Clean Marmoleum Floors For a Healthier Home
Marmoleum is an environmentally friendly flooring material that needs special care to keep looking its best. When you buy Marmoleum flooring it’s important to understand this material’s unique care needs. Unlike common flooring, Marmoleum needs specialty cleaners which are formulated to preserve its finish and prevent damage. Using standard cleaning products may cause permanent damage. While some surface damage can be restored, it isn’t as robust as wood or tile. Proper care and cleaning are important to preserve the beauty of your flooring for years to come. Let’s take a look at the best ways to maintain and clean your Marmoleum flooring.
Daily Maintenance and Cleaning
Proper daily maintenance is important to preserving your Marmoleum floor. Sweep away any dirt or debris with a dry broom, vacuum cleaner, or microfiber dust wipes. Quickly soak up any spilled liquids and allow them to dry. It’s important that Marmoleum flooring doesn’t stay wet for long periods. Standing water or other liquids can permanently damage the finish. Some surface damage can be repaired, but it’s best to prevent any damage before it happens.
Serious spills can be cleaned using water, but don’t use cleaning products that aren’t specially made for Marmoleum floor care. If maintenance or custodial staff are in charge of cleaning they are likely using more powerful cleaning products in other areas of your building. Common cleaning products can damage Marmoleum flooring and their use should be restricted to other, less delicate, surfaces in your building. Make sure custodial staff understand the special needs of your flooring to prevent accidental damage.
Before cleaning Marmoleum make sure you are using the proper products. Regular cleaners can use harsh chemicals and may cause serious damage. Only use neutral pH cleaning products specially formulated for Marmoleum floors. Fobo makes a popular line of correctly formulated products, but other neutral pH cleaners may work as well. If you’re planning to use products not specially made by Fobo don’t assume they are safe for your flooring. Verify that any cleaning products are suitable for Marmoleum flooring before use.
You can buy Marmoleum neutral pH cleaners as either ready-to-use or undiluted. Ready-to-use cleaners can be applied straight from the bottle. Undiluted cleaners must be mixed with unheated tap water before use. Buying undiluted products is best when cleaning large areas of flooring. Ready-to-use products are good for spot cleanups but can be expensive when cleaning entire floors.
Diluted neutral pH cleaners can be used to fill a mop bucket or an auto scrubber. Mop and/or scrub the floor with a cleaning solution. Remove excess soil and cleaning solution with a clean mop. Rinse mops often and refresh the cleaning solution as needed. Water shouldn’t be allowed to stand for long periods on Marmoleum floors. Using specially formulated neutral pH cleaning products won’t change this fact. Always remove excess cleaner as soon as possible after mopping.
After mopping with a cleaning solution, your flooring should be rinsed with cool water and allowed to dry thoroughly. Never use warm or hot water on Marmoleum flooring. Always clean and rinse with cool or room-temperature tap water. For heavily soiled floors there are other, stronger cleaning products available which can remove dirt while preventing damage to your flooring. These products should always be used instead of trying to increase the effectiveness of regular cleaners with hot water.
Deep Cleaning for Stubborn Stains
If your Marmoleum flooring is extremely soiled or stained, regular neutral pH cleaners may not be enough. Don’t attempt to use standard heavy-duty cleaning products as these may damage your floor. For these situations, Fobo produces heavy-duty cleaners that are also neutral pH. These can be used with mops or automatic scrubbers.
To use Fobo heavy-duty cleaner, you’ll first need to dilute it by following the label’s instructions. Apply the diluted cleaner to the flooring with a mop or automatic scrubber, and let it sit for one to four minutes. If you’re using an automatic scrubber you can agitate the solution with a medium or heavy-duty scrubbing pad. These will be the blue or green pads, respectively. After this, you can remove the solution with a mop, wet vacuum, or automatic scrubber. Thoroughly rinse the floor with clean water and allow it to dry completely.
Restoring and Buffing
No matter how well Marmoleum floors are cleaned, they can lose their shine over time. Like other aspects of Marmoleum care, it’s important to avoid using standard floor polishes or waxes. Luckily Forbo creates two products which can be used regularly to keep your floors looking great: spray buff and mop on restorer. Spray buff is sprayed on floors just before a final pass with an automatic buffer. The mop on the restorer must be diluted and allowed to dry thoroughly. When dry it has a hazy appearance. Finally, you can buff or burnish to restore the original gloss of the finish.