All About Tile - MAINTENANCE RELATED QUESTIONS

Most Ragno porcelain tiles require minimal maintenance.  They can generally be cleaned with clear water and/or a neutral pH liquid cleaner (soapless).  Follow with a clear water rinse and wipe dry to prevent film formation.  As with most porcelains, spilled liquids may stain the light-colored products if not promptly removed.  Neither sealing nor acid cleaning is recommended for any of Ragno porcelain tiles.

The tile should be thoroughly cleaned of grout after installation (following the grout manufacturer’s instructions) to assure ease of maintenance in the future. Tile, whether glazed ceramic or porcelain, should be maintained on a regular and frequent basis to prevent build up of soil, grease, residue, soap detergents, sealers, dampness, liquids, etc., to keep the surface clean and lessen slippery conditions.

For heavily abrasive tile, i.e. tile with a wet C.O.F. of 0.70, the following maintenance equipment and procedures may be required:

Wash Group: One five gallon plastic pail, one deck brush (10 inches wide with two inch bristles) and one mop (rayon).

Rinse Group: A standard mop bucket with a mop wringer and one mop (rayon).

Procedure: Fill the five gallon Wash Group pail with hot water and p.H. neutral liquid cleaner (soapless) in concentrations according to manufacturer’s recommendations. Half-fill the Rinse Group mop bucket with clear hot water.

Immerse the Wash Group mop in the five gallon pail of cleaner solution. Working in ten foot by ten foot sections, spread the cleaner solution to cover the ten square foot section. Scrub well with the deck brush.

Following the scrubbing, rinse the area with the mop and water from the Rinse Group.  Proceed to the next ten square foot area and repeat these procedures until the floor is cleaned, changing both the wash solution and rinse water frequently as they become dirty.

These questions are often interrelated. If the surface appearance of the tile differs significantly from uninstalled pieces left from the installation there are several possible explanations.

The tile may appear dull if a grout haze remains on the surface of the tile. This often happens when the grout is not thoroughly cleaned from the tile surface immediately following installation. Since grout is a form of cement, it becomes very difficult to remove after drying completely. This can be avoided by grouting only manageable sections at one time and cleaning each well before moving on to other areas. This step is particularly important when working with textured, natural stone-like tile that feature crevices or clefts.

When grout remains on the surface, it attracts and holds dirt, thus making it impossible to restore the original sheen to the tile. Products exist in the marketplace to remove grout haze; these products often contain acids that can damage the surface of the tile. Since the surface of tile is essentially a layer of glass, it can be easily etched by acid. Ragno does not recommend acid cleaning for any of our glazed products. Any effort to remove grout haze with an acid-based product should be cautiously undertaken by a professional contractor and utilized with extreme caution. Improper use of acids that etch the glaze also results in loss of light reflection and dirt retention that diminishes the sheen of a tile.

Additionally, normal wear and tear can result in scratches that, over time, retain dirt and reduce sheen. Culprits can be sand or gravel adhered to shoe soles, chairs or bar stools that are repetitively moved across a tile surface, children’s toys with abrasive finishes, loaded carts or other conveyances, etc. Always consider a tile’s durability classification when choosing a product for specific areas.