Floor burnishers are an important addition to any facility’s floor maintenance program. They are used to polish or burnish a floor to bring out its original shine. Shiny floors lead to a great looking facility and happy guests.
Like any purchase, you are likely curious how much one is going to cost you.
Depending on what you are looking for, and the needs and budget of your facility, a floor burnisher can cost anywhere from $1,300 to $20,000.
For some, the cheapest burnisher will be all you need, but for others, a more expensive option will be the best fit for the facility.
This article will breakdown some of the factors that affect the price of a commercial floor burnisher:
- Power Source
- Features Installed
- Service and Support
- Delivery, Set-Up, & Training
Floor burnishers can be walk-behind or ride-on.
Walk-behind burnishers are available with cleaning paths ranging from 12-27 inches. The larger the cleaning path, the more the equipment is going to cost.
The cheapest walk-behind burnishers will be cord electric with no advanced features. They typically cost between $1,300 and $4,200.
Propane burnishers are the next step up in price, ranging from $2,500 to $4,500.
Battery-operated burnishers are the most expensive walk-behind burnishers and can cost anywhere from $6,500 to $12,000.
Ride-on burnishers are the most expensive burnishers but can provide shorter cleaning times for larger areas.
Ride-on burnishers offer cleaning path sizes up to 27 inches. Similar to walk-behind burnishers, the larger the cleaning path, the more expensive the burnisher.
They are typically battery-operated. The price of a ride-on, battery-powered burnisher will be affected by the size of the burnisher and the number of batteries installed. Ride-on burnishers usually cost somewhere between $17,000 - $20,000.
They are best used in areas ranging from 20,000 to 100,000 square feet, like hospitals or schools, where smaller burnishers would be inefficient.
2. Power Source
Floor burnishers are cord-electric, propane, or battery-powered.
Cord-electric burnishers are walk-behind models. They are the most commonly purchased because of their low cost.
Cord-electric burnishers produce the least amount of shine because they are limited to the amount of power they can draw from an outlet. The limited power restricts the pad pressure and speed.
Cord-electric floor burnishers are the least expensive burnishers, but they require more labor and time to operate.
Cord-electric floor burnishers must be plugged into an outlet to operate. The typical power cord length is either 50 ft or 75 ft.
The operator must manage the cord throughout a cleaning procedure ensuring that they are always in reach of the outlet and that they are not going to run over the cord. The additional time it takes to manage the cord leads to decreased productivity and longer cleaning times.
Propane burnishers are more expensive than cord-electric burnishers.
Propane burnishers are powered by an internal combustion engine, producing the most amount of power. The increased power allows the burnisher to produce the most amount of downward pressure and achieve the best shine, but they are highly limited to where they can be used.
Propane burnishers release toxic fumes and should only be used in well ventilated or vacant buildings.
Battery burnishers are the most expensive machines when it comes to the power source, but they provide increased cleaning power, improved portability, and shorter cleaning times.
Battery-powered burnishers have the most consistent downward pressure, allowing them to produce a quicker and better shine when compared to cord-electric and propane burnishers.
Battery burnishers are a good option for facilities that need to clean spaces beyond the reach of a power cord.
The average run time is 3 hours. The price of a battery-powered burnisher will depend on the size of the machine and how many batteries are needed to operate it.
Pro Tip: Propane and battery-powered burnishers can increase productivity by up to 30% when compared to cord-electric burnishers.
Getting a floor burnisher with no “bells and whistles” that only performs basic polishing/burnishing may cause you to spend more time performing follow up cleaning procedures.
Advanced or additional features added to the base model will enhance cleaning performance or provide some added benefit, such as increased worker productivity, but will cost you more money.
When burnishing, dust is created during the process.
Burnishers with dust control aid in the removal and containment of dust particles that were generated during the polishing process. Dust control improves indoor air quality and reduces the need for follow-up dust mopping.
The dust control feature may be more expensive upfront but will help lower overall cleaning and labor costs.
If your burnisher is not equipped with dust control, you will have to vacuum or dust mop after the procedure to remove the dust that was left during the polishing procedure.
Spending more money on a commercial floor burnisher that has dust control allows you to skip having to vacuum or dust mop, decreasing the amount of time and money you would otherwise have to spend on vacuuming or mopping
Dust control will allow your workers to be more productive, getting more done in the same amount of time, and ultimately saving on labor costs.
Automatic Height Adjustment
The most basic burnishers do not offer height adjustment. Machines without height adjustment are the cheapest but do not ensure the pad is evenly rotating on the floor.
Burnishers with manual height adjustment allow the operator to manually adjust the height of the pad to produce the correct amount of pad pressure on the floor. These are better than burnishers with no height adjustment, but allow for operator error and increased damages to the floor.
The best burnishers are equipped with automatic height adjustment. The machine automatically adjusts to the floor, creating the best shine. Burnishers with automatic height adjustment reduce the chance of operator error and floor damage and increase employee productivity.
4. Service and Support
On-going service and support can help extend the life of your floor burnisher and reduce the need for more costly repairs.
Although it may cost you more initially, services like preventative maintenance will help safeguard your investment. It will also prevent unscheduled equipment downtime and lost worker productivity that downtime causes.
5. Delivery, Set-Up, & Training
To get the most out of your equipment investment, take into consideration the cost of machine delivery, set-up, and training.
Training is important in ensuring employees understand the safest and best way to operate and maintain the equipment. Proper usage and training will reduce equipment damages, extend the life of your burnisher, reduce employee injury, and maximize employee productivity.
Floor burnishers can come with a warranty on parts, which will allow you to keep your repair costs down.
Most warranties on parts are between 2-3 years but can range from 2-7 years. In general, the longer the warranty, the more expensive the machine.
Warranties typically do not cover the replacement of expendable wear items such as scrub brushes, pad holders, carbon motor brushes, bulbs, bags, filters, and various rubber/plastic parts.
The price of a floor burnisher is not the only factor you should consider when making a purchase decision. The best burnisher for your business will be based on the size of your facility and the importance of budget, desired cleaning results, and safety.
For large facilities, the best investment will be a ride-on, battery-powered burnisher. Even though it’s more expensive, your workers will be more productive, get more done in the same amount of time, and ultimately save you on labor costs.
For small facilities that are looking for the cheapest machine, a cord-electric burnisher will be the best investment. But, it is still important to look for a machine with dust control. You may initially spend more on a burnisher with dust control, but it will eliminate the need for dust mopping. Skipping dust mopping shortens cleaning times and allows workers to complete other cleaning tasks.
If you are most concerned with getting the best shine and do not have to worry about indoor air quality or noise level affecting occupants, such as in vacant buildings or buildings which can be cleaned overnight, propane burnishers are the best option.
Selecting the best floor burnisher for your business based on your budget and needs can be challenging.
If you have additional questions or need help deciding on the best burnisher for your facility, let an EBP Equipment Specialist help.
EBP has an unrivaled selection of commercial cleaning products and janitorial cleaning equipment to help you build the most effective floor care program.
Our Team begins by understanding your needs and desired outcomes so we can suggest the best equipment choices for you. We guide you through the decision-making process to ensure you make the right purchase.
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