Restoring Weather Stained Terrazzo Steps in Glasgow

The photographs below are from a set of Terrazzo steps outside a house in Glasgow which had completely lost their colour after being subject to years of weather staining and believe me we see all sorts of weather up here in Scotland. The owner of the house wanted them restoring back to their natural state but naturally concerned about safety didn’t want them shiny or slippy in anyway.

Terrazzo Steps Before Cleaning and Sealing in Glasgow

Cleaning Terrazzo Steps

I could see tackling the different surfaces of the stone stairs would be tricky so rather than opt for a cleaning product I decided to use a set of diamond encrusted burnishing pad fitted to a handheld flex machine.

I started with the very coarse 50 grit pad lubricating along the way with a little water and moved up through the medium and fine pad until the job was finished. Now normally when working on stone this is followed up with the application of a very fine pad to restore a polished appearance but clearly in this case that would not be necessary. In between the application of each pad the steps were rinsed with water to remove the slurry generated in the burnishing process.

One complete I left them to dry out for a few days; fortunately I had timed my visit within a warm weather window so I was confident they should be dry when I returned.

Sealing Terrazzo Steps

I returned a few days later and after checking the stone had indeed dried out I sealed the Terrazzo with three coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is a breathable impregnating sealer suitable for external application. Being an impregnator it protects the stone from within by occupying the pores in the stone where dirt might otherwise become ingrained, it also enhances the natural colours in the stone and as you can see from the photograph below the steps now look much pinker.

Terrazzo Steps After Cleaning and Sealing in Glasgow

Source: Terrazzo Tile Cleaning and Restoration Service in Glasgow

Restoring Old Terrazzo Kitchen Tiles in Cheshire

This post is from the small Cheshire village of Bosley where I had received an enquiry from the owner of the old station master’s house. The house was quite old and the owner had been modernising it whilst keeping many of the original features. This includes some fantastic Terrazzo kitchen tiles which unfortunately were not looking their best due to an abundance of ingrained dirt. The floor was well overdue to be restored by a professional, so we were called in to get the job done.

Terrazzo Kitchen Tiles Before Cleaning in Bosley Cheshire

Terrazzo is a very hard wearing and affordable material that was quite common in many public buildings so I suspect this floor was original.

Terrazzo Kitchen Tiles Before Cleaning in Bosley Cheshire

Burnishing a Terrazzo Tiled Floor

Terrazzo is very hard wearing so we find the best method to clean them is to treat them like a Marble or Travertine and use a process we have developed called ‘burnishing’. This process cleans and polishes the tiles using a system of four 17″ diamond-encrusted burnishing pads of varying grits in conjunction with a little water as lubrication.

We started by applying the Coarse 400 grit pad to grind away the stubborn ingrained dirt, a little water is used to lubricate and then the floor is rinsed to remove the slurry that is generated. We then worked our way through the system to a Medium 800 grit pad, Fine 1500 grit pad and finally a Very Fine 3000 grit pad each one applied in the same way.

This process carefully refines the polish of the surface of the tiles, restoring shine and lustre while ridding the stone of ingrained dirt. Once the burnishing had been completed, we gave the floor a thorough rinse to remove dirty water and soil residue the floor. It was then left to dry overnight.

Sealing a Terrazzo Tiled Floor

The floor had dried by the next day, so the tiles were ready to receive a fresh seal to protect against ingrained dirt and make them easier to keep clean in the future.

Our choice of sealer for this floor was Tile Doctor Colour Grow, it’s an impregnating sealer that’s specially formulated to enhance the natural colours in the tiles. As an impregnating sealer, Colour Grow fills the pores in the stone to act as a barrier against muck.

Terrazzo Kitchen Tiles After Cleaning in Bosley Cheshire

Before we left the customer to enjoy their newly restored Terrazzo tiles, I made sure to use a rotary machine fitted with a white pad to gently buff the floor and make sure the finish was pristine.

Terrazzo Kitchen Tiles After Cleaning in Bosley Cheshire

Source: Terrazzo Tile Cleaning and Restoration Service in Cheshire

Deep Cleaning Terrazzo Hallway Floor

This Terrazzo tiled hallway at a property in Northampton was in a really bad state. It was heavily soiled and suffered from glue marks where the original carpet covering it had been removed. Additionally, there was some damage to the edges of the doorway, and a large crack in the floor running across the width of the hallway.

