Building sites are notorious for generating hard to remove dust and dirt. Once the job is completed, all surfaces and furnishings must be cleaned immediately, either by the client or by a specialised contractor.
Porcelain stoneware slabs are an ever more popular choice for walls and floors. While they are often chosen for their technical characteristics and style, not everyone is aware that they must be thoroughly cleaned after installation to ensure that they maintain their high performance, colour and decorative effect over the long term.
Haloes, stains, grouting and other residue can affect the performance of porcelain stoneware, resulting in a surface which does not match the intended effect of the design and installation.
Familiarity with the right products and techniques for deep cleaning porcelain stoneware surfaces after a renovation is therefore an essential tool for preventing disappointing results. Let’s take a closer look at how to proceed:
How to clean a porcelain stoneware floor to remove residues of paint and resin
The first thing to do when cleaning porcelain stoneware tiles or slabs after renovation is to remove the coarser residue - i.e. residue that you can immediately see or feel.
The amount of work to be done can only be assessed after the floor has been swept and the walls cleaned off with a soft brush, so as to remove any loose dirt.
Any traces of paint and resin, now clearly visible, can be removed with a rubber scraper to protect the porcelain stoneware surface against scratching. If scraping is ineffective, you can use professional cleaning products designed for cleaning porcelain stoneware.
If so, it is best to use viscous cleaning products, which can be applied over small areas with a brush, even on the walls, since they are designed to stay in place long enough to take effect.
Follow the instructions on the product’s packaging, and always test a small area first to make sure that the product is not harmful to the surface.
Washing after installation: how to remove patina from porcelain stoneware floors and walls
Once the roughest residue has been removed from the stoneware surface, it is very likely that you will see an unattractive dusty grey patina, especially if the floor and wall tiles are dark or medium in tone.
This patina is hard to remove with commercial neutral detergents, and must be cleaned professionally, so that you can enjoy the full beauty and technical quality of your porcelain stoneware surfaces.
If the slabs have been installed with a cement grout to fill in and colour the joints, the porcelain stoneware can be washed after the renovation with an acid buffer product.
The dilution and application of the product to the walls and floors will depend on the extent and stubbornness of the patina. The larger and more stubborn the stains, the more deep cleaning they require.
But the final outcome - the porcelain stoneware floors and walls you wanted, to be lived every day - is well worth the effort, whether you clean them yourself or have them cleaned by the contractor who, after all, is finally responsible for the quality of the job.