Superior Mark® industrial floor marking tape is a durable, easy-to-apply, and long-lasting option for warehouse floors, but even the best floor tape will show signs of wear or damage with heavy use. To ensure a reliable application that lasts through foot and vehicular traffic, follow these tips when applying, cleaning, and replacing visual cues and lines with floor marking tape.
1) Test Floor Tape Before Applying to Ensure Durability
While our floor marking tape is durable, you must find the right options to meet your facility’s specific needs. Your tape needs may differ depending on whether you’re applying over concrete, in cold or wet areas, in spaces that require repetitive wheel-turning, or on textured surfaces. A tape sample kit allows you to properly test floor tape to ensure your intended application will stand up to the daily traffic and individual demands of your location. Even floor tape rated for heavy traffic may deteriorate with repeated scraping, dragging, or twisting wheels. By testing ahead of time, you can save yourself the trouble of trying to figure out why your new tape application won’t stick. Get the right tape for the job the first time when you order and use your sample kit to test:
- Visibility in the intended application area
- Ease of application
- Resistance to damage in your application location
- Simple, no-residue removal
2) Proper Floor Tape Application Lasts Longer
While the application process is quick and simple, there are still steps to take to ensure that Superior Mark® Floor Marking Tape sticks—and stays stuck. The industrial-strength pressure-sensitive adhesive offers a secure grip that stands up to traffic, pallet dragging, and cleaning procedures. Taking shortcuts will reduce the lifespan of your tape application, so install it right the first time for the best results.
Prep the Area Properly
Scrape up any old paint or tape using adhesive or paint remover as necessary. Applying floor tape over flaking or peeling lines can cause new applications to deteriorate faster. With contaminants in the way, the adhesive will fail prematurely. Sweep to remove dirt and debris to ensure the adhesive sticks properly, clean the area with a degreaser, then use 70- to 90-percent Isopropyl Alcohol to cut through any remaining contaminants. Repeat the cleaning process as many times as necessary until a strip of tape removes clean, no debris attached. The floor should be completely dry before tape application as moisture can contribute to adhesive failure.
Follow Application Instructions
Application instructions provide the information you need to ensure your floor tape sticks through day-to-day use. If installed properly—following directions in terms of floor material, amount and type of traffic, and area conditions—you’ll save time and cut maintenance costs. Taking shortcuts often means you’ll likely need to re-apply tape sooner and more often. For a durable tape application:
- Install the tape while it is at room temperature—this allows the adhesive and substrate to conform easily to the surface, creating a strong, long-lasting bond.
- Avoid applying tape over seams or cracks in the floor surface. Instead, allow an inch on either side of the floor damage or seam.
- Don’t overlap tape; instead, splice tape for proper corner application or where ends meet.
Don’t Forget to Tamp Tape Down
Finishing your tape application by tamping the lines activates the adhesive, the final step to ensure your visual cues and signs remain in place. Without this final step, your tape may peel up or tear. Instead of stepping on the floor tape to tamp, rely on floor marking equipment designed for the job: A tamper cart provides plenty of weight to ensure the tape adheres; an applicator cart makes straight lines easy to apply and includes a built-in tamper for ease.
3) Change Habits That Reduce Floor Tape Life
Superior Mark® Floor Marking Tape is made with beveled edges that send traffic up and over instead of scraping across so the application can stand up to dragging and scraping. While floor tape and signs can manage occasional rough treatment, no product is perfect: Repetitive scraping or dragging will damage the tape. Damage can be prevented by lifting loads slightly, avoiding turning the wheels while resting directly on the tape application, and ensuring the tape is spliced, rather than crossed, to prevent lifting at the edges. If the same damage occurs often, look at options for re-training or adjusting habits that may contribute to the damage.
4) Regular Evaluation Ensures Long-Lasting Application
Checking tape often for signs of damage can clue you into application or location adjustment needs. If specific damage keeps occurring, such as twisting or tearing, adjusting the placement of the next application just outside of the range of forklift wheels may prevent future damage. If a workflow has changed, it may result in increased traffic or vehicular traffic where only pedestrian walkways had been. Previous visual cues may become irrelevant or may even be sending mixed messages if not updated. Institute reporting methods to help identify tape that needs to be updated, damaged sections in need of replacement, or areas that need a slight adjustment with future installations. With a regular audit of floor tape applications, you can ensure the visual cues are working as required and check for and repair minor damage before it requires a full reinstallation.
5) Replace Tape Sections As Needed
A key part of the 5S Methodology is continuous improvement. Keep the work floor safe by replacing damaged tape sections as necessary rather than waiting until the whole application needs repair. Not having to repair the whole area and only replacing sections saves work hours, materials, and money. Our Kaizen Cart makes the repair process easy by keeping everything organized and at hand for easy replacement, no searching for tools or rolls of tape required.
6) Store Floor Tape Properly
Proper floor tape storage ensures it’s in ideal shape when you’re ready to install it. Follow these instructions to keep your spare tape in top shape:
- Avoid storing floor marking tape or signs in extremely cold or hot areas for long periods of time—store it at room temperature or in climate-controlled storage.
- Suspend unused tape to prevent edge damage. If you must stack tape to store it, place a foam layer between rolls to prevent damage.
- Storing tape rolls in a box keeps the materials clean.
- An application cart is a handy way to store extra rolls.
A Kaizen Cart provides an easy solution for storing extra tape rolls or floor marking equipment. Simply wheel the cart into the work area when a repair is necessary. There’s plenty of space on the cart for your most-used tape so you can remove and replace damaged sections in minutes.
7) Provide Training for Proper Application and Care
In addition to training staff on what lines and signs mean, you should also prepare a team to properly apply, clean, and replace floor tape. Ask staff and management for feedback, implement changes as necessary, and watch for significant problems so you can update as necessary.
Know How to Clean Floor Tape
Though Superior Mark® Floor Marking Tape is durable enough to withstand cleaning machines and chemicals, it lasts longer if care is taken during maintenance. Our all-purpose floor degreaser is formulated for an effective clean without damaging tape applications. Regular cleaning means taped lines and cues remain visible and you’re not spending extra time scrubbing build-up away.
Record Floor Tape Damage
Ensure floor managers know what damage to report, and how to report it. Documenting damage allows for continuous improvement: It provides an opportunity to adjust application procedures, such as switching to dashed lines or corner markers where straight-line damage occurs most.
- Schedule regular floor marking audits
- Create a procedure for documenting tape issues
- Repair floor tape damage right away to avoid time-consuming replacement jobs
- Keep supplies together for easy access
- Update installation methods or location as necessary if the same damage seems to occur repeatedly
With these seven tips, you can make your floor tape application last longer for a safer, more productive warehouse or facility. A durable application comes down to following installation directions, cleaning properly before and after tape is applied, evaluating damage regularly, and repairing torn or damaged applications promptly. Visit our Resource Center for more floor marking tips and how-to guides.