Renovating Grade A Tumbled Travertine Tiles in Ripon, Yorkshire

My client gave Tile Doctor a call to discuss their hallway floor which was in a poor state, they thought the tiles were Travertine but weren’t 100% sure as it was installed before they acquired the property. I arranged a time to do a site survey to see what we could do for them.

The property was in Ripon which is a lovely Yorkshire cathedral city just North of Harrogate. I took a look at the floor and confirmed the tiles were indeed Travertine, in fact I identified it as Bullnose Grade A Tumbled Travertine which is a premium product and well worth renovating. Travertine is a natural stone material that has unique features and colouring that no other stone can offer. The distinctive design and natural patterns found within the stone make it very popular as a flooring material and is often used as bathroom wall tiles too. Travertine’s durability makes it ideal for all manner of projects and it is often used externally.

Like any stone floor it’s important to maintain the sealer if you want it to look its best and from what I could see the sealer had now failed and was letting dirt get into the pores of the Travertine making it very difficult to keep clean. The owners also had two dogs which may have contributed to the wear and tear. I discussed with them the prognosis and we agreed a quote for completing the work to renovate the tile and grout.

Tumbled Travertine Ripon Before Cleaning Tumbled Travertine Ripon Before Cleaning

Cleaning Tumbled Travertine Floor Tiles in Ripon

I arrived the following week and started by protecting the skirting boards etc. with tape to protect them from splashing during the cleaning process. Once that was done I started burnishing the Travertine with a set of diamond burnishing pads which are run over the floor with water to remove dirt, old sealers and restore the polished appearance of the stone. Using a rotary floor machine, you start with the coarse 400-grit pad before moving onto the 800 and 1500 grit pads rinsing the floor in between each pad to remove the slurry that is generated.

My next task was to tackle the cream coloured grout which had become dark with dirt. To do this I used a cleaning product called Tile Doctor Pro-Clean which is a concentrated, multi-purpose high-alkaline cleaner that’s particularly good on heavily soiled and neglected grout. You dilute it into different strengths depending on the nature of the problem and it works best when left to dwell and soak in for about ten minutes first. I scrubbed all the grout lines by hand with a scrubbing brush to get them really clean and then rinsed with water and removed the slurry with a wet vacuum.

Finally, the cleaning process was completed using the last of the four burnishing pads which is a 3000-grit polishing pad which is applied dry with only a little water sprayed on the tile.

Tumbled Travertine Ripon During Cleaning

Given the size of the floor I had to work in sections and the photograph above shows the difference in the tile and grout between two of the sections. Once done the floor was left overnight to completely dry out, the warm weather made this a quick process.

Sealing a Tumbled Travertine Floor in Ripon

Returning the following morning, I used my moisture meter to test the moisture levels in the floor. Applying the sealant to a floor that is still damp prevents it from curing. I had selected to use the Tile Doctor Ultra Seal on this job, this is a premium product, which gives a no-sheen, natural-look, penetrating sealer made to provide maximum stain protection. You can also use it as a pre-grouting sealer. The customer didn’t want the floor to be shiny, so this was the perfect product for them.

The customers were really satisfied with the massive transformation in the floor returning the floor to almost new. They were so pleased that the floor didn’t look tired any longer and it would now be able to withstand the traffic of their two dogs. The floor would be much easier for them to clean and maintain.

Tumbled Travertine Ripon After Cleaning Tumbled Travertine Ripon After Cleaning

 

Source: Travertine Tile Cleaning and Renovation Service in Ripon, Yorkshire

Travertine Tiled Kitchen Floor Renovated in Parwich, Derbyshire

A few years ago, my client moved into a house in the village of in Parwich which sits in the Derbyshire Peak District. They had good methods for cleaning but complained that the Travertine tiled kitchen floor never actually looked clean afterwards. The main problems were the grout and the holes in the Travertine tiles both of which attracted dirt and proved difficult to clean effectively.

Travertine Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning Parwich

Ideally, they would like the Travertine to have a sheen finish, so I went over to take a look, discussed what treatment could be done to get the floor looking its best and showed them some examples. We also discussed the different types of sealers that could be applied to protect the floor once it had been cleaned. They were happy for me to do the work, so we agreed a date for my return.

