Know your Hard Floors
As a Building Service Contractor we see many different types of hard floor surfaces. Each type of floor has its own requirements for both daily care and periodic cleaning. Before you can clean your floors you must know your floors.
In our experience the most popular types of floors are ceramic tiles, porcelain tiles, terrazzo tiles, vinyl tiles, marble floors and wood floors. Each floor type requires a different maintenance plan.
Ceramic and Porcelain Tiles
These should be swept and damp mopped daily using a mild all-purpose cleaner. Using a heavy detergent or too much chemical on these floors can result in film being left behind after cleaning. This can cause the floor to have a sticky or slippery texture. Dust, dirt and bacteria will also adhere to the film left behind causing the floor to appear dirty.
We do not recommend polishing these floors. These tiles, by nature, do not accept polish since glazed tiles do not absorb any of the applied product. The grout areas allow the polish to penetrate, but it will be next to impossible to remove the polish. The polish can cause discoloration and become a breeding ground for germs.
It is recommended that you have these floors scrubbed periodically by a professional company to clean the tiles and the grout lines. This helps to maintain the “like new look” of the tile.
Terrazzo and Vinyl Tiles
Just like ceramic floors, these should also be swept and damp-mopped daily with a mild all-purpose cleaner. However, these floors are a bit more high maintenance. They require regular buffing and reapplication of polish to maintain their shine. In addition, these floors would need to be stripped of their polish and re-finished periodically.
These floors can look amazing and last a long time once they are well maintained. For more information about developing a maintenance schedule for your vinyl and terrazzo you can speak to your service provider or contact our office.
Marble floors are easily scratched or worn by foot traffic. They require a sealer to protect them. A special stone sealer is required: it will allow the marble to “breathe”. If natural gases within the stone cannot escape through the sealer, bubbles will rise, the seal will break, and the floor finish will become dull. It is always best to have a professional company that is experienced with stone floors such as marble maintain these floors for you.
These floors must be swept daily. It is recommended you damp-mop the floor using a neutral all-purpose cleaner and a microfiber mop. With these floors, moisture is your enemy! Overly wetting floors like this can result in damage to the wood and may even cause warping. These floors can be protected with the use of a sealer.