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Orange Saltillo Tile

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Hello Everyone, I have not posted in this area yet but here goes: I have a customer that has the Orange Saltillo Tile in walkways around his house and the back patio is also tile. It has who knows how many years of erosion and neglect. This is outside where the animals do thier thing on it, tree sap, leaves, etc.... I tried using a little bit of pressure and warm water around 150 degrees and got some of it up. The Tree sap looks like it has stained the tile. There is no glaze or wax on thes tiles and a lot of them have pits from erosion. I am wondering:

1. Will floor strippers work as good as pressure washing chemicals to clean?

2. Has anyone done this before and what were the results?

3. Has anyone tried comparing the floor buffer to pressure washing on tiles?

I talked to a guy and he said that the floor buffer with the right pad and stripper will take some of the top off and make it look good again. Does anyone know about this? Thanks for any help.

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Many floor strippers are similar to what many use for concrete cleaning. Potassium and Sodium Hydroxide are the two most well known floor strippers, often with Butyl Cellusolv added for extra kick.

Those would help quite a bit with general soil and tree sap, but would do nothing for any erosion.

If the glaze is really gone, then the soft clay inside much the same as a raw brick is fairly delicate, and would respond well to a LIGHT acid wash. Home Depot has specialty chemicals in the tile section for Saltillo and a few others.

The use of a floor machine may do damage since the machine itself is quite heavy if you have a standard commercial unit. The pads for floor cleaning are only going to get the top surface and not the pits. The concrete brushes from 3M are in the $200.00 range and do well for scrubbing uneven surfaces.

This is more of a restoration job than cleaning, and you need to be careful or you may kill the tile. A good sealer should be applied after to protect them, as they may not live to see another cleaning.

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This is way old but I am interested in how it went..

I have these in my kitchen and exterior patio..they are often refered to as Mexican tile....They do not come with a glaze persay far as I usually saw and were applied originally across the country as if they were to have their pores open. When it comes time to clean they respond well to standard degreasers and the grout respond well to citric acid and last years and years with a natural look and no top coat. Problem is though they show every bit of dirt and require too much cleaning. Method is either mop or autoscrub with mild strato grit type brush as you must get into the grout and you must pick water up...well if not the water just goes straight down into slab and evaporates just fine on backup with dirt and chemicals. When I got tired of the cleaning all the time I tried a few high solid acrylic finishes first and they were just absorbed right off and made cleaning no easier. So then I used some conversion varnish followed up by the acrylics and bamm they looked hot for the past year. The kids got a new sandbox about 3 weeks back and proceded to go ahead and create me a nice traffic lane on the kitchen when their trikes tracked it in. Couple more weeks I am stripping it all off and redoing with catalyzed poly before top coating..

Mine are pretty robust far as being able to scrub with low speed machine. Have even ran 100 grit sand screens on them to smooth corners and edges of individual tiles so that I could run a soft padded propane burnisher on them..haha, yup I do grocery stores at night then come home and polish my kitchen with a 200 lb machine..lol

P.S. I consider it a restoration level of work cause to do perfectly you will end up with some amount of the clay coming off and possably some scratches left to sand out or fill in. The black 3M hipro pads (thin open weave) are the best to really get clean though(or to strip vinyl..btw). Sand screens can be had at the big box store if you want to really get in there.

Thanks for the info. Any Names or Brands for an Outside Tile Sealer? Thanks.

Not Behr low lustre...slippery as all get out.

Not white mountain..lasts less then a year under sun.

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