Janitorial Cleaning | Commercial Cleaning Detroit - PROImage Facility Services - Part 2

Category: Janitorial Cleaning

Turn up the Heat: Carpet Cleaning

Turn up the Heat: Carpet Cleaning

 Carpet cleaning is a science, and without proper training and education, one can easily make serious mistakes that can result in potentially irreparable damage to carpet. With so much at stake, it is important to understand the role of heat in the carpet cleaning process.

 Heat is one of the four fundamental components of cleaning along with agitation, time, and chemical action. Heat speeds up the molecular activity of chemicals so that they work harder to help remove soils. In fact, studies show that for every 18 degrees of temperature rise above 188°F, chemical action is increased by a factor of two.

Along with helping to break down and remove soils, heat has additional benefits:

    • Longer carpet life span. Embedded soils can eat away at carpet fibers along with the backing of the carpet, but more effective cleaning―the result of heat―can help remove these soils and enhance the life span of the carpet.

    • Easier grease and oil removal. Heated cleaning solution helps loosen and break down grease and oils so that they can be more easily removed from carpet fibers.

    • Improved appearance. Often the texture of the carpet is fluffed by the heated cleaning process, making the carpet look fuller and more luxurious.

    • Shorter drying times. Heat can speed up the drying process for carpets.

 Although heat can benefit the carpet cleaning process significantly, it can lose value at a certain point. Typically, heated solution of approximately 212°F at the wand tip is considered preferable. Too low a temperature can mean you are not maximizing the benefits of heat. Conversely, too high a temperature can result in vaporization, which can be detrimental to the cleaning process. The cleaning solution should always remain in a liquid form.

When Heat May Be a Detriment

While heat is an important player in effective cleaning, there are a few situations when heat should be avoided. Typically this depends on the type of fiber or fabric being cleaned or the type of soiling.

 For instance, if crayon or candle wax is in the carpet, high heat may cause the colors and dyes to run. Additionally, protein soiling, including soil from blood, eggs, and other foods, is typically best cleaned using cold water. With these soils, heated water can actually bake the proteins into the carpet, making them harder to remove. Such problems can be avoided by simply inspecting the carpet before cleaning.

 Fabrics such as wool and silk can present further complications. While rarely installed, especially in commercial facilities, wool carpet is usually best cleaned with warm―not hot―water. Many experts suggest 150°F is the maximum temperature to be safe, as excessive heat can damage the appearance of the wool. For its part, silk may shrink if it is cleaned with too high a temperature, and permanent texture damage also can result.

 Finally, certain dyes, no matter what the fiber or fabric, can lack colorfastness and may bleed if cleaned with high heat. If you are unsure as to whether the carpet to be cleaned is colorfast, test a small area before cleaning the entire carpet.

source: www.issa.com

Contact PROimage Facility Services at (313) 387-1977 today! Your Facility’s Professional Image Is Our Business.

A Word on Mats

A Word on Mats

To help keep floors cleaner for longer one of the first things that need to be checked are the mats to make sure they they are a help and not a hindrance.

Proper matting is one of the major things to keep floors cleaner for longer. Matting is key but throwing a three by five mat at an entrance way is not going to get enough dirt off people’s shoes. It is important to focus on both indoor and outdoor matting and ensure that they have the right type of mats, as well as the right size mats to effectively prevent soil from entering the building.

 It all begins at the entrance of the facility. With a vast majority of debris in a building coming in through the entrances, proper matting is the first line of defense to keeping much of the dirt from being tracked further into the building. Proper matting can eliminate up to 90% of dirt and debris from entering the building.

 Using effective bi-level scrapping mats in conjunction with wiper mats at minimum distances of 15 to 20 feet greatly reduces that dirt and debris, allowing for less wear and tear of the floor surface.

 Mats, like floors need to be maintained well. They need to be kept clean and vacuumed. A lot of times you’ll see mats that are worn out and or neglected. This will cause an increase in the dirt inside the building.

Source: Contracting Profits Magazine Apr 2013

Contact PROimage Facility Services at (313) 387-1977 today! Your Facility’s Professional Image Is Our Business.

Commercial Cleaning Services in Flint, MI

Health Care: Norovirus Is Leading Cause of Intestinal Disorders In American Kids

  The symptoms of gastroenteritis aren’t pretty, but at least doctors know what’s behind the wave of cases in recent years.

  According to a new study released by the Centers for Disease Control, norovirus sent nearly 1 million children under age five in the U.S. to the doctor or hospital  in 2009 and 2010. And treating those youngsters cost an estimated $273 million a year.

  Norovirus is often called the “stomach flu” or “food poisoning” since its symptoms include severe vomiting and diarrhea. According to the CDC, the virus, which inflames the lining of the stomach and intestines, causes 21 million cases of illness, 70,000 hospitalizations and 800 deaths in the U.S. annually. A little more than half of the cases are passed from person to person, and 20% are caused by contaminated food.

