Porcelain Tile Cleaning

Welcome to my Work History archive where you will find detailed examples of the cleaning and renovation of Porcelain tiles carried out in East Yorkshire

Cleaning and Polishing Porcelain tiles

Harder than ceramic tiles modern production methods have allowed a growth in the availability and design of Porcelain tiles which are known for their durability and water resistance making them a popular option for floors. Like Ceramic, Porcelain tiles are generally very easy to clean and need little maintenance however some are micro porous and do require sealing, you will need to ask you supplier which type you have installed as it can be very difficult to tell.

If your Porcelain tiles are of the micro porous variety then they will need to be sealed to avoid a build-up of dirt in the pores of the tile. For this we recommend Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal which works by impregnating the pores to ensure dirt can’t become ingrained there without changing the appearance of the tile itself.

Apart from sealing the biggest issues with this type of tile are usually grout related. Either the adjacent grout discolours over time or the tiler has been unable to remove excess grout from the surface of the tile, an issue known as Grout Haze or Grout Smears. Modern grouts can be particularly susceptible to the grout haze issue due to shorter working times and polymers in the grout which make it difficult to remove once dry. If this sounds familiar do contact us so we can advise you on how best to remove it.

Below you will find detailed examples of work we have carried out in the past, it should give you some idea of what’s involved and what can be achieved with the right techniques and products.

Porcelain Tiled Utility Floor Before After Cleaning and Grout Sealing in Hull

Dirty Porcelain Tiled Utility Room Cleaned and Sealed in Hull

This Porcelain tiled utility room at a property in Hull had been primarily used as an area for the household dogs, and so had suffered over the years from plenty of wear and tear.

Originating in China, Porcelain is a type of ceramic that is known to be quite hard-wearing and durable, however, dogs are known to bring all manner of muck into the house from outside, and it was certainly beginning to show here. The property owner was keen to have the tiles professionally cleaned and sealed, with the grout lines being in a particularly dire state.

Porcelain Tiled Utility Floor Before Cleaning in Hull

Cleaning a Dirty Porcelain Tiled Utility Room

To begin the cleaning process I firstly mixed a 60-40 mix of Tile Doctor Pro Clean and water. Pro Clean is our go-to cleaner for natural stone tiles due to its consistency and versatility. I applied it to the tiles and grout lines and left it to dwell for a short while, allowing it time to loosen the layers of muck and also break down any old sealer remaining on the floor.

Next, I scrubbed the solution into the floor with a 17″ rotary machine, and paid special attention to cleaning the grout lines with a wire brush, bringing them back to their original colour. Any resulting cleaning residue was removed with a wet vacuum and any chemicals remaining on the floor were washed away using a thorough rinse with water.

Sealing a Porcelain Tiled Utility Room

Before the floor could be sealed, it needed to be left to dry overnight. It is always recommended to leave freshly cleaned floors to dry for at least 24 hours before sealing, since even the slightest amount of moisture can cloud the sealer and damage its performance. Running damp tests is a good idea to make certain that the floor is completely dry.

Porcelain Tiled Utility Floor During Grout Sealing in Hull
Once satisfied that the tiles and grout lines had been fully dried out, I proceeded to seal the floor with Tile Doctor Ultra Seal. Ultra Seal is an robust impregnating sealer that prevents dirt from becoming ingrained in the grout and the stone itself, thus making the floor much easier to keep clean in the future.

The sealer also gave the floor with a bright, natural look finish, leaving it worlds apart from the condition it was in just a day previously. Needless to say the customer was very happy and impressed with the results achieved in a short space of time.

Porcelain Tiled Utility Floor After Cleaning and Grout Sealing in Hull

Professional Tile and Grout Cleaning and Sealing for a Dirty Porcelain Tiled Utility Room in Hull

Deep Cleaning Porcelain Tiled Floor Cottingham Hospital

Deep Cleaning Porcelain Floor tiles at an NHS Hospital in Cottingham

Although we do work on a lot of residential floors we also get commercial work such as the following request to deep clean Porcelain floor tiles in the high-traffic entrance area of the NHS Cancer Ward in Cottingham, near the city of Hull.

Deep Cleaning Porcelain Tiled Floor Cottingham Hospital
The Porcelain floor itself was quite large, measuring 170 square metres, and was in need of a thorough clean. The Porcelain tiles were Italian with a cement grey grout line, in addition, they had been laid in sections using a plastic Schluter Systems expansion joint. As you can imagine, the unit has a lot of patients walking around, along with doctors, nurses and other staff. Consequently, my contact at the NHS requested that we conduct the work at night, as this is the quietest time of day and therefore both risk and disruption are minimised.

