Stripping and Waxing Floors

Stripping and Waxing Floors

April 25th, 2012   •   No Comments   

To keep your business, office, or facility looking clean and professional, it’s important to have the floors stripped and waxed regularly. Whether you’re gearing up for a do-it-yourself job, preparing to oversee a professional, or training your staff to do the job right, you’re going to need a good grasp on the basics of the task ahead. The concept is a fairly simple one, but the procedure itself can be complex and tedious. You (or your commercial cleaning employees) are going to need the right equipment, solution, and attention to detail to ensure that the job is done correctly. There are also some important safety guidelines to consider in order to prevent reactions to chemicals as well as slips and falls. Here’s a step-by-step guide to the process.

    1. Prepare your work area. Gather all of the supplies necessary to do the job, and rope off the area to keep people away from the vicinity while the work is being done.
    2. Prepare yourself. It is a good idea to wear eye protection as well as gloves and boots to prevent any dangerous interaction with the chemicals involved in stripping and waxing a surface.
    3. Prepare the stripping solution of your choice by following the directions on the label of the container. Be sure to pay careful attention to the dilution instructions to prevent the chemicals from being too strong and thus posing risks to the workers and the floor surface.
    4. Clean and sweep the area thoroughly, removing any debris as well as stuck-on substances. You may need to sweep several times to remove as much dirt and dust as possible before beginning the stripping process.
    5. Buff the surface of the floor using an auto scrubber or low speed buffer.
    6. Apply the stripping solution to the floor, and allow it to sit for approximately five minutes. This is the time required for the chemicals to begin working to remove the existing wax.
    7. Use the auto scrubber or low speed buffer to remove the sealant from the floor completely. Be especially careful around corners and sides of the walls, and inspect the area thoroughly to ensure that all of the sealant is removed.
    8. Rinse with a wet mop to remove any residual stripping solution. Repeat this step as necessary until you have completely removed any remaining solution. You may want to use a neutralizing solution to deactivate the chemicals in the stripping solution just in case it is not all removed.
    9. Ensure that all sealant has been removed; if it has not, you will need to repeat the stripping process.
    10. Allow the area to dry completely—this could take up to 1/2 hour or more depending on the size of the area as well as the indoor climate.
    11. Apply the wax sealer by dipping the mop into the wax and applying it with a circular motion. Do not pour the bucket of wax onto the floor as the wax is meant to be applied with a thin and even coat.
    12. You should wait until each coat of wax dries completely before applying the next coat; this could take up to an hour between coats.
    13. Be sure that no one steps on the final coat before it is dry to prevent floor streaks or floor impressions.
    14. Rinse all equipment that came into contact with the stripping solution or wax sealant after the job is done.

Stripping and waxing a floor surface really is a job for professionals. If you are considering doing it yourself, weigh the costs of renting equipment and purchasing the right stripping solution and wax, not to mention the manual labor involved as well as the risk of ruining your floor. If you make the wise choice of contracting the job out, be sure to hire a company with a proven track record of success and good customer service. Remember, the appearance of your business or facility—including the floors—says a lot about your company and can affect the bottom line. Although regular waxing and stripping can be expensive, it can also make the difference between a polished and professional appearance and an unappealing, grimy-looking environment that no one wants to step foot in. You’ll be surprised at how a good waxing and stripping job can transform the appearance of your building!

Camilo Kawas understands the importance of providing quality work as the owner of a successful commercial cleaning company specializing in stripping and waxing.

 

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