  Based on their latest findings, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, the researchers said an estimated 1 in 278 kids will be hospitalized for norovirus infection by the time they turn five, about 1 in 14 will visit an emergency room and 1 in 6 will receive out patient treatment.

  The estimates came from data involving more than 141,000 kids under age five who required medical attention for acute gastroenteritis between October 2008 and September 2010. Lab tests confirmed the presence of the norovirus. The virus was identified in 278 of the 1,295 cases of acute gastroenteritis and rotavirus, which is another cause of gastroenteritis, was identified in only 152. Infants infected with norovirus were more likely to be hospitalized and about 50% of the medical care visits from norovirus infections occurred in kids between six to 18 months.

  The surge in norovirus cases may be due in part to better control of rotavirus infection, for which children can be vaccinated. “Our study confirmed that medical visits for rotavirus illness have decreased,” said Dr. Daniel Payne, an epidemiologist in the Division of Viral Diseases at the Centers for Disease Controland Prevention in a statement. “Also, our study reinforces the success of the U.S. rotavirus vaccination program and also emphasizes the value of specific interventions to protect against norovirus illness.”

  There is no treatment for norovirus, other than bed rest and drinking plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration. Most people recover between 24 hours to 48 hours.

  Work on a vaccine to protect against the virus is underway, and in March, when a new strain of norovirus was identified in the U.S., TIME spoke to Dr. John Treanor, chief of the Infectious Diseases Division at the University of Rochester Medical Center who is testing a vaccine developed by LigoCyte Pharmaceuticals:

  The shot contains a part of the norovirus’ outer layer, which they hope will generate a strong immune response in those who get immunized.

A vaccine would be critical for preventing the disease from escalating in populations; because it spreads so quickly, norovirus infections are difficult to contain. “You really only have to be exposed to a couple of viral particles to get sick,” says Treanor. “This makes it very contagious because when you have norovirus, you are dispersing literally millions of particles. When it only takes one or two to make the next person sick, it translates into very high contagiousness.”

  If successful the vaccine could significantly reduce the number of illnesses associated with the virus, and same millions in health care costs to treat dehydrated children. Until then, the CDC recommends washing your hands regularly, cleaning any infected or contaminated surfaces and laundry and if you or anyone around you is sick, and to wait two to three days after you recover before preparing food for anyone.

source: http://healthland.time.com

Contact PROimage Facility Services at (313) 387-1977 today! Your Facility’s Professional Image Is Our Business.

Janitorial Services in Warren, MI

Cleaning for Health

Looking into the future, we can expect to see an increased interest in cleaning for health. This growing interest is partially due to the widespread acceptance of green cleaning. The adoption and use of green cleaning products and services has renewed the awareness and appreciation of the primary purpose of cleaning—i.e., to remove unwanted matter and pathogenic microorganisms from facilities to ensure they are in a state conducive to the occupants’ health and well being. The growing interest in cleaning for health is also borne out of greater awareness and an increase in the transmission and prevalence of infectious pathogens that threaten human health, such as MRSA and the norovirus. Cleaning, of course, plays a crucial role in breaking the “infection connection” and protecting human health.

Today, we have devices like Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) testers that can scientifically measure the effectiveness of a cleaning process. ATP testers are becoming more common in the marketplace because they are relatively inexpensive and provide almost instantaneous results. These devices play an important role in not only measuring effectiveness, but also in improving cleaning processes.

In fact, ISSA and the Cleaning Industry Research Institute are collaborating on a three year research project using ATP testers to establish a uniform, scientific measure of clean from a public health perspective so that when a facility is declared “clean” it means that it is healthy and sanitary for the occupants’ welfare. When completed, the findings will have the most relevance in a K-12 educational setting, but it is expected that the results will be readily transferable to most institutional settings. The research is also expected to prove the positive connection between a clean and healthy school building and student performance.

source: www.issa.com

Contact PROimage Facility Services at (313) 387-1977 today! Your Facility’s Professional Image Is Our Business.

Janitorial Services in Commerce, MI

Carpets, Health, and Air Quality

There have been a number of surprising studies throughout the years regarding the amount of germs and bacteria that can be found on office desks, cell phones, and the sponges we use to wipe down counters and wash dishes. However, one study that has gotten relatively little notice relates to carpets and concerns about indoor air quality (IAQ).

  In that study, which was conducted by the University of Arizona several years ago, researchers asked a group of people to wear brand-new shoes for two weeks. They were to wear the shoes everywhere—to school, to work, shopping, etc. After two weeks, the shoes were returned to be tested for contaminants that might have collected on the shoe bottoms. What researchers discovered surpassed their expectations:

  • The shoes collected more than 420,000 units of bacteria, and all the shoes had varying amounts of bacteria on them.

