Chemical Etching Methods of Floor Treatment

There are methods of making mineral surface floors slip resistant that make use of mild acids to make an invisible tread pattern in the surface of the stone. 

These acid based products make a microscopic tread pattern on the surface of the stone that creates slip resistance without changing the visible appearance of the surface.  Porcelain bathtubs can be made slip resistant as well with the use of a diluted version of the acid based product.

Acid based non slip floor treatments can be used on ceramic tile, porcelain tile, travertine tile, quarry tile, marble, granite and terrazzo.  The products are mixed with different formulas for the different types of floor surface to make sure that the appearance can be maintained.  Highly polished floors like polished porcelain, polished marble, and polished granite need to use a weaker version of the acid based product to keep the shine.

Concrete can also be acid etched but it needs to be done with a stronger product and done with plenty of ventilation.


The procedure that is followed to do the acid etching is really a very easy process.  It is a matter of applying the product, leaving it on for a period of minutes and then neutralizing so that the chemicals are no longer etching.  After that, the product is cleaned up and the floors are rinsed thoroughly.

There are some surfaces that can't be treated with acid etching products.  These floor surfaces include painted concrete floors, wood, vinyl-based flooring, acrylic tubs and showers, rubber, metallic surfaces, floors that have been sealed with epoxy or urethane coatings and other non-silica based floor types. This is where we recommend a water-based, non-toxic and clear anti-slip floor coating that adheres to all indoor and outdoor surfaces.  It is a great solution for these situations etching products will not work. 

One of the advantages of acid etching products is that they are long lasting if they are maintained correctly.  In restaurants, maintaining the floors means cleaning them regularly with a good degreaser so that grease does not build up.  In outdoor areas maintenance would mean hosing off or power washing so that there is not dust on the surface.  In showers maintenance would include rinsing well so that there is no soapy buildup.  It is important not to allow the floor to become coated with a wax or a soapy buildup of any kind to maintain the slip resistance. 

Paying attention to the safety of floors has enabled many businesses to reduce slip and fall claims. 

Lynda Logan, President

Slip Resistant Solutions, Inc.

Slip Resistant Solutions, Inc. offers products so that businesses and homeowners can make their own floors or bathtubs slip resistant.

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