Porcelain and fully vitrified floor tiles are fired at very high temperatures which mean they have very little porosity. Porcelain and other fully vitrified ceramic floor tiles provide a hard wearing and easy to clean surface in domestic and commercial situations. They resist most stains, but both polished and unpolished porcelain tiles will benefit from being kept in perfect condition by following the HG care and maintenance program.
Initial Builders Clean
If those responsible for cleaning the floor are to achieve the best possible results, it is vital that tiled floors are inherited from the Building or Tiling Contractor in perfect condition. In particular this means that all traces of staining from tiling or other building work have been removed by performing an initial first clean using HG Cement, Mortar & Efflorescence Remover (Product 12) (diluted up to 0.5lt : 5lt of water and for more stubborn residues a mix of 1lt : 4lt of water) ). This will ensure that all cement residues from the grouting etc. are removed from the face of the tiles. It is advised that the solution is to be used on a small area of tiling to test that it doesn’t affect the quality of the tile and the grout joint. Any residues not cleaned off at this time will remain on the surface of the tiles and will not be subsequently removed during normal regular maintenance cleaning. Furthermore, these residues will act as a key for dirt to cling to and will make regular cleaning difficult if not ineffective.
Regular (Daily) Maintenance Cleaning
This can be carried out either by hand mopping or by scrubber/drier machine using HG Quick. After mopping by hand, ideally the floor should be wet vacuumed to pick up the rinsing water. If a wet-vac pick up is not available it is good practice to use two buckets, one containing the detergent solution and a separate bucket containing clean water for rinsing the mop. As the mop picks up dirt it should be rinsed clean. Thispractice helps to keep the cleaning solution free from dirt and will ensure that no streaks or residues are left on the floor. The bucket containing the rinsing water can be emptied and replenished as it becomes dirty without wasting detergent solution. Traditional single bucket mopping will not give good results on porcelain tiles. The detergent solution quickly becomes soiled with dirt being picked up from one place only to be put back somewhere else. Tiles with a textured or anti-slip finish should be scrubbed either by hand with deck scrubbing brushes or pads or by machine fitted with either a brush or pad. If in doubt, try both brushes and pads to determine which is the most effective on the particular floor. Cleaning large areas is usually carried out by scrubber/drier however the most common cause of problem is the build-up of a dirt/detergent film left behind by the machine. When this film is not rinsed off during normal one pass cleaning, the floor deteriorates in appearance and can become slippery. To cure this problem:
1) Decrease the quantity of detergent used or
2) Carry out a periodic deep cleaning operation.
Periodic Deep Clean
It will be necessary, from time to time, to thoroughly ‘deep clean’ the floor with HG Remover to clean off any build-up of ingrained dirt that tends to become ‘buffed’ by intensive foot traffic. When deep cleaning, it is essential to allow the HG Remover time to work on the floor before scrubbing and picking up. It is therefore necessary to ‘double scrub’ as follows: 1st pass – Apply the diluted HG solution with a mop in advance of the scrubbing machine. Alternatively apply the solution with the scrubbing machine running with the squeegee lifted up and the vacuum off. Keep the floor wet with the solution and do not allow the floor to dry out. 2nd pass – Using the machine with the squeegee lowered and vacuum switched on, proceed to scrub and pick up. 3rd pass – Finally thoroughly rinse the floor with clean water. Scrubber/drier or wet-vac machines do not collect all the liquid deposited in one go. Therefore ideally carry out a third pass rinsing operation with a second machine following behind to avoid track marks or streaking caused by residues of dirt not rinsed fully away.
Bleach based or powdered cleaning products should not be used. It is also very important not to use detergents with a “high solids” content that leave a polymer or a wax residue, as any film left on the surface builds up and adds to the burden of later maintenance. Dirt and stains will become ingrained in this film impairing the overall appearance of the floor. New floors should be treated according to the above schedule. Existing floors that have previously been maintained with products containing high solids will need to be deep cleaned (stripped) to remove any existing residue. Follow the stripping guidance supplied by the detergent manufacturer, as this film must be removed with the appropriate stripper before proceeding with the HG System. For optimum results, the regular cleaning should be carried out as efficiently as possible so that the periods between a deep cleaning operations are extended to a maximum.