A reader comments: “We are struggling with a composite type floor that claims to be anti-microbial and recyclable. It is deteriorating due to the customer requiring us to use cleaning processes contrary to the manufacturer’s directions. Any help?”

As we researched this product we learned that it was installed incorrectly and has been maintained against the manufacturer’s directions. In the next articles, we will examine the entire issue to better understand what happened and suggest some solutions.

First of all, this product does fulfill its promises if installed and maintained correctly. Unfortunately, the customer either has not read the guidelines or is choosing to ignore them. The manufacturer’s directions are very clear NOT to use any cleaning products (including disinfectants and strippers) above pH of 8. The customer is requiring your staff to use a very potent disinfectant to clean the floors and they are not allowed to rinse it off. Not allowing the floor to be rinsed is causing further damage.

Based on the literature posted on their website, this type treatment will cause premature aging (aka biodegradable tendency) that will cause the floor to not only have a shorter life but also will cause it to soil sooner due to the softening of the surface. The use of a harsh disinfectant does little to make the floor germ free and actually can cause the floor to be less safe due to reduced slip resistance. Other than Blood Borne Pathogen cleanup of bodily fluids there really is no need for using a disinfectant on most floor surfaces. Exceptions would be operating rooms that should be as sterile as possible and conceivably day care center floors where children might have direct contact.

We will continue this subject in a future article. Your comments and questions are important. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean...

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net