How To Effectively Clean Concrete Garage Floors
This cleaning task depends on the nature of the floor itself. It’s no secret that sealed floors are easier to clean, but sealed floors also offer a more stable concrete surface as the years go by. Although a sealed floor is not impenetrable, such steps greatly reduce the likelihood of corrosion caused by messes and vehicle maintenance chemicals. Prior to sealing the garage floor, concrete should be brushed and cleaned thoroughly. Otherwise, stains will be trapped in the concrete for years to come.
How to clean garage floors depends on the type of mess to be cleaned. Absorption and disposal are always the first considerations, since safety is usually an issue with vehicle messes. Most absorbent materials look like kitty litter, but have unique chemical properties, preventing hazardous exposure and environmental issues.
Some messes are more hazardous than others. Also, some cleaning materials will give off fumes. These must be carefully eliminated, either by airflow, or through periodic use. In some cases, it is better to prevent wind and debris from entering the garage during the cleaning of the garage floor, since debris may turn a concentrated spill into larger spread.
Water may be one of the most useful cleaning tools in the kitchen, but it rarely helps with an oil spill. The absorbent sand itself will do most of the work, but eliminating the stain is a matter of finding the right cleaning product. Soaking with such materials is the most important step, since it allows the separation of some of the stain from the garage surface. Powdered solvents are sold for this purpose.
Sometimes, overly aggressive cleaning will destroy the integrity of a cement floor, especially if changes in the foundation or the contraction of concrete have already occurred. Cracks in concrete should be taken care of immediately, in order to prevent water and debris from corroding the concrete surface. Knowing how to clean concrete garage floors will do more harm than good, if cracks or scrapes are present in the concrete.
Once the stain is removed, and the sealant is seen to, buffing is the final step. Buffing does far more than adding an extra shine, since it ensures the safety of tires and other objects stored directly on the ground. Buffing also makes the movement of furniture, tables, and bins easy and efficient. There’s nothing wrong with preferring a garage that has a show-room feel.
Without a protective surface, knowing how to clean concrete garage floors is half the battle. In some cases, high pressure water and sand will be needed to remove major stains. Resurfacing the area may be more efficient for some floors than removing a stain, then resealing the floor. Even well-sealed floors will be stained if a mess is left unattended. Some garage chemicals will eat through a beautiful, sealed garage floor in a matter of hours.
Deep cleaning means removing everything from the garage. Dirt should be removed, and the entire surface should be rinsed out. Solid and liquid cleaners are used next, with small amounts of cleaner, and a great deal of elbow grease. There’s no substitute for cleaning out dirt with a coarse brush, before and after sealing the garage floor.