Indoor Air Pollutants effecting health of working people.

Indoor Air Pollutants effecting health of working people.

When you think of pollution, tailpipes and smokestacks are probably what come to mind — not your office. But our offices are filled with noxious substances that can be harmful to your health.

Given the fact that we spend from 65 to 90 percent of our time inside, according to the Washington Department of Health, it’s important to keep indoor air clean.

“Most of the things that cause problems are odorless.” Dr. Nicholas Busba. “So, in many cases there’s nothing to alert you to the problem.” That is theres nothing other than the symptoms thease allergens can trigger. Such as respritory problems (including asthma flare ups) and fatigue.

Here are some tips to keep you office air fresh and healthy.

  1. Keep it clean- Good indoor hygine can greatly cut down on dust mites, germs and mold.
  2. Dust surfaces regularly.
  3. Change your filters regularly.
  4. Vacuum all floors daily wth hepa filter vacuums.
  5. Invest in a good floor matting system. This traps dirt in the mat instead of making it airbourne.
  6. Have a good carpet cleaning routine in place.
  7. Mop hard floors daily.
  8. Use eco-friendly cleaning products whenever possible.
  9. Let fresh air in.
  10. Invest in an air purifier.
  11. Cutting out smoking – over 4000 chemicals are in cigarette smoke.
  12. Monitor humidity – it should be between 30-50%.
  13. Monitor ventilation.
  14. Keep some greenery indoors. Many plants scrub you air.
  15. Keep air ducts free from dust and dirt.

New Battery Backpack Vacuum – Saving you Time & Money

Hi everyone,   Hope you are all having great day.  I am pleased to announce Carter Cleaning Company got our first battery backpack vacuum.  Yay!  We have been wanting to get one for years and finally it has arrived.  The benefits to our clients and employees are vast.   Here is an article I found that highlights some of the benefits.  Thank you for all your support clients, employees, friends and family.   We are looking forward to continuing to serve you. Backpack Vacuum Rogers MN

Cutting The Cord

Everything is cordless today. From phones to computers, it’s convenient to be untethered.

The same is true when vacuuming. Battery-powered backpack models eliminate wasted time searching for outlets, create a safer environment without cords to trip over and easily clean hard-to-reach places, such as elevators and stairwells.

For years vacuum manufacturers hesitated to bring battery-powered backpacks to the market, waiting instead for batteries to become lighter and have longer run times. Now, technology has caught up to demand and building service contractors and in-house custodial departments are discovering the advantages of this equipment firsthand.

Here, three end users explain what factors are driving them to buy battery-powered backpack vacuums. Jan/san distributors can use these case studies to help educate their customers on the benefits of battery backpack equipment.

Rechargeable Vacuum Leads To Company Growth

When two young men founded Southeastern Janitorial, a BSC in Charleston, South Carolina, less than three years ago, they knew emerging technology was key to their success. From their active social media presence, to streamlining online work order systems and cordless vacuums, they embrace technology and the benefits it brings both to their clients and to their business.

“There’s a lot of competition out there and anything that makes us look better than the next is something we want to do,” says Brandon Schneider, who along with Chris Abel co-founded the company.

Schneider says some janitorial companies hesitate to invest in equipment, but Southeastern tries to put the best tools in its employees’ hands.

“Backpack vacuums are one of the major ways that we are differentiating ourselves,” says Schneider. “You see some crews walk in with upright models and it looks like they’re back in the 1960s.”

A couple of years ago, Schneider says backpacks were a “wow factor,” but recently many cleaning companies, especially larger ones, have switched to the machines. Southeastern finds the backpacks are more efficient than uprights because they’re easier to handle in tight areas such as under desks, around chair legs and in stairwells. Now, the leading technology is battery backpacks.

Schneider says rechargeable vacuums save time and, therefore, money.

“It saves us about 45 minutes to an hour of vacuuming time per 100,000 square feet,” says Schneider.

While more expensive than traditional backpack vacuums, battery models can pay for themselves in seven to eight months because of the significant labor savings, says Schneider.

In a few short years, Southeastern has grown into four states — South Carolina, North Carolina, Mississippi, and Louisiana — and now cleans approximately 7 million square feet on a nightly basis. The majority of their business is in commercial and medical office buildings, as well as arenas and industrial spaces.

