No matter which product you choose for your gym floor surface, regular maintenance will help you keep it safe and performant longer.
Whether you choose wood, linoleum or vinyl, they all need to be taken care of. Since we are a sports vinyl manufacturer, here are a few tips to optimize your vinyl sports flooring system.
1- Protective caps and covers
Sports floor can be used for more than sports related activities such as basketball, handball or volleyball to name a few. School assemblies, meetings, dances and bingos are among the activities that can be held on these floors.
In order to protect the polyurethane wear layer, chairs, tables and other furniture placed on the floor need to be protected with caps or covers.
2- Appropriate footwear
When using a surface for sports, make sure students and athletes wear appropriate footwear for the chosen sports. For example, spiked shoes should never be used in a gymnasium independently of the surface material!
3- Walk-off mats
Maintenance is a daily procedure. Grit and dirt are a major cause of wear and their removal on a daily basis will extend the life of your sports floor. It can be helpful to put walk-off mats at all entrances to help remove dirt and grit from people’s shoes. It is also a good idea to restrict direct access from the outdoors onto the sports floor.
4- Cleaning frequency
For daily cleaning, it is recommended to dust mop the entire area with a treated dust mop to remove dust. This daily cleaning must be coupled with a regular washing cycle depending on traffic. Some periods may be less crowded which makes repeated washing unnecessary, but for the busier months, floors should be thoroughly cleaned each week and even more often for cafeterias and locker-rooms for example.
5- Proper cleaning solutions
Before washing, the surface should be swept with a treated dust mop. Then it is recommended to mix a solution according to the manufacturer's instructions. Using a clean mop or automatic scrubbing machine, drop a good amount of cleaning solution on the floor and let it soak for at least 15 minutes.
It is important that the dirt remain suspended in the cleaning solution, until it is removed. If there is not enough solution, or it evaporates, it will make the task more difficult.
On heavily soiled floors, let the cleaning solution stand for a longer moment. The surface can then be scrubbed with a floor buffing machine (150-350 rpm) or an automatic scrubbing machine with the appropriate pads and brushes. Dirty cleaning solution should then be removed with a wet vaccum or automatic scrubbing machine and rinsed with clean, lukewarm water that has to be removed afterwards.
All floor surfaces should be completely dry before allowing traffic. Use of circulating fan can accelerate the drying process.
BONUS: Prevent damages
It is also very important to carefully inspect the floor a few times each year to determine if there has been any surface damage to the floor such as cuts or gouges. These types of damage can be repaired by the installation company and should be dealt with promptly in order to prevent dirt and liquids from accumulating in the damaged areas.
Those are only a few recommendations that you can follow. Make sure to discuss it with your retailer before choosing your sports floor and ask for a maintenance plan after the installation.