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I'm trusting it is ceramic and grout. It is not intended to have finish applied to it. Certainly needs to be scrubbed and cleaned with a heavy duty tile and grout cleaner to find what the surface beneath looks like.

The tile may have a nice shine to it but has been covered with finish or worse, mop n glo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yeah.I scrubbed a small spot to see what it would look like. The grout and tile cleaned real nice, but there is no gloss to it. I moved a plant that was on the floor and the finish has a gloss to it. So when it was new it did have a shine to it. It is ceramic tile and i think it came with a finish on it. Why is it not intended to have finish applied to it?
 

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You can try floor finish stripper. It is an alkaline cleaner. Mix by label instructions. Rinse well.

Ceramic tile surface is not a good adhesive for floor finish. It may flake off or need frequent recoating. If the tile was manufactured with a shine it will not strip off and will remain over the entire surface. Scratch yes, but should maintain a gloss overall.
 

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My first recomendation would be to check with your customer and see if they have any extra tiles laying around. That will show you what the floor should look like.
It sounds like a finish was applied if you moved the plant and there was a gloss finish under it and the rest of the floor is dull.
Another way to tell if a finish was applied is to check the grout in a protected area like close to the base board or close to the cabinets for any finish build up you may need to clean some of the grime off the grout to see it.
If you find any extra tiles ask the customer if you can have one for a sample take it with you and apply 3 to 5 coats of high gloss finish that will give it a high gloss wet look and bring out more color and detail out of the tile then you can take it back and set it on the floor in front of your customer and give them a visual of what the floor can look like.
If they dont have any extra tile go buy a close match and use that
If thats what they are looking for then proceed with the floor strip then re finish
Let your customer know that once its done it will need to be maintaind depending on the traffic
as it dulls and the finish wears you can re apply coats to bring it back but over time you will need to strip the floor and start over.
 

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Looks like I got here too late!!

From the picture it looks to me like limestone or travetine. Either way it does not look man made, and if you can't tell then don't mess with it!! If there is a repeating pattern, it is man made. If every tile has a different pattern or vein structure, is is natural. Natural stone must be honed and polished to get a shine. Do not use a bunch of crap on this floor and end up destroying what is left of it! Ceramic tile needs no finish on it, it is what it is. Step aside, and tell your client to call a professional tile cleaner/restorer to fix this floor before you end up buying it!!

az
 
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