Renovating Discoloured Grout in Bury

A client from Bury, north of Manchester, contacted us to have their Slate tiled floor stripped and sealed and have the grout replaced. They were finding it difficult to keep clean and were mainly concerned about the grout which they described as awful.

As per usual practice I went over to survey the floor and work out a price for doing the work. After running some tests, I realised that the tiles were actually Porcelain which are manufactured to imitate Slate and therefore far easier to maintain. I recommended a deep clean of the tile and grout followed by the application of a grout colourant to restore the appearance. I completed a test clean on part of the floor which they were very happy with and they agreed to my quote. We booked the work in to be completed later in the month.

Slate Look Porcelain Tile and Grout Before Cleaning Bury Slate Look Porcelain Tile and Grout Before Cleaning Bury

Cleaning/Repairing a Slate effect Porcelain Tiled Kitchen Floor

First, I prepared the area and taped up the plinths and skirting to protect them. I then cleaned the floor using Tile Doctor Remove and Go, which is sprayed onto the tile and grout and then scrubbed in with the aid of a rotary floor machine fitted with a scrub brush. The slurry was then extracted off the floor by rinsing with water and extracting with a wet vacuum.

The next step was to apply Tile Doctor Grout Colourant Pre-Treater to the grout lines and scrub it in. This product is slightly acidic so as well as cleaning it also etches the grout to provide a better bond with the colourant. It was left to get to work on the grout for a few minutes and then was scrubbed in with a stiff narrow brush. I used a steamer and a wet vacuum to get the grout as clean as it could be and then left it to dry for a short time.

With the tile and grout as clean as it could be, I inspected the floor and could see areas where the grout was still stained and others where it was crumbling. Only the application of a grout colourant would give the consistent appearance desired by the customer. First though I needed to tackle the crumbling grout by scrapping out the old grout and replacing with new.

Sealing a Slate effect Porcelain Tiled Kitchen Floor

I needed the fresh grout to dry out, so I left the floor overnight and came back the next day to complete the grout colouring for which I used one bottle of Tile Doctor Grout Colourant in Limestone wiping off any excess as I went. As the floor tiles were in fact Porcelain there was no need to apply a sealer so once the colourant had dried the job was complete.

Slate Look Porcelain Tile and Grout During Grout Colouring Bury

Once finished the floor looked great, it was now clear that it has been the grout that had brought down the overall appearance of the floor.

My customer was very happy with their new floor and even left me a bottle of wine! I left then with some Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner, used regularly it will ensure the appearance of the floor is maintained and the grout is protected.

Slate Look Porcelain Tile and Grout After Renovation Bury

 

Source: Porcelain Tile and Grout Cleaning and Renovation Service in Bury

Renovating Lime Mortar with Grout Colourant in Bury

We received an unusual request from the owner of an old cottage in Bury who was unhappy with the state of the grouting in their Kitchen. The customer advised us that the floor was very old and originally grouted with a lime mortar also that they had been in touch with several companies before contacting us including tilers and masons and none of them was interested.

Intrigued I paid the customer a visit to survey the floor and work out the best way to renovate the grout. The cottage turned out to be three hundred years old and the owner wanted to keep the Quarry tiled floor which was laid in a Herringbone pattern and still in good condition as a period feature as it complemented the rustic look of the cottage.

Lime Mortar Grout Before Restoration Bury Cottage

After testing the floor, I was able to confirm it was indeed Lime Mortar which was historically used on walls and natural stone floors until the 19th century when it was replaced by cement. The mortar was now grubby and had shrunk in places where it had then been topped up with conventual grout resulting in a patchy appearance.

Lime Mortar Grout Before Restoration Bury Cottage

I felt simply cleaning the grout wouldn’t resolve the irregular look so my suggestion was to use a grout colourant that would sit on the surface of the grout and provide a uniform appearance. I must point out that the Grout Colourants used by Tile Doctor are not like grout pens you see on home make over shows, they are much more effective.

Applying a Grout Colourant to Lime Mortar

Happy to go with my recommendation I set about preparing and cleaning the Quarry tile and mortar with a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Pro-Clean. This is sprayed onto the floor and then scrubbed in with a buffing machine fitted with a scrubbing pad. This action turns the cleaning solution into a slurry as the dirt is lifted out of the floor which is then rinsed off with water and extracted with a wet vacuum. Tile Doctor do sell a Grout Colourant Pre-Treater product that has been especially designed for this purpose however it’s slightly acidic and so not something I would recommend for use on lime mortar.

Lime Mortar Grout During Cleaning Bury Cottage

Once the floor had dried, I started with the grout colouring which is painted onto the surface with a small brush. Two thin coats of natural grey colourant were applied and any excess that came into contact with the quarry tile was quickly wiped off with a cloth. The product dries within two hours but takes twenty-four hours to fully harden.

Lime Mortar Grout After Restoration Bury Cottage

I think you will agree the results speak for themselves and made the area look nearly new! My client was certainly impressed and left the following feedback which says it all:

Kamila was professional, courteous and very hard working. I am delighted by the job done on a very old difficult tiled floor. I would not hesitate to use Tile Doctor again or in recommending them to a friend. – Mrs Law, Bury

 

Source: Grout Cleaning and Restoration Service in Bury, South Lancashire