How to Clean Rubber Flooring
Tips & Tricks

How to Clean Rubber Flooring

Rubber flooring is a long-lasting flooring material used in weight rooms and gyms. It is strong and can withstand heavy foot traffic, and is not damaged by spills and moisture. Its durability and resilience are because rubber has natural elasticity.

If you have rubber flooring in your garage weight room or gym, it is essential to clean it regularly. Cleaning rubber flooring is easy, and all you need is a mild detergent, water, and a mop. That said, you can purchase a rubber floor cleaner from your local store. Here is a comprehensive guide on cleaning your rubber flooring.

Sweep the floor

Start by sweeping up any dust and debris as these will make cleaning more difficult if left on the floor. Carefully sweep under any furniture and equipment in the room. Ensure that you dust the surfaces such as tables and benches before you clean the floor.

A vacuum is more effective for removing dust and debris but make sure that the one you choose does not have a beater brush as that would scratch the rubber floor. It is advisable to use a high-performance suction vacuum to remove the dust.

You could also use an air blower to push debris from hard-to-reach spots.

Spot clean the floor.

Before you clean the floor, you need to remove any stains on it. It is essential to inspect the entire area for stains and remove them by scrubbing using a soft-bristled brush. If you own a gym and there is stuck-on gum on the flooring, use a scraper to remove it. Do not use a metal scraper, and they can damage rubber floors.

Mop the floor

It is advisable to use a sponge, microfiber, or nylon mop to clean rubber flooring. Use a water and soap or rubber floor degreaser solution and avoid washing with dirty water. Do not soak the floor with too much water as you mop, especially if you have rubber tiles. Water can seep in through the seams and damage them.  If you have a large area to clean, consider using a rubber floor cleaning machine such as an automatic buffing machine or floor scrubber with a soft nylon brush or contact pad. That will ensure that you clean the floor quickly.

Allow the floor to dry.

Allow the floor to air dry, and do not wipe it with a dry towel or cloth as that may leave streaks on it. Instead, you can use a wet vacuum to speed up the process then allow the flooring to air-dry all the way.

After cleaning, you should consider sealing the floor with a rubber finish. It will enhance longevity and appearance. That said, you should not use rubber finish on recycled rubber floors. Recycled rubber floors are usually black.

How do you remove stains from a rubber floor?

To remove light stains, clean the area with a sponge soaked in soapy water. If you have set-in stains, use soapy water and a soft-bristled brush to clean them off.

Is rubber flooring easy to clean

Yes, rubber flooring is easy to clean. All you need is a sponge, nylon, or microfiber mop and a bucket of soapy water. To clean a large area, you can use a rubber floor cleaning machine.

Can you mop rubber flooring?

Yes, you can mop rubber flooring, but it is not advisable to soak them with large amounts of water. If you have rubber tiles, consider cleaning each tile individually by hand. It is not advisable to use a wet vac to dry rubber tiles; allow them to air-dry.

Can vinegar damage rubber flooring?

Vinegar is acidic and can damage your rubber flooring. It is, however, excellent for cleaning dirt and particles off your floor when diluted. Add a cup of vinegar to one gallon of water to safely clean your floor.

What can dissolve rubber flooring?

Harsh solvents dissolve rubber flooring and should not be used for cleaning it. Also, avoid using oil and solvent cleaners such as Lysol or paint thinner as they will break down your floor.

Should I use bleach to clean rubber flooring?

It is not advisable to use undiluted bleach on rubber flooring as it can adversely affect it. That said, when diluted, you can use it to disinfect rubber floors.

How do I disinfect my rubber floor?

If you own a gym, use rubber flooring disinfectant approved by EPA’s Emerging Viral Pathogen Guidance. It will kill bacteria, fungus, and viruses and is easy to use.

Is steam cleaning rubber flooring good?

Yes, Steam cleaning rubber flooring kills germs or pests and removes stains without using harsh chemicals. It also prevents water spots and dries quickly. To steam clean your rubber floor, you will need to use a steam cleaner.

Rubber floor repair and Maintenance tips

Clean the floors regularly depending on the foot traffic. If there are a lot of people using the room, consider cleaning it daily. You can use a mop and soapy water and then use a wet vac at least once a month.

