Chicopee - Cleaning and maintenance

A SPOTLESS floor makes an excellent first impression; a dirty floor, however, has the opposite effect and no matter how good the customer service or products on sale, that vital first impression will be of a slapdash and unprofessional environment, says Chicopee.

Whether it’s a multi-national company or a small business, poor floor cleanliness will give a bad first impact that can be difficult to overcome.

For establishments such as schools, hospitals and restaurants, hygiene is of paramount importance and all surfaces should be cleaned regularly in order to keep dirt and bacteria at bay.

The question is, what is the best method of cleaning? While it is effective, floor cleaning machinery is often unsuitable for use during the day, when public areas experience a heavy footfall. In addition, it may be incompatible with more delicate surfaces such as hardwood which are easily scratched or warped.

The fact that floors can be made from a wide variety of materials makes selecting the right cleaning method even more pertinent. What works on vinyl may not be suitable for concrete, while lino and marble are vastly different – yet all may be subject to a heavy footfall.

The level of traffic and the size or shape of the floor in question should also be taken into consideration. Some surfaces, such as those in airports or hospitals, may be unsuitable for larger items of machinery because they are in use 24/7.

Location also has a role to play, as areas close to outside doors will inevitably incur a high degree of contamination. Equally, the type of facility will play a part. Bacteria removal is a major concern for healthcare facilities, while kitchen floors are likely to experience more spills of greasy substances.
A variety of floor-cleaning solutions exist, from traditional string mops to sophisticated electrical machinery. However, they may not all be suitable for every application.

String mops, for instance, use more water and chemicals at the beginning of the task than towards the end, which has the effect of delivering an inconstant clean. The fact that a wet-mopped floor can take up to 10 minutes to fully dry also increases the possibility of accidental slips and falls.
Added to this is the fact that some surfaces are unsuitable for water-based cleaning, such as hardwood which can be prone to warping when wet. High moisture content in the air can lead to buckling, therefore wet mopping a laminate floor is never a good idea.

Even after washing, string mops may still contain germs and bacteria, which can be spread on to the next area to be cleaned – studies have shown that 93% of laundered mops still contained potentially dangerous microbes – while the high cost of external laundry makes this an unappealing option for some.

Whatever the facility, when the highest standards of hygiene are required, a great deal of time and energy is put into cleaning high-touch areas such as tables, sinks and food preparation surfaces.

Understandably, strict cleaning regimes are in place in healthcare facilities, hotels and restaurant kitchens in order to halt the spread of germs from one surface to another.

Limited attention may be paid to floors as, while they may be heavily contaminated, they are not frequently touched by hand.

However, studies have shown that bacteria on the floor can be easily transferred when other objects come into contact with it, such as bed linen or cutlery that has been accidentally dropped.

Fortunately, high-quality microfibre mops are now widely available that are suitable for use on every surface, however delicate. The Microfibre floor mop range from Chicopee, a brand of Berry, enables cleaning professionals to achieve higher standards of hygiene without the need for time-consuming laundry or leaving floors wet for any length of time.

Reportedly made from 100% high quality microfibre, the mops are said to pick up then trap dirt and bacteria within their fibres, removing germs before they can contaminate objects that may fall onto the floor.

Chicopee says its disposable microfibre mops can increase effectiveness, lower chemical consumption and remove the need for floors to be saturated with water. This has the added benefit of a reduced environmental impact.

Traditional string mops can require a large amount of water both during the cleaning process and during laundering. Switching to a disposable system removes the need for laundry, reportedly reducing overall costs. The disposable mops are attached to the Chicopee fluid mopping tool, then are simply discarded after use, eradicating the danger of contaminating the next surface to be cleaned, the company says.

The mopping tool has reportedly been ergonomically designed to make the task of mopping easier for employees. ‘Light, durable and easy to use’, says Chicopee, the tool has a trigger to release cleaning fluid from the built-in reservoir, offering the added benefit of reducing water and chemical consumption.

The Microfibre Floor Mop range is available in economy, light and super versions, reportedly making it suitable for even the most heavy-duty tasks but also for more delicate floor surfaces. The economy and light are said to be able to clean up to 1,770sq ft before the reservoir needs to be refilled.

The mops are just one of a number of environmentally friendly products available from Chicopee. These include the J-Cloth plus biodegradable, which as the name suggests is fully biodegradable and compostable.