Travertine Kitchen Floor Before Cleaning Parwich

Deep Cleaning and Polishing Travertine Kitchen Tiles

When I returned my first task was to add protection to the beautiful wooden kitchen, so it wouldn’t get splashed during the cleaning process. Once that was done I set about burnishing the stone floor with a set of diamond encrusted pads fitted to my rotary buffer machine running as slow speed. I started with the coarse 400-grit pad lubricated with water and then after running it over the whole floor I rinsed off the resultant residue with water which was then extracted with a wet vacuum.

The next step was to get the grout clean and for this a ran a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean along the grout lines and then scrubbed it in by hand using a stiff grout brush until I was happy with the result. Pro-Clean is our go to product for grout cleaning and being alkaline based its safe to use on all types of tile and stone. The now soiled cleaning solution was rinsed off with water and then extracted as before using the wet vacuum.

This burnishing process was then continued using an 800-grit and then a 1500 grit burnishing pads, again with water to help lubricate. These medium and fine pads slowly start to build the polish back on the stone and close the pores. As before water was used to rinse off the residue and the vet vacuum used to get the floor as dry as possible afterwards.

The last pad in the set of four Burnishing Pads is the very fine 3000-grit pad and this pad is applied dry with a small amount of water sprayed onto the floor as you go, we call this process a spray burnish and it really adds the nice subtle sheen the customer was looking for.

Sealing a Travertine Tiled Floor

The last step in the renovation process was to seal the floor with a suitable sealer which will protect the Travertine from staining going forward and make the floor much easier to clean.
Having discussed sealers with the customer at the beginning the choice was clear and two coats of Tile Doctor Ultra Seal were applied to the floor. Ultra-Seal is a premium product that soaks into the pores of the stone protecting it from within but without enhancing the look of the stone in anyway.

Travertine Kitchen Floor After Cleaning Parwich

It’s probably difficult to appreciate the full difference from the photographs above by my customer was very happy with the improvement and they now have the floor looking the way they wanted.

Travertine Kitchen Floor After Cleaning Parwich

 
 
Source: Travertine Tile Cleaning and Polishing Service in Parwich, Derbyshire

Polishing Dull Travertine Floor Tiles in Swansea

This customer from Swansea was unhappy with the look of her Travertine floor tiles and so decided to call in tile doctor after she had seen pictures of other travertine floor tiles on one of our websites and wanted hers to look the same. The natural brown shades of her own Travertine tiles had become very dark and were looking dull and lifeless in comparison.

It was clear to me that the Sealer was wearing thin with use and dirt had now penetrated the pores of the stone making it difficult to clean effectively. This is a common problem with stone floors and this is why Tile Doctor offer a maintenance service where we pop round once a year to top-up the sealer on your floor.

Travertine Floor Swansea Before Cleaning Travertine Floor Swansea Before Cleaning

Stripping and Re-Polishing Travertine

To restore the polished appearance of the floor the stone would need to be stripped of any remaining sealer and dirt, re-polished and then sealed; we find the best way to achieve that is through the application of a set of Diamond encrusted burnishing pads.

I started the burnishing process by fitting a coarse 400 grit no.1 burnishing pad to a floor buffer and running at a slow speed ran the pad across the whole floor. This coarse pad is designed to strip off old sealers and dirt from the tile. You use a little water to help lubricate and once complete it’s necessary to rinse the area with water to remove the soil that is generated. The next step is to start building back the polish with the 800 and then 1500 grit pads which are applied in the same manner.

The floor was then rinsed again with water and I turned my attention to the grout which was scrubbed by hand using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and a stiff brush. The floor was given another rinse and then inspected to ensure I hadn’t missed anything. Before leaving for the day I used the wet vacuum to extract as much moisture from the floor as possible.

Sealing Travertine Floor Tiles

On the second day I finished the banishing process with the application of the final of the four pads which is a very fine 3000 grit pad which adds a final polish to the surface leaving it looking shiny. This last pad is applied with a small amount of water spayed onto the tile in a process we call a spray burnish. The use of water is so small the floor remains dry enabling us to apply a sealer shortly afterwards.

There are some beautiful brown shades in Travertine and so to really make them standout I sealed the floor using a couple of coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is a colour enhancing impregnating sealer that soaks into the pores of the stone protecting it from within. The sealer will also make ongoing cleaning and maintenance easier for the customer.

Travertine Floor Swansea After Cleaning

The customer was very pleased with the result and commented on how clean and deep the shine had come out using the Diamond pad system.

