Don’t Let Winter Weather Destroy Your Floors

Don’t Let Rain, Snow, Sleet, Salt and Grit Destroy Your Floors! Weather conditions compound floor care problems.  A regular maintenance program is critical to extend the life and appearance of your floors. Control Grit By Using High Quality Industrial Mat…

Don’t Let Rain, Snow, Sleet, Salt and Grit Destroy Your Floors!

Weather conditions compound floor care problems.  A regular maintenance program is critical to extend the life and appearance of your floors.

Control Grit By Using High Quality Industrial Matting

To keep the elements from entering your building, use HIGH QUALITY industrial matting.

A Quality 3-Mat System Will Prevent 80-90% of Soils From Entering Your Facility

A heavy duty, all-rubber studded mat should be placed outside each building entrance door to trap particulate soils and contain moisture.  Just inside the building entry door, place a raised or textured “carpeted” scraping mat to trap even more soils and moisture.  The third step is a finish/wiping mat that is 10-16 feet in length for wiping what’s left on shoes and boots.

NOTE – Thin, vinyl backed mats will not trap much soil and tend to slip and slide.

Clean More Frequently

Snow and rain introduce moisture into a facility.  Increasing the frequency of sweeping, mopping and scrubbing to remove soil and moisture.  Also, floors must be clean before any burnishing or “buffing” to prevent grit from being ground into the floors.

Cheap Ice Melters Are a Killer

It’s amazing how many people think that “salt is salt” and buy the cheapest so-called ice melting product that they can find.  Then, they wonder why their sidewalks, matting, carpet and floor finishes are breaking down so quickly.  Many of the “salt is salt” crowd also see no need to place 3 quality industrial mats at each entry door.  It is truly puzzling how many people “save” $1-2/bag on ice melt without any thought that may be destroying $50,000 of carpet and/or flooring.

Understand Ice Melt Products

The bulk of any ice melter product consists of sodium chloride.  “Cheaper” ice melters are primarily made of sodium chloride.  These products work poorly and need to be applied at much heavier rates in an effort to melt ice and snow.  Sodium chloride is abrasive and only melts to a temperature of +20F degrees.

Calcium Chloride

Pure calcium chloride has excellent melting capabilities and absorbs moisture but, tracks into buildings. A pure calcium chloride product melts ice and snow to -50F degrees.  Calcium chloride’s may be harmful to pets paws and plantings.
NOTE – Many “cheaper” ice melter products make prominent claims on their packaging that they contain calcium chloride, when they barely have a trace amount in it.

Magnesium Chloride

Pure magnesium chloride is safer for pets and plantings and melts to -17F degrees.  However, magnesium chloride is somewhat destructive to concrete as it tends to cling and eventually penetrate into pockets of air entrained concrete, breaking down these air pockets over time.

NOTE – Many “cheaper” ice melter products make prominent claims on their packaging that they contain magnesium chloride, when they barely have a trace amount in it.

Use Only Professional, Quality Blended Ice Melters

Check the label and MSDS to find the exact amount of each chloride in a blended ice melt product. You’ll need just enough calcium chloride to jump start the melting process while having a proper blend of magnesium chloride, potassium chloride and as little sodium chloride as possible.  Ask what the chloride usage is 100 square feet to gauge the amount of destructive sodium chloride you entries and walkways will be exposed to.

Prevent Loss of Floor Finish Adhesion

Poor quality floor finish products may produce a high gloss look in warm months but suffer finish adhesion loss in the cold and gritty conditions of winter.  To prevent loss of finish adhesion, you’ll need to remove all floor finish and use a quality sealer as a base.  Then a high quality floor finish will need to be applied.

Use the 3-mat system to prevent grit, dirt and ice melt from entering your building.

Maintain floors by sweeping, scrubbing and mopping on a regular basis.

Buff/burnish floors regularly to enhance the appearance and extend the life of the floor finish.

Scrub and re-coat floor finish as needed.

Contact us with any questions or to put together a floor maintenance program for your situation.  We can help!

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