TERA-GEM III EPOXY SYSTEMS
Floors receive more abuse than walls or any other area in a building. The search continues for the miracle material, which never requires maintenance, but with all the technology of modern science, no one has yet developed such a material. Floors have all kinds of chemical products spilled on them, heavy items dragged over them and all kinds of heavy and light loads passing over them. Dirt itself is an abrasive and with people carrying it on their shoes, the floor surface is bound to be scratched. If abrasive dirt and other spilled items are not removed, they soon become ground into the surface leaving an unpleasant appearance.
All flooring materials require some maintenance. Revolan Systems materials have been specifically designed with tough wearing finish surfaces and while they are more maintenance free than most materials, they do require some maintenance care. How much care? That depends on the level of appearance the owner desires, the amount of abuse given to the floor and the dedication of the maintenance staff in carrying out the established maintenance program.
CAUSES OF SLIPPING ON FLOORS
- FILM ON SURFACE
Floors are subjected to much spillage of food, oil, fats and chemicals of all types. Many times the item spilled leaves a film which coats the floor and becomes slippery especially when something wet is spilled on top of it. In other cases the cleaning procedure is not thorough some of this film remains even though the cleaning operation has removed the majority of it. This is especially true in meat packing rooms and other areas where animal fats are present. In these cases, the hot cleaning solution often puts the fat residue in suspension until the cleaner cools down and the fat re solidifies, and the slippery film is still on the surface. Often a film of soap from the cleaning operation is left on the floor because it was not rinsed thoroughly enough. When water is spilled on the floor it acts on the thin soap film and a slippery surface results. This is the reason a free-rinsing detergent is recommended.
This is a sliding effect that has the foot slipping because it has skidded across the surface of the wet area much as a car or an airplane skids on a wet highway or runway. If hydroplaning is suspected, the sliding action can be stopped by providing a slightly textured surface which will deep the water from forming a perfectly smooth surface and will provide some “tooth”. In some areas, greater antiskid characteristics are needed because of the type of activity in that area. All Revoplate epoxy floor systems can be modified to include “extra” non-slip texture. There are several different finishes available from a slightly textured finish (similar to very fine sandpaper) to a heavy texture (similar to a very coarse sandpaper), It is important to understand that increasing the non-slip qualities in any way also increased the maintenance costs. It is more difficult to get them off the normal finish. If cleaning is poor, the dirt and film residue will eventually build to such a thickness that it covers the anti-skid additive and the effect is lost.
A floor will only be as clean as the water, mops and buckets, hot pressure washing, and/or scrubbing equipment, which may be used to do the cleaning job. In many cases mops are seldom laundered, buckets infrequently cleaned out and the water used during cleaning is seldom changed. In cases of this type, the maintenance staff is merely moving dirt from one place to another. All maintenance personnel should follow good maintenance practice of changing the soap solution and rinse water frequently, sending the mop head to the laundry after each use and of keeping all maintenance equipment clean.
THE TWO-BUCKET METHOD IS RECOMMENDED AS IT PROVIDES CLEANER SOLUTIONS.
The best technique is to use pressure hot water. This system is not suitable for every floor cleaning operation but suitable for many warehouse and industrial processing area. A free rinsing, non-ionic detergent is recommended for cleaning as it has good cleaning action and generally doesn’t leave soap build-up. The floor should be cleaned as often as necessary. Floors cleaned with a mop or scrubbing machine, should be rinsed thoroughly and as often as is necessary, and the liquid should be removed by wet vacuum pick-up. Heavily soiled floors need stronger concentrations of cleaning solutions. Always remember to change water often to keep from depositing the dirt. Warm water usually does a better cleaning job than using the cleaner with cold water. The instructions of the manufacturer of the cleaner should always be followed.
After floors have been thoroughly cleaned, they can be sealed if desired. The periodic use of a standard maintenance sealer will enhance the ease of cleaning and the level of appearance desires of the owner.
Some owners like to apply several coats of sealer to get good film thickness and then buff the floor on a weekly or daily basis to keep the sheen quite high. This is an optional step and utilizes a floor machine with lambs wool or other type of buffing pad. The frequency of buffing is a choice of the owner and is dependent on the level of sheen desired.
After a period of tough use or where the abrasive traffic has caused some wear, the floor can be readily rejuvenated by a maintenance application of the original finish coat. The floor can easily be patched and by installing the pigmented finish coat, additional applications can also be installed. Since these clear finishes do not hide the old surface in the same manner as a pigmented finish coat, some trapped dirt and abrasion marks might still be visible. This type of rejuvenation may not be satisfactory as far as appearance is concerned, but it will increase the usable life of the floor.
There are hundreds of maintenance cleaners and sealers available making it impossible to list them. It is suggested the owner select a reputable manufacturer of maintenance materials and test those products in a small area under actual use conditions before making a final choice.
Staining or a white blush will occur if the new floor is not allowed to cure fully (7 days) prior to allowing water, chemicals, etc. to stand on the surface.
Non-Food Service / Industrial
- Sweep up and vacuum all dirt and debris
- Rinse surface to remove finer grit left behind by sweeping and vacuuming. Use of cold water for
this purpose is acceptable. The preferred equipment would be a pressure washer.
- To clean the surface coating use a mild alkaline cleaner with CLEAN, warm water. Water temperature should be 110 F to 130 F. A high pressure washer, again, is preferred equipment. The alkaline cleaner should not contain bleaches, ammonia or mediums that may etch or attack the coating. It is recommended that all cleaning compounds be spot tested prior to volume usage. Examine the coating for discoloration, pitting or softening. If any of these occur discontinue use of that cleaning material.
- The use of soft bristled brushes to aid the cleaning process is acceptable. Check with your janitorial supply company for brushes that are soft and do not scratch.
- Rinse surface with cool water to remove remaining soap residues.
- If surface becomes scratched or pitted use a floor sealer such as Johnson=s complete or equal,these can be purchased at a janitorial supply store in your area. Terrazzo wax can be also used.
The intent of all cleaning procedures for hard, durable coatings such as epoxies is to remove dirt, grime, etc without scratching the film. As the film receives more scratches, dirt can build up on the surface. Cleaning compounds must be purchased with the intent to remove the dirt and minimize
abrasiveness in the cleaning method. A knowledgeable janitorial company should be able to provide a host of satisfactory products. Staining or a white blush will occur if the new floor is not allowed to cure fully (7 days) prior to allowing water, chemicals, etc. to stand on the surface.
Staining or a white blush will occur if the new floor is not allowed to cure fully (7 days) prior toallowing water, chemicals, etc. to stand on the surface.