Rotovac Corporation cleaning carpet

Hard Floor Maintenance and Floor Surfaces

Asphalt Tile / Linoleum
Products with a pH above 10 will emulsify protective coatings leading to a rapid deterioration of the tile. Solvent-type cleaners tend to soften, or even dissolve asphalt, linoleum tile. Stripping solutions should fall in a pH range of 10-12. Stronger solutions can cause running or bleeding of the color pigments in the tile.

Vinyl / Vinyl Composition Tile
For maintenance of all vinyl flooring, methods and materials are the same, as the vinyl flooring is virtually immune to solvents and is highly resistant to acids and alkalis.

Although some manufacturers claim a protective coating or wax is not necessary, there is no floor covering that is impervious to abrasive friction and wear.

Finished Wood
There are many types of wood and just as many types of coatings for them. It is best to use a neutral or mild alkaline solution for cleaning. Perhaps most important is to keep the amount of cleaning solution and rinse water to a minimum to avoid the wood fibers from absorbing water and becoming damaged.

Quarry / Ceramic Tile
While both quarry and ceramic tile are virtually impervious to most elements, the grout surrounding them may not be. When using an acid product, be sure that complete and thorough rinsing is done. Acidic products may eat away at some grout as it would a lime deposit.

Natural Marble
Acidic products should never be used on natural marble, as marble is composed of limestone which is attacked by acid just as an acid would dissolve a hardness film. A moderate or strong alkaline product may discolor (Lighten) marble, and for that reason their use is not recommended.

Seamless (Poured Urethane) etc.
Very durable flooring that is impervious to most chemicals used in cleaning. These floors are sometimes poured in several steps, and if faulty preparation is done between steps, a deterioration of the floor may occur on its own. It would be best to avoid strong alkaline cleaning solutions.

Concrete floors should be sealed with a special sealant periodically during its lifetime to enable the concrete to resist soils that would penetrate it. The use of a strong acidic product or a strong alkaline product can deteriorate the concrete if it has not been sealed.

Marble or Granite chips set in mortar and then ground smooth is a terrazzo floor. Some people believe there are special sealers used on terrazzo floors and there is no real need for any other protective coating. However, as with any type of floor you must apply a sacrificial coating in order to preserve and protect the marble chips. As well as provide an anti-slip surface.

Conductive Floors
Found in health care and hospital units such as surgery, intensive care or where oxygen is used. Conductive Flooring allows static electricity to be conducted to the ground without the spark you sometimes encounter. This property of the floor helps to avoid explosions in an oxygen rich atmosphere, so it is very important that only an approved product be used and very thoroughly rinsing be carried out.

Metal Crosslinked Polymer Floor Finishes
These are synthetic floor finishes where the plastic molecules in the floor finish are bonded together with a metal ion to produce a polymer floor finish that is unaffected by water, detergents and stripping without the use of ammonia. Typically the more coats of these floor finishes the more shine you will get and the slip resistance is not diminished.

Silica Filming
A white film on a surface that cannot be chemically removed. This film is caused by the use of a sillicated (metal protective) product that has not been thoroughly rinsed off. it can also be caused by an acidic product used on grouting between tiles and not rinsing thoroughly.


Condition of Floor
Floors that have been regularly maintained for several years with buffable waxes are difficult to strip, occasionally impossible. Essentially, the wax turns into part of the floor A customer must commit time and effort required to strip the layers of wax if this is not possible, then a buffable finish is recommended.

Floor Color
Dark colored floors enhance powder, scuffs, dust and scratch marks. it is important to remember this before making a recommendation to the customer. Black heel marks show up more easily on light colored floors. Protect these with a highly black mark resistant floor finish product.

Entrance / Exterior Conditions
Buffable and non-Buffable finishes become quickly scratched by tracked-in sand and grit Usually, buffables provide better protection than non buffables against abrasive foot traffic. Because Ultra High Speed finishes are pliable, they generally can be recovered by buffing provided that enough finish is still on the floor.