Authored By: Kori Murray

minimize-inconvenience.jpgI’ve seen a lot of gross restrooms, and most of the time the uncleanliness is due to poor stripping and waxing practices. Nobody likes a dirty restroom, but it seems that when it comes to maintaining restrooms, shortcuts are taken. Below are three of the most common practices I’ve observed when it comes to stripping and waxing floors, and why these shortcuts aren’t worth it.

1. Not stripping wax before putting down a new coat.

If you don’t strip the old wax off before putting a new layer down, you’re encasing dirt, grime, and debris between the old and new layer of wax. Additionally, you’ll be able to see the discoloration in the floor because the dirt will be trapped between the wax layers. If this practice is routine, over time you’ll have multiple layers of wax with debris encased between each layer. When the time comes and you finally decide to STRIP AND WAX, you’ve got a hard road ahead of you. First you’ll need to use a stripper to remove the layer of wax. Then, you’ll need to use a cleaning solution to remove the dirt and debris. Then back to removing the next layer of wax and so on until you’ve reached the bare tile. All this extra work leads to a greater labor cost and product cost (since you’re using more cleaning products to clean).

What you should do instead: Properly strip and wax the floor. Yes, it may be more time consuming at first, but you’ll spend far less time stripping and waxing the floor the first time, rather than delaying the work till you’ve got multiple layers of wax to strip. Your other option is to strip the floor of wax and use a sealer instead. We offer protective coatings that are a great alternative to wax; with proper maintenance the coating can last 3-5 years (vs stripping and waxing every 6-12 months), daily cleaning only requires water and a green cleaning product (vs commercial cleaning products that have negative effects on the environment).

2. Laying wax around furnishings instead of removing furnishings and waxing the floor

Whether it’s a refrigerator in the kitchen, or a floor cabinet in a restroom, it can be a real pain to have to move something heavy to properly strip and wax. While it’s up to each individual to determine if it’s worth the extra effort to protect the surface beneath the furnishings, it’s important to keep these points in mind: If the surface beneath the furnishings is unprotected, it’ll be susceptible to staining. Additionally, if for example your cabinet is made of metal and you clean the surface with water, you can expect rusting to occur and get into the unprotected tile. Over time the stains will build up and will become very noticeable. If you’re looking to keep a clean, aesthetically pleasing facility, stained surfaces around furnishings stick out like a sore thumb.

What you should do instead: Remove the furniture before stripping and waxing, provided you want to keep your facility spick and span. You can do it yourself, or, if you hire a contractor to strip and wax, you can ask the contractor to move the furnishings for you, but it may cost you extra. When we talk to clients about this issue, we let them know that if the surface beneath/around the furnishings is not protected, it will get stained. If the client wants to avoid the staining, the furnishings should be removed so the entire surface can be protected.

3. Using cheap wax

Cheap wax turns yellow over time, and it just doesn’t last as long as it should. While you may save money on the upfront cost of the wax, you’ll likely pay for it once it starts to discolor and begins to fail earlier than expected. This means having to strip and wax more often than you’d like, tying up labor and time, and increasing maintenance costs.

What you should do instead: Use a good quality wax. While it may be more expensive, it’ll last longer.

These practices come down to cost vs quality. You can save on cost but the quality of the work will be poor, leading you to re-do the work more often, or hiring someone else to fix it.

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