Renovating Rust Stained Marble Shower tiles near Shrewsbury

We were contacted by a homeowner near Shrewsbury about the Marble wall tiles in their shower which were looking particularly grubby. They had tried to clean the area with a multitude of household products but were unable to improve their appearance and had decided to call in some professional help.

I went over to do a site visit, run some tests and recommend a solution, I like to do this where possible as it ensures I can provide an accurate quote and it also gives me an opportunity to demonstrate a workable solution. The tiles were the small two inch square Marble Mosaics which from my point of view means there’s a log of grout to clean.

Marble tiled shower before Cleaning Church Preen

More importantly whilst there I discovered their water is pumped up from a well and the water is rich in Iron deposits. You can see on the picture where the water has dried on the walls and then the Iron deposits have turned rusty resulting in a large rust stain.

The property was in the old village of Church Preen which a small Hamlet in Shropshire which only has around 30 properties, it is approximately 12 miles from the county town of Shrewsbury.

Marble tiled shower before Cleaning Church Preen

Cleaning Rust Stained Marble Shower Tiles

Normally I would remove the iron and rust deposits with an acid-based product such as Acid Gel or Grout Clean-up but Marble is acid sensitive and doing so would etch and damage the tiles. So, to work around this problem I selected to use Tile Doctor Rust Away which worked really well. This product is an effective ready to use cleaner specifically designed to remove rust stains particularly when it has become heavily embedded. In the pictures it is clearly visible how the solution turns purple when it reacts to the rust and iron deposits.

Marble tiled shower during Cleaning Church Preen

After the rust was removed, I set about cleaning the Marble tile and grout with Tile Doctor Oxy-Gel which being a gel sticks well to wall tiles allowing for a longer dwell time. After ten minutes the solution was scrubbed into the tile and grout by hand and then rinsed off with water. I repeated this process a couple of times where necessary until I was satisfied the tile and grout were as clean as could be and then rinsed the tiles down thoroughly to ensure all any traces of cleaning product has been removed. Once done the Marble tile and grout looked so much cleaner.

Sealing Mosaic Marble Shower Tiles

It was a hot day and with a little encouragement from my air move I was able to dry out the tiles and grout quite quickly as verified by testing with a damp meter. This meant I could complete the job in one day without the need for any additional drying time.

I sealed the Marble and grout with two coats of Tile Doctor Colour Grow which is an impregnator that seeps into the pores of the stone intensifying the natural colours and providing durable protection. With a fresh sealer in place water now runs off the shower wall and no longer accumulates on the tile where the Iron in the water can cause staining as it rusts.

Marble tiled shower after Cleaning Church Preen

They were over the moon with their revamped shower, it now looked much more inviting for them to use and less embarrassing when guests come to stay.

Before leaving we discussed aftercare and I recommended the use of Tile Doctor Aqua-Pro for general cleaning, it’s a pH neutral product so its safe to use on sealed surfaces. Also I suggested that should the find water starting to collect on the shower wall after use it’s wiped off with a squeegee.

Marble tiled shower after Cleaning Church Preen


Source: Marble Tile Cleaning and Restoration Service in Shropshire

Removing Limescale from a Marble Bathroom Counter-top

Marble is known for its premium quality, toughness and aesthetic, making it a very popular choice for bathroom countertops, such as this one at a house in Northampton. However just because it’s tough doesn’t mean that Marble can be cleaned with the usual household cleaners. Like all natural stone, Marble is acid sensitive and unsuitable products can have a very damaging effect on its appearance.

In this situation, the property owner had used a limescale remover to remove some unsightly marks from the countertop. Unfortunately, the product was acid-based and instead of making an improvement it just made it worse and caused severe etching.

Black Marble Vanity Worktop Before Polishing in Northampton

The first photo above shows the limescale marks from where toiletries have been placed on the side whilst wet. Since Northampton is a hard water area, the limescale deposits over time caused these marks to appear.

Burnishing a Damaged Marble Bathroom Countertop

The only way to effectively remove the Limestone deposits – while at the same time rectifying the damaged caused by the botched cleaning attempt – was to use a system of hand-held diamond encrusted pads and hand help blocks of various grits to cut back the stone and re-polish it, a process we call burnishing.

Before officially beginning the burnishing process, I ran a few tests to determine the type of pad I would need to use to achieve the best results. I found that, in most areas, I would need to use the Tile Doctor 400 Grit (Coarse) pad to resurface the tile and remove the damaged layer of stone, but in some areas where the etching was worse, I would need to use the 200 Grit (Very Coarse) pad.

After burnishing the affected areas with the Coarse and Very Coarse grit pads, I started to incrementally polish the stone to achieve a high-quality shine, working my up through the Medium, Fine and Very grit pads.

Black Marble Vanity Worktop During Polishing in Northampton

No chemicals were used during this process – only water for lubrication, combined with the six-inch diamond encrusted burnishing pads fitted to a hand-held buffing machine.

Sealing a Marble Bathroom Countertop

The final part of the restoration was to seal the stone to maintain a long-lasting, deep polished appearance. To do this, I used Tile Doctor Shine Powder, which is a crystallising sealer in powder form. The powder is applied directly and combined with water, before being worked into the stone to seal it.

Black Marble Vanity Worktop After Polishing in Northampton

The customer was very happy with the results and the level of shine achieved. I gave the customer a complimentary bottle of Tile Doctor Stone Soap, which is our aftercare cleaner for polished natural stone, along with instructions on periodic maintenance to help maintain the finish we had achieved for as long as possible.
Source: Marble Counter-top Cleaning and Polishing Service in Northamptonshire