Our floor care blog series continues with this week’s post about wood floors.
When properly maintained, wood flooring is an optimal surface for main gathering areas in schools like gymnasiums and auditoriums. However, there are also unique challenges that wood flooring is susceptible to when not properly treated, including scuffs and scratches, pest infestations, splintering, cracking and buckling and even moisture absorption. Without an adequate wood care and maintenance program, schools may be faced with expensive replacement costs.
New Uses For Wood Floors
Wood floors in schools endure heavy foot traffic and routine wear and tear during sporting events and dance performances. Increasingly, these areas are being utilized for much for than sports and may even be used year-round. These spaces host events such as pep rallies, festivals, religious gatherings, community and craft fairs and local fundraisers. With so much activity taking place on wood floors, facility managers need to have the right products and tools in place.
The Transition To Waterborne Finishes
In recent years, waterborne finishes have become a more popular choice for wood floor maintenance, as they create attractive floors and the preparation, application and drying processes are easier and less time-consuming than traditional oil-based finishes. Oil-based finishes also take more effort to move across floors due to the product’s viscosity. Proper ventilation is also required to release the emitted vapors.
Despite waterborne finishes having a slightly higher purchase price, they provide long-term savings overall. This floor finish also has a lower environmental impact on facilities and air quality, and those applying the finish are able to work with a less toxic product. Lastly, water-borne products won’t discolor floor surfaces.
Tips For Using Waterborne Finishes
When working with waterborne finishes, there are some important best practices to keep in mind.
- Choose the right tools for facility maintenance staff.To maintain a finish over time, it is recommended to use a dry microfiber to remove dust, debris and other particles and wet microfiber to deep clean and remove stains. Machines, including robotic models, can further simplify a floor care routine.
- Use a product specifically designed for wood floor cleaning. It’s important to find a cleaner that does not dull the floor’s finish. Look for a professional strength, waterborne cleaner that is formulated for unwaxed, polyurethane-finished wood floors.
- Incorporate floor refinishing into a long-term maintenance schedule.Before applying any new finish to a surface, ensure that the old surface has been thoroughly abraded and removed.
Wood flooring in school gymnasiums and auditoriums possess a set of unique challenges and require a comprehensive and thoughtful maintenance and cleaning routine to ensure longevity. By utilizing the correct products and ensuring facility maintenance staff have the tools they need to perform asset upkeep, schools can ensure a decades-long lifespan for their wooden floor assets.
Is your school looking for wood floors that shine like an NCAA championship court? Contact us to learn how Diversey and Bona’s wood care solutions can make your school floors sparkle.