When stripping VCT the wax will come off in layers so the floor may need to be stripped more than once. Before stripping the floor, the area being serviced should be checked for stripper sensitive surfaces. Extra care needs to be used in these areas. Areas that may suffer damage are protected with plastic sheeting and blue delicate surface tape. Everything that can be removed is removed before stripping the floor. Stripper is applied to the floor using a mop and spread over the floor. The floor is completely saturated with a rinse free scrub free stripper. The stripper is given 10-20 minutes to soak in and breakdown the stripper before being scrubbed with a black pad under a 175rpm scrubber. This aggressive pad scrubs away the layers of wax that have been softened by the stripper. This creates a slurry of dissolved wax and stripper. This is pulled into a puddle with a squeegee and scooped up with a dust pan or sucked up with a squeegee vac. This process is repeated a minimum of two times and is repeated until all the wax has been stripped from the floor. Leftover old wax can turn a brownish yellow that looks really ugly under a shiny floor. The only way to correct left over old wax is to completely redo the job.
It definitely pays to strip one time to many rather than one time too few. The hardest and most important part of thorough strip is the edges. Edges tend to build up more wax than the center of the floor because they get less wear and cleaning then the traffic areas. If the edges are not thoroughly scrapped and scrubbed they will leave a nasty yellow brown ring around your clean shiny floor. Again the only way to correct this is to completely re-service this floor. After the floor has been completely stripped of wax from edge to edge the floor is thoroughly cleaned and detailed. Any stubborn areas are scrapped and scrubbed with a maroon stripping pad and then re-cleaned with ammonia and water. When the floor is clean and dry it is ready to coat with wax. Two different types of wax are used when we set up a VCT floor. The first two coats are a water based urethane reinforced floor wax that is very chemical and abrasion resistant. This provides a very tough base coat to protect the vinyl floor. The top four coats of wax are a 25% solids high performance wax. This builds up the layers that will be serviced between stripping and waxing. Putting down multiple thin coats of wax gives a beautiful bright shine. Each thin coat makes the surface smoother and more level which gives that nice bright clean looking shine.