Recommended Maintenance Tips for Timber (Sports) Floors
When considering the large investment made when installing Timber Floors; regular maintenance including the application of Re-Coatings; will ensure the longevity, condition and appearance of the floors are maintained to their highest standard.
Regular maintenance of all timber floors will extend their life and ensure it presents constantly at its best.
The correct care of your floor requires the following simple procedures:
- Sweeping The removal of normal dust, dirt and grit can be achieved quickly and effectively using an electrostatic sweep mop. To reduce the effect of grit on the floor it is important that the floor be swept two-three times daily or as often as possible to minimize damage to the floor surface.
- Spot Mopping – General Spills and sticky oils will form a matrix on the surface, which cannot be removed by sweeping. To clean these small areas effectively and remove sticky dirt it will be necessary to use a damp mop only that has been immersed in a neutral cleaner mixed to manufacturers recommendations.
- Automatic Scrubbing Machines – These will be necessary to maintain large floor areas. For areas over 200 sq.m it is generally more cost effective and efficient than hand mopping.
This procedure should be employed every 2-3 days for optimum results.
A non-foaming Neutral Cleaning Detergent should be used.
It is not recommend to use oily Detergents or Soaps as these will leave a residue as well as making Annual Re-coating susceptible to potential De-lamination between layers of old and new Coatings.
The use of mats at all external entries will reduce the amount of abrasive material (dust, dirt and grit) from being walked onto the sports floor. We recommend Matting with a soft backing.
ABS Timber Floor Services recommend all Sports Courts should be recoated annually, depending on their usage. For Sports Facilities whose budget doesn’t stretch to Annual Re-Coats, ABS recommends consideration of coating in high wear areas of courts such as Shooting Circles in Netball and within Keys or 3 – Point Lines for Basketball Courts.
In the interests of maintaining a high quality Timber Floor, ABS would advocate that it is better to recoat a little bit too soon, rather than a little bit too late.
- Install Non-Marking and Non-Abrasive soft pads and/or fittings to the bottom of all moveable Furniture such as the bottoms of Chair and Table Legs and Cabinet legs.
- Use Mats or other appropriate Floor Coverings underneath Gymnasium equipment to protect the surface of the floor.
- Clean all Mats daily.
- Clean Electrostatic Mops daily (a recommended method is to Vacuum).
- Don’t – Use excessive Water to clean, as this will damage any timber floor.
- Don’t – Wax or Polish Sports Floors as (according to Coating Suppliers), this will lead to a floor with the potential for higher slip characteristics. It adds also to the cost of any Annual Refurbishment, as these wax and polish coatings will have to be removed entirely (Stripped or Sanded) to ensure proper adhesion of any subsequent coating.
- Don’t – Drag anything across the floor – Gymnasium Equipment, Tables, Chairs, Pianos, etc.; as each of these will cause unnecessary damage to the floor and will prompt premature recoating.
Don’t – Encourage Inappropriate Footwear i.e.
- High heels and Football Boots. These shoe styles can apply point or impact loads and compress the Timber.
- Hard Soled Street Shoes, Tennis and Sports Shoes can trap dirt, sand particles and small pebbles, all of which will damage the floor.
Correct maintenance and cleaning is vital to maximize the life span of any Timber Floor and the Floors Coatings.
To achieve this it is advisable to follow all of the above steps as often as possible. Even if the floor looks clean, it may not be.
A method of checking for any dirt or grit on the floor is to simply rub your hand over the surface. You will feel any grit.
N.B. ABS Timber Floor Services provides all information based on current Industry recommendations and manufacturers and suppliers advice.