terracotta floor

Cleaning Mexican Terracotta Tiles in St. Albans