Anyone that cleans hates safety flooring - it can be really difficult to make look good. One of the frustrating things about safety flooring is that it can get stained and there is no way of getting it out. Here's how you can find out if it is a stain or just ingrained dirt, and what the common stains are.
Often there is a misunderstanding on what is a stain, and what is just simply dirt.
Why is Safety Flooring So Difficult to Clean?
The top layer of this type of flooring is soft and slightly uneven; this is how it achieves the slip rating. The problem with this is:
- It picks up a lot of marks because the friction it creates is so high it can melt a thin layer of a shoe rubber and can be very hard to remove.
- Because of the uneven surface conventional mops tend to clean the peaks but miss the troughs and dirt builds up over time in these troughs giving the floor a dirty appearance.
- Because many of these types of floors are slightly sponge like, fluid like pen ink and urinal can get into the top layer and permanently stain the floor (as often seen under urinals or in classrooms where pens have been stamped into the floor). This can be impossible to get out.
Here's a few things to test:
1. Use a Strong Alkaline Chemical
Most stains will come out with a strong alkaline product. We would recommend using Windmill Wrestler for deep cleaning safety flooring - this is a very powerful hard surface cleaner. Mop the product onto the floor and allow 3-4 minutes contact time, give it some agitation with a deck scrub and then vacuum or mop the product off the floor. This should effectively lift the ingrained dirt out of the surface.
2. Use a Scrubbing Machine
Using a scrubbing machine will almost certainly have a better result than mopping alone. Above is a picture of a recent floor we were involved with that used a Multiwash on a floor that had been mopped for years.
Suitable machines include:
Ivo Powerbrush XL - a great tool for getting into confined areas and also stairs, around toilets, and small areas of safety flooring - this will give an intensive scrub of the floor.
Truvox Multiwash - this really is one of the best machines on the market - it's a solid machine that has an excellent cleaning action. Make sure it is set on maximum brush pressure, and use warm water through the machine. If you need to use a chemical, either mop it on or use it in a trigger spray (the tanks are quite small to get chemcial dilution correct, and generally the effective brush action doesn't require any chemical).
3. Try a Magic sponges
Magic sponges live up to their name, and whilst you may dismiss them to look at them, the dense sponge is incredibly effective at lifting out dirt. You can get this for floor pads now as well, which works really well on the Ivo Powerbrush XL too (here's a short video showing it in action).
If none of the above works, you almost certainly have a stain. The most common stains are:
- Urine - particularly under urinals or around toilets
- Ink - pens that have leaked, or stamped into the floor
- Tar - tar that has been trodden in, particularly new tar from recent works outside.
There will be nothing you can do to remove it, it is a permenant stain. Download our guide below for more tips on cleaning and maintaining your safety flooring.