By Jim Flieler
We were noticing more and more facilities opting to use terrazzo and concrete flooring as part of their sustainable building efforts. These flooring substrates are known to be durable, sustainable choices in the construction industry preferred by more and more green builders for their environmental benefits. Terrazzo by its very nature is a sustainable choice: It’s comprised of scraps of recycled materials, including glass chips, mixed marble scraps and cements that are leftover from other construction projects. Concrete floors conserve resources because they can function as both the foundation slab and the finished floor. Both types of flooring substrates also contribute to better indoor air quality and energy efficiency, too.
As we were seeing these flooring substrates becoming increasingly common, we were also noticing many custodial departments and cleaning contractors struggling to find effective ways to clean them without negatively impacting their beneficial environmental footprint. Conventional floor care methods are labor intensive, rely heavily on chemical usage and can often do more damage to specialty substrates like concrete or terrazzo than good.
When we designed our award-winning Enviro-Solutions Terrazzo/Concrete Floor Care Program, we set out to create a program so that end users never need to deep strip, scrub, seal, or apply floor finish or diamond grind floors ever again. We were looking to include as many environmental benefits in the program as possible. Here is a closer look at some of those environmental benefits:
Reduced chemical usage: This floor care program is very specifically designed so that end users will never have to strip, seal or finish floors. That is because floor strippers, sealants and finishes are often very strong chemicals with high VOC content that can pose harm to human health and the environment. In fact, the floor stripping process is one of the most environmentally challenging processes in any custodian’s task list. When floor stripper, along with the other strong chemicals needed in a traditional floor care program, is eliminated then that is 100% less of those potentially harmful chemical effluent going down the drain and into our shared water supply, into sewage lines or fumes going into end user and building occupants airways and into the atmosphere.
Keep existing equipment: This floor care program can completely revamp your maintenance routine without requiring any new equipment. Our diamond pad technology may be used on any autoscrubber. Many green floor care equipment requires a significant investment in new technology, leaving the problem of what to do with old, but perfectly usable, equipment. Unfortunately, that equipment may often end up in the landfill. By allowing custodial teams to keep using floor equipment, this program reduces waste and is cost efficient, too.
Reusable diamond pads: When simply washed in water, the diamond pads included in this floor care program can be used over and over again. Many floor care programs come with disposable pads, which pile up in landfills. Our diamond pad technology is 100% infused to make them last longer. Simply rinse in hot water and hang to dry.
Dilution control available: An accurate dilution control dispensing and installation system is available to accompany this floor care program, further reducing waste. This dilution control dispensing system ensures that each end user is only able to pour the exact amount necessary into the machine needed for the job. Not only is there a 25-60% cost savings associated with using a dilution control system versus a “free pour” method, but also that’s much less chemical being released into the environment. The system reduces employee contact with the chemical and ensures the exact proper amount of cleaning fluid is used to ensure the most efficiency possible.
Lower energy consumption and battery charging cycles: Working together, along with diamond pad technology used with an automatic scrubber, the products in this floor care system are designed to help remove mild pitting, stains, and the wear tear that can occur on heavily trafficked terrazzo and concrete floors. The goal of this program is to be very efficient, and the system has been designed to save your autoscrubber energy with the innovative diamond infused pad technology. This also reduces the need for battery charging cycles, which can have significant beneficial impact on the environment.
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