How to Restain Roman Tile
Roman tile is a beautiful addition to any floor or wall. However, due to the fact that much of this type of tile is not glazed with a sealer, after a time the tiles will begin to appear worn and dingy. When this happens you have two options. First, you can replace the tile, which is highly expensive and time consuming. Alternatively, you can re-stain the surface, refurbishing and re-coloring the original tile, which is a much more cost effective solution that you can often do yourself.
Step 1 – Assess Your Floor
Decide whether your tile is made of a porous material or not. If it is not a porous material you will not be able to stain the tiles. For example, terra cotta tiles are porous and can be stained.
Step 2 – Sweep and Mop the Floor
You will need a clean surface to work on. Sweep the floor and mop it well before you move on to stripping the sealer off.
Step 3 – Strip the Floor
While the floor is unglazed it is usually not unsealed. You will have to use the tile stripper agent to strip the sealer off the floor, otherwise the stain will not work.
Step 4 – Mop the Floor, Again
You need to mop again to remove all of the stripping agent from the floor.
Step 5 – Prepare the Floor for Staining
After stripping the floor it is ready to stain. It is important to guard against dropping anything on the floor at this point. The tile is not protected from stains. Using the blue painter's tape, seal off the baseboard and any other areas you want to protect from the stain. If you are using multiple stains for a design in the floor do that design at this point, let the floor dry and tape it off.
Step 6 – Apply the Stain
This is pretty straightforward. Make sure you test an area first, to make sure that this is what you want. Tape off all the grout before you begin this step. You will use a rag and dip it in stain. Rub this rag along the floor until you have a full layer of stain. Make sure that you start on the far side of the floor and work your way out of it. Allow it to dry and apply another layer if necessary.
Step 7 – Stain the Grout
Tape off your newly stained tiles and restain the grout whatever color you choose.
Step 8 – Seal the Floor
Use a durable, strong sealer to protect your new floor for a long time. Matte sealers as opposed to glossy or high sheen will work best.
Step 9 – Polish
Now polish the floor with 4 or 5 coats of a good quality floor polish.
Step 10 – Keep it Clean
Clean the floor with a microfiber mop often, using a solution of white vinegar and water.