  • Potentially hazardous levels of E. coli were present on about one-third of the shoes.

  • Greywater, food, drinks, grease, tar, and dust were found on all of the shoes to varying degrees.


  These kinds of contaminants and bacteria all have the potential to negatively impact indoor air quality when they are walked into a facility on users’ shoes. However, in most cases, carpets act as an environmental filter, trapping soils, bacteria, and contaminants and stopping them from becoming airborne, which means healthier IAQ for everyone.

  But the effectiveness of carpeting as an environmental filter is dependent on maintenance. Carpets must be properly cleaned and maintained at regular intervals in order to protect IAQ. And this typically begins with the creation of an effective and sustainable carpet maintenance program.

Carpet Maintenance Program

  One of the first steps that must be taken before creating an effective carpet maintenance program is to study the amount of foot traffic and the number of people who generally use each carpeted area. This information will help determine the “soil rating” of the facility, which is the measure of the intensity of the soil load that can accumulate in the carpets. These ratings are designated as light, normal, moderate, heavy, or extreme. Soil ratings help determine the frequency of tasks such as vacuuming, interim carpet cleaning, and hot-water carpet extraction.

  For instance, a facility with a moderate soil rating should be vacuumed two to four times per week to remove dust, contaminants, and particulates from carpets. Additionally:

    • Spotting should be performed daily or as soon as spots are noticed.

    • Heavy traffic areas should be cleaned using either interim or restorative carpet cleaning methods every six months.

    • All carpets should be cleaned using hot-water carpet extraction at least once per year.


  Unfortunately, determining the soil rating of a facility and how frequently carpet cleaning tasks should be performed to help protect IAQ can be determined only on a case-by-case basis. “Facilities vary in traffic, soiling rates, and usage,” explains Heiferman. “Additionally, climate and the desired appearance level of the carpet are considerations that must be evaluated in order to build an effective maintenance program.”

The Importance of Carpet Extraction in Protecting Indoor Air Quality (IAQ)

 Earlier we referenced the role of “interim” cleaning methods as part of an overall carpet maintenance program. Typically this refers to carpet cleaning methods that remove soils found on the top surfaces of the carpet. These include vacuuming as well as shampooing and bonnet cleaning methods. According to Mark Baxter, an engineer with U.S. Products, while these methods can be effective, the key thing to remember is that they are, as the name implies, only interim or short-term measures.

 “Interim methods can only do so much. In order for carpets to serve as a filter and protect IAQ, they must be thoroughly cleaned using restorative methods.”

 Baxter takes this a step further, advising that carpets should be cleaned using hot-water carpet extractors that heat the water or cleaning solution to more than 200°F. “[Heat] improves the effectiveness of cleaning chemicals so that less chemical may be necessary. This makes the entire carpet cleaning [process] greener and more sustainable and helps protect IAQ,” says Baxter.


Complete Carpet maintenance

  “A [successful] program [will be one] that addresses all of these cleaning and maintenance issues, beginning with the proper training of cleaning technicians, promotes sustainability and protects IAQ and the health of all building users,” says Baxter. “It also ensures that soils and contaminants are removed from carpets, which not only enhances their appearance but increases their longevity as well.”

Source: http://www.issa.com


Contact PROimage Facility Services at (313) 387-1977 today! Your Facility’s Professional Image Is Our Business.

Janitorial Services in Detroit, MI

Linoleum Floor Care Tips

Cleaning professionals may be a bit surprised to hear that linoleum floors—first introduced more than 120 years ago—are making a comeback. But while this flooring material used to be found mainly in homes and residential facilities, it is now becoming popular in commercial locations. The key reason for this trend is that many types of linoleum floors are considered a green or more sustainable floor covering option, especially when compared to the more traditional and very popular vinyl composite tile (VCT).

Vinyl is a synthetic product made of petrochemicals and other components, most of which are not sustainable. Linoleum, on the other hand, is typically made of a variety of ingredients including linseed oil, cork dust, tree resins, and wood flour (finely pulverized wood that is finer than sawdust), all of which are renewable resources. Linoleum has two other features that commercial property developers and owners appreciate: it is fire retardant and water resistant.*

Chemical Issues

Linoleum floors can be very sensitive to chemicals, especially the kinds of traditional cleaning chemicals used on VCT floors. In general, it’s best to use pH-neutral cleaning solutions following manufacturers’ recommended dilution ratios.

High-pH or high-alkalinity  cleaners can damage linoleum floors. In fact, frequent use can not only impact the look of the floor, but can also cause cracking, shrinking, and even discoloration. Additionally, using too much water to clean these floors can cause problems. Linoleum is installed in sheets, and there may be small openings between each sheet. Water can seep into and under these openings, which can result in mold and mildew and even cause the floor to rot.

source: www.issa.com

Contact PROimage Facility Services at (313) 387-1977 today! Your Facility’s Professional Image Is Our Business.