Open Accessibility Menu

Stripping Years of Wax Buildup from VCT Flooring

Location: Praise Tabernacle Church

Project: Removing years of wax buildup on VCT floor

Days to complete: 1

Surface Area: Approximately 3000 sq. ft.

The floor exhibited here was in the auditorium and connected offices of a church. The floors hadn’t been properly stripped and waxed in many years, and there was significant buildup of old wax and dirt throughout. This is especially visible in areas covered by furniture, where dirty floors lead to the original untouched VCT underneath, as well as small areas where the old wax had been worn away.

Untreated floors are challenging to clean and restore, but in the right hands can end up looking good as new. Clients are often blown away to see their flooring in immaculate conditions once we have stripped away all the dirt, grime and old wax. Floors that have excess buildup or damage can be many times be restored to a like-new condition.

For this particular project we used an emulsifying stripper to remove the old dirt and wax. We followed the dilution instructions very closely and let the stripper sit on the floor for at least 30 minutes so it could get to work. The key is to make sure the chemistry has a chance to dwell on the floor and break down the wax so it’s easier to scrub and scrape from the floor. We used heavy duty stripping pads and razor blades to get the wax to lift from the flooring and baseboards. Some of the baseboards were so built up with wax it didn’t make sense to salvage. The stripping process is the most challenging part of a project like this, as an excess of slurry is created. This blend of water, stripper, wax and old dirt is shown on the floor being sucked up and disposed of. On extremely filthy and heavily coated floors we sometimes need to repeat the stripping process a few times before we get to bare flooring, as was the case with this project.

Once we got down to bare flooring, we were able to begin the revitalization process. The most important part of the waxing process is to make sure the floor is neutralized and completely dry before fresh new wax is added. If we do not follow a very specific protocol, there is potential that the coating will not adhere properly. Other problems like discoloration or wax separation create unwanted blemishes that are tough to remove. We avoid these issues with proper ventilation and the right amount of time allotted for the floor to dry.

For the waxing portion of the project we used our ServiceMaster Premium 26% solid wax and applied 4 coats to create the right amount of sheen, as well as extra protection of the floor. As you can tell from the photos, our technicians take great pride in their work and excel in taking the worst floors and making them look great again! This floor will hold up for years to come with the right maintenance and periodic scrubbing program.