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ICAN/ATEX: What is the correct procedure when top scrubbing?

June 11, 2013

Many cleaning professionals visit the International Custodial Advisers Network (ICAN) Ask the Experts page for insight and, every business day, we deliver advice to better help you perform your job.

Tuesday’s Question:ICANATEX Logo

My peers and I have had some debate as to the procedure for top scrubbing.

One side claims that you should burnish your floors after top scrubbing because you need to burnish out the scratches before applying finish; the result they claim will be a higher gloss on the floor.

The other side contends that you should first top scrub the floor and then lay the coats of finish after all of the proper prep work.

What is the correct or, let’s say, the best way of the two that I have just described?

Tuesday’s Answer:

There is no truly correct procedure here because both will work.

However, most modern finishes are self-polishing, meaning that they dry to a high gloss without any mechanical help.

This means that applying finish to a properly scrubbed, rinsed, and dried floor will result in an impressive high gloss as long as the recommended drying time between coats is followed so that the last coat doesn’t disturb the previous ones and cause a cloudy appearance.

Burnishing a floor after scrubbing probably is not much help in removing deep scratches from the tile.

Those lesser marks in the finish itself will have been leveled by the top scrubbing, and covered or filled by the added finish coats.

The burnishing will remove light abrasion marks and smooth the tile surface, given that the floor is flat and even … - Lynn E. Krafft, ICAN/ATEX editor

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