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Evaluating Practices & Maintaining High Cleaning Standards

cleaning-bidBidding on cleaning contracts takes a thorough understanding of the industry, some experience, and a bit of savvy. There will always be the low-ballers who promise to do more for less just to get the job. Not only can that kind of behavior lead to disagreements between a client and a cleaning provider, it can tarnish the reputation of the commercial cleaning industry as a whole.

It is important for commercial cleaners to regularly evaluate their services and review their standards. Ask yourself some important questions about how you do business and what kinds of commercial cleaning you are equipped to handle:

Cleaning Practices

  • What is your cleaning company good at doing? It is tempting to bid on an attractive job. A well-paying contract is enticing, but make sure you have the staff, the training and the equipment to adequately perform the job before bidding on it.
  • What is your company not as good at? Many cleaning companies have expertise with a set of tasks, such as hard floor care, window washing, and medical facility cleaning. Not every cleaning company can do everything perfectly. Know your limitations and strengthen your strengths.
  • Are you working to improve your weakenesses? There is always room for improvement in the cleaning industry. Better commercial cleaning products and practices help you do jobs better and improve the cleaning industry at large.

Business Practices

  • Are you maintaining profitable accounts? Contracts should be re-evaluated on a regular basis to determine their profitability. Over time, jobs may need to be renegotiated or terminated in order to make room for more profitable opportunities. Determine whether your high maintenance accounts are worth the extra time and effort, as well.
  • Measure your productivity. Compare clients and jobs that are similar to get an idea of what a good productivity rate is for that type of client. Every job will be different, but having a ballpark standard of how productive your staff should be will help you maintain a high standard for each job. You can get a rough idea of your productivity for each cleaning job by dividing the square footage being cleaned by the direct labor hours.
  • How are you measuring your standards? Based on your contract for a cleaning job, are you giving the customer what they are paying for and performing the best work  you can? Are you using the best cleaning products and equipment available to you? Is your staff properly and regularly trained so they can clean to the highest of industry standards?

National Purity develops and supplies cleaning products that meet the highest standards of the cleaning industry. Contact us to order and learn more about our all purpose cleaners, degreasers and hand soaps.

“Image Credit: flickr.com

Reduce Cleaning Mistakes With Adequate Training

cleaning-staffIt’s important to equip your cleaning staff with safe and effective cleaning equipment and cleaning products. It is equally important to equip them with adequate and useful training. The efficiency and safety of your cleaning team could rely on a thorough and thoughtful training program.

You can help improve your cleaning department and avoid money-losing mistakes with these suggestions:

  • Create a standardized cleaning procedure for each cleaning task. Equipment, supplies and tools should be used in the same manner by all members of your staff. This will streamline the cleaning process and will create less opportunity for mistakes. It will also allow your cleaning staff to naturally hold each other to the same standard.
  • Communicate with the vendors of the cleaning products and equipment you use to find out the most effective and safest way to use their products. This is especially relevant for specialty cleaning tasks, like carpet cleaning, foodservice floor degreasing, etc.
  • Many unsafe practices are developed as a result of insufficient training. Remember that a little bit of ignorance can go a long way.
  • Consider training an ongoing process. Take opportunities to train and retrain your staff as safety and best practices are updated, when you add new members to your staff, after an accident occurs or when new equipment or products are introduced into your department. Training goes beyond a conference room or mandatory meeting. Take it into the field by observing your staff, finding teachable moments and giving positive reinforcement.
  • In addition to enough training, make sure to give the right type of training to your cleaning staff. Many cleaning applications involve chemicals and sophisticated equipment. Staff members should be trained to the level of certification so there is no doubt that they are qualified to perform a task or operate a certain pice of equipment.
  • Create a set of safety information, including accessible and easy-to-read posters and lists. Include educational materials about the chemicals, labels, safety procedures and equipment that your staff interacts with.

Cleaning mistakes can compromise the health and safety of your staff, and can also be costly. Taking the time to thoroughly train your staff on an ongoing basis will reduce the incidence of of mistakes. The bid you put in on a job, or the budget your department receives often doesn’t take costly accidents and mistakes into account. To be an efficient, safe and profitable organization, your cleaning staff needs to operate at high efficiency.

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Foaming Handsoap Saves Time and Money

 foaming-soapFoaming handsoap is rising in popularity, and it’s no mystery why. The convenient and effective soap is easy to use, attractive to end-users and can save facilities significant time and money.

One of foaming handsoap’s most attractive qualities is its cleanliness. Public restrooms that use foaming soap have less floor clean-up and less soap residue mess from dripping liquid soap. Less soap on the ground means more soap in the hand, making clean-up faster and easier. It also saves money by wasting less soap.

Foaming soap is applied to hands directly in a lathered state. Consumers massage and rub it into their hands, adding water if required, to maintain a good lather. A quick and simple rinse of the hands carries away dirt, grime and germs.