Travertine Floor Swansea After Cleaning

Before leaving I recommended the use of Tile Doctor Stone Soap as an aftercare cleaner, this produce is specially designed for cleaning polished stone, not only does it helps build patina, but it won’t prematurely erode the sealer like many acidic cleaners you find in the supermarket which should really only be used on ceramics and Vinyl tiles.
 
 
Source: Travertine Tile Cleaning and Polishing Service in Swansea

Restoring Travertine Floor Tiles Cirencester

This customer from Cirencester was not happy with her look of her Travertine floor tiles; in fact, she had been browsing the Tile Doctor web site and realised how her floor should look and got in touch to have it renovated.

Polished Travertine Cirencester Before Cleaning Polished Travertine Cirencester Before Cleaning

I’m based in Dursley which is West Gloucestershire and have made the journey to Cirencester to the East on several occasions to work on tiled floors there. If you have never been it’s worth a visit; it’s a lovely market town which dates back to Roman times and is situated on the lower slopes of the Cotswold Hills.

Burnishing a Travertine Tiled Floor

To get the best from Travertine it really needs to be burnished which is an abrasive cleaning process that involves the application of several different grades of diamond encrusted pad to the stone lubricated with a small amount of water.

The pads are fitted to a rotary buffer and run over each tile in sequence from coarse to very fine. I started with the first of the four burnishing pads which is a coarse 400 grit pad that designed to grind away the dirt and old sealer on the surface of the floor. After applying the first pad, I moved my way through the medium 800 and fine 1500 grit pads to gradually restore the appearance of the Travertine making sure to rinse the floor with water in between to remove the soiling.

Next, I set about cleaning grout lines with Tile Doctor Remove and Go which was diluted with water and then scrubbed in with a stiff narrow brush. The soiled cleaning solution was then rinsed off with more water and extracted using a wet vacuum.

Polished Travertine Cirencester During Cleaning Polished Travertine Cirencester During Polishing

The burnishing and grout cleaning took most of the day and I need the floor to be dry in order to seal it so I left for the day and left the floor to dry off fully overnight.

Sealing a Travertine Tiled Floor

The next day and before sealing the floor I applied the last pad in the set of four which is a 3,000 grit “very fine” burnishing pad. This final pad really builds the final polish on Travertine tile. The pad is applied with the rotary buffer as before but is applied dry with only a fine spray of water using a process we call a “Spray Burnish”

Once I was happy with polish I proceeded to seal the floor using Tile Doctor Ultra Seal which is a natural look sealer the seeps into the pores of the stone protecting it from within but without affecting the look of the stone. The floor was then left to dry for an hour and I finished by giving the Travertine a final buff using a white pad.

Polished Travertine Cirencester After Polishing Polished Travertine Cirencester After Polishing

My customer was delighted and now she has a Travertine tiled floor looking how it should.
 
 
Source: Travertine Tile Cleaning and Maintenance Service in Cirencester, Gloucestershire

Puting the Polish back on Travertine a Tiled Floor in Blackburn

Close-up photo below of a Travertine tiled floor installed in a house in the former mill town of Blackburn where simply put the polished appearance had worn off and was now looking dull and unappealing.

Travertine Tiled Floor Before Polishing Blackburn

I popped round to the house to take a look and could see that the tiles would need to be burnished to restore the polished appearance. To demonstrate the difference this would make I polished one of the tiles using the Tile Doctor burnishing pad system which consists of the application of four 17 inch diamond encrusted pads applied in sequence from coarse to very fine with a rotary buffer. The customer was amazed at the difference and we agreed a date to come in and complete the whole floor in time for the Christmas holidays.

Stripping and Re-Polishing Travertine

On my return I repeated the burnishing process across the entire floor starting with the 400 Grit Coarse Red No.1 Burnishing Pad which strips off old sealers and dirt from the tile. You use a little water to help lubricate and once complete it’s necessary to rinse the area with water to remove the soil that is generated. The next step is to start building back the polish with the 800 and then 1500 grit pads which are applied in the same manner.

Travertine Tiled Floor During Polishing Blackburn

The floor was then rinsed again with water and I turned my attention to the grout which was scrubbed by hand using Tile Doctor Pro-Clean and a stiff brush. The floor was given another rinse and then inspected to ensure I hadn’t missed anything. Before leaving for the day I used the wet vacuum to extract as much moisture from the floor as possible.

