Hard Floor Restoration
Applying the right techniques
Hard floors come in so many different forms and visually stunning designs. The manufacturing processes had advanced so much over the last 20 plus years that it is possible to misinterpret what material some hard floor covering actually are. The vinyl or LVT (luxury vinyl tile) market has grown significantly with different prints and textures being introduced, the appearance of what looks like a wood or stone surface has cleverly been replicated by vinyl manufacturers. Rubber, Laminate, Linoleum, Marmoleum have all progressed too with design advancements, improved manufacturing and performance, which gives them a firm stance within the marketplace.
The perception of hard floors has historically been that they don’t require as much maintenance as soft floor coverings; this is false. Hard floors are a two-dimensional product so require increased maintenance because there is nowhere for dust, dirt and general soilage to collect, it will sit on the floor surface and cause damage through footfall moving across it. The need to sweep, vacuum, mop, and carry out periodic treatments such as a strip and seal becomes more necessary. If a particular floor type has been poorly maintained and cleaned it may require some form of hard floor restoration, deep clean, scratch and scuff removal, this may involve the careful use of abrasive or diamond impregnated pads to light key back the surface before re-finishing it with the appropriate type of coating or finish.
The progression in sealants and protective coatings for hard floors is a forward moving industry with new innovations constantly coming to market, it is important once more that you know the floor material construction before any attempt is made to apply a product that might not adhere correctly. Rubber floors, for instance, are a solid material, so it is possible to restore the surface through abrasion techniques and re- polish the rubber to its original appearance, this is also the case with Linoleum & Marmoleum. It is not advisable or recommended to apply some topical coatings to rubber as the adhesion is not satisfactory.
Vinyl floors will generally have a UV cured PU coating when they leave the factory of approximately 5-6 microns, this will protect the floor for a period of time but the application of a further permanent PU coating will give a further 40 + microns of protection. This can be applied following installation or after a strip back and deep clean has taken place as part of a vinyl restoration process, this will give a ‘new look’ to a worn floor. It is also possible to apply different PU coatings that will convert a standard vinyl into an ESD conductive floor or a Non-staining floor, these permanent floor sealing processes should be carried out by a professional and adequate preparation of the flooring should take place prior to application.