Slate floor

Old Riven Green Slate Kitchen Floor Renovated in Leyland

This is an old Riven Green Slate floor in the kitchen of a property in Leyland that dates to when the house was built around 150 years ago. It was looking very worn indeed and the cement pointing was falling out in several areas. The client requested a site visit so we could provide a quote for the renovation.

Riven Green Slate Before Cleaning in Leyland

On inspection I could see the floor was in desperate need of a deep clean, repairs to the pointing and then sealing to add protection going forward. Having worked on the renovation of similar stone floors I was confident we could improve it significantly and with a new sealer applied it would look totally different. They were happy to go ahead with my quote and we booked in a suitable time to carry out the work.

Riven Green Slate Before Cleaning in Leyland

Cleaning and renovation of a Riven Green Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor

Were happy to take on work of any shape and size and as jobs go this was one of the smaller floors I’ve been asked to work on.

Work began with the application of a coarse 200-grit diamond pad fitted to a weighted rotary floor buffer. The pad was worked into the floor using a strong dilution of Tile Doctor Remove and Go for extra cleaning power and lubrication. The scrubbing action releases a lot of dirt and old sealers etc from the Slate turning the solution black. This was then rinsed off with water and the soil extracted with a wet vacuum.

Old floors like this one don’t have a damp proof membrane installed under the stone and so it’s quite common to see moisture from underneath the floor rising through the stone and depositing minerals including salts on the surface as the moisture evaporates. This problem is commonly known as effloresce and to counter it I like to neutralise the alkaline salts by giving the floor an acid rinse. This involves further cleaning the stone using a dilution of Tile Doctor Grout Clean Up which is scrubbed into the stone and then rinsed off with water and extracted afterwards. Not only does this dissolve any salts is also neutralises the use of alkaline cleaners and etches the stone slightly so you get a better bond with the sealer.

Once the floor cleaning part of the renovation plan was complete attention turned to knocking out the old failing cement that was used to grout the Slate slabs. With the rubble cleared away the stone was repointed using a modern breathable and flexible product that will cope with any moisture rising through the floor. Once dry the floor was then cleaned again removing all the soil with a wet vacuum and left to dry overnight.

Sealing a Riven Slate Tiled Kitchen Floor

Calling back the next day one thin coat of Tile Doctor X-Tra Seal was applied which added a bit of lustre and this will add strong protection to the stone. X-Tra seal is a premium product, but it was the perfect product for this stone and situation as its formulated using an oil-based resin that will bring out the colour of the green slate; it’s also fully breathable and waterproof so it’s a great sealer for use in high traffic internal or external areas.

Riven Green Slate During Sealing in Leyland

Again, it’s not a cheap sealer but for old rough stone floors in an old house without a damp proof membrane it ticks all the right boxes. Once done the floor was complete and it looked so much cleaner and healthier.

Riven Green Slate After Sealing in Leyland

As usual I discussed after care with my client and recommend they use Tile Doctor pH Neutral Cleaner which is a lot milder than the bleach based cleaners you often find on supermarket shelves. These stronger products can damage the seal (not the stone) and within weeks or months of using that type of cleaner the sealer will be compromised. It’s the sealer that stops dirt from becoming ingrained into the pores of the stone so it makes sense to use a cleaning product that will maximise its life.

Riven Green Slate After Sealing in Leyland

 

Professional Restoration of a Riven Green Slate Tiled Kitchen in Lancashire

Cleaning and Milling Silver Pearl Pearlescent Slate floor in Lancaster

Previously I had solved a lippage problem on this customers Limestone kitchen floor where the tiler had laid the tiles unevenly and they had asked me to remove and level the edges which we can do with diamond encrusted burnishing pads. I sorted that out and they asked me back to look at their Conservatory floor as well which was a Silver Black Pearlescent Slate, again laid with lippage but the slate had also been oiled prior to sealing causing it to loose all its Silver colouring making it look black all over. It was at this point the customer shared the whole story of how the floor had been laid when she had been away on her holidays and had trusted the Tiler to do a good job; unfortunately he hadn’t and was unable to correct the problem. The floor was left in a sad and sorry state for a number of years and the owner unhappy with the floor had to cover most of the floor in rugs so she wouldn’t trip on the lippage. It probably would have stayed that way until one day they noticed my Tile Doctor Van in a Lancaster car park where they stopped me so to get my business card.

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So a few days later I called round to assess the problem and came up with a solution; I offered to Mill the whole floor with Diamond segments using burnishing pads and just to prove my faith in this system to help solve her floor issues, I moved the settee away and proceeded to Mill a small section, after rinsing with water and Vaxing the waste up, the customer was delighted with the results, not only had the rough lippage disappeared but she could see the Silver Pearlescent colour shine through the Black Slate, which is exactly why she bought the Tiles. We think the Tiler oiled the floor to darken it so you couldn’t see what a bad job he had done on laying the tiles, unfortunately this didn’t stop people tripping over them.

The great thing about milling a stone tile is it actually improves the look not diminish it, unlike wood the more it’s worked at the better it will look. I spent an extra day on this floor to get it right for the customer and the results were very satisfying for us both especially after I had put down several coats of Tile Doctor Seal and Go on The Slate to lift the colours in the stone and also add a sheen to the tiles as well.

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I always mention to my customers the importance of using a nuetral cleaner like PH Neutral cleaning product for aftercare cleaning and not to use a bleach based cleaning product like flash, Domestos etc, or even Washing up Liquid which is slightly Acidic; all these will damage a stone sealer given time and diminish it’s protective qualities.

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