Technical Procedures Disclaimer
Prior to inclusion in GSA’s library of procedures, documents are reviewed by one or more qualified preservation specialists for general consistency with the Secretary of Interior Standards for rehabilitating historic buildings as understood at the time the procedure is added to the library. All specifications require project-specific editing and professional judgement regarding the applicability of a procedure to a particular building, project or location. References to products and suppliers are to serve as a general guideline and do not constitute a federal endorsement or determination that a product or method is the best or most current alternative, remains available, or is compliant with current environmental regulations and safety standards. The library of procedures is intended to serve as a resource, not a substitute, for specification development by a qualified preservation professional.
We’ve reviewed these procedures for general consistency with federal standards for rehabilitating historic buildings and provide them only as a reference. Specifications should only be applied under the guidance of a qualified preservation professional who can assess the applicability of a procedure to a particular building, project or location. References to products and suppliers serve as general guidelines and do not constitute a federal endorsement nor a determination that a product or method is the best alternative or compliant with current environmental regulations and safety standards.
ROUTINE PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE GUIDELINES FOR TERRAZZO
This standard includes guidelines for maintaining terrazzo floors
on a daily and periodic basis.
- Scrub new terrazzo several times a week and mop on remaining
- Cleaning compounds used on terrazzo should be free from
alkalies, acids, or other strong ingredients which can
permanently damage the floor.
- Avoid acids and washing solutions containing carbonates or
- DO NOT USE sweeping compounds containing oil, sand or
- The floor must be carefully rinsed after cleaning.
- All cleaning solution and rinse water must be picked up, by
squeegee, mop or wet-dry vacuum, to prevent slipperiness.
- DO NOT USE soaps and scrubbing powders containing water
soluble, inorganic salts, or crystallizing salts in the
maintenance of terrazzo.
- The cleaning cycle should be regulated by the amount of
- For general cleaning, use a neutral cleaning compound diluted
in accordance with the manufacturer's directions.
- For very dirty areas, increase the amount of compound.
- The floor should be pre-wet with clean, warm water before
beginning the washing operation.
- A mop dressing used for daily sweeping should be NON-OILY;
Sweeping compounds containing oil will penetrate and
permanently discolor terrazzo.
- Sweeping compounds containing sand are difficult to sweep up
and may abrade the surface if left on the floor (wax-treated
dustmops and sweeping compounds are good).
- Electric- or battery-powered scrubbing machines should be used
periodically with a solution of neutral compound to loosen
- Floor machines should be equipped with fiber brushes, or with
abrasive nylon pads.
- Buffing the floor with a powered machine after each cleaning
restores the luster to the surface, building a natural sheen.
- Steel wool SHOULD NOT be used on terrazzo; It may rust and
stain the surface.
- Terrazzo floors containing abrasive aggregates SHOULD NEVER be
sealed; They should be scrubbed regularly to keep them free of
build-up of dirt and other foreign matter.