Initial cleanup involves removing installation adhesive and layout marks. This is normally accomplished by using a solvent such as mineral spirits, naptha, Sovesso or the adhesive manufacturer’s recommendation. Care must be taken to use clean rags to avoid re-depositing adhesive in hair cell pattern. If initial cleanup is not done properly, the seams or other areas will develop discolored areas at a later date. (See “Previous Cleaning Residue” below). These areas should be rinsed thoroughly with clean water.
Spot surface normally involves tough marks or stains due to spills, graffiti, heel marks and impact from carts or trucks. These marks require a cleaner such as Crown Anti-Vandal Spray or DWR2. These are specialized spot cleaners that should be used for small areas only. A short stiff bristled brush may be necessary to remove some stains from the hair cell surface. These cleaners should be rinsed thoroughly with clean water so heel marks or abrasions from rubber bumpers on carts may be removed simply by brushing without a cleaner. Routine Maintenance General routine maintenance should require nothing more than a commercially available liquid type cleaner (409, Fantastic, Pine-Sol, White Cap, Mr. Clean, etc.) to remove general pedestrian traffic dirt. Powdered type cleaners are not recommended because they tend to leave a residue if not rinsed properly. A sponge or clean rag is usually all that is required, although some tough spots or large areas are more easily cleaned with either a manual or mechanical scrubbing brush. There are brushes available that can be attached to variable speed drills.
Previous Cleaning Residue
Previous cleaning residue sometimes takes a long time to become noticeable. At times it will be evident as soon as the wall surface dries. The residue is usually an organic substance that is trapped in the recessed areas of the hair cell pattern. It is necessary to use special cleaners that actually suspend the organic matter so that it can be rinsed off the vinyl easily. Commercial floor wax strippers such as Johnson Wax Step Off have worked in the past. The problem areas are scrubbed with a stiff bristled brush along with one of these products, and then rinsed with clean water. To add luster and additional protection a protective coating of Pledge Spray Wax or vinyl luster cleaner can be used.