“We have structured the company for growth and are really starting to concentrate on expanding our markets this year,” says Schneider, who adds one ingredient to that growth is using backpack vacuums.

In the future, Schneider believes backpack vacuums will weigh less and carry extended battery-life, further enhancing the company’s productivity.
“The technology’s there and it’s much better than it was a year ago,” says Schneider. “So I see in the next couple years us buying much more of those than we do already.”

 

The Value of Clean – Excellent graphic for building owners and mangers :)

This is currently my favorite graphic.   Interesting about how cleanliness is the most important factor to customers.  This also seems to highlight the cleaner the building the happier and healthier people are inside of it 🙂

Value of Clean

Microfiber Cloths Excel Over Cotton

With 80 percent of infections being transmitted through direct contact, it’s no wonder that proper cleaning is as vital as good personal hygiene. In addition to identifying key areas that harbor infectious bacteria, custodial managers are charged with implementing best practices for the removal of these microorganisms. This includes providing custodians with appropriate cleaning tools to mitigate the spread of germs.

Cleaning cloths are an important component of any custodial program, but often facilities settle for cheap rags in place of quality products that facilitate cleaning and disinfection.

“We’ll spend $150,000 on a UV robot housekeeper, but we’ll nickel and dime the cleaning cloths,” says Mark Heller, president of Hygiene Performance Solutions in Toronto. “So we might use a torn-up, discarded towel rather than a finished, engineered product.”

Yet, given the right tools, Heller believes custodians aspire to meet the standards set forth by housekeeping to achieve and maintain a clean, healthy environment.

Increase Your Fiber

When choosing an appropriate cloth engineered to remove soil and bacteria, there’s no substitute for microfiber, say consultants.

“Microfiber cloths are synthetic and have grooves built into the fibers themselves, so they’re very absorbent and trap soils,” explains Steve Tinker, chemist and past president of the American Reusable Textile Association (ARTA), Shawnee Mission, Kansas. “As a result, soils can be picked up very quickly and held in the fibers very efficiently.”

Although cotton is also highly absorbent, it is not as effective as microfiber at grabbing and holding onto soil.

“The pros of cotton are that it’s readily available and fairly cheap, but it doesn’t do a very good job of soil collection,” says Darrel Hicks, author of Infection Prevention for Dummies. “When it comes to infection prevention, our number-one job is to remove the soil from the surface so that the disinfectant has a better chance to work.”

Another disadvantage of cotton cloths is the problem of quat binding, which occurs when fabrics have a strong attraction for the active ingredients in quat-based disinfectants, thereby reducing their efficacy. For this reason, Hicks is seeing an increasing number of facilities switching from cotton to microfiber cloths.

University of Minnesota Medical Center — Fairview in Minneapolis, switched from cotton to microfiber cloths several years ago after testing the efficacy of both materials.

“We found microfiber will pick up the spores and microorganisms, even without the use of disinfectant, whereas cotton will just wipe them around,” says Amanda Guspiel, environmental infection preventionist. “We use quat-based disinfectants with the microfiber, and we haven’t had any issues with the quat binding that occurs with cotton.”

Guspiel has seen a reduction in the number of hospital acquired infections since switching to microfiber cloths.

Clearing up Floor Care Myths

Our industry has its share of myths. Myths can confuse, frustrate or cause extra work. Let’s clean-up a few floor care ones.
applying floor finish Big Lake MN
Myth: Additional coats of floor finish make a floor more slippery with each coat applied. False. Floor finish manufacturers go to great, if not extreme, lengths to make certain their floor care products meet or exceed industry slip/fall standards. In fact, should a floor coated with any quality finish become “fast” or slippery, the best fix is to top scrub and apply a fresh coat of the same finish.

Myth: Top scrubbing with a weak solution of stripper is a good procedure to deep clean a floor prior to recoating. False. The chemicals formulated into strippers are designed to reverse the process that occurs when floor finish is initially applied, allowed to dry and cure. The stripping process is a chemical process and even a weak solution attacks the chemical makeup of the floor finish coating left behind. Consequently, after scrubbing and removing the dirty solution, damage has been done to the healthy floor coating.

