By Jim Flieler, VP of Sales
Facilities often go through a list of processes and procedures that become so ingrained in the way things are done that the people doing them will lose sight of why they are actually performing these tasks. One area where this is especially true is in floor care. There are many repeated tasks involved in a comprehensive floor care program, from preventive measures, to daily tasks, to restorative to more in-depth floor care procedures, all of which often have specific processes and are followed at regular intervals.
We have written extensively about the best methods for a comprehensive floor care program, if you’d like to refresh your own program. However, it is equally as important to know why you are following these steps, and to train your staff about the reasons for their work. When you and your team understand the importance of your procedures, you are more likely to be invested in the work and to do it the right way. Let’s review the importance of regular floor maintenance together. These three key reasons for floor maintenance should be incorporated into all of your facility training throughout the year, from onboarding, to staff check-ins, to annual retraining.
Regular Floor Maintenance Extends Floor Life
Your facility’s floors are an expensive investment. Flooring costs a lot to install and is highly disruptive and cost prohibitive to replace, especially in large facilities with high foot traffic, such as airports, hospitals, schools and convention centres. One of the most overlooked benefits of regular floor maintenance is the durability and longevity of floors. Simply put: The better you care for your floors now, the longer they will last.
When you follow a regular floor care routine, you are expanding the lifespan of your floor. Dirt, rocks, grit and small objects will scratch your floors, increasing the need for expensive and disruptive restorative floor care, scratching your sealant while also making it necessary to replace your flooring sooner.
Preventive measures will be your first line of defence in prolonging the life of your flooring. This includes a robust matting system to keep dirt and debris out of your facilities. Next you will want to use common maintenance methods that keep your floor clean and free from first to maximize your floor’s lifespan. Some floor care tips that will increase the lifespan of your floors include:
- Matting inside and outside of every entrance or exit in your building.
- Daily sweeping and vacuuming to remove all dust and debris.
- Daily mopping and cleaning
- Regular deep cleaning and restoration processes
- Using the right products that are not too harsh
- Diluting your cleaning products correctly
- Follow the Five Critical Security Elements of Disinfecting to protect your floor surfaces.
Regular Floor Care Maintains Appearance
There is no doubt that people prefer clean buildings! Your flooring is one of the first things any person will see when they enter your facility, and it covers the largest amount of square footage, too. Any business will be wise to make sure floors look their best at all times to keep customers satisfied. As a facility manager, that means keeping building occupants satisfied by making sure your floors have a clean appearance.
To maintain the appearance of your floors, you will need to clean them daily, whether that includes sweeping, vacuuming or mopping—or any combination of the three. Spot cleaning should also be a daily procedure to target pesky stains on carpeting or floors before they become permanent fixtures.
A floor care program that emphasizes appearance should include:
- Vacuuming high traffic areas daily
- Spot treating stains and spills daily
- Full vacuum twice per week
- Regular vacuum shampooing
- Hard surface floors swept and mopped daily
- Weekly scrubbing of hard surface floors
- Regular burnishing of hard waxed floors to maximize shine
A clean, shiny floor will go a long way toward bringing your facility and business value. This may even be more valuable than the benefit of extending floor lifespan. Make sure your team is aware that daily tasks may seem repetitive or unnecessary at the moment but the repetition of daily tasks such as vacuuming and mopping adds up to a clean look that can’t be beat!
Regular Floor Care Minimizes Labor Costs
Floor care budgets make up an average of 67 percent of your entire custodial budget. We know that 90% of that is labour, which means you can save a whole lot of money by avoiding the labour-intensive floor care processes like stripping and resealing your floors. The good news is that regular floor maintenance tasks like daily cleaning and weekly scrubbing will delay the need for more labour-intensive, restorative floor care procedures. Here are some tips to incorporate into your floor care routine to help save labour costs:
- Consider the list of steps for a process like deep stripping, amount of workers needed for the job and the time required to properly complete a task.
- When choosing a floor stripping product, look for a higher concentrated stripping product instead of a traditional 1-1, 1-2, 1-4 dilution product to gain substantial RTU cost savings.
- Choose floor care products with shorter dwell times. When you account for the number of custodians needed to deep strip a floor, it may make a significant impact if you can find a stripping product that has a shorter dwell time.
- And an RTU number, which indicates the dilution rate, could mean that even though a product is more expensive, you will get more work out of it.
Learn more about floor care routines that can achieve any of these important benefits in our extensive library of videos, webinars and blogs on the topic of floor care. Or, contact an expert at Charlotte to talk specifically about how our products and training material can help you and your facility ensure your floor care program is top notch.