We at haid-tec see ourselves as experts in the cleaning of fine stoneware. After 20 years of tinkering with creating pads and cleaning agents especially for these floor tiles and improving them all the time, today we would like to turn our attention to basic knowledge: What is porcelain stoneware? Why is it such a popular floor covering? And why, despite its robustness, does it pose a challenge to many a cleaner?
Tiles of porcelain stoneware fired at particularly high temperatures. The firing process at around 1200° Celsius results in a particularly hard and dense ceramic with an almost completely closed surface into which only minimal water can penetrate. The tiles are robust. High-quality porcelain stoneware tiles are very durable and almost “unbreakable”.
For places with a lot of public traffic, it is the type of tile that is most often selected. Customers walk on it in grocery stores, shopping centers, bank counter halls, at the airport and in car dealerships. It is also installed in wellness and bathing areas, saunas and commercial kitchens, where there are high requirements for hygiene and at the same time a high risk of slipping. Due to its durability, the tile of porcelain stoneware today is one of the most popular and widely used floor coverings. It is also in demand precisely because it is easy to clean. Actually, you can’t do much wrong.
Or is it?
A floor on which tiles of porcelain stoneware laid, is resistant and robust. Robust, but still not so easy to clean?
How can this contradiction be explained?
For this we need to look closely at the surface of the tile. Sometimes the surface looks very smooth and shiny. Then it was probably given a microglaze. Sometimes the tile is polished and also looks shiny; but if you were to get very close with a microscope, you would see very small valleys and hills. Namely, the polishing removed the so-called burnt skin and exposed the microporous interior of the porcelain stoneware tile. This porous structure is not even visible to the naked eye.
>> Read more about the differences of smooth and matte tiles, polished and glazed tiles in the second blog post soon.
The advantage of porcelain tile is: dirt can not penetrate into the material because it is so solid.
The disadvantage is: dirt and cleaning residues can very well get caught in the microscopic valleys.
“Cleaning – yes please! Care – no thanks!” To this short denominator could be summed up the motto for cleaning porcelain stoneware tiles. And despite this rather simple motto, the “secret” for the proper cleaning of tiles still has not reached all cleaners. While cleaning means removing dirt, “maintenance” means the application of substances; while wood flooring absorbs these maintenance substances, porcelain stoneware retains them on the surface. Over and over again. This may only become noticeable after some time, but then it is all the more powerful: the floor becomes slippery and, in the worst case, an employee, a customer or a guest slips.
If cleaners are not properly instructed, they may resort to a cleaning agent out of ignorance, resulting in an unsightly result in the long run. It does not harm a tile floor if it is cleaned with caring means, but still people can be harmed or brought down. This is because the layers of dirt and detergent continue to build up over time; the floor becomes greasy and slippery. To put it bluntly:
Dirt + lime + conditioning agents = a disastrous combination
An unsightly gray haze can thus actually become a tripping hazard – in the truest sense of the word. Especially when it is raining outside and customers enter the entrance area with wet shoes, it can – “poof” – come to a slip. It may or may not go smoothly…
What can be done now to prevent the creeping build-up of dirt?
Actually, it’s not that hard. Basically, only two things are needed: the right cleaning agent and the right “tools of the trade”.
More precisely, our specially developed porcelain stoneware cleaner combines everything it takes to remove dirt and does without anything that is harmful to the environment and not good for porcelain stoneware. This means that professional cleaners are already halfway there.
All that’s needed to win on points is the right pad. For manual cleaning of small surfaces, corners and edges with hand holder. For the cleaning machine as an insert in the driving plate.
And which pad exactly?
Many are familiar with it as a magic sponge. The white sponge is available in many drugstores and is praised as a miracle weapon against dirt. Especially in the household with small children, the sponge is handy to make “artistic decorations” disappear from the plaster or wallpaper.
So is melamine foam a better performer? Also for the floor?
At haid-tec, we have processed melamine resin foam into pads that are ideal for professional floor cleaning. If cleaning machines are equipped with MelaminPlusPads, maximum mechanical cleaning performance is achieved.
We are often consulted by store managers of a discount store because the tile floor has become gray and unsightly. The amazed expression when we clean a spot of the grayed floor with the pad and water in front of the person in charge always makes us realize that it really does look almost like magic. Because, as I said, the tile itself has not suffered any damage – you just need to help it get rid of all the layers.
The fact that this succeeds is due to the special nature of the melamine resin foam, which scrapes the dirt from the tile and gets into the smallest recesses. This makes the pad from haid-tec superior – in terms of mechanics – to all other textile materials, not to mention brushes.
Here, too, the formula is quite simple: if the mechanics already contribute a large part to removing the dirt, less cleaning agent is needed as a consequence. This also pleases the environment. The MelaminPlusPad can also be used with water alone, but the maximum cleaning performance is achieved in combination with the cleaning agent. However, even a quarter of the dosage of commercially available cleaning agents is enough for the best cleaning result.
With professional maintenance cleaning that completely removes dirt, property owners and operators save themselves time-consuming and costly basic cleaning!
And to answer the initial question, yes. Pads made of melamine resin foam are better performers when it comes to floor cleaning!
Are you already using our pads and are you satisfied? Feel free to tell us about your experience! 👇We appreciate your message below in the comments.
With over 3,000 objects walked on and over 5 million square metres of floor area, David Haid is a proven expert in the cleaning of porcelain stoneware floor coverings. As an author in our haid-tec magazine „BODEN-ständig“, he shares his expertise from over 15 years of professional experience with you and provides valuable tips, especially for challenging cleaning projects.
If you have any questions, he will be happy to help you at any time and can be reached via the following channels.