Benefits of foaming handsoap

  • Hand washing facilities routinely find that they save money by going through less foaming handsoap than liquid handsoap. Part of the reason may be because users are immediately given a handful of lathered soap. Instead of pumping a dispenser for more liquid soap, foaming handsoap delivers a fully lathered soap right into a user’s hand. Foaming soap is also considered to be more effective, allowing consumers to use less of it per hand washing than many liquid soaps.
  • Foaming handsoap drips less than liquid soap. A soap that drips less creates less of a mess on the floor. Liquid handsoap is prone to dripping, and is also more difficult to clean off of floors. Foaming handsoap is easier to clean up and drips less. Less time spent cleaning soap off of the floor means more time spent on more worthy pursuits.
  • Foam handsoap is perfect for high traffic restrooms in medical facilities and commercial spaces. Automatic soap dispensers efficiently release a measured amount of foaming soap right into a user’s hands. This saves on wasted soap, clean-up efforts and janitorial time needed to maintain and clean manual and liquid soap dispensers. Foam handsoap dispensed automatically also reduces instances of cross-contamination, keeping hospitals, clinics and workspaces cleaner and safer.

National Purity’s mild liquid foaming hand soap is made from the finest ingredients available. It moisturizes as it clean, leaving your hands soft, smooth and extremely clean. Bulk foaming hand soap provides emollients, moisturizers and skin protectants.

Foaming hand soap is recommended for use in the following facilities: Restrooms, Offices, Clubs, Institutions, Hotels, Spas, Factories, Hospitals, Restaurants, Nursing Homes, Locker Rooms, Doctor Offices, Veterinary Clinics.

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Use Automatic Soap Dispensers to Promote Health

We all know that hand washing is a key component to public and personal health. Hospitals, clinics and other medical facilities benefit from patients, staff and visitors reducing the amount of germs and contaminants on their hands. Offices, administrative buildings, foodservice spaces and other workplaces benefit from customers and employees with clean hands. Regular hand washing helps fight the spread of viruses and bacteria that can cause illness, reduce workplace productivity and affect morale.

Upgrading to automatic soap dispensers

Regular hand washing has been proven to be effective in reducing the spread of germs. Your medical facility or workplace can take it a step further by upgrading to automatic soap dispensers. Manual soap dispensers and bar soaps can work against workplace hygiene by becoming collecting places for bacteria, viruses and other germs.

Automatic soap dispensers do not come into contact with dirt and germs that people carry on their hands, helping to stop the spread of contaminants in work environments. They are activated when someone places their hands in front of the sensor. A measured amount of soap is then automatically released into the user’s hand.

  • Automatic soap dispensers do not have to be touched in order to be activated. This touchless technology reduces that amount of germs, bacteria and viruses people come into contact with.
  • Manual soap dispensers and bars of soap can harbor the dirt and germs of the last person to use them, spreading them to the next user.
  • Automatic soap dispensers are operated by sensors that detect the presence of a user. There are no opportunities for germs to be passed between people.
  • Complement you automatic soap dispenser with an automatic towel dispenser. The entirely touchless system will keep the people in your workplace safe and healthy.
  • Control the amount of soap you use with an automatic soap dispenser. Manual soap dispensers can get overused when people pump them or press their buttons multiple times to dispense more soap. An automatic soap dispenser releases a measured amount into the hand of a user. This keeps a cleaner environment by reducing spilling, and saves soap.

National Purity handsoaps 

National Purity handsoaps are formulated for mild, effective skin and hand cleaning. We offer liquid moisturizing, and foaming handsoap options. We have created soap products that keep hands clean and workplaces healthy. Our fresh-smelling handsoaps are perfect for restrooms in medical facilities, offices, foodservice spaces, cafeterias, school campuses and sports facilities.

“Image Credit: flickr.com

Keeping Your Campus Clean

School buildings and campus facilities are subject to daily wear and tear.  Cafeterias, restrooms, dormitories, classrooms, administrative buildings—the list of areas that needs to be cleaned on campus is long. No stone can be left unturned when it comes to creating a safe and healthy learning environment.

Hundreds, sometimes thousands of students, faculty and visitors pour through college and university campuses every day. Keeping school buildings, floors and facilities clean is essential for health and the positive image of your institution.

Schools are designed for teaching and learning. Clean, nice-looking facilities are a key component to a learning environment. Campus cleanliness is so important that schools across the country maintain in-house cleaning staff or contract cleaning to larger janitorial companies.

Whether your campus is maintained by a janitorial department or a contracted company, the cleaning products and methods they use are important to keep your campus running smoothly. National Purity can provide the appropriate products for your school environment. From handsoap to all purpose cleaners, our products keep campuses clean and safe. We also offer a line of green cleaning products that can help your school lessen its environmental impact.

Essential daily and/or weekly campus cleaning includes:

  • Sweeping and mopping all hard surface flooring.
  • Vacuuming floors and carpets in administrative, classroom and dormitory buildings.
  • Cleaning the walls, windows and other surfaces of rooms and buildings throughout campus.
  • Maintaining handsoaps and toiletries in public and dormitory restrooms.
  • Maintenance of floor drains to assure that floors drain and dry properly after cleaning.
  • Proper storage of cleaning equipment and supplies to prevent rodents and pests.
  • Use of effective and safe cleaning products in restrooms, cafeterias and food preparation spaces.
  • Creation of cleaning schedules that are checked and maintained by cleaning staff to assure that every building and room is attended to on a regular basis.

