Terrazzo is most common in commercial applications, but is gaining popularity in homes, often as tiles with newfound aggregate additions like glass, shells, coral, and more. It is commonly used for lobby flooring in public buildings, such as school and government offices. Many homes in Florida that were built in the 1950s and 1960s used terrazzo flooring due to its constant cool temperature and resistance to mold and mildew. Recently terrazzo is being used in new construction and decorative homes for staircases, walls, and countertops, offering distinctive colors and unique patterns that homeowners are embracing in their new home designs. It is relatively easy to clean, but does need periodic professional maintenance.
Terrazzo can be poured in place or prefabricated and precast for use in a variety of applications. Cement or epoxy is used as the binder modern terrazzo which features chips of marble, quartz, granite, coral, shell, glass, or other appropriate materials. After being combined, the surface is polished to create the beautiful glossy appearance. Divider strips (zinc, plastic, brass, or aluminum) help divide sections, allowing for the movement needed to avoid cracking, as well as color transitions or custom designs.
The Luxury and Elegance of Terrazzo
Like many natural stone surfaces, terrazzo provides a unique level of luxury and elegance in homes and businesses. Early on, marble and granite were the stones of choice for the aggregates used in terrazzo applications around the world, each adding a lavish touch to homes as well as businesses. As the process has evolved, today shells, glass, coral, mother of pearl, mirror, porcelain, and local stones are used for the creation of unique and beautiful terrazzo applications. Plus, epoxy resin can be tinted to complement the chosen terrazzo aggregate to create a completely customized look.
Even old terrazzo floors can be restored to the beauty, luxury, and elegance they once knew with polishing and restoration. Even terrazzo flooring which has been under cover of another type of flooring (carpet, tile, etc.) can be restored to its original grandeur.
Cleaning and Maintenance of Terrazzo
Like most flooring and countertops, terrazzo is fairly easy to clean though it does require a certain level of care to maintain. Most often periodic professional maintenance is recommended. Here is what you need to know:
- With hard surface flooring, terrazzo needs to be regular sweeping and dust-mopping to remove abrasive dirt and grit, which can damage the surface.
- For cleaning, terrazzo surfaces need pH-neutral cleaners rather than harsh chemicals or alcohol-laden cleaners, both of which can damage the polished finish.
- When spills happen, wipe quickly with a clean cloth. Using a dry clean cloth will help prevent damage which can result in deterioration of the terrazzo. If needed, clean the surface as need with warm water or your favorite pH-neutral cleaning product.
As with most surfaces, it is important to know, not only how to clean, but also how to use the surface effectively without damaging it. For flooring, having guests remove shoes before entering can help, but it is not always practical in commercial situations. Instead install floor mats at entryways, so guests can wipe their footwear removing grit and grime which could damage the terrazzo flooring. On countertops, scratching the surface or damaging the finish is a concern, so you should avoid placing metal pots and pans directly on your terrazzo countertops. Taking these simple precautions will help you keep your terrazzo looking great well into the future and avoid damage that requires restoration.
WHAT NOT TO PUT ON YOUR TERRAZZO
What not to put on terrazzo is as important as how to clean terrazzo. It is important not to put anything on the surface that could scratch it, like the bottom of a metal pan or pot. On the floor, grime from shoes can easily damage the floors. A simple tip: have people remove their shoes or use a mat where they can thoroughly clean their footwear. This can not only save time in daily cleaning and maintenance, but save time and money when it comes to long term terrazzo restoration and cleaning.
Restoration and Repair of Your Terrazzo Surfaces
Like other stone surfaces, repairing chips and cracks in terrazzo can be challenging. If your terrazzo surfaces need to be restored or repaired, we recommend:
- Analyzing the damage
- Determining the appropriate aggregate needed for repair
- Checking the color is matched with an epoxy resin and applied to ensure the proper match, dimension, type, and color.
Given the steps in the terrazzo restoration process, you will want to choose experienced and trusted professionals to ensure proper restoration and repair without further damage. The team of professionals at Classic Marble Restoration, Inc. are well-trained and will find the proper solution to your unique situation, perform the needed repairs, and restore your terrazzo to its original beauty.
Call Classic Marble for Terrazzo Cleaning, Polishing & Restoration Services
With more than 25 years of experience in the industry, Classic Marble Restoration, Inc. delivers with well-trained technicians who provide the latest cleaning techniques and promise 100 percent satisfaction to each and every customer – residential and commercial.
If you have any questions about terrazzo cleaning or care, contact Classic Marble Restoration today at 954-578-3600.
Classic Marble Restoration, Inc. can provide the following services for your terrazzo surfaces:
- Terrazzo Cleaning
- Terrazzo Polishing
- Terrazzo Refinishing
- Terrazzo Restoration
We will also repair cracks and fill holes and chips, usually left behind from carpet tack strips.
For larger restoration projects, as well as commercial terrazzo restoration projects for hotels, yachts, and condo associations, we are happy to offer a FREE project estimate.