How do you clean aggregate flooring?
Aggregate flooring (that is, a rough and rocky concrete floor without a smooth top layer) can be notoriously difficult to clean. While sweeping and mopping may be good enough for some jobs, really dirty floors might require chemical compounds or muriatic acid. To keep your aggregate flooring sparkling clean, follow the following steps.
Step 1 – Sweep the Floor
Remove loose dirt by vigorously sweeping your aggregate flooring with a large, stiff-bristle broom. Scrape off any gum or sticky residues. Follow this by sweeping with a microfiber mop to pick up any leftover dirt particles.
Step 2 – Mop the Floor
For grimy aggregate flooring, mix warm water in a bucket with household cleaner. Vigorously mop the floor with this solution. If the dirt continues to cling, try mopping with a solution of warm water and a chemical cleaner from the hardware store.
Step 3 - Hydrochloric Acid
The dirtiest, most resistant aggregate floors might require hydrochloric acid (also known as muriatic acid). This is a dangerous compound that should only be used if you’ve had previous experience with industrial chemicals. Wear protective gloves and goggles at all times and don’t allow the acid to come in contact with your skin. Mix 1 part acid to 20 parts water and apply to the floor with a sprayer. Rinse thoroughly, preferably with a power washer.
Aggregate flooring can look good for years, even decades, if you know how to care for it correctly. Aggregate is made from a mixture of epoxy resin and small stones or pebbles. Glass or quartz chips can also be used instead of stones. The finish of aggregate flooring is bumpy, since to the surface of the stones is not flat, although some companies can pour another layer of resin over the floor or grind it for a smooth finish. Long lasting and durable, not much can go wrong when cleaning it.
Tips for Cleaning
Aggregate floors are made with a plastic mix, epoxy resin, and are also sealed. Treating the flooring as a plastic is the best way to go about cleaning it.
First, sweep with a stiff broom to remove dust and dirt. Fill a mop bucket with boiling hot water. Add a dash of mild detergent. Mop floor in a figure 8 motion. Using this motion makes it easier to cover large areas, and also picks up extra particles more effectively. Discard water and the rinse mop. Refill the bucket with boiling hot water only. Give the floor another mopping. Dry floor with towels. Resealing every five years is recommended to keep your floors looking their best.
Mistakes to Avoid
Do not use harsh chemicals or abrasives on your aggregate floor. If a product can damage plastic, then it can eat into the resin. Metal and hard plastic scourers should not be used on aggregate floors that are with epoxy resin.