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floating grout in Fredericksburg Va

How to regrout a shower

After years of being bombarded with water, cleaning agents, and scrubbing, your grout may have had all it can take. Grouting a shower or bathtub surround is actually quite a bit of work. All the old grout and caulk must be removed before the new grout and caulk can be replaced. We often come across jobs that were not prepared correctly and the new grout just fails. New grout cannot be floated or skimmed over old grout, it will just flake off in no time. However, we see this all the time, especially in today’s real estate market. Skim coating is common in properties for sale. It’s real hard to sell a house that has an ugly black shower, a quick skim and a bead of caulk to cover up all that black stuff might just be enough to pass it off to an unsuspecting buyer.

How to regrout a shower properly

Preparing the surface

This picture shows a properly prepared surface for the new grout. We used various grout saws, utility knives and lots of elbow grease to remove all the old grout and caulk. Many contractors or even homeowners use electric dremel type tools to do this, we prefer hand tools to reduce any risk of chipping a tile. It’s always best practice to wear safety goggles during this procedure. After all the grout and caulk is removed give the shower a good vacuum and wipe down with a damp grout sponge. If the tile had any build up of calcium or soap scum that would be cleaned real good before the grout removal, so excess water would not get between the tiles. The preparation of the shower is the most tedious and time consuming of the job, this next part goes much quicker but does require some skill level.

 

properly removed grout

all old grout removed

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Installing the new grout

floating grout in Fredericksburg Va

Regrouting showers is something we also do.

Floating grout can be a bit tricky for the newbie. Newly mixed grout is just a little thicker than pancake batter, but starts getting thicker and harder to spread as it starts to set up. That can be a problem for someone that does not have the speed of a pro. It’s important to never add water to the grout after it’s initial mixing, that will ruin it.

After working the grout into all the joints, It’s important to get as much of the excess grout off the tile by placing the float on an angle and wiping across the tile diagonally, as shown.

Clean up

After the grout has been floated onto the walls, it is then wiped clean with a grout sponge. Sponging also helps even out all he grout lines for a nice even professional look. Now this is the important part, don’t over work the grout with too much water in the sponge or re wipe areas already wiped. Just wipe it once, and leave it. The tiles will haze over and will buff off easily with a clean white terry cloth towel in about 2 hours. While buffing the tile it’s advisable to wear a respirator, the fine dust produced is not good for you to breath.

The final icing on the cake is the caulk, I like to caulk around the base of the shower pan and up the corners as well. Most of the unsanded grouts found today have polymers in the grout and don’t need sealing. I do however recommend sealing sanded grout, usually found on floors.

Pristinepete.com

sponging the tile & goout

Wiping and smoothing grout joints

Pet soil

Do you think your tile is clean?

Pristine tile and grout restoration offers free tile & grout cleaning demonstrations in the Fredericksburg Virginia area. Call 540-841-3907

Pristine Tile & Grout Restoration Yellow Pages Ad

 

Expert Tile & Grout Cleaning

cleaning tile & grout floors

How we do it:

There are actually 4 components working together in harmony that allow us to achieve these superior cleaning results.

Emulsifier – We use a non toxic, environment friendly spray that is applied to the tile & grout floor to quickly loosen up the soil.

High Pressure – Our advanced patented equipment produces water pressure that can be adjusted between 200 and 1500 psi to penetrate even the toughest areas!

Heat – Our powerful truck mounted steam cleaner is capable of maintaining temperatures over 230 degrees throughout the cleaning process.

Vacuum – Our Vacuum process surgically lifts the soil and dirty water off your floor.

Other amazing videos at real job sites

 

Cleaning a Travertine kitchen floor in king george va

Cleaning, Before & After Photos

Awesome Results

This was a great week at Pristine! Even after years of cleaning with our powerful truck mounted equipment I am still amazed myself at the results we achieve. Thanks to today’s technology I am able to snap some quick photos with my smart phone and share them with the world. In this particular post I am sharing photos from a concrete cleaning job, a tile & grout cleaning job, and a carpet cleaning job.

Concrete Driveway Cleaning

Concrete Cleaning

Driveway cleaning

This photo is of a concrete driveway at a residence out in King George, Virginia. The owner stated that he has never had it cleaned in the 14 years he’s been there. Our concrete cleaning system is far superior to ordinary power-washing in many ways. It is a contained cleaning system with powerful vacuum, so there is no over spray or run off. This was especially important on this job because the homeowner had the driveway surrounded with some very nice plantings. If you’ve ever power washed, you know what happens when you hit that flowerbed with the wand, dirt everywhere!

Using powerful truck mounts also enables us to clean at temperatures well over 200 degrees, everyone knows heat is critical for achieving outstanding cleaning results. You can view great concrete cleaning video on our website.