  • Avoid using harsh chemicals on your rubber floor as those could damage it. Harsh chemicals and waxes will erode the rubber and damage its color. In addition, acidic cleaners react with rubber floors and cause permanent damage. Instead, consider using water and mild soap solutions or buy a rubber floor degreaser to clean your floors.
  • Do not use a vacuum with a beater brush on your rubber floor or a wet vac on rubber tiles.
  • Clean up spills as soon as you notice them to ensure that the moisture does not damage the floor.
  • Do not use a scouring pad to clean your floor, as it will permanently damage your floor.
  • To keep your floor looking new, use a rubber floor conditioner. You can make yours at home by mixing half a bucket of water with two teaspoons of powdered fabric softener. Use it periodically on your floor to give it a glossy look.
  • Use a barrier matting system to enhance floor longevity and reduce cleaning costs.
  • Ensure that you use protective casters and glides for tables, chairs, and any other furniture you have in the room. Use chair pads to ensure that office chair wheels and casters do not damage your rubber flooring.  
  • Avoid using insecticide sprays and disinfectant cleaners that contain solvents or oils. They may settle and cause discoloration, slipperiness, and other damage to your floor.
  • Create a cleaning schedule to guarantee that you clean the floor regularly.
  • Take extra care of the floor during the first six months to ensure that it serves you for a longer time.

Repairing a broken rubber floor

If there is a hole or crack on your rubber floor, it presents a tripping hazard. The damage could become more extensive and result in costly repairs. It is therefore essential to repair breaks immediately you notice them. If you are concerned about the patch standing out, consider using the opportunity to add an eye-catching design. Follow these easy steps to repair damaged rubber flooring.

  • Make sure that the area is clean of all dust and particles
  • Mix the rubber granules with the binder.
  • Use glue to prime the edges of the holes in your floor.
  • Using a trowel fill the hole with the mixed materials and then deep it in soapy water and smooth over the area.
  • Ensure that the area cures for 24-48 hours.

How to seal Rubber flooring

Sealing your rubber floor adds an extra layer of protection and ensures that it lasts longer and looks good. If your floor has colored flecks, rubber floor sealer and finish will preserve its appearance. The sealer will also give it a glossy wet look that is very attractive. Use these steps to seal your rubber floor.

  • Make sure that you purchase high-quality sealant and that your floor is clean and dry.
  • Put rubber finish and sealer into a bucket and saturate a sponge with it.
  • Apply a coat all over your rubber floor, and then allow it to dry.
  • Apply a maximum of four coats or until you achieve the sheen you want.
  • Make sure you apply thin coats, and each dries before applying the next one.
  • Do not buff using a machine as that will leave streaks and marks.
  • Allow the floor to dry for a day, and then you can carry out routine maintenance and care procedures.  

When the finish wears off or becomes uneven, you can remove it and reapply it. Follow these steps to remove the rubber floor finish and sealer.

  • Vacuum or sweep the floor to remove all loose dust and dirt particles.
  • Purchase a stripper and prepare a stripping solution. Make sure that you follow the manufacturers’ instructions.
  • Use a nylon mop or a sprayer to apply the solution, and do not flood the floor with it.
  • Allow it to sit for 5-15 minutes and ensure that it does not dry.
  • Use a soft-bristled brush to scrub small areas or a single-disc rotary machine to clean larger rooms.
  • Use a mop or wet vacuum to remove the stripping solution.
  • Where necessary, repeat the process.
  • Reapply the finish and sealer

Check this too: How to Insulate a Garage Ceiling Rafters

What are the benefits of Rubber floors?

  • Easy to Maintain

Rubber floors are easy to maintain and can serve you for a long time when you clean them regularly with water and mild soap.

  • Germ resistant

Rubber floors maintain germ resistance for longer than other flooring materials after cleaning. That makes them great for baby playrooms and weight rooms.

  • Spill-Resistant

Spills are easier to clean off rubber floors since they have improved stain resistance.

  • Long-lasting

Rubber flooring lasts up to 20 years.