Terrazzo Hallway Northampton Before Cleaning

Terrazzo is an interesting material, originally produced in Italy, that consists mainly of concrete with segments of marble and other stone interspersed and held together with a resin. Since Terrazzo is formed in this way, I explained to the customer that I would fill the crack along the floor and the small holes around the edges with concrete, before then using tile paint to match in the colours as best as possible. This would be the most cost-effective solution, which was ideal since the customer had a limited budget for the repairs.

Terrazzo Hallway Northampton Before Cleaning

Before beginning the restoration, I tested a small area using a diamond encrusted burnishing pad, thereby giving the customer an indication of the type of results that could be achieved. With the customer pleased by the results, the job was booked in for the following week.

Terrazzo Hallway Northampton Before Cleaning

Cleaning and Burnishing a Soiled Terrazzo Tiled Hallway

To begin, Tile Doctor Remove & Go was applied to the floor and was left to dwell for ten minutes to soften the carpet glue and break down any old sealer. This was then scrubbed in to the tiles with a pad fitted to a rotary machine. To remove the remaining residue and marks in the particularly stubborn areas, I used a manual hand scraper. The entire floor was then wet vaxed to soak up the soiled cleaner and leave the area clean for burnishing.

This was followed by the use of Tile Doctor diamond encrusted burnishing pads to polish the tiles, starting with a coarse grit pad, followed by wet vaxing and repeating the process with a medium grit pad and finally the fine grit pad to achieve the desired effect. I then installed a turbo dryer to dry the floor.

I returned to the property once the floor was dry and carried out the repairs which had been discussed earlier with the customer (filling the holes and cracks in the floor with concrete), cleaning off any concrete residue before I finished for the day.

Sealing a Terrazzo Tiled Hallway

Upon my return to the property the next day, I refined the polish on the floor even further by applying the extra fine grit burnishing pad.

Terrazzo Hallway Northampton After Cleaning

To finish off the three day restoration, I sealed the Terrazzo tiles using two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow sealer. As an impregnating sealer, Colour Grow soaks into the pores of the stone, protecting it from ingrained dirt. Colour Grow also contains colour intensifying properties, allowing it to enhance the naturally occurring shades in the stone, and therefore stopping it from appearing dull.

Terrazzo Hallway Northampton After Cleaning

This floor certainly was in a bad state, with damage as well as dirt to deal with, but I’m pleased to say that the work went a long way in transforming its appearance, leaving a very happy customer.

Terrazzo Hallway Northampton After Cleaning

Source: Terrazzo Floor Restoration Service in Northamptonshire

Restoring the Appearance of Terrazzo Floor Tiles

Every so often I will get the chance to undertake tiled flooring restoration work in public buildings, and late last year I was asked to clean and seal a Terrazzo floor at a church in Redhill. The floor wasn’t in great condition; not only was it suffering from a significant amount of dirt due to a lack of proper maintenance, but it was also marked by several cracks. Overall, the appearance of the floor was very displeasing and the church was keen to have me in to complete some repairs, along with a deep clean and seal.

Terrazzo Flooring Redhill Church Before Restoration Terrazzo Flooring Redhill Church During Crack Repair

Cleaning and Burnishing a Terrazzo tiled floor

Upon initial inspection of the floor, I was unable to say for certain whether there was any old sealer remaining on the tiles so to ensure it was removed I began the cleaning process by applying a layer of Tile Doctor Remove & Go, which is a powerful cleaner/stripper designed to both break down old layers of sealant and lift out any ingrained dirt.

I then gave the floor a rinse with water to remove any excess cleaning product, before moving onto a different cleaning process, known as burnishing. Burnishing involves polishing the surface with to achieve an aesthetically pleasing sheen finish. The Tile Doctor burnishing system consists of four diamond encrusted burnishing pads with different levels of grit.

Terrazzo Flooring Redhill Church Part Cleaned Terrazzo Flooring Redhill Church Part Cleaned

I began by applying a Coarse burnishing pad, before working my way through the system with Medium, Fine and finally Very Fine pads to achieve a very refined, high quality polished finish, you need to use a little water to help lubricate the burnishing and you need to rinse the floor after each pad to remove the slurry.