Deep Cleaning Porcelain Tiled Floor Cottingham Hospital

Cleaning the Porcelain tiled floor

I started the job off with a deep clean, using a solution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean diluted with water, the dilution was roughly thirty per cent Pro-Clean to seventy per cent water. This strength of solution was sufficient enough to lift the ingrained dirt and stains out of the Porcelain tiles. Pro-Clean is a very versatile alkaline cleaner which can be used on most types of floor including natural stone.

Deep Cleaning Porcelain Tiled Floor Cottingham Hospital Deep Cleaning Porcelain Tiled Floor Cottingham Hospital

Working in small sections, I used a spray gun to coat the floor with this cleaning solution, before leaving this to dwell for roughly 20 to 30 minutes. The solution was then scrubbed in to the tiles using a black buffing pad attached to a 17″ scrubbing machine. The resulting cleaning residue was then promptly removed using a wet-vac machine.

Deep Cleaning Porcelain Tiled Floor Cottingham Hospital

Cleaning the grout

After completing the tile cleaning and inspecting the floor to ensure all dirt and stains had been removed, I paid special attention to the grey grout lines. I opted to use a solution of Tile Doctor Grout Clean Up diluted with clean water. The ratio in this instance was roughly twenty per cent Grout Clean up to eighty per cent water.

Deep Cleaning Porcelain Tiled Floor Cottingham Hospital
Grout Clean Up is an acid-based product designed to penetrate beneath the surface of the grout to remove grout smears and mineral deposits, including rust. It is recommended for use on masonry surfaces and acid resistant stone such as Porcelain, Ceramic, Sandstone and Slate. Once both the tiles and the grout had been individually cleaned, I gave the floor a thorough rinse with clean water to remove any trace of product. All fluids were extracted using a wet vacuum.

Deep Cleaning Porcelain Tiled Floor Cottingham Hospital
Deep cleaning the entire Porcelain floor took some time but the was certainly worth the effort, the tiles now look so much cleaner and the grout a consistent shade of grey.

Deep Cleaning Porcelain Tiled Floor Cottingham Hospital

Large Porcelain Tiled Floor deep cleaned at a Hospital in Hull

Changing Grout Colour on Wood Effect Tiles in Hull Step

Changing the Colour of Grout on a Wood Effect Floor in Victoria Dock

I recently went down to the city of Hull, the biggest in East Yorkshire, for this job after I was contacted by a client living in the Victoria Dock area. My client had a very nice wood effect Porcelain floor, but she was not happy with current colour of the grout, which was a light grey, and wanted it changed to a dark grey instead. The floor was very well maintained – with Porcelain being a highly resistant material – and so it did not require a deep clean itself. On this particular occasion, my main focus was on the grout.

Changing Grout Colour on Wood Effect Tiles in Hull Step 2

Applying the pre-treatment cleaner

The Tile Doctor Grout Colourant kit consists of a pre-treatment cleaner and the colour seal, along with a grout brush and scrub pad to apply the products. My first task was to apply the pre-treatment cleaner to the grout. This prepares the grout joints for a superior grout colourant bond.

Changing Grout Colour on Wood Effect Tiles in Hull Step 1
Once sprayed on to grout, the pre-treatment cleaner was left to sit for 1-2 minutes before being worked in with the nylon grout brush. Any excess cleaner and dirt was then rinsed off with clean water to prepare the grout for re-colouring.

Changing the grout colour

The next stage of the re-colouring was to apply the grout colourant itself. I applied the dark grey colourant very carefully using an applicator brush, ensuring that it was distributed as evenly as possible along the grout lines.

Changing Grout Colour on Wood Effect Tiles in Hull Step 3 Changing Grout Colour on Wood Effect Tiles in Hull Step 4

I then left the grout to dry for a couple of hours, before using clean water in combination with a scrub pad to remove the excess. As you can see from the photographs, the overall result was a whole new look for the floor, with the dark grey colour accentuating the fantastic wood effect Porcelain, more so than the light grey had done previously.

Changing Grout Colour on Wood Effect Tiles in Hull Step 5
Both myself and my client were very pleased with a job well done.

Changing Grout Colour on Wood Effect Tiles in Hull Step 6

Re-colouring the grout on wood effect floor in Victoria Dock


East Yorkshire Tile Doctor

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