Beyond the Products

Floor-care: An Art or a Science?
on April 1 2024, 11:43 pm

    When it comes to keeping floors squeaky clean is it more about the technique or the product used? Sheri Bilger of Misco Products tells us more…

    Q: From daily sweeping and mopping to stripping and waxing, does proper floor-care rely on product more or application?  

    A: APPLICATION!!! If the floor is not properly prepped, the finish will not adhere to the floor.  The floor needs to be properly rinsed of all residues after stripping or scrubbing and completely dried before finishing.  Also, the room needs to have a little humidity in it as possible for proper dry times.  The floor should be above 54 degrees as well.  Having the AC on can help along with fans that are not blowing directly onto the floor.

    Q: Does a facility’s standard operating procedure (SOP) rely on items to tick off the list or the way the cleaning is being done? For example, proper mopping strategies vs. “mopping to mop”?  

    A: SOP’s are always great to rely on as it gives structure to the cleaning application.  Some people would just mop to mop a floor but is it done correctly?  Making sure the dilution is correct in the bucket is key along with using cool water.  Following SOP’s are great guidance to make sure everyone is on the same page and not doing their own “thing”.

    Q: Is cleaning a floor really about expertise, or is it about following product usage recommendations? Is this something that needs annual training? 

    A:  FOLLOW THE LABELS!!  Do not mix chemicals with other chemicals.  So many times, I hear someone say I added bleach to my neutral cleaner!  WHY?????   You can really damage a floor doing this and what if bleach was added to an acid bowl cleaner?  There goes the roof into the sky!!  Depending on what the floor is, a neutral cleaner is what they need, such as a hallway in a school.  If in a hard tile and grouted floor in a restroom, an enzyme is a great choice for that floor.  Annual training is a great tool to keep everyone on the same page and for new hires as well.  Knowing what to use and where to use it is a key to keeping floors looking their best!

    Q: Are there any floorcare “secrets” or “tips” you have for our readers?  

    A: Know your floor before using a product.  What finish is on the floor and how do I keep it looking good?  Dust mop and damp mop daily.  Always dilute the product according to the directions.  For instance, if a neutral cleaner is 2oz/gallon of water do not use 10oz/gallon of water to make it shine because it won’t.  You will end up with sticky dirty floors and it is a waste of product and money.  Do not use hot water on the floor; it will dull it out.  Use room temperature water with your cleaners.  CLEAN MOPS are a key as well.  Don’t use dirty mops to mop.  Keep them clean along with the mop buckets.  Change water when visibly dirty.

    So: art or science? To conclude, this Q&A may prove that it is both. Regardless of who or how the job is being done, it seems that the art lies in the ability to trust the science on chemical labels. 

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