If all ceramic tile was installed the way it should be, there would be less wear and tear damage and degradation of finishes and home improvement would be a walk in the park. Unless you have an epoxy floor of course!
Unfortunately, tile setters are paid only to lay tile and install the grout. Most of the contractors who hire them don’t consider the long term use of the product and how important proper grout sealing and maintenance is.
Some builders are simply under the impression that tile and stone will stay attractive; they aren’t around to see the finishes after months or years of use.
They leave the installation to the tile setter or epoxy contractor, assuming anything to do with that scope of work will be taken care of by them. Usually even in new construction, sealing and protecting the floor finish simply gets left up to the homeowner.
Taking a few steps to protect tile and grout as soon as they are installed will save some grief down the road.
Using appropriate sealers on new tile will ensure that dirt will have a tougher time reaching the surface; but any surface, sealed or not, will need cleaning after continuous use. Grout and tile respond differently to stains and dirt, but both become worn and need attention through the years.
Dirt Affects Tile and Grout Differently
Grout cleaning requires a deeper penetration than is necessary for cleaning tile. Even though grout sealing will lessen the effects of surface grime, it cannot completely stop it. The primary sign that grout cleaning is necessary is when the grout coloring becomes inconsistent. Dirty areas will appear darker than the others. That’s why epoxy flooring is much simpler, as there is no grout!
Tile has a glazed finish in most cases. This helps stop deep penetration of stains, but any breaches in the finish will allow impurities to get through the armor. Clay tiles do not always have a protective sealer and need to be sealed or waxed to keep the dirt out. Tile cleaning encompasses many different restorative actions based on materials and the extent of the damage, so no two cleaning jobs are exactly the same.
Continuous Tile Care and Maintenance
Caring for tile is ongoing to lessen the number of times tile cleaning needs to be performed. Whenever a spill occurs, it should be addressed immediately to lessen any penetrations or chemical reactions it might have with the surface. Some liquids are more damaging than others to grout, and some are damaging to tile too, especially in the case of natural stone.
Cleaning itself can be detrimental depending on the cleansers used. A clean dry cloth to blot up the spill is the first course of action and a damp cloth to wipe with afterwards. Any cleaner necessary should be used sparingly and designed for the specific surface material.
Look for signs of wear and staining though the grout coloring, surface appearance, and luster of the tiles. Be sure that you don’t procrastinate too long when tile cleaning is necessary. Ignoring dirty tile only adds to the amount of tile or grout cleaning necessary and can also lead to a need for repair and/or restoration.
Taking proper care of tile floors will extend their beauty and when it comes time for tile cleaning, be sure to utilize specialists who can restore the appearance of tile so it looks brand new again. At Great White Floor Cleaning, we have the knowledge and the experience to protect your investment properly.