This Slate floor was laid twelve years ago in the kitchen of a property in the spa town of Harrogate. It had never been cleaned professionally since installation and by now it was really in need of a good clean. I went to the property to do a site visit; some areas were sticky to walk on and thick with grease particularly around the cooker area!
I conducted a test clean on an inconspicuous patch of floor to demonstrate to the client what could be achieved. The test went well and they were very happy to be reminded what the floor should actually look like. I supplied my quote, and they were happy to go ahead, I booked in a time to carry out the work, which would take a couple of days.
Cleaning a Multi-Coloured Chinese Slate Kitchen Floor
Initially l used a scraper to remove the worst of the grease and then a wire brush. Next, I spot cleaned the badly stained Grout with neat Tile Doctor Pro-Clean, scrubbing it in by hand, rinsing with water and extracting afterwards with a wet vacuum. Some areas were so dirty they needed redoing to really get them clean.
The whole floor was then thoroughly cleaned with more Tile Doctor Pro-Clean diluted one part cleaner to two parts water and scrubbed in with a black scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary floor buffer. I had to do most of the floor twice to achieve a good result.
I then cleaned all the grout by hand with a scrubbing brush and gave the floor a good rinse with water and extracted all the soils with the wet vacuum. The difference even at this stage was remarkable.
Sealing a Multi-Coloured Chinese Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor
The floor was left to dry off overnight and I returned the next day to apply the sealer. Before sealing though I like to check the floor is dry with a moisture meter, sealing a damp floor can lead to a patchy finish.
Four coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go were applied to the Slate to seal in, you have to wait for the first coat to dry before applying the next so this can take a while. I chose this sealer as it provides both a stain resistant seal along and leaves a durable low-sheen finish. Another reason for using Seal and Go is its water based so doesn’t give off a smell as it dries.
By the end of day two the floor looked excellent, the multi colours of the slate now shone through and it was a long way from the sticky greasy floor that had greeted us the day before. As you can imagine the client was very happy with the results.
For aftercare I recommended the use of Tile Doctor Neutral Tile cleaner for maintenance. This tile and grout cleaning product is pH neutral so it won’t degrade the sealer like many harsher cleaning products. Most Supermarket cleaning products are simply too strong for use on sealed surfaces and will prematurely strip the seal off the tiles over time. The sealer protects the stone from dirt becoming ingrained in its pores so once it’s worn off you will find the floor becomes difficult to clean.
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When cleaning tiles with a mop we recommend using two buckets, one containing a neutral pH cleaning fluid such as Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner or Stone Soap and the second where you rinse your mop afterwards, otherwise you will contaminate your cleaning fluid with dirt every time you rinse.
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