This ceramic tiled shower cubicle was installed at house in Silverdale, you can see from the photographs below that there was staining from the chemicals in domestic products and there was also a build-up of mould on some parts of the grout and silicone sealant. Mould can get a grip here due to a porous top layer and this is especially a problem in the UK where bathrooms tend to be small with inadequate ventilation.
Cleaning Tile and Grout
The ceramic tiles and grout was treated using Tile Doctor Oxy Pro which is a ready to use tile and grout shower cleaner that comes with a trigger spray attachment which allows the cleaner to mix with air making it lighter and allowing it to stick to vertical surfaces. It was then worked in using a stiff scrubbing brush by hand before being rinsed off with water; this process was repeated a number of times until we had managed to clean all the areas and then left to dry.
Unfortunately it’s not possible to remove mould from silicone sealant, the only solution is to have it stripped off and replaced. Once this was done the edges were cleaned up and fresh mould resistant silicone was applied.
It’s worth mentioning at this point that silicone will last longer if the residue from soaps, shampoos and body washes etc. are rinsed away with clean water after having a shower as it’s the chemical and not the water that damages the silicone in the first place.
The results are plain to see and my customer was very satisfied with the work.
Prevention is always better than the cure and another tip you might find useful is to improve ventilation which is a major problem with draught free modern housing fitted with insulation and double glazing, if this is not possible try leaving your shower room door wide open after having a shower. Another option is to look at installing a ventilation and heat recovery system which extracts the hot air from kitchens and bathrooms through a heat exchanger to warm up fresh air from outside and recycles it back into the house.
Oddly Enough I had sold these Ceramic tiles to the customer in Preston when I used to work at a local Tile Shop many years prior. I had also been back to clean and seal the grout on his floor tiles originally in 2007 and then again in January 2010 when we used a Grout Colourant on them. It’s nice to get called back like this as it shows they appreciate the service you provide; for this visit the request was to freshen up the floor tiles and also the Ceramic Kitchen wall tile and Grout which had become ingrained with Grease from the cooker.
Cleaning Tile and Grout
The total area was approximately 25m2 and it took me a day and half to give the Tile and Grout a deep clean. For the most part I used Tile Doctor Pro-Clean but for the wall tiles where Grout Colourant has been applied I used Tile Doctor OxyPro which is a ready to use Tile and Grout cleaner that comes in a spray bottle, when applying any liquid to a wall its best to mix it with air in a spray bottle as this makes it lighter and helps it stick and soak into the to the tile and grout as opposed to running down it. It was noticeable that the grout colour was mainly intact and it had just needed a good clean on the whole apart from maybe near the cooker which I topped up with new Grout colour in the original shade.
Applying Grout Colourant
Once everything had been rinsed and the grout had dried I was able to apply the grout colourant using my colour applicator (toothbrush). You have to be fairly methodical doing this so it can take a while, you can remove excess colourant by spraying plain water and scrubbing with a white pad (don’t used a coloured pad as you can transfer the dye from the coloured pad to the surface).
We were asked to improve the appearance of this Ceramic tiled floor and Grout installed in a kitchen in Chalfont St Giles which over a few years had become difficult to keep clean and the grout lines had become stained and discoloured.
Cleaning Tile and Grout
Our first task on day one was to clean the Ceramic tiles and Grout so we created a diluted 50/50 mixture of tile doctor Pro-Clean and Nanotech UltraClean, the two products combine to provide a very powerful tile friendly alkaline cleaner with tiny sized abrasive particles. This was left to soak into the tile and grout before being agitated and scrubbed with a scrubbing machine running on low speed. We also used stiff grout hand brushes along the grout lines. Once we were happy with the overall condition of the tile and grout it was washed down using clean water and the resultant soiled solution extracted from the floor using a wet vacuum. I’m pleased to say that using this method we were able to return the tile and grout back to its original colour.
Whilst this was a fantastic transformation the grout lines being porous would untreated soon become dirty and discoloured. The only answer to this problem is a permanent colour seal to the grout lines which not only aids the future floor cleaning, but improves the whole appearance of the floor.
Applying the Grout Colour
Before applying a Grout Colour it’s important to ensure the grout is clean of grease and dirt naturally we had just cleaned this floor so this was not a problem I only mention it in case you were considering taking on a similar task yourself.
Once the grout has dried you can start applying the colourant which is a relatively straightforward process of squeezing the product onto a toothbrush and running it onto the grout. Don’t be tempted to use an old toothbrush for this purpose as it may contaminate the colourant leading to discolouration in the finish.
We completed the project the next day using an Aqua Mix sand coloured Grout Colourant; the customer was extremely pleased and commented how whole clean and efficient the process was.