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ICAN/ATEX: How can I restore ceramic bathroom tiles to their original finish?

March 19, 2013

Many cleaning professionals visit the International Custodial Advisers Network (ICAN) Ask the Experts page for insight and, every business day, we deliver advice to better help you perform your job.

Tuesday’s Question:ICANATEX Logo

I am having a problem with cleaning ceramic tiles in the restrooms due to a previous housekeeper's error in judgement.

Toilet bowl cleaner was used to clean the floors and has left spotting on the floor.

They then tried to cover up the problem by putting down a floor finish to no avail.

What can I use to get the floor back to, or near, its original finish?

Tuesday’s Answer:

bathroom tileThe original finish was probably none, so you may wish to start by stripping whatever was put down.

I can't say for certain, obviously, but I suspect the toilet bowl cleaner was a hydrochloric (HCl) acid based one and it dissolved whatever grout film was left on the tiles when they were installed.

This would account for the spotting, and the solution to your problem may lie with doing a light acid rinse of the entire  … - Lynn E. Krafft, ICAN/ATEX editor

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