Note: All recommended procedures are applicable to precast terrazzo.
Are samples available upon request?
Standard samples are not available as each job is a custom order to your specifications. Slight color variations in chips occur depending on geographical areas in which they were obtained. It is recommended that a sample, per your specific project, be requested for final color approval.
What caused the discoloration at the metal divider strips?
This question arises frequently with poured in place floors and is also a consideration with precast terrazzo base, treads or any item with accent strips. Metal divider strips in various gauges have been used extensively in terrazzo floors for many years. Initially the strips may tarnish or discolor temporarily. This temporary discoloration is beyond the control of the terrazzo contractor as it is created by the water and cement combination that is used in the installation of the terrazzo.
Do not be alarmed; this condition has developed from the trapped moisture that remains in the system. The moisture used in the flooring system must dissipate during the curing period. Thus, with the sealer on the surface, the moisture moves laterally to the nearest divider strip to escape and that moisture can temporarily lead to discoloring.
Note: The normal cure time of a terrazzo floor varies and due to the sealing process, the cure time is extended.
How should I clean my terrazzo floor?
Use a scrubbing machine with a 16” to 20” diameter brush. Place a soft-type pad on the brush to aid in holding a 3M-type screen mesh pad. It should be emphasized that these mesh pads should only be used two or three times annually.
The grit of the screen mesh pad can be one of the following: #60, #80 or #100. (The lower the number the coarser the grit.) Using a neutral cleaner and water as lubrication, scrub the floor surface. After several passes in different directions, you should recognize the removal of all foreign matter from the surface. The cleaning cycle program should be regulated by the amount of foot traffic. As the terrazzo floor ages the maintenance requirements are lessened.
Note: Remove the build-up of wax or sealer with a stripper material before passing the screen mesh over the surface.
What sealers are recommended for terrazzo floors?
All sealers should be UL listed for “Slip Resistance” and required to produce a static coefficient of friction (SCOF) of 0.5 minimum.
Note: Some jurisdictions now require a SCOF of 0.6 minimum to comply with ADA regulations. In this case, the sealer used must be specified to produce a SCOF of 0.6 minimum. Several sealers are capable of meeting this standard.
New cement terrazzo systems: should be sealed with water-based sealers during the initial year following completion. In the second year, the system can be sealed with the solvent-based sealer, if so desired.
Epoxy terrazzo systems: can be sealed with a solvent or water-based sealer immediately following the polishing process after overnight drying.
How should I care for my terrazzo floor?
The use of a pure surface coating (as most floor waxes are) is unnecessary and ordinarily NOT recommended. Applying a surface coating or wax may decrease the non-slip co-efficient of friction below the standard rating of 0.5. The marble chips and aggregates, which make up 70% of the terrazzo floor, have very low porosity and do not absorb most staining substances.
The portion of the terrazzo that needs protection is the binder, especially portland cement, which is porous and will absorb stains. Terrazzo does not need protection from wear, it needs protection from absorption and this is achieved through the use of a penetrating sealer which seals off the pores in the binder.
Precast Terrazzo Enterprises