Allied Tile solid vinyl flooring normally requires a minimum of maintenance to retain its “like new” appearance and retain its high performance characteristics for many years.
Various factors influence the type and extent of a maintenance program for any individual installation.
Some of the factors are: type and volume of foot traffic, construction and nature of flooring, hygiene standards, cleanliness and appearance established by owner, rolling carts to which the flooring is exposed and the type of maintenance and how it interacts with all these factors.
The best maintenance program for any flooring is the one that combines all the factors. These are preventative maintenance, initial and follow up maintenance. These should start before any flooring has been specified, installed and in use.
General Floor Care
All adhesive on the face of the tile and surrounding areas must be removed immediately, while still wet. Use a clean cloth with clean, warm tap water and a mild detergent. This should be done during the installation. Do not flood the floor, use solvents and do not permit adhesive to dry on the flooring. Removal may be harmful to the floor and cause permanent damage.
Within an hour of installing the tile, broom sweep the installation and remove any debris and grit that could be ground into the flooring surface causing scratching and damage.
Prohibit all traffic of 24 hours after the installation is complete and allow adhesive to dry completely.
Wash and clean the floor 48 hours after the installation is complete. Do not flood the floor.
Use smooth, non –staining, rust proof, flat surface metal or plastic support cups, two inches or greater in width. Place under legs of heavy furniture and equipment to even the weight load and reduce the indentations and limit scratches and damages.
From bottom of chair legs, remove small diameter buttons and replace them with smooth, non- staining, rust proof, flat surfaced metal or plastic glides one inch or greater in diameter.
Use casters two inches or greater in width of swivel chair legs and rolling stock. They must have the same characteristics as the furniture cups referred to above.
Avoid direct exposure to lighted ends of cigarettes, matches and extremely hot areas of any material, as these can cause burn marks and discoloration.
Scratches and damage can occur from protruding nail heads, undersides of footwear and that severe abrasion can occur from sharp projections on undersides of loads that are pushed or pulled over the flooring.
Cleaning Newly Installed Floors
Dry mop the area to be cleaned with an untreated mop.
Mop with a solution of Allied Floor Cleaner mixed with 1 to 2 oz. of clean, cool tap water. Moderately soiled floors use 3 to 4 oz. And heavily soiled floors use 5 to 6 oz. Do not flood the floor. Rinse the floor thoroughly with clean, cool tap water.
Apply the cleaning solution to the floor with a mop and bucket. Do not flood the floor. Allow the cleaner to remain on the floor for 2 or more minutes, but, not long enough for it to dry.
Scrub the area until all soil and dirt is loosened from the floor. Rub out any black marks or scuffs with the edge of the mop end or with use of a non- abrasive hand pad.
Depending on the surface texture of the tile, cleaning can be performed with an auto-scrubber fitted with a scrub brush or mild type scrubbing pad. Avoid coarse grades of synthetic pads, which can damage the floor surface. If an auto- scrubber is used, a clean mop and clean bucket filled with clean, cool tap water should be used to pick up all cleaning solution left behind by the auto-scrubber.
Rinse the floor thoroughly with clean, cold tap water. Do not flood. Repeat rinsing as many times as necessary to remove all traces of soil and cleaning solution.
Take up the rinse water and permit the floor to completely dry.
The floor is now ready to accept the floor finish if you want additional protection. It is not required.
Apply Floor Finish
Pour Allied Tile Floor Finish into a bucket and use at full strength. It is not to be diluted. Two to three coats should be applied.
Dip a clean mop in toe the bucket and squeeze the excess liquid thoroughly with a squeeze type wringer. Apply Floor Finish evenly to the area. Move the mop in a side to side or figure eight motion across the surface of the floor. Turn the mop frequently to present a fresh surface of the mop to the floor. This method of application will cover any areas that may have been missed in the previous pass and will result in a coating that not show leveling differences. Before the application mop “works dry”, dip into the floor finish again and repeat the squeezing and continue until the floor is completely coated. Avoid splashing walls and fixtures.
Avoid excessively heavy coats of Floor Finish, but, do not spread too thinly because streaking or a non-uniform Floor Finish appearance may result.
Allow the Floor Finish to dry completely. This should require 20 to 30 minutes, but, it will depend on air and floor temperatures, relative humidity and air flow.
Apply the second coat of Floor Finish in the same manner as the first coat and at a right angle to the direction in which the previous coat was applied. Allow to dry completely. The same procedure should be followed for additional coats. Allow 4 to 6 hours before replacing furniture and fixtures and opening the floor for use. Do not force drying of the Floor Finish because this could cause powdering.
For very high foot or wheel traffic, or other highly demanding jobsite conditions, additional coats of Floor Finish that might be indicated should be applied on the following day in accordance with instructions in the previous paragraphs.
If Gloss Floor Finish has been applied, a low speed buffing machine equipped with non- abrasive white color pad can be used to buff the floor at a speed not to exceed 400 rpm. Buffing above 400 rpm can adversely affect the surface and damage the floor. DO NOT buff if a Matte Floor Finish has been applied. Buffing a Matte Finish will diminish the matte appearance.
Do not use rubber backed “walk off” mats directly over vinyl flooring. A chemical reaction can occur and cause a permanent stain on the floor. “Walk off” mats should be placed at all entryways just before the flooring begins. We recommend any rug or matting that does not have rubber backing. Suitable backings are vinyl, nylon, natural fiber, jutes and propylene. These act as a way to remove soil and grit from flooring. Mats should be cleaned periodically to avoid excess build up of soil and grit.
Avoid tracking in and onto flooring, asphalt or tar from driveways. A chemical reaction can occur and cause a permanent stain on the floor.
