Do you wash your car with a dirty sponge?

Mop Head Dirty
I’m not going to tell you how to wash your car that’s for sure, but the general principals are the same.
We constantly have enquiries from cleaners about getting their floors clean.  “I need to do it quickly, efficiently & cost effectively” are common parameters that a lot of contract cleaners give us when discussing their floor care needs. It all makes sense, the quicker you can clean the floor the quicker you can put your invoice in and get paid by your customer. What happens when your customer says “I’m not happy with the job youre doing”? Is it your fault? Is it your employees fault? Is it the process in which you are cleaning the floor? It could be all three. Let’s look at the latter, the process.
Generally, mopping the floor goes like this:
1.       Get mop & bucket from storage room
2.       Fill mop bucket with water
3.       Pour chemical in mop bucket
4.       Swish mop around the floor
5.       Tip toe back to the door so you don’t leave dirty foot prints in the wet floor
6.       Empty mop bucket water down the sink and be pleased with how dirty the water is
7.       Lock doors & repeat steps tomorrow
This all sounds fine (maybe even familiar), but imagine if you could do it more efficiently & most importantly more economically…
How many of the following do you do? Dust mop or vacuum the floor before mopping? Clean your mop bucket?  Use a twin bucket mop bucket? Launder your mops? Use hot water? Correctly dilute your chemical at the recommended dilution rate?
All are basic things individually but combined are imperative to gaining the results your clients deserves.The cleaner your equipment is before you start the better it will work (& last) for you. Remember that your mop is the contact point for your chemical hitting the floor, scrubbing it and extracting the dirt from the floor and back into your mop bucket, so the less dust and debris that is on the floor before you mop the better the result.

A traditional string mop, whilst effective in its own right, only has a small contact point with the floor and more often then not the middle part of the mop never touches the floor nor dries the surface.  A microfiber mop (click here) changes our thinking a little by having the whole mop (40cm long x 15cm wide) scrubbing the floor with 1000’s of microfiber particles working at the same time to ensure maximum coverage (reducing labor time/costs). Not only does the microfiber clean better it also dries the floor by absorbing up to 500mls of liquid and eliminating the possibility of dirt fibres being left on the surface. These mops & frames collapse to easily fit into mop buckets allowing for a quick wring and back to the floor. Even better is the fact that these mops can be laundered 500+ times ensuring your mop is clean every time you use it and not in need of replacement every month.

This brings me to the mop bucket, a disgusting invention when you think about it, you wouldn’t dunk your head in a bucket after shampooing your hair then dip it in the same bucket when you have conditioned it, would you? No… You would rinse it with clean fresh water before applying the conditioner & then rinse it again with water to get that clean look and feel your after. The system is the same with mopping your floor, how do you expect to clean a floor if you keep putting dirty water down from your mop bucket? The two bucket (click here) system eliminates cross contamination by never allowing your mop to come in contact with the dirty water already extracted from your floor, similar to a floor scrubber where there is a clean water compartment & a dirty water compartment. Your mop is simply dunked into the clean water bucket, wrung out with any excess water going into the dirty water side.
Where the two bucket system is not practical or budgeted for the cleaning chemical rotation policy becomes crucial, as mentioned above as soon as you put your mop back into your bucket you start putting dirty water back on the floor. I like to think of this like I am an Australian Cricket team selector by having a rotational policy.  Rotate clean water in & rotate dirty water out, whether you think it’s needed or not.  An average bucket full of water & Useall PH Neutral All Purpose Cleaner (click here) would cost between $0.15 & $0.30 so it’s not alot of money to ensure the results you are after.  Useall is safe on all surfaces and has a built in rinse aid giving you faster drying times and compliments the work that your microfiber mop has already done.  A big key to consistency is having the right dilution every time, this can be achieved by a chemical dilution system, a pelican pump on a 5ltr container or even a jug with measurements on the side.  Stronger chemical doesn’t always equate to better results it just costs you more money and takes longer to clean off.  Your staff can be costing you money with their “guesstamation”  of incorrect dilutions.
I hope you may be able to use a bit of the above information to help your business but remember before you next wash your car have a look at the sponge to see how clean it is, if its falling to bits and black because you cleaned your wheels last week do you think it will do a good job?

By Lynden Griffiths 

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