Myth: A 25 percent nonvolatile solids content floor finish is harder or more durable than an 18 percent nonvolatile solids content floor finish. False. Higher percentages of nonvolatile solids are just that — higher percentages of nonvolatile solids. Durability or hardness is determined by the type of solids, not the percentage.

For example, finishes that are formulated for daily burnishing will be “softer” than finishes formulated for less frequent or no burnishing (easily buffable, easily scuffable). A high solids finish may be formulated to meet bid specifications calling for high solids but the type of solids can have a higher percentage of lesser quality ingredients to help lower costs. These formulations may not be durable and may be receptive to impacted soil, which leads to oxidation and discoloration and other problems.

Myth: Only some finishes are susceptible to furniture sticking to a freshly finished floor. False. This problem can happen with any finish at any time, but usually occurs in the summer months when humidity is highest.

The problem is related to relative humidity and drying/curing time. One common example occurs frequently in schools. When a classroom is coated with finish, there is no way to determine the relative humidity in that room. The only way to prevent the desks from sticking is to leave the desks in the hallway until the new finish is completely cured. But how do we know when it is cured? We don’t.

To minimize the problem, apply thin coats, keep the application to 100 percent solids or less in any 24-hour period (four coats of 25 percent nonvolatile solids finish), leave the air handler on, leave the door(s) open, and when the desks are returned to the room, lay them on their sides, if possible. Should you encounter desks sticking, do not attempt to pull them up as you risk pulling up parts of tile. Instead, gently tap the legs of the desks down low near the floor until the desks separate from the finish.

These are a just a few of the myths we sometimes encounter as we clean and care for buildings.

By  Skip Seal

How to Properly Maintain your Backpack Vacuums

In spite of all the advances being made in the category, there’s still independent testing and the human factor to consider. According to Rathey, managers in the market for a new backpack vacuum should consider one that is approved by the Carpet and Rug Institute. From there, the machine is only as good as the human factor it takes to maintain and operate.

“When you add the human factor as part of the machine, procedures need to center around maintenance and training,” says Rathey. “While current models are more ergonomic, employee training is the basis for the best results to help prevent injuries.”

When putting together a maintenance plan for backpack vacuums, first check with the equipment manufacturer. In addition to what’s outlined by manufacturers, staff should be checking filters and cords on a regular basis.

“Filters should be emptied after every two hours of usage and micro filters should be discarded every week and replaced with new ones,” says Walker. “Cloth and exhaust filters should be rinsed out on a weekly basis and replaced when they’re worn. This helps prolong the life of the vacuum.”

It is also important for staff to wind cords properly as they move through the building.

“If this doesn’t happen, in a very short period of time, the cords will end up looking like a 50-foot long ramen noodle,” adds Walker. “Once this happens, cord breakage and torn sheathing is next.”

When checking the cords, train staff to also examine the power plug prongs.

“I see broken prongs in almost every cleaning operation I visit,” says Walker. “Cleaning workers must know that broken prongs need to be reported and extension cords need to be replaced.”

With proper care, this equipment can remain a long-lasting staple for custodial departments. Managers looking to increase cleaning efficiency and productivity of their staff should add ongoing training and maintenance procedures as equipment is introduced. They should also keep on top of equipment advancements that can streamline existing carpet care programs.

Backpack Vacuum Rogers MN

By Angela Watkins

*New Contact Information* Plus * New Value Added Benefit to Clients*

*New Contact Information* Plus * New Value Added Benefit to Clients*

We are so excited to give you our new contact information.  sarah@cartercleaning.net and nick@cartercleaning.net .   Also if we have missed any emails, we are very sorry.  Please resend them to us, call us or fax us and we will take care of it right away.  Thank you so much.   If you are a email contact we will also send you a personal message with the new information soon.  Please check out the new website too. Clients, you can log in to your cleantelligent account through the link.  Also we have a new portal for you to log in and see your payments, invoices, account balances, plus much more.  If you would like your portal to get activated just send one of us a quick email or fill out this form and we’ll get you set up. 🙂   http://www.cartercleaning.net

Thank you for all your support.  We really appreciate it.