Concreate, Inc. delivers concrete polishing and custom staining for both commercial and residential projects primarily in Virginia and Maryland (but also up and down the East Coast). We work hand in hand with with designers, architects, project managers, general contractors, tradesmen, and home owners alike from start to finish. We welcome the opportunity to serve your polished concrete needs in every way possible.

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5 Professional Tips for Cleaning Polished Concrete Floors

5 Professional Tips for Cleaning Polished Concrete Floors

A mobile cart with products for cleaning polished concrete.

Learning how to clean polished concrete floors can maximize their lifespan and reduce your maintenance expenses.

Key Takeaways:

  • Keeping your concrete floors clean is vital
  • You’ll want to set a mopping schedule and use a pH-neutral cleaner
  • Cleaning spills quickly is also essential
  • Avoid using bleach, vinegar, and ammonia

Your polished concrete floors will be a beautiful addition to your building. These surfaces add a level of sophistication to any business and provide a durable, easy-to-maintain flooring solution in many settings.

However, despite their durability, concrete floors will require some maintenance. You’ll need to develop a cleaning strategy to reduce the number of stains you encounter and keep your floors looking great for years to come. 

Fortunately, cleaning polished concrete is relatively easy once you know what you’re doing. This guide will provide expert tips on how to clean polished concrete floors. 

1. Develop a regular cleaning schedule

From the moment your polished concrete floors are ready for traffic, it’s essential to keep the surface clean. The good news is that as long as you have a plan, cleaning this material is relatively straightforward.

For starters, you’ll want to give the floor a sweep, vacuum, or dry mop at least once daily. This regiment keeps the surface clear of dirt, dust, and grime that can quickly accumulate over time. Removing dust and dirt also improves traction, so your floors don’t become a slipping hazard.

Wet mopping on a regular schedule is also essential. It’s not necessary to mop your polished concrete floors every day, but doing a deeper clean at least once per week is recommended. Even if your floors only see light traffic, this step should not be omitted. More frequent deep cleanings will become the norm in buildings with higher foot traffic, such as schools or retail shops. 

The cleaning schedule you develop depends on the amount of dirt and grime your floors accumulate, so you’ll have to customize your plan based on your building’s needs. Speaking with a concrete expert offers greater insight into how your cleaning plan should look.

2. Use a pH-neutral cleaner

When doing light mopping, you can use clean water on your floors. This water will remove some crud and grime, leaving your surfaces in better condition. However, only using water over time could leave some dirt behind, eventually discoloring the floor.

You’ll have better success cleaning your floors with a specialized cleaner. It will eliminate more stubborn debris and stains from your surfaces than water alone. A pH-neutral cleaner suspends debris on the floor’s surface, making it easier to wipe away.

The pH scale ranges from 0 to 14, with 0 having the highest acid content and 14 having a high alkaline content. A pH-neutral cleaner will sit between 7 and 7.5 on this scale. You’ll want to avoid using acidic cleaners like vinegar and alkaline cleaners like ammonia and bleach because they can deteriorate the concrete, remove its finish, and dull its appearance. 

You can purchase special pH-neutral products recommended for cleaning polished concrete floors, ensuring your maintenance doesn’t do more harm than good. It’s also essential that any cleaning staff you hire is made aware of how to clean polished concrete floors safely.

3. Clean spills immediately

You’re bound to end up with some spills on your polished concrete surfaces from time to time, but immediately cleaning them can reduce staining. Make sure you get to any oil and grease spills as soon as possible, since leaving those substances on a polished concrete floor will likely leave a permanent residue behind.

Investing in a guard or sealer application for your polished concrete floors will buy you some time when it comes to cleaning. The goal is to clean the spill before it has time to absorb into the surface, which is when problems arise. 

Acidic spills can also create issues for your floors. Orange juice, vinegar, and other acidic substances can etch the surface if you don’t clean them quickly. Substances with high acid content can etch the surface almost immediately. 

The key is being aware and acting quickly when a substance spills onto your concrete floors, as this can minimize damage and leave your surfaces looking as good as new.

4. Ensure you use the cleaner correctly

Correctly using the floor cleaning product you select will minimize the issues you encounter with your surfaces. The secret is allowing the cleaner to sit on the floor long enough to break down the contaminants and suspend the particles in the solution. Prematurely wiping the cleaner up won’t give it enough time to remove dirt and grime.

However, you also need to prevent the cleaner from drying on the surface because it will leave residue behind and won’t do an adequate job removing dirt and debris. Following the instructions your cleaner comes with is a good starting point, but keep in mind that different spills will have different cleaning needs. 

As a rule, you’ll want to clean a small section of your floor before moving on and mopping another part of the room. Using this technique ensures the cleaner doesn’t have time to dry before you rinse it.

5. Invest in a floor scrubber

An automatic floor scrubber can minimize the time your maintenance or cleaning team spends on your floors. It also ensures there’s no excuse for not cleaning your polished concrete surfaces regularly. 

The floor scrubber should be equipped with a non-abrasive pad that won’t scratch the surface or remove any protective guards you apply. The time this device will save you could make it worth the upfront investment.

Developing your floor cleaning strategy

The amount of time you spend cleaning polished concrete floors in your building depends on the traffic they see and the frequency of the spills they encounter. No matter what, though, keeping these surfaces free from dust, dirt, and grime will minimize the repairs and maintenance they need and keep them looking great.

Concreate can polish your concrete floors and recommend a cleaning regiment to minimize the problems they could experience. We do everything but pour the slab and can provide all the advice you need after opting for polishing the concrete floors in your building. Visit thisisconcrete.com for more information on how to clean polished concrete floors.