Cleaning Anti-Slip Floors
After installing a tile or other type of flooring that has great slip resistance, or after applying an anti-slip floor coating with great slip resistance on top of a slippery floor (like SparkleTuff™ Anti-Slip Floor Coating), you’ll find that dragging a dirty mop across the floor may no longer be sufficient to get the floor clean. In fact, mops usually do a great job of spreading dirt and grease evenly across your floor, but they do a horrible job of removing the dirt and/or grease from the floor completely. Like we often say, using a mop to get a floor truly clean is like using a dirty rag to clean your teeth. It just doesn’t work.
If you’re cleaning your mop head methodically and regularly, and switching out your mop water every few minutes with fresh, clean water, then perhaps you’ll have a little luck removing some contaminants and making your floor appear clean, but if you truly want to get a floor clean, you’ll have to use better technology.
The best way to clean a floor is with a professional Auto Scrubber. They come in various sizes and they do a great job, if used properly. With an anti slip floor, you do not want to use any type of pad on an auto scrubber, especially the white “polishing pad”, which will polish the floor smooth and decrease the slip resistance. Pads can grind down the grit that is providing the slip resistance for your flooring, or polish away any texture and/or pores providing the anti-slip properties of your floor. You want to use a soft brush, which sometimes requires a phone call to the Auto Scrubber manufacturer. Below is a photo of a compact floor scrubber for tight areas. Ideally, your auto scrubber (also sometimes called a floor scrubber/dryer) will include a double-squeegeed suction in the back, and soft brushes in front to agitate the floor cleaner before sucking up the dirty water, leaving you a clean and mostly dry floor.
21st century technology is going to be much more effective than that dirty old greasy mop! Most Auto Scrubber manufacturers assume everyone wants to polish their floors, but you don’t want to do that with an anti-slip floor! Use brushes, not polishing or abrasive pads on them. The best thing about an Auto Scrubber is the double-walled squeegee on the back that sucks up all the dirty water and other contaminants so you can completely remove them from the area as opposed to spread them around with a dirty mop. That helps to get the floor completely dry more quickly as well.
For small areas and spot cleaning throughout the day, an Auto Scrubber may be too much. In those cases, a soft brush can be used to agitate your floor cleaning soap of choice (degreaser, neutral, or acidic floor cleaning chemical), and then the dirty water can either be rinsed in to a floor drain (with or without the help of a foam squeegee), or wet-vacuumed up with a quality powerful double-squeegee wet vacuum. What’s often called a “vehicle wash brush”, used to clean eighteen-wheeler trucks, is soft and will get in to the grout. It’s like what your dentist will say about a toothbrush: you don’t want a really hard brush, but rather a soft brush to massage the dirt out of hard to reach places like grout, microscopic pores in the floor, and in between the pieces of grit. Here’s a soft “vehicle brush” we like, which we put at the end of a broom stick:
When purchasing a quality wet vac, you’ll want one with a double-walled squeegee, as it’s much better at sucking up the dirty water and completely removing it from the floor. This will allow your floor to be completely dry much faster. There are cheap “shop vacuums” out there, but you’ll find that a quality wet vac will cost a bit more money, but will be well worth the extra investment, as it sucks a floor almost completely dry very quickly, thereby removing all the dirt, grease, and other contaminants from your floor effectively. Here’s a photo of our wet vac squeegee wand with the “double wall”:
By improving the technology and tools you use to clean your anti-slip floor, you’ll find the old way of cleaning up with a dirty old greasy mop and some dirty water in a bucket to be so “old school” and insufficient that you’ll never go back to those “caveman-era” methods. The right tools for the job will make your floor much more sanitary, safe and beautiful without destroying the slip resistance. Remember: you don’t want to polish an anti-slip floor with a pad (especially not a white pad). You just want to clean it with a soft brush, and then use either fresh water to rinse the dirty water in to floor drains, or use powerful suction to remove the dirt completely from the floor. Mops just don’t work, and clean floors are safer floors!