It had been a while since this Victorian tiled hallway at a property in Reigate had received a deep clean and re-seal and it was now looking quite unloved. The sealer had almost worn off and dirt had become ingrained in the pores of the tile leaving it dull and lifeless. Hallways floors receive a lot of foot traffic so do need regular attention if they are to look their best and this example was no different.
Fortunately, the floor was intact with no broken or loose tiles to deal with, there were a few chipped tiles in the floor but I think that adds character to a floor of this age. I worked out a quote to deep clean the tiles, flush out the dirt and add a fresh sealer to protect them. The quote was accepted and a date set for the work to commence.
Deep Cleaning a Victorian Tiled Hallway Floor
I started the work by applying a generous coating of Tile Doctor Oxy-Gel and left it to soak into the pores of the Victorian tiling for around 30 minutes. I used Oxy-Gel so as to minimise the use of water which can exacerbate efflorescence salt issues which is a typical problem of floors of this age that don’t have the benefit of a damp proof membrane.
Then using a very coarse 100-grit diamond encrusted pad attached to a rotary floor machine the tiles were given a good scrub. This process skims away a small layer off the surface of the tiles to remove the dirt and old coatings such as sealers. All the soil was extracted from the floor using a wet vacuum and I repeated this process twice for maximum effect.
At this point the tiles were already looking significantly better but I hadn’t finished yet. I still needed to deal with the edges and corners where the pad can struggle to reach. For this I use handheld burnishing blocks and more Oxy-Gel, you need a lot of elbow grease to do this but its an important step and can also be used to deal with any stubborn areas.
Once finished I used a little water to help rinse off the floor and the wet vacuum again to get the floor as dry as possible before leaving the floor to dry off completely overnight.
Sealing a Victorian Tiled Floor
The tiles need to be dry before sealing so the next day my first action was to test the floor for moisture using a damp meter. They passed and were ready to take a sealer which for this floor I used Tile Doctor seal and Go Extra. It’s super tough and ideal for doorways and hallways and leaves a nice sheen without being too shiny.
Before leaving I left advice on how to maintain the tiles using Tile Doctor Neutral Tile Cleaner which is a gentle tile cleaning product that will clean the floor without impacting the sealer which can be a problem with many of the strong products you find in supermarkets.