State Governing and Advocacy Association for Contractors, Distributors and Manufacturers of Cleaning and Maintenance Supplies

Winter-Floor Care Maintenance Plan

By: Theochem

Winter Facility Floor Care Plans

The frigid winter months and mounds of snow are upon us.  The time where salt and melt away products are used and then tracked into buildings. On hard surfaces, these products can eat away at a floor’s finish and produce a slick coating, creating a slip-and-fall hazard. They can also cause damage and quicker soiling by embedding on carpet. Abrasive sand and grit collect in ice and snow and make their way onto floors. In adverse weather, building users often wear heavier shoes with treads that collect moisture and soils. They can push salt, snow, dirt and sand into floors and carpets and spread it further around a facility than traditional dress shoes. People flock inside during the winter months, and more people and foot traffic usually means floors need additional cleaning time and attention.

As to what is recommended for floor care, the first step involves creating a winter floor care plan. Walk through your facility and note the floor areas most impacted by winter weather conditions. In most cases, it is the lower floor areas and areas near entries that are most affected. As long as these areas stay clean, winter weather will only marginally impact floors in other parts of the facility.

Your winter floor care plan should outline what needs to be done as well as frequency of these tasks. However, to help protect floors from winter’s wrath, you need to also take a close look at the following:

Matting: Mats should be installed at key building entries such as before the door and after the door, but the length of the matting also is very important to consider. Most experts recommend as much as 15 feet of matting installed outside and directly inside the facility, as well as in the lobby areas or walkways off the lobby. This ensures that as much as 70 percent of all moisture and soil walked in from outside is captured by the matting.

Chemicals: When it comes to floor care chemicals, it is true that “you get what you pay for.” It always is advisable to select high-quality chemicals and finishes, even if they do cost a little more. This can help reduce the amount of time it takes to perform floor care tasks and, because the major cost of floor care is labor, reducing these times can more than pay for any additional costs of selecting high-quality chemicals and finishes.

Vacuuming: If your facility is still dust mopping or sweeping floors, this might be a good time to consider using a vacuum cleaner. Vacuuming removes deeply embedded soils in porous tiles and grout areas and can be much more effective than dust mopping. Further, vacuuming can help protect indoor air quality because some vacuums have HEPA filtration systems. Finally, thanks to specially designed harnesses, some backpacks are comfortable to wear. These ergonomic features minimize discomfort so productivity is maximized.

Heeding these tips can help you better and more efficiently maintain your facility during what can be the brutal months of winter.

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Florida Sanitary Supply Association