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Monday, September 22, 2014

Question

We have black tile floors and no matter what we do we can not keep a wet-look shine on these floors. We are currently using Equinox (Pioneer) and buffing daily. We have been working on getting a shine for 8 months now, but cannot figure these floors out. They shine to a point, but we canít seem to get a deep enough shine and once we mop them, it puts us back to square one. I have been doing floors for 26 years, so I have an extensive knowledge of floor care. All of my light colored floors look amazing. Is there a secret to maintaining black floors?


Answer

The color should not matter. A shine is due to light reflection from a surface. While your finish may be smooth and clear, the actual floor surface may not be. Old, abraded tiles take on a dull look due to the uneven light reflection.
The tiles themselves must, then, be clean and smooth. You may wish to try a different seal under the finish coats. Or, more coats of sealer to smooth the surface. To suggest to an experienced floor person that there may be too little finish left to polish and that more coats need to be added may seem insulting, but buffing takes off finish and daily buffing takes off finish daily. Do a quick scrub and recoat in a limited area and lay down five or six coats, properly dried. Let them sit for several days to cure fully and try again with the buffing. If you see any improvement, you have a simple fix. Mopping that directly dulls a previously shiny floor is also suspect. What is in the mop water? Is it incompatible with the finish? Is anything even moderately abrasive being allowed on the tile? Check this as well. You can also contact your finish supplier for a more exact appraisal of the situation. An on-site visit from them may provide the quickest solution to your problem.
Lynn E. Krafft, ICAN/ATEX Associate Editor
lekrafft@juno.com