A janitor may think applying floor finish to baseboards with a heavy emphasis on the corners to give them a shine is a good idea. At one time this may have been considered best practices but no more since we have learned through trial and error that the more finish applied to baseboards means there is more to remove in the future.


Once finish is applied to baseboards, it creates a whole new set of issues as to maintaining the floor. Although a 3-4 inch baseboard may seem insignificant, the total square footage that has to be serviced can be daunting. The labor involved is intense and requires either specialized scrubbing/stripping units or a lot of work on hands and knees. If the well intentioned worker has applied multiple coats over time it may be necessary to replace the baseboards which can be damaged due to the requisite scraping and scrubbing to remove the built up finish.


As the floor is maintained through scrubbing and burnishing, the well intentioned worker will continue to apply more coats to the edges, baseboards and corners that do not receive the wear and tear of the middle of the floor. In a prior article I mentioned utilizing the Stop Lite System which allows floor techs to know how many coats of finish are on the floor at any given time. One of the key elements to implementation of this system is to avoid any finish or baseboards and only one thin coat along the edges.


The old saying, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is true when it comes to maintaining baseboards. 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.