How to Clean & Sanitize Rubber Gym Mats (Plus Other Delicate Gym Equipment Surfaces)2019-09-07T16:27:21-09:00

How to Clean & Sanitize Rubber Gym Mats
(Plus Other Delicate Gym Equipment Surfaces)

Owning a gym requires a significant investment in exercise equipment that is vulnerable to premature aging and wear/tear with misuse – or worse, due to cleaning with harsh chemicals.

Fitness centers and yoga studios are known to have extremely high bacteria counts, but they’re filled with many different surface types that can be challenging to clean. Steam cleaning has been the obvious solution for many gym owners & operators.

Sanitize Rubber Gym Floors Without Destroying The Material

Rubber workout area flooring is notoriously difficult to keep clean and maintain proper hygiene. Mop heads, paper towels and rags leave behind fibers that become noticeable over time and quickly decrease the traction of the rubber surface.

The traditional mop and bucket routine doesn’t disinfect – it just spreads germs and bacteria, cross-contaminating other areas. The other option, pressure washing, can be an effective way to clean flooring, but the water spray and ricochet leaves your entire gym and nearby equipment sopping wet, then requires a separate system to vacuum up water, then fans to dry the whole area…it’s just not practical indoors.

Steam vacuuming rubber gym floor
Using steam to clean machine handlebar
Steam cleaning a Bosu exercise ball

If you’ve been frustrated looking for a safe, easy solution on how to clean gym equipment – especially high-traffic rubber floors – steam cleaning is the answer.

And many of the mass marketed harsh cleaning chemicals aren’t cheap – plus they’re terrible for the environment and oftentimes actually pretty bad for the long-term health of the fabric or surface they’re being used on.

Steam vacuum systems require only tap water to remove grime, sweat and dirt build-up off delicate rubber mats and floors while still sanitizing and killing germs to a hospital-accepted grade of clean. Within the machine itself, water is converted to super-heated steam, sanitizing the soft surface without causing damage, then vacuuming up the loosened visible dirt after destroying bacteria and most dangerous pathogens.

And yes, steam is completely safe to use on rubber surfaces.

Steam cleaners operate hot enough to sanitize and effectively lift grime, but not hot enough to melt the rubber flooring, yoga mats or exercise balls. Commercial steam-pressure vacuums clean without chemicals and won’t destroy rubber floors over time the way that most mop and bucket chemical cleaners will. Additionally, steamvac cleaners can be used to sanitize almost every surface in a gym, from durable metal hand weights to soft flexible yoga mats.

Steam Safely Sanitizes Bosu Balls, Too

Specialty gyms and fitness studios can have many different kinds of specialized equipment, and each piece of equipment comes with its own unique cleaning challenges.

Among the long list of awkward-to-clean items is the Bosu ball or physioball. Those flexible rubber, round exercise balls are high-touch areas that are challenging to clean because of their shape and material.

With time, chemical spray cleaners will start to leave rubber or silicone surfaces with a gross, sticky feeling as the material physically starts to break down & degrade. Steam cleaning does not do this.

Super-heated steam is completely safe to use for sanitizing rubber studio flooring & exercise balls, too. Again, the steam gets hot enough to kill dangerous pathogens, but it won’t melt or damage the rubber in the Bosu ball.

Actually Pick Up Dirt & Grime – Don’t Just Smear It Around

Another benefit of steam cleaning/vacuuming rubber gym floors is that steamvac machines leave behind significantly fewer waters spots than a mop & bucket would.

Mops really just push dirt and water around, whereas sophisticated residential & commercial steam cleaners don’t just emit steam – they also vacuum up & effectively remove the dirt and debris that most mop heads would just smear around.

Sanitizing workout equipment handle with steam
Steamvac setup with only water
Cleaning steamvac machine with tap water

Scent-Free Cleaning & Zero Allergic Reactions

Cleaners with leave-behind chemical perfumes can be a common customer complaint – or a fast way to lose members.

Supermarket shelf cleaners like bleach, Pinesol, Lysol or others not only degrade the equipment materials over time, but they also leave behind chemical perfumes and other odors or residues  that many gym members either don’t like or can even have uncomfortable allergic reactions to.

With some equipment, a chemical cleaner’s leave-behind scent isn’t as noticeable. But certain workout equipment like yoga mats and Bosu balls get quite close to gym member’s faces and other sensitive skin areas, meaning they’re more likely to either cause skin irritation reactions or just plain offend the nose.

Using the power of steam cleaning is great for running a gym that is considerate of not only maintaining sanitary high-touch areas, but also being considerate of customer allergies.

Steamvacs run purely with regular tap water, turning it into super-heated steam within the machine, then immediately vacuuming & removing any residual moisture. There are no chemicals needed to sanitize even the most delicate gym equipment (like yoga mats & Bosu balls), meaning there are also no leave-behind residues or unwanted chemical perfumes.

Long-Term Financial Gains

Not only do pieces of equipment and high-touch surfaces cleaned entirely with steam last longer, but you’ve also eliminated the cost of continuously buying chemicals cleaners, mop heads, and many other items that chemical-based cleaning regiments require. One steam vacuum machine also reduces storage needs for the all that cleaning equipment & supplies.

When you invest in a commercial 3-in-1 steam-pressure-vacuum cleaning system, the good ones aren’t necessarily cheap. But considering how many gym operators are constantly buying new rubber floors and mats because of chemical wear & tear, the long-term financial gain of sanitizing with a chemical-free, water-only steam cleaning system can be significant.

If you’re considering cleaning your gym or studio with the power of steam but want to discuss questions & concerns, we’re happy to talk about the pros & cons and see if it’s the right fit for you. Feel free to contact us.