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A terrazzo floor is the same as any concrete slab with a few exceptions. It is often placed over a concrete slab in a thin layer, from a half to three quarters of an inch in thickness. It is seeded with with colored marble chips on the surface while the mix is fresh, and the chips are seated in during the floating or troweling process. After the mixture hardens, the polishing process begins. Large floor grinding machines using diamond chip impregnated cutters polish the surface in steps from coarse to fine. You now have a beautiful terrazzo floor, but highly susceptible to staining. Most contractors place one or two layers of sealers on the finish but this is not enough. In a school system where I performed this installation, we had to take great precautions to protect the floors. Then, upon occupying, the school personnel stripped off the sealer and applied multiple layers of floor wax per manufacturer's recommendations. Therefore, in order to restore a terrazzo floor one must first strip and clean all waxes, sealers, dirt and grime. Then you have to consider whether repolishing the surface will remove stains and imperfections which sometimes penetrate very deep into the surface. Then, if repolishing won't do it, you must consider removing the floor and reinstalling it. But before I did that, I would aggressively clean the surface and then do a proper job putting down layers of floor wax. Often the sheen from this procedure, especially after a thorough cleaning of the old floor, will conceal most imperfections.

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