Terrazzo Flooring Redhill Church Cleaning in Progress Terrazzo Flooring Redhill Church During Burnishing

Once the floor had been allowed to dry completely following both cleaning processes, I set about filling the cracks in the tiles with two part resin stone filler.

Terrazzo Flooring Redhill Church During Crack Repair Terrazzo Flooring Redhill Church Crack Filled

Then, once the filler had dried, I re-polished the floor using only the extra fine burnishing pad, focusing my attention along the crack lines. This really helped to reduce the evidence of cracks and left instead a smoothed surface.

Sealing a Terrazzo tiled floor

The final stage of the restoration involved sealing the Terrazzo tiles with Colour Grow, which is Tile Doctor’s colour intensifying sealer that impregnates the stone seeping into its pores to provide protecting the floor from within with a robust seal capable of withstanding the high amount of traffic experienced by church floors. The last step was to buff the entire area with a soft white buffing pad.

Terrazzo Flooring Redhill Church After Terrazzo Flooring Redhill Church After

The church was very pleased with the results, especially that they were able to show it off for last year’s Remembrance Sunday and left the following comment on the Tile Doctor feedback system:

“Many thanks for the work on our Terrazzo floors. It’s only when you see the before and after that you realise how grubby they had become. We have had loads of complimentary comments as to how good they look. Bill Bailey was a very personable and professional contractor who put himself out to work around our requirements and others working in the buildings at the same time. More than happy to recommend the company and Bill personally. Many thanks for a job well done.”

Terrazzo Flooring Redhill Church Before and After Restoration

Source: Stone Floor Cleaning Service in East-Surrey

Re-Sealing a Terrazzo Floor

For this job, I paid a visit to the bustling town of Windermere in South Cumbria. My client asked me to refinish a black and white Terrazzo tiled entrance and hallway floor. Terrazzo if you’re not familiar is a very interesting and beautiful stone of Italian origin, which has been used for flooring in houses for centuries.

We had previously quoted to do the work on this floor however the customer has also received a quote from another firm in Glasgow and had chosen to go with them solely because they were more expensive. However, it stands to reason that the most expensive companies are not always the best quality and Tile Doctor prides itself on the amount of customer feedback we display on our websites which we believe is a far better indicator.

On the arranged day no one from the Glasgow firm showed up and after following up with the firm a young man in his early 20s arrived five hours late and began work on the floor. According to the customer he spent three days attempting to complete the job, but ran out of time and asked the client to apply the sealer themselves. The client applied the sealer, but as she had never done it before the floor turned out blotchy in appearance and she was far from happy.

Black and White Terrazzo Tiles Before Cleaning Windermere

To cut a long story short, my client complained to the Glaswegian company, after all she had paid for a full service and not received it. Unable to get a satisfactory conclusion from them she decided to call in Tile Doctor to put the matter right. I must point out that although I have included before and after photos one this post it’s really difficult to appreciate the extent of the problem without seeing the floor in real life.

Re-Applying Sealer to a Terrazzo tile floor

To resolve the sealer, and to provide my client with the polished finish she had originally wanted, I burnished the floor using a set of four Tile Doctor Diamond encrusted burnishing pads. Each of the four pads has a different grit: I first applied the coarse pad and worked my way through medium, fine and eventually very fine using a little water to lubricate and rinsing the floor between each pad to remove any residue; after the burnishing process was complete I gave the entire floor a final, thorough wash.

I then used a wet-vac machine to extract the water and get the floor as dry as possible before leaving for the day and allowing it to fully dry completely overnight, it’s very important that the floor is as moisture free as possible before being sealed as it can affect the final result.

The next day I returned to the house and sealed the floor with two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow, an impregnating, colour-enhancing sealer that really accentuates the look of the black and white tiles.

Black and White Terrazzo Tiles After Cleaning Windermere

Now that the problem has been resolved, my client is very happy with the condition of her Terrazzo tiled entrance and hallway floor.

