Streaking of a floor is usually the result of being damaged due to incorrect procedures.  A slippery floor may be a lawsuit ready to happen whether it is due to moisture on the floor or poor maintenance.  Take a moment to review both these topics and identify any other areas that can put your company at risk.

If floors have streaking:

Cause: Floor finish or seal not thoroughly dry before applying additional coats 

Solution: Strip, rinse, and reapply - Do not re-coat if mop drags


Cause: Contaminated mops or pails used to apply finish (i.e. dirty strip mop used)

Solution: Strip, rinse, and reapply floor finish using clean equipment


Cause: Floor finish frozen or stored in extreme heat

Solution: Replace damaged product. Strip, rinse, and reapply new finish


Cause: Floor finish applied over factory finish on new tile

Solution: Strip, rinse, and reapply new finish


Cause: Contaminated finish put back into drum

Solution: Do not use leftover finish. Dispose of contaminated finish. Strip, rinse, and reapply finish


Cause: Improperly rinsed floor before coating

Solution: Rinse floor after scrubbing or stripping before floor finish is applied


Cause: Dirty mop or equipment used when applying finish

Solution: Ensure equipment is clean before attempting to apply finish


Cause: Floor not thoroughly scrubbed and rinsed before applying finish

Solution: Scrub and rinse floor thoroughly before applying finish


Cause: Cotton mop heads that have not been soaked prior to initial use

Solution:Soak new cotton mop heads prior to first use for mopping or applying finishes


If floors seem slippery: 


Cause: Silicone based products (furniture polishes, glass cleaners) getting on floor due to aerosol overspray or accidental spills

Solution: If silicone based products are used near aisles, apply to rag prior to use to reduce the chance of over spray hitting floor. Scrub floor thoroughly to remove: If floor is still slippery after cleaning, apply a medium coat of finish over affected area


Cause: Ice melting compounds on floor

Solution: Clean contaminated (normally near entrances and at end of runners) floor thoroughly with clean water to remove - Do not use detergents or vinegar when spot cleaning. Control amount of ice melting chemicals used. Use approved mats and runners. Extraction-clean mats and runners occasionally with clear water


Cause: Powder residue left on floor after burnishing, etc.

Solution: Dust mop floor after burnishing


Cause: Dirt and grit on floor

Solution: Use approved mats and runners. Dust mop thoroughly


Cause: Improperly treated dust mops being used - usually oil treated. 

Solution: Use Paraffin treated mops


Cause: Improper detergent solution:  little or none will not permit removal of foreign substances 

Solution: Always measure the detergent and use recommended dilution


Cause: Use of acids (vinegar) in cleaning water. Acids will destroy the cleaning ability of detergents

Solution: Always measure the detergent and use recommended dilution- Do not add vinegar


There are many challenges to maintaining a floor and it is an ongoing job to determine the cause and then find a solution.  Always consult with a knowledgeable vendor who can bring in support if necessary. 

Your comments and questions are always welcome.  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