At this point the customer commented that the floor looked amazing and that the floor never looked this good, even after it was first installed.

Sealing Travertine Floor Tiles

On the second days we used the 4th burnishing pad which is a 3000 grit pad to burnish and polish the surface until it came up looking gorgeous and glossy. With this pad you simply spray a little water on the floor during the polishing process, something we call a spray burnish.

The last step was to seal the tiles using a single coat of Tile Doctor Ultra-Seal which was applied and then buffed in with a white pad to remove any excess. Ultra-Seal is a premium, no-sheen, natural-look, penetrating sealer formulated to provide maximum stain protection.

Travertine Tiled Floor After Polishing Blackburn

The customer was really pleased with the difference we had made to the floor and before leaving we advised the customer of the best way to maintain the floor using neutral PH cleaners and to avoid strong cleaning products which can erode the life of the sealer prematurely.
 
 
Source: Travertine Tile Cleaning and Polishing Service in South Lancashire

Filling holes in Travertine Tiles

Details below of another Travertine tiled floor that we re-furbished recently in the kitchen of a house in Lutterworth which is a market town located in southern Leicestershire. The floor was looking dull and flat and the colours had become washed out, it now needed burnishing to strip off the dirt and bring back the polish; another problem were the natural holes which you find in Travertine had not been filled and were now trapping dirt and proving difficult to clean.

Travertine Kitchen Floor Tiles Lutterworth Before Polishing

Filling Holes in Travertine

To deal with the ingrained dirt and to remove any surface coatings the floor was cleaned with a dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go, this is quite a strong product normally reserved from stripping sealers and other coatings but it’s also an effective cleaning product so to save time I decided to use this first giving the floor a thorough wash down and rinse afterwards. The grout was also given a thorough scrub during this activity and once that was done the soiled waster extracted the floor was inspected and the holes in the travertine filled using a special Travertine filler product.

Burnishing Travertine Tiles

The next step was to burnishing the entire floor using a set of burnishing pads which strip back any surface dirt from the stone using a coarse diamond encrusted burnishing pad and then building up the finish with a medium, fine and super fine pad until you have restored the polish and appearance. This process blends the Travertine filler added earlier into the stone so it’s impossible to tell the holes had been filled; I should mention you need to use little water which is used to lubricate the process and in-between each pad the resultant slurry is rinsed away. Once this is done the floor is given a thorough rinse which is then extracted and then left to dry overnight.

Sealing Travertine Floor Tiles

On our return the floor was checked to ensure it had dried out using a damp meter in a few different spots. The floor was dry so it was sealed using a tow coats to Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that gets into the pores of the stone to prevent dirt from becoming ingrained there; Colour Grow also enhances the colours in the stone and this works well on Travertine as it brings out the brown colours.

Travertine Kitchen Floor Tiles Lutterworth After Polishing

 
 
Source: Travertine Tile, Grout and Stone cleaning in Leicestershire

Filling Cracks in Travertine Floor Tiles

This job was a Travertine tiled Kitchen floor in West Disbury, the customer ask me to have a look at the tiles which had been down for three years and had quite a lot of cracks in, on top of that it had not been sealed very well when it had been laid which had allowed dirt to become ingrained into the tile leaving it looking dull.

Travertine Floor West Disbury Before Travertine Floor West Disbury Before

Maintaining Travertine Tiles

The first job was to wash the floor down to remove any grit from the floor and then remove what remained of the old sealer, now with Travertine being a very hard stone it has to be removed using of a set of diamond encrusted burnishing pads fitted to a rotary machine. Once this was done all the cracks in the Travertine were filled in using a flexible grout which was a blend of three different grout colours in order to get a shade that matched the colour of the travertine. The tiled area was quite confined and tricky to work in so this process including the sealer removal took two days in all.

Polishing and Sealing Travertine Tile

On the third day I used the fine burnishing pad to give the final polish and then to protect the floor from stains it was sealed with two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is a colour enhancing sealer that brings out the colours in natural stone. Once the sealer was dry it was buffed using a white buffing pad to make sure that I hadn’t left any residues from the seal.

Travertine Floor West Disbury After Travertine Floor West Disbury After

The customer was very pleased with the finish and found it very hard to spot the cracks I had filled.
 
 
Source: Travertine Tile Repairs in Manchester