The Complications Surrounding Limestone Floor Cleaning
Limestone is a popular flooring that can look stunning. But when a limestone is not cared for properly, it will quickly start to look dull, grimy, stained and spotted with ugly etch marks.
Limestone needs careful maintenance because it is a sedimentary stone, formed from calcium deposits.
Being a sedimentary stone means there are lots of microscopic fussures that make the stone porous.
The porous nature of limestone means that it should be sealed regularly, to prevent dirt from becoming embedded in the pores of the stone.
Being formed from calcium means that limestone is can be dissolved by acids.
Limestone's sensitivity to acids means that it can easilly suffer damage from acidic liquids.
A list of harmful liquids includes
- acid cleaning products
- liquid hand soap
- liquid shampoo
- liquid hair conditioner
- toilet cleaners
- squash drinks
- cola drinks
This means that limestone is more likely to suffer from chemical damage in; kitchens, dining areas, wet rooms, toilets, bathrooms and swimming pools.
So, without the correct maintenance regime, poor cleaning and foot traffic can soon turn the floor dull and flat.look dull, grimy, stained and spotted with ugly etch marks..
It takes an experienced professional to analyse and develop a cleaning and restoration solution that best meets your situation and budget.
That’s why you shouldn’t trust just anyone to clean your limestone flooring.
With over 20 years of experience, Abbey Floor Care has helped over 5,000 customers with their floor care issues.
Professional Limestone Cleaning - Reviving a Dull Soiled Floor
Preparing The Work Area
- Clear the room of all removable furniture (tables, chairs etc.)
- If the nature of the floor causes cleaning chemicals to splash (uneven tiles, deep-set grout) we will install protection to walls, doors, static furnishings and adjoining floors.
Professional Limestone Cleaning Process
- If the floor is particularly porous, we may "wet-out" the floor with clean water to prevent the cleaning solutions soaking into the stone before thay can emulsify the surface soil.
- Apply cleaning solution to a workable area and leave for 10 to 20 minutes to allow the cleaner to soak into the soils.
- Scrub the floor with a suitable brush or pad to remove the soils ready for removal.
- Vacuum away the soiled slurry, rinse withe clean wwater and vacuum away.
- If the floor is particularly dirty with lots of ingrained soil, we may use oour pressurised rinse and capture equipment to hel premove soils that scrubbing can't reach.
- Repeat the cleaning until the floor is as clean as we can get it. Normally, a couple of passes is all we need.
- Leave the floor to dry, ready for sealing
Professional Limestone Sealing
We offer a number of sealing options depending on the condition of the floor and our client's budget. The limestone sealing products we can apply include;
- neutral impregnating sealers
- colour-enhancing impregnating sealers
- film-forming topical sealers
- hybrid impregnating and film-forming slealers
We can advise on the best treatment for your installation
Polishing Limestone Tiles - Giving A Beautiful, Easy To Clean Finish
Limestone polishing will transform dull limestone flooring into beautiful surfaces to enhance any home. By polishing your limestone flooring you will make it easier to maintain and keep clean.
If you are thinking about cleaning or polishing your limestone floor you will need to decide on the type of finish you want. A high gloss is a beautiful, luxurious finish.
The finish is achieved by honing the floor with progressively finer diamonds. With a high gloss, the colours in the stone are enhanced and the floor is beautifully smooth. But a high gloss shows scuffs and scratches much more quickly than lighter polish.
Limestone Honing - To Give A Beautiful Soft Sheen Or Velvet Dull Finish
This cream limestone floor is finished to 400 grit and then lightly polished with polishing powder. I hope you agree that the finish is still beautiful. This lighter polish is more appropriate for higher traffic areas like kitchens and dining room. It stands up better to traffic and is less likely to show light scuff marks.
If you’re looking for a superior finish, then your floor will need to be quite smooth. If the tiles are uneven, then the floor will need to be ground flat using heavy weight grinding equipment. If you try to polish an uneven floor you will not get the clarity of finish and reflections will look distorted.
Limestone polishing equipment is heavy and expensive machinery, however, it does a fantastic job. Some companies call themselves limestone polishing experts but they have neither the equipment not experience to back up their claims.
Professional Limestone RestorationLimetone tile floor restoration generally includes one or all of the following services:
- Replacing damaged tiles.
- Re-grouting limestone tiles
- Filling holes in limestone tiles
- Repairing cracks in Limestone tiles.
- Limestone polishing.
- Limestone Honing
- Limestone cleaning.
- Limestone sealing
Limestone Honing - To Give A Beautiful Soft Sheen Or Velvet Dull Finish
Limestone Sealing – Critical Information You Need To Know
You may be surprised at the number of telephone calls we get from distressed people who have cleaned and sealed their limestone flooring but are unhappy and looking for the best way to restore their floors.
If only they had the advice you are going to get now!
Limestone sealing after cleaning limestone is not as simple as the instructions on the tin tell you.
This is because the sealing process is only a small part of the process.
Preparation for sealing limestone – A Critical Step
Before you start sealing your limestone flooring, remove dry soil with a vacuum cleaner and deep clean the floor with the correct limestone cleaner.
Cleaning limestone with a quick mop with a standatd cleaning solution will not do, you must use the correct cleaning products.
Most limestone is porous, this means that water and dirty cleaning solutions will soak into the surface of the stone before you can completely remove them.
The best way to clean porous limestone to mechanically release the soil and use pressurised rinse and extraction equipment.
A rotary cleaning machine with a soft brush is used to gently agitate the surface of the floor to release the ingrained soil.
The pressurised rinse equipment sprays pressurised hot water onto the stone and immediately extracts the excess water and soil before it gets a chance to soak back into the stone again.
Leaving your floor beautifully clean and ready for sealing.
Sealing your limestone floors
Before you start to seal your limestone floors make sure it is thoroughly dry, so there is no limestone cleaner residue.
Best to leave the floor at least 24 hours after cleaning to allow the moisture to evaporate. There are two types of limestone sealer you can choose from.
A penetrating or impregnating sealer and a surface sealer.
The beauty of a penetrating sealer is that it will not affect the appearance of your floor, so it is ideal after polishing limestone floor tiles.
A surface sealer will make the colour slightly darker as it sits on the surface of the stone.
Whichever sealer you use, a single coat will not suffice. In most cases, you will need to apply 2 or more coats, depending on the porosity of the stone.
You will know you have enough coats when the floor no longer soaks into the floor.
At this stage, wipe off the excess sealer and leave to dry.
Preparation and cleaning equipment is not readily available from hire shops.
So your best bet is to call on the services of a limestone sealing professional.
Make sure to maintain your new sealed floor with the right limestone cleaner.
Standard floor cleaners will soften and damage the sealer.