Tile Floor Cleaning

Tile and Grout Cleaning

This second picture is actually from the same home in King George, Virginia. It is obvious from the photo that the grout had turned completely black over the years. It is extremely difficult for a home owner to achieve these results from scrubbing alone. There are 4 components that work in harmony that give us this type of clean. They are heat, vacuum, pressure, and emulsifiers.

After this floor was cleaned we applied a sealer to the grout. In this case only the grout will benefit from a sealer, ceramic and porcelain tiles are non-porous and will not accept sealers. Sealing the grout protects it from permanent staining as well as makes it a little easier to clean. Our tile & grout cleaning footage on our site is quite Impressive.

Carpet Cleaning in a Preschool

Pre School

This rug belongs to one of our great customers, it is a local preschool here in Stafford, Virginia. It is important for daycares and schools to have their carpets cleaned on a regular basis to avoid the spread of germs. Again, this is where the heat comes in. When you clean with steam you are enhilating the germs and bacteria that lurk deep down in the carpet fibers. Regular carpet cleaning is key for any carpet to keep it looking great for years.

After the carpet has been cleaned we do recommend Scotchguard protection to help the carpets resist permanent damage from spills and soil. We also offer deodorizers and odor treatments for folks that may have pets.

According to Shaw Industries you should have your carpets cleaned every 12-18 months, this will help keep the carpets looking new for many years and is actually part of the warranty requirements for the Stainmaster line.

This last shot is of a berber carpet in a rental property down in Lake Land Or.  Another fantastic customer that counts on us to restore their carpets in their many rental properties as the tenants come and go. We were successful in removing several stains and spots as well as greatly improving the appearance of a noticeable traffic lane.

Thanks for reading, and be sure to visit us at Pristinepete.com to find out we can help you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More shots of our work

 

carpet cleaners stafford

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Affordable Carpet Cleaning

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cleaning a Travertine kitchen floor in king george va

Tile floor cleaning in Stafford virgina

This travertine kitchen floor in King George Virginia was heavily soiled from dogs and years of foot traffic. As you can see there was no problem getting this floor to look new again.

 

 

Kitchen floor tile with white grout in Stafford Virginia, no problem for our advanced cleaning techniques.

 

 

 

 

 

Replacing cracked or loose tiles.

Why are my tiles cracking and grout falling out?

There are many reasons why tiles crack or become loose. The most common reason is poor installation. There are many short cuts installers can take to save time or money, most may not be noticeable for a year or two, long after the job is done. By this time the installer is nowhere to be found. Before tile can be installed the floor should be prepared with a suitable cement backer board. The board should be layed in thin set, and screwed down as well as making sure all seams are taped.

After the sub floor has been prepared with backer board the tile can be set in thin set. For larger jobs there should be at least 2 installers to ensure the thin set does not start to set up be for the tile is placed on it. It is also advisable to butter the back of each tile, another step that is often skipped because it just takes more time.

Pristine highly recommends using a company that specializes in installing tile, not just a handyman or a family member. You will be much happier with your floor in the long run. Pristine has two personal favorites J & J tile and Marble or quality carpet and floor(Bob Mcdonald or Scott Busby can help you). Please trust me on this, I get call after call from folks who’s floor is failing because they tried to save money on the install.

So… after all that has been said, can we fix your floor?

sometimes… it depends on the severity of the problem. If it is just a few tiles or a small area that has become a problem we can carefully remove the tiles, grind down the old thin set and re-set the tiles, as shown in the photos. If the problem is widespread through out the majority of the floor, chances are, it was a really poor installation job and needs to be done over.

One last tip on installing floors…always, always, always save some leftover tile for repairs and even take note of the grout color and where it came from. This makes certain that any future repairs will look great! The biggest problem we face is that people have cracked or broken tiles and no spares. Once the floor is installed the tile will become obsolete and nowhere to be found in less than a year.

When the grout and caulk need to be replaced.

 

Many times we get calls for shower tile cleaning, but sometimes the caulk and grout are just too far gone for cleaning alone, as shown in the photos below from this home in Fredericksburg Va.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yuck! who would want to get in that shower? (Sorry for the thumb)

It is always a great idea to inspect your showers, tubs, and sinks for signs of a problem, such as missing or cracked grout and/or caulk. Often small problems can be rectified before they turn into big expensive problems. In the case above it actually looked a lot worse than it was. The grout and caulk were in bad shape but miraculously the water had not penetrated to the wall board just yet. Pristine was able to go in and clean the tile, remove and replace all the old grout and caulk and make this shower look new and inviting once again!

Some folks are not quite as lucky and repairing or replacing often are needed.  If the tiles are loose and the walls feel spongy you can bet damage has taken place. Sometimes we can cut out a bad section and make the necessary repairs, if the damage is not too extensive.

The photos below, believe it or not, are the same shower fully restored!

