We don’t hear a lot about the care of rubber floors or rubber flooring tiles for a variety of reasons.
First, while these floors are becoming more popular, they are typically just used in “utility” areas of a facility. In other words, the glossy stone floors proudly on display in the facility’s lobby get all the praise and attention while the rubber floors installed in the secondary staircases, mailroom or warehouse get all the heavy-duty traffic & limited care.
Another reason we do not hear about rubber floors or the cleaning and care of rubber floors is because, for the most part, they do not require a lot of care and maintenance. This can also apply to rubber gym flooring. This makes the “cost of ownership” of rubber floors much less than other types of floor coverings.
This was proven a few years back in a Florida hospital. Rubber floors were installed in various areas of the hospital. Their care and maintenance were compared to other types of hard surface floors, and the hospital concluded the rubber floors required “half the cost to clean and maintain [compared to] other hard surface floors in the hospital.”
But here is another fact we should know as well. Rubber floors can last even longer and look even better if steps are taken to keep them clean, conditioned, and looking their best. We should also point out that while rubber floors may be less costly to care for once installed, they can cost more to select than other types of floor coverings. Because of this, the more administrators and cleaning crews know about caring for these floors, the lower their cost of ownership will be in the long run.
Rubber floors are now available in different styles and textures. Interlocking rubber floor tiles are also getting popular because they can be so cost effective. Some are flat, or at least appear to be flat. These floors actually have slight hills and valleys.
Other types of rubber floors have what are called “studs” or in some cases “mushrooms.” These studs or mushrooms protrude from the floor and are typically used to help promote walker safety. This is why we often see them installed on stairways, in sports facilities, and on heavily trafficked walkways such as those found in airports, especially if the floor has slight inclines or declines.
Cleaning and Care of Rubber Floors
In most situations, rubber flooring only needs to be swept, or preferably vacuumed, and damp mopped. Because these floors often have an uneven surface or studs, a string mop is easier and more effective to use than a microfiber flat mop.
However, for more detailed cleaning and scrubbing, the best way to clean rubber floors especially rubber gym floors, is by using a cylindrical brush floor cleaning machine should be used. These machines use counter rotating brushes that allow them to dig deeper into the floor, loosening and removing soils. A rotary floor machine, on the other hand, may not do this as effectively.
Deciding on the chemicals to clean rubber floors is extremely important; an all-purpose cleaner is known to be the best choice. If a cleaning solution is used with a pH that is too high or too acidic, the rubber will eventually dry out. Once that happens, the floor may lose its natural luster, appear dried out, and even crack which will then make it get dirtier, faster.
To prevent this, apply a specially/specific designed rubber floor sealant or floor finish to rubber floors. An effective rubber floor sealant or finish will help prevent dirt and soil from penetrating into the floor while producing a high-gloss shine. This not only protects the floor and makes the floor look better, but also it makes it easier and faster to maintain the floor.
It’s often a good idea for administrators to work with a jansan distributor when selecting an effective rubber floor sealant/finish, as well as daily cleaner. Because of where rubber floors are often installed, a higher degree of flexibility may be required of the cleaning solutions, sealants, and finishes selected. Once a sealant or finish has been applied to a rubber floor, it can be “buffed” or polished on a regular basis, preferably using a cylindrical floor machine with appropriate buffing brushes. This helps bring the floor’s shine back.
Avmor manufactures a wide range of cleaning solutions that can be used to care for rubber floors. For more information, contact an Avmor representative.
Avmor cleaning solutions that will prove effective for the cleaning and care of rubber floors include SF151 Floor Cleaner and Prep, SF152 Cleaner and Gloss Enhancer, SF326 Synthetic Finish for Sheet & Sports Flooring and SF303 Water Based-Urethane Fortified Sealer Finish. It will help protect the floor and produce a high-gloss shine.