Bringing floors back to life

17th of April 2023
Bringing floors back to life
Bringing floors back to life

Resilient floor renewal is one of the emerging trends in the flooring market – one which has been gaining momentum for both financial and environmental reasons. It can also make for healthier, more hygienic floors says Marc Janssen of Bona.

Resilient floor renewal is one of the emerging new trends in the flooring market, and one which has gained significant momentum recently for a number of reasons, largely financial and environmental, and also as a means to maintain a healthy, hygienic surface.

The world has of course become more environmentally aware than ever before.  Our understanding is rapidly increasing around the impact that our decisions have on the planet, both as businesses and consumers, and indeed many of us are taking steps to reduce our environmental footprint. To support this shift new, innovative and exciting ways are ever emerging across all industries. Resilient floor renewal is a pioneering development, contributing to the circular economy by renewing existing materials for as long as possible.

Joining the circular economy is kinder to the environment and better financially too. Buying brand new is highly expensive while renewing or renovating something that already exists is cheaper, it is significantly better value for money.

Budgets have taken an enormous hit in recent months, and soaring costs mean a tighter rein in spending across industries.  Options to save money are increasingly popular, and there are compelling reasons as to why the floor renewal pathway is becoming such an attractive choice - it’s 50 per cent cheaper than a brand new floor replacement and requires 50 per cent less downtime, whilst providing the same high-quality final results.

Favour the flat floor

So how does floor renewal translate into healthier, more hygienic floors? Resilient flooring is materials such as UPVC, vinyl, rubber or linoleum, which is used extensively in most industries, particularly those with heavy footfall. Its hard-wearing, durable features make it a number one choice in places from airports, hotels and shopping centres to healthcare and education environments. That’s because it is extremely good at supporting high usage both from people and equipment.  The fact resilient floors are also easy-to-clean means they are often used to also minimise the risk of germs gaining a foothold.

As a result of these attractive properties, resilient flooring is incredibly popular and it’s highly likely to be found underfoot, wherever you are.  However, the by-effect is that once it is damaged and looks like it has reached the end of its life, it is viewed as rubbish and often ripped up and disposed of in landfill. In fact, millions of square feet of resilient flooring are replaced every year, the wastage is staggering and importantly it is easily avoidable through renewal.
Resilient floor renewal delivers compelling benefits in different areas - hygiene and safety, aesthetics, budgets, and it’s a significantly more sustainable option.

A safe, healthy surface

Every day a significant amount of dirt and micro-organisms accumulate in the scratches and joints of hard flooring surfaces. Eliminating the build-up of this type of contamination is essential if the floor is to be kept scrupulously clean. Frequent cleaning will achieve clean-looking, shiny floors. But that doesn’t mean the floors are free of bacteria, which thrive in flooring with seams, grooves, and cracks.

Safety and hygiene practices that prevent the spread of bacteria and viruses are more important than ever across all industries, especially government and local authority, healthcare and education where floors can easily become contaminated.

As well as serving a functional purpose, renewing an existing resilient floor, instead of replacing with a brand new one can provide a healthier environment, regardless of how damaged the old floor looks. It is a new, yet quick and simple alternative, to improve the hygienic properties of facilities starting from the ground up.

The reason it is a good choice from a cleaning and hygiene viewpoint is largely due to its ability to repair torn and damaged areas, by creating a flat surface which is free of any joints or seams.
The smooth surface provides long-term protection, it greatly reduces the risk of bacteria growing, germ contamination or other fungi-related development that often occurs when joints or seams are present.

It is also worth noting the durable quality makes this type of flooring resistant to chemicals that could harm the floor and the environment. The best way to achieve a hygienic floor is to follow a proper regimen of daily cleaning and periodic deep clean treatments, which may consist of reviving or recoating the flooring. This means it can easily and efficiently be cleaned during the floor’s lifetime. Think also about opting for waterborne solutions which lead to healthier indoor air quality and reduce downtime because there are no toxic fumes to mitigate.

Think TRBA standards

A recent Technical Rules for Biological Agents (TRBA) test carried out in conjunction with the IFR Institute in Germany also highlights the health and safety benefits of creating a flat surface particularly in a healthcare setting or facilities where high levels of hygiene are essential. TRBA 250 focuses on the biological agents handled in health and welfare facilities and its regulations for floors state they must be resistant to water, easy to clean, smooth and slip resistant, seamless with joints, rounded corners and edges, and completely sealed. If a product meets TRBA 250 standards, it can be assumed it will deliver a high level of safety and health protection. Hence the importance of seeking products that meet these regulations.

The floor is the largest surface area in any facility as it collects dirt and grime, and the task of keeping it clean and healthy is a huge challenge. Changing the way we think about a floor when it reaches the end of its visible life cycle can impact how hygienic and safe it is – after all, the process of stripping and polishing a surface can be harmful and highly toxic.


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  • ISSA Interclean
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