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What is the best lane cleaner for each lane finish and surface?
  Unfortunately, there is no "magic formula" as to which cleaner works well on which finish or surface. There are many factors that can affect how well a cleaner performs: quality of the surface or finish, type of water used, type of cleaning method used, frequency of cleaning, etc. Most of the time, it all comes down to trial and error to find the right cleaner.
Is it OK to use straight water to clean a bowling lane?
  The old adage "oil and water don’t mix" applies here. Straight water does not contain the ingredients necessary to emulsify the lane conditioner and remove the conditioner and dirt from the lane surface. In addition, water does not contain the drying agents found in most lane cleaners, which help to increase the evaporation time of the liquid.
What about using laundry detergent or dishwashing soap?
  The rule of thumb here is "think of who made the cleaner and for what purpose". Most people would not do dishes or laundry with lane cleaner, so we shouldn’t clean lanes with these types of products. There is also the possibility that these products could interact with the lane finish or surface and cause future damage. Reputable bowling manufacturers spend much time and money in the development of their products to assure that they can be safely used on all bowling lanes. To avoid damage, in some cases very expensive damage, it’s a good idea to use the products that were developed specifically for bowling lanes.
There is a film left on the lane surface every time the lanes are cleaned. What could be the problem?
  If possible, it should be determined if the film left behind is conditioner or cleaner.

If it is conditioner, it could be that the wrong type of cleaner is being used. A conditioner film could also indicate that the cleaning mixture is too weak and more cleaner should be added. Another possibility is that the equipment used to clean the lane is not functioning properly.

If it is determined that the film is NOT conditioner, it may indicate that too much cleaner was used, and the mixture should be diluted with more water. The water to dilute the cleaning mixture could also be at fault. If the water used is high in minerals, for example, it may be a water film that is left behind. In this case, some type of treated water may be the only cure.

How many times should lanes be cleaned?
  As often as possible.

Dirt left on the lane surface (or dirty lane conditioner) will act as a grit, similar to sandpaper, as the ball impacts the surface. A bowling ball generates about 1800 pounds of pressure per square inch, and this impact will grind the dirt into the lane surface causing eventual wear.

With the heavier amounts of lane conditioner being used today, lanes can get dirtier faster, again necessitating the need for more frequent cleaning.

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