Black and White Terrazzo Tiles After Cleaning Windermere

Source: Terrazzo Floor Cleaning and Restoration service in South Cumbria

Filling a Cracks in a Terrazzo Floor

A few months ago I was called down to the coastal town of Southend to restore a damaged Terrazzo tiled floor. Terrazzo is a very beautiful type of stone of Italian origin, and has been used for hundreds of years for residential flooring. The problem with this floor was a significant crack in the surface that was not only spoiling the appearance of the Terrazzo, but also posed a potential hazard for anyone walking in and around this area. I was also commissioned to give the floor a thorough clean and seal .

Cracked Terrazzo floor Before Repair Southend

Repairing a crack in a Terrazzo flooring

To begin the repair, I first mixed a strong solution of one part Tile Doctor Pro-Clean to three parts clean water. I then applied this solution to the hole and the surrounding area, making sure that any dirt and muck had been completely removed before filling. Pro-Clean is a versatile, alkaline cleaner recommended for cleaning natural stone floors.

The damaged area was then dried using an air blower to remove any moisture from in and around the hole, paying special attention to the tricky cracks that were not so easy to dry. The cracks were then filled with a stone glue and hardener. Once the filling had been completed I gave the area a coat of acrylic paint mixed with glue to match the original colour of the floor as much as possible. The final stage in the repair process was sanding down the treated area to achieve a smooth surface that was consistent with the rest of the floor. As you can see from the photograph, the finish came out very nicely however I apologise for the photograph which I appreciate could have been better.

Cleaning a Terrazzo tiled floor

As aforementioned, I was also commissioned to give the floor a thorough clean. I did this using a similarly diluted solution of Pro-Clean and water. The solution was worked into the stone using a black scrubbing pad fitted to a rotary floor scrubbing machine. After completing the clean I rinsed the floor and removed the resulting soil with a wet vacuum, I then left the property to allow the floor plenty of time to dry before being sealed.

Sealing a Terrazzo tiled floor

I returned the next day to seal the floor using Tile Doctor Shine Powder. The crystallised powder is applied directly to the floor and then worked in with a buffing pad. The result is a nice durable shine which had previously become dull over time due to high usage and the breakdown of an old surface seal.

Cracked Terrazzo floor After Repair Southend

Source: Professional Tile, Stone and Grout cleaning and maintenance services in Essex

Deep Cleaning Old Terrazzo Tiles

We visited a lady in Luton who had just had a brand new Terrazzo tiled floor installed and had chosen not to have it sealed. Terrazzo is a beautiful tile made from natural stone and as such is very sensitive to acid.

Terrazzo tiles etched with vinegar before restoration

Although this is common knowledge within the tiling industry, the builder who completed the initial installation of the Terrazzo floor did not make the client aware of the stone’s acid sensitivity. What’s more, he actually advised against sealing the floor. This resulted in the client unknowingly using an unsuitable cleaner and left what looked like water splashes all over the floor.

In a desperate attempt to remove the stains she applied vinegar to the floor. Since vinegar is an acid it caused a deep etching and immediately took away the shine of the tile, leaving in its place a dull mark. At this point she decided to contact the Bedfordshire Tile Doctor, and I came along to her rescue!

Terrazzo tiles etched with vinegar before restoration

Burnishing an Acid Damaged Terrazzo Tiled Floor

To remove the etching I used a set of Tile Doctor Diamond encrusted burnishing pads. Since the marks were particularly severe I opted to take the tile right back using an extra fifth pad rather than the usual four. The pads are applied in sequence from Coarse to Extra fine with a little water and a rinse between each pad. After the burnishing process was completed, all of the marks had been removed and were replaced by a beautiful polished shine.

Terrazzo tiles etched with vinegar after restoration

Sealing a Terrazzo tiled floor

We then sealed the floor using two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnating sealer that penetrates deep into the pores of the stone, providing a durable seal from within. This will help protect against dirt and stains in the future, and will also help to lessen the impact of mishaps should the floor become exposed to acidic products again. In addition, Colour Grow is a colour intensifying sealer so, as you can see from the photos, the lovely natural shades of the Terrazzo were accentuated.

Terrazzo tiles etched with vinegar after restoration

With the floor restoration a success, my client was very happy and before leaving I advise her to use Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner or Tile Doctor Stone Soap for regular cleaning as these products will maintain the floor without affecting the appearance of the floor or degrading the sealer.
Source: Professional Tile, Stone and Grout cleaning and maintenance services in South Bedfordshire