The picture below is of a counter restoration project we did in the city of Fredericksburg Va 22401,

old tile counter top looks new again

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pristine’s new constant contact email archives

 

Pristine has sent out a few emails with tips and specials for our customers. These emails are now available to everyone through our constant contact archives You will find specials, as well as helpful tips for carpet cleaning, tile cleaning and sealing.

Tile & Grout Cleaning

 

Do I have to seal my grout?

Yes!

The two main types of grout are sanded and unsanded, sanded is used in larger grout joints and unsanded in smaller joints. The sand is added to the grout to give it strength, but also leaves a rough texture. This porous rough texture absorbs spills, dirty mop water, outdoor soil and so on, making it difficult to clean. In no time the grout will be stained, discolored, and just plain ugly. Using a quality sealer on the grout will help prevent permanent staining, as well as make cleaning easier. The misunderstanding is… people think sealer will keep their grout clean. The fact is sealer will only provide a barrier, thus making cleaning easier and permanent damage less likely, soil will still find its way to the floor, if I had the answer to preventing that, I would be a hero, and probably out of business. The unsanded grout ussually found on walls, and in showers, is much less porus, but still can benifit from sealer especially in a shower. There are often minerals in the water that can even leave unsanded grout stained after time, especially white grout.

 

Carpet Cleaning Tips & FAQ’s

What’s that ugly black line in my carpet around the base molding?

Quite often a black line will form in the carpet around the perimeter of a room., this is most noticeable in white carpet. The condition called filtration takes several years to become noticeable. The term filtration comes from your carpets acting as a filter. When air flows through the carpet it slowly deposits very fine, electrostatically charged particles in the carpet fibers. Once this black ring has set in, it is super difficult to remove. Filtration forms along the wall for two reasons, the padding ends at the tack strip which allows the air to flow through the carpet,  The second reason is that the vacuum just can’t get that close to the wall.

How can I prevent filtration from happening?

Frequently vacuuming your carpet is key… remove it before it sets in. You will however, need to use the slim crevice too that came with your vacuum to get close to the base molding. It is also important to vacuum the rooms that “no one ever goes in” that is where I see the worst of it. Leading carpet manufactures recommend professional deep cleaning of the carpet every 12-18 months. This varies with every home, as homes with high traffic, pets and children seem to take a bit more abuse.

If  I have a stain resistant carpet do I need to re-apply the protectant?

Yes!

 Many higher end carpets come with stain protection, however this does not last forever, normal wear and vacuuming can compromise the protector over time. We always advise applying new protector every couple of years. We at Pristine, here in Fredericksburg, Va., use either Scotchguard or Dupont’s advanced stain protectant. The best time to apply this is right after the carpets have been professionally deep cleaned.

Are all carpet cleaning compaines the same?

No

Like any other industry, carpet cleaning companies vary tremendously. First, there are different types of carpet cleaning. Two of the most common are hot water extraction or steam cleaning and the other is dry chemical cleaning. Both have their advantages, however, the leading carpet manufactures say that steam extraction is the best for cleaner, longer lasting carpets. Then, there is the quality of the equipment being used. There are many reputable carpet cleaners out there, but there are also a lot of guys that buy cheap portable extractors and call themselves professional carpet cleaners. You would be better off renting a rug doctor than hiring one of these guys. Some of the higher end portables that have good power and heat can do a decent job.

The best carpet cleaning machine in the world is only as good as the operator. Carpet cleaning is a skill that comes with training and experience. When you hire a big company, it can be hit or miss, has the tech been cleaning for 5 years or did they start yesterday? Inexperienced can do more harm than good, if too much residue or water is left behind it can cause problems such as re soiling, and very slow dry times which in extreme cases can trigger mold and mildew to breed.

Tired of bait and switch?

The Stafford Virginia area has some great carpet cleaning companies, but as with any industry there are a few bad apples. Be very careful of companies that offer lowball pricing! Many companies will offer deals that sound too good to be true, because usally they are. Some compainies will give a low quote over the phone just to get in your house, once there they will tell you that it is going to be more for one reason or another. To run a reputable carpet cleaning company there are many cost factors to consider… equipment cost, repairs and maintenance, licensing, insurance, continuing education, advertising, cleaning chemicals, and gas is now approaching $4.00 per gallon! So, any company offering carpet cleaning for a ridiculously low price is either cutting corners, increasing the price upon arrival (bait & switch), not using the proper cleaning agents or procedures, or they will be out of business in a hurry. Pristine has been cleaning carpets as well as tile & grout in Stafford, Fredericksburg, and Spotsylvania Virginia for many years. We take great pride in cleaning the right way, for a fair price, and never increasing the price after we show up. But don’t take my word for it, visit our Home Advisor Ratings and you will see we have held a 5 star rating for the last 4 years!