No Compromise: Terrazzo School Floors Get Safer Without Sacrificing Gleam for Deer Park School District
Ditching wax for the Diamond Devil™ Shine Tool provided big advantages for the school district:
- Fewer custodial staff slips and falls
- Surprisingly high gloss shine exceeded expectations
- Labor savings on overtime and summer hours
- Eliminate need to strip and replace wax or other coatings
- Zero-chemical process is safer and less expensive
After one too many custodial staff slip and falls during the summer terrazzo wax stripping and rewaxing process, Jeff LaFlair was willing to give up his illustrious floor shine for a safer process, even if it meant lower gloss for his school district’s terrazzo floors.
The buildings and grounds administrator discussed this concern with the school principal and district superintendent, and everyone agreed to the compromise: safety first.
Surprisingly Shiny Option
LaFlair explored various waxless polishing options. At one point he polished the floors with a competitor’s polishing pad and achieved what he considered decent shine results. He remained satisfied until Jerry Carbone, a sales manager with American Paper & Supply, introduced him to the Malish team.
“Malish came in and showed us their Diamond Devil™ Shine Tool. We thought we had a polished floor…After seeing their finish process done on top of my polished floors, we realized that there was even more shine that could come out of it. The floor looked even better,” LaFlair said.
Safe and Easy to Use Shine Tool
The school district switched to the Malish Diamond Devil™ Shine Tool, which proved simple and efficient for his custodial team to use. The tool fit easily onto their auto scrubber.
The first-time use required stripping all the wax off, even in the corners that hadn’t been properly stripped in years. Malish’s Mal-Grit Xtra™, an extreme stripping brush, helped with this step.] Then they said goodbye to wax, floor stripper and any other chemicals. The Shine Tool requires water alone for the initial polishing round as well as the follow-up maintenance. Even with salt in the winter, there is no need for a special cleanser. The team can just sweep and buff with the Shine Tool. LaFlair had considered other options, but even if stripping wasn’t necessary annually, other hardeners or other treatments required a strip-down process every five years, which defeated his goal of eliminating employee slips and falls that inevitably happen when stripping floors.
The initial polishing took his team around two to three hours to cover 2,000 sq ft. Maintenance takes about 10 minutes every one to two weeks (like buffing a waxed floor). It’s a simple once-over with the auto-scrubber at regular speed.
“The process with the Diamond Devil™, it’s just an easy thing.”
In addition to cutting chemical costs, the Shine Tool has a long life. Two school buildings were polished and have been maintained for several months and two more buildings are in progress, yet the Diamond Devil Shine Tool hardly shows any signs of wear.
Off the Charts Review
The Diamond Devil™ Shine Tool yielded great results without compromise: unexpected shine, a safer, less time-consuming process, and money saved on chemicals. In fact, the Shine Tool’s polished finish far outlasted the results of traditional wax.
“When you walk onto a freshly waxed floor, it looks great. Two days later, if somebody drags something across it, you see lines. Dirt gets embedded in it,” but with the Shine Tool that doesn’t happen, the floor remains pristine. “With the Shine Tool, when you get done with it, it looks wet. We have people ask us, ‘Can we walk down that?’ and there’s nothing there,” LaFlair said. “The polish, the shine, the reflection: It’s amazing compared to what it used to be, even six months later.” While the floor may look wet, it’s actually less slippery than a waxed floor for staff and students’ daily use, even when wearing dress shoes, LaFlair said.
LaFlair said he can’t rate the Diamond Devil™ Shine Tool from one to five, because “it’s a 10.” Likewise, the school district leaders are amazed at the shine results. “Now that they’ve seen the difference, they think that… we’re putting chemicals back on the floor. Then I tell them this is a raw floor, and it’s polished.”
Deer Park Schools Ditch Wax but Keep the Sparkle
The Deer Park School District in Deer Park, NY wanted to eliminate the stripping and wax process on their facilities’ terrazzo floors for safety reasons and the custodial team thought they would have to give up the shine they were accustomed to with a waxed floor. They were pleasantly surprised when they discovered the Malish Diamond Devil™ Shine Tool, which runs on water alone and eliminates stripping altogether. The tool proved simple and efficient to use during regular school hours, and its high gloss finish outshines waxing.
For more information or to answer any questions you may have around DIY terrazzo floor restoration with our Diamond Devil Shine Tool, please contact us.