Proper Care & Maintenance of Aluminum Diamond Plate

aluminum-diamond-plateIf you work in construction, chances are you familiar with aluminum diamond plate. Also known as floor plate, tread plate or checker plate, aluminum diamond plate features a pattern of raised diamonds on one side and no texture at all on the reverse. This lightweight metal stock is typically made from aluminum, but it can also be made from steel and stainless steel.

Aluminum diamond plate has a number of uses. You may have seen it on catwalks or on stairs in a construction or industrial setting. The texture created by the diamond shapes give workers added traction, reducing slippage. Diamond plate is also used decoratively. Many steel construction tool boxes utilize this material on the exterior of their products. It can also be seen frequently on the inside of ambulances, delivery trucks and fire trucks.

Taking Care of Aluminum Diamond Plate
Like any other type of high-use metal, it is important to take good care of your aluminum diamond plate to help keeping it looking and working great. Because it is used for such demanding purposes, chances are good that it will get quite dirty on a regular basis. Below is a basic guide on how to clean aluminum diamond plate.

Step One: Cleansers
Do not ever use harsh detergents or floor soap to clean diamond plate. Don’t allow water or cleaning products to sit on the surface for a long period of time. Harsh chemicals will eventually destroy the finish, as will acid-based cleansers, detergents and compounds, when used improperly. Non-detergent car wash soaps are your best choice. Wash and then rinse thoroughly right away to prevent staining, water spots, blemishes or etching on the surface.

Step Two: Protection
A protective coat of wax will help to keep your diamond plate looking new, regardless of whether it is aluminum, steel or stainless steel. Regular waxing will help to preserve the diamond plate and reduce the amount of time required to clean it on a regular basis. Start with clean diamond plate and evaluate the condition of the aluminum diamond plate to see how much wax and correction needs to be done to get it looking shiny and new.

Step Three: Correction
In some cases, it takes more than clean diamond plate and some wax to get your metal looking new. You might need to use specialized metal cleaners or polishes, as well as a buffer to get it back to its original shine. Buffing and polishing will take a lot of time and effort, so make sure you set aside enough time to get the job done. You don’t want to leave any cleaners or polish on the metal longer than the manufacturer’s recommendations suggest.

Preventative Maintenance for Aluminum, Steel and Stainless Steel Diamond Plate
Sometimes the best way to clean diamond plate is to never really let it get out of hand in the first place. The next part of our guide to proper care and maintenance of diamond plate is a series of tips that you can take that will help to reduce the amount of time required to clean and care for the metal on a regular basis. Establishing good habits like these will help you to take even better care of your aluminum diamond plate than ever before.

Tip #1 – Evaluate
Take time to evaluate your aluminum diamond plate each day. Because of the extreme weather conditions experienced here in the New England area, it is important to pay attention to diamond plate in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island year round. The hot rays of the summer sun are just as damaging as the icy snows and salted roads of winter. If something nees to be cleaned – clean it. Make sure to clean diamond plate as soon as you see it needs attention.

Tip #2 – Be Gentle
While it was already mentioned in the cleaning steps above, it is worth repeating that it is important to avoid using harsh chemicals, cleansers, acids and other corrosive products that could potentially harm your aluminum diamond plate

Tip #3 – Keep it Dry
Don’t underestimate the power of water to do damage to your aluminum diamond plate. Water drops can cause spotting and, when left in direct sunlight, it can also cause etching. Make sure to dry your aluminum, steel and stainless steel diamond plate thoroughly, even if it just gets hit by a sprinkler.

Tip #4 – Protect
Protect your aluminum diamond plate whenever possible. That means keeping it out of the elements, keeping it dry, keeping it waxed and protected from chemicals and other harmful materials. Even though diamond plate is designed for heavy use and abuse, it pays to protect it whenever and as much as possible.

Tip #5 – Take Care
Whenever you are working with polishes, buffers or other corrective actions, make sure to take care of yourself. Wear eye protection, gloves and protective clothing. Make sure you have enough supplies on hand to get the job done.

Where to Buy Diamond Plate in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island
If you are looking to purchase diamond plate in Connecticut, Massachusetts or Rhode Island, visit Mid City Steel. With locations in Westport, MA and Bozrah, CT, Mid City is strategically located to meet the needs of customers throughout the southern New England region. In addition to aluminum diamond plate, Mid City Steel offers a wide variety of new, used and surplus steel and metal products, providing our customers with top notch service, competitive prices, and on time delivery. You can count on Mid City Steel.