The Hidden Danger of Sticky Floors

Hidden danger of biofilms on sticky floors

Are sticky floors actually making you sick?

No one likes walking on a sticky floor. The tacky suction as it grips your shoes. The unpleasant squelching noise as you pull your foot away to take your next step. What’s worse, anyone walking over the floor is going to think it’s dirty. That’s even more frustrating when you know that not only is the floor clean, but it might be the cleaner or disinfectant itself that’s causing it to be sticky.

But one of the biggest dangers is one you can’t see or feel. Sticky floors are also an ideal place for biofilms to grow. These bacteria-rich films can cause infections both acute and chronic. Biofilms can also produce and trap odors. They can also be very resistant to antimicrobial agents and disinfectants1.

How are Biofilms Formed?

1. Planktonic (free-swimming) bacteria attach to a surface. Sticky residue on a floor helps facilitate this.

Planktonic (free-swimming) bacteria attach to a surface. Sticky residue on a floor helps facilitate this.

2. Bacteria attach to a surface via sugary substance (EPS). The EPS coats the bacteria and attaches it to other cells and other substances. Cells can share genetic material and have an organized structure.

Bacteria attach to a surface via sugary substance (EPS). The EPS coats the bacteria and attaches it to other cells and other substances. Cells can share genetic material and have an organized structure.

3. Biofilm grows, matures and thickens. Biofilms can cause billions of damage each year by damaging equipment and facilities and causing infectious diseases.2

Biofilm grows, matures and thickens. Biofilms can cause billions of damage each year by damaging equipment and facilities and causing infectious diseases.

The good news is that there are cleaning products that don’t leave sticky residue behind, and can help remove built-up biofilms as part of a restoration process. For more information on how residue is formed, and how to combat it, get our free E-book, Preventing Dirty, Sticky, Slippery Floors for free just by filling out the form on this page.


3. Donlan, R. M. (2002). Biofilms: Microbial Life on Surfaces. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 8(9), 881-890

8. Jacoby-Garrett, P. (n.d.) What are Biofilms? – Definition Formation and Examples [Video File]. Retrieved from: study.com/academy/lesson/what-are-biofilms-definition-formation-examples.html

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