Remove chemical spillage as soon as possible. Allied Tile flooring is resistant to harmful effects from a wide range of chemicals, but, the chance of permanent staining is directly related to the exposure time of the spillage.
Limit exposure to direct sunlight to avoid possible discoloration. Use of sun blocking window treatments is suggested.
Maintain temperatures between 60 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit in areas where flooring is installed. Temperatures outside these limits can cause flooring to sink or expand.
Hard plastic rollers of any color and black rubber rollers on any rolling stock will stain vinyl flooring. They should be replaced with light colored, soft rubber rollers.
All protective devices should be cleaned periodically to remove dirt and grit which could damage the flooring.
Allied Tile Floor Maintenance Program
The Allied Tile Maintenance Program is a simple, effective, way to protect Allied Tile flooring from wear and tear, and to achieve an attractive high gloss or an equally attractive low gloss, matte appearance. This program uses three products: a neutral cleaner, floor finish, and a stripper. They can be used with various types of maintenance equipment, such as, a low speed buffer, an auto-scrubber, or a mop and bucket. Buffing should not exceed 400 rpm. Attention to the Allied Tile Maintenance Program will protect, maintain and extend the life of the flooring.
Always use Allied Tile maintenance products in combination with each other and never combine with other products.
Use a dust mop rather than a vacuum to more completely and easily remove dust.
New mops or applicators being used for the first time should be soaked in warm water for 5 minutes before using. This assures removal of sizing that is present from the time of original production. Mops should then be rinsed and wrung out, damp dry prior to use.
Dry dust mops treated with oils or silicone is not to be used.
Non-rinsing floors completely can adversely affect performance of subsequent coating.
Always use clean mops and pails separately dedicated to each different maintenance product.
Perform maintenance with the mix solutions and coating applications per the instructions on the on the bottle.
Perform light cleaning as soon as the floor has been installed.
After completing this process, the mop should be soaked and rinsed thoroughly with hot water until it is completely clean and free of Floor Finish and squeezed dry. Mop should be marked to clearly state its use and stored separately from other mops that may be in use.
Remaining Floor Finish should be disposed of and should not be poured back into its original container. To do so would contaminate the unused Floor Finish.
Dry mop or vacuum the floor to remove loose dirt and foreign matter. Use a clean mop, wrung out in clean, cool tap water alone, or in a solution of Floor Cleaner mixed with 1 to 2 ounces per gallon of clean, cool water. Rinse as required. Do not flood.
Periodic low speed buffering to a surface that has had Gloss Floor Finish applied to it, will remove smear and scuff marks and achieve optimal visual appearance. DO NOT buff Matte Floor Finish, because buffing will diminish the matte appearance.
Where the floor finish wears away without noticeable black marking or soil embedment, damp mopping should be performed as descried in the first paragraph of this section and should be followed by application of 1 or 2 coats of Floor Finish, as needed. If desired, and only when Gloss Floor Finish has been applied, buff at speed not to exceed 600 rpm.
Medium to Heavy Maintenance
When a high traffic area begins to take on wear patterns, or when the floor becomes noticeably and substantially blacked mark with wear patterns, follow directions in the Cleaning Newly Installed Floors section.
Use only enough mechanical action toe remove the dirt. It is unnecessary and undesirable to remove all the previous coats of Floor Finish. Stubborn black marks that may remain, can usually be removed on a spot basis with a dry #000 steel wool or a fine synthetic pad.
Follow with 2 to 3 coats of Floor Finish, as needed. If desired, and only when Gloss Floor Finish has been applied, buff at speed not to exceed 400 rpm.
As an alternative to the above, spray buffing can be performed, but, only when Gloss Floor Finish was previously applied.
Mix 40 to 8 ounces of Floor Finish per gallon of clean, cool tap water and pour into a spray bottle. Spray a mist on s small (4” x 20”) area.
Use with a 3M red color synthetic pad on a floor machine and buff at maximum speed of 285 rpm until dry. After initial buffing, use a white pad to obtain a high gloss. Dust mop after buffing to pick up buffing dust.
As always, dispose of any solutions remaining in buckets. Wash mops with clean, hot tap water.
At a point in time when built up layers of previously applied Floor Finish become obvious and unattractive, stripping of the floor should be performed. This will normally be once or twice a year.
Apply the Floor Stripper literally to the floor with a 24 ounce mop. Avoid splashing walls, baseboards and edges of counters and fixtures. Confine work areas to 50 to 75 square feet.
Permit stripping solution to remain on the floor for a few minutes, but, not long enough to become dry.
Scrub the area with a non-abrasive bristle brush or with a floor machine or an auto scrubber each equipped with a 3M brand blue or green color synthetic scrubbing pad. The pad color depends on the surface texture of the floor. Operate at 175 rpm. Stay 4 inches away from the walls, baseboards and edges of counters and fixtures, to avoid splatter.
Immediately after the scrubbing activity and while stripping residue is still wet, “pool” it together with a squeegee and pick it up with a wet/dry vacuum or scoop it into a large dust pan. After most of the residue has been picked up, rinse the area with clean, cool tap water. Do not flood.
Immediately take up all rinse water and remaining stripper solution with a wet vacuum or with a squeegee dust pan receiver and bucket.
Use a clean cloth to take up any splashes on vertical surfaces.
Rinse the entire area again with clean, cool tap water. Do not flood. Repeat take up activity for complete removal.
If Floor Finish film is still present, repeat stripping activity for complete removal.
Permit the floor to dry completely. Rub your palm over the floor surface. If white powder is apparent, repeat rinsing process until there is no residue.
Maintenance of Residential Installation
Follow light maintenance program instructions as described above.