Q. My company cleans a lot of new buildings. A lot of our clients are using "fake hardwood" (vinyl plank) in their offices. Those floors are usually very easy to maintain on a daily basis, but we been noticing a lot of clear scuff marks that don’t seem to come off. What is the proper way to maintain those floors? Should we seal them? Should we buff, scrub?
A. More than likely the floor you are trying to clean is laminate. Laminate flooring has several layers: a wear layer which is a protective, transparent coating, a design layer, which shows the decorative choice such as hardwood or marble, an inner core layer of high-density fiberboard, a resin layer, and finally a backing or underlayment to reduce noise and soften impact from heavy use.
Always use low moisture cleaning procedures, preferably with a neutral cleaner or mild acidic rinse (vinegar diluted 1 cup per 2 gal. mop bucket). Mops should be firmly pressed out to avoid noticeable residues of water. Abrasive cleaners and pads should never be used. Laminate should never be sealed or finished with a polymer floor finish. It can be buffed with a white or low aggression pad to remove marks and scuffs, and to restore the natural sheen.
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