National Purity gives campuses the opportunity to reduce waste, protect the health of students and staff, and lower greenhouse gas emissions by offering green and environmentally friendly cleaning products. Our line of green cleaning products and supplies includes all purpose cleaners for , handsoaps for restrooms and degreasers for kitchen and cafeteria floors.

Contact us to talk with a member of our staff to determine the cleaning products that will be most effective for your campus. We have been specializing in cleaning products since 1924. Our experience and expertise will help create a beautiful, clean learning environment at your school.

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11 Bathroom Deep Cleaning Tips

Cleaning restrooms and bathrooms might not top your list of favorite jobs, but with the right techniques and materials, you can make your bathroom the high standard for cleanliness. National Purity commercial cleaning products are designed to be effective and affordable. Follow these tips from our deep cleaning experts to get the most out of your bathroom cleaners.

Deep cleaning tips for bathrooms

  • Wipe down walls, wainscoting, decorations, light fixtures, shelves and vents.
  • Spray all mirrors and glass with a commercial glass cleaner and thoroughly wipe dry.
  • Check windows for streaking and rinse to remove old residue before using a window cleaner.
  • Use a disinfectant cleaner on tiled areas to remove grime, soap residue, and oils that build up on them. Dirt and soil cling to these sticky surfaces, so use a scrub brush or non-abrasive pad to effectively remove grime.
  • Clean grout with a commercial product and a grout scrubber, toothbrush or sponge to remove mold, mildew and soapy scum. Areas between tiles should be sealed with a commercial sealer to make them water and abrasion resistant.
  • Shower liners can be washed in the washing machine or alternately, scrub them thoroughly with warm, soapy water.
  • Attack difficult toilet bowl rings by scrubbing with an environmentally friendly or green commercial cleaner/disinfectant that dissolves hard-water stains. Toilets are magnets for germs, so make sure to disinfect all toilet surfaces, including the back, sides and underneath the seat.
  • Sinks, faucets, handles and soap dispensers should be cleaned well with a commercial disinfecting cleaner. A small scrub brush will allow you to reach all the crevices and channels on sinks where dirt, soil and grime can collect.
  • Clean wastebaskets by washing them out with warm, soapy water. You can also use liners to keep them extra clean and easy to maintain.
  • Work from the top down when cleaning. Soil and germs on walls, stalls, windows and sinks will fall toward the ground when cleaning.
  • Sweep and mop floors with a commercial cleaner to disinfect and eliminate dirt and grime that has fallen to the ground. Make sure drains and clean and unclogged before mopping.

Commercial disinfectants eradicate germs and and form the foundation of essential bathroom cleaning. For maximum effectiveness, allow the cleaning product to saturate a surface for several minutes. Scrub and wipe clean, then rinse the surface and allow it to dry. Use separate cleaning cloth for each application to eliminate cross contamination and the spread of germs and bacteria around the bathroom. Extended exposure to commercial cleaners can cause skin irritation, so remember to wear rubber gloves for adequate protection.

“Image Credit: google.com

What Makes Green Cleaning Products Green?

If you’re like most Americans, green cleaning products are on your radar. Healthier to use and less impactful on the environment, it’s no wonder that more businesses than ever are turning to green cleaning supplies to keep their offices, foodservice areas and medical facilities safe and sanitary.

As the market expands to meet the increasing demand for green cleaning products, it’s important to educate yourself about what actually makes them green. Standards may differ between suppliers. Your definition may be different than your provider’s.

What makes green cleaning products green?

Green cleaning products come in all stripes. From reduced packaging to less skin irritation, many things can make a cleaning product green. The type of green cleaning product you select should meet your goals. Do you want products that come with less packaging, or do you want materials that don’t use harsh chemicals? Here are some things to consider when searching for a greener cleaning product:

Packaging. 

  • Landfills are spilling over with the plastics we use to package things. Locating suppliers and distributors that use minimal packaging can go a long way towards going green.
  • You can take it a step further and choose products that are packaged with recycled or partially recycled materials.

Pollution.

  • Smog-forming chemicals, also known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), are present in many conventional cleaning products.
  • VOC products can contribute to air pollution and asthma attacks.
  • Low VOC cleaners help reduce smog-forming emissions and respiratory stress.

Skin Irritants.

  • The harsh chemicals in traditional cleaning products can cause irritation to skin and eyes.
  • Green cleaning products that do not use ammonia, sulfuric acid, chlorine bleach, or sodium hydroxide will create a safer and less harsh environment for cleaning staff.

Fragrance and Dye.

  • Chemicals are often added to conventional cleaning products to make them look unique or to mask offensive or harsh chemical odors.
  • Additives that alter the fragrance or appearance of cleaning materials have virtually no value as cleaning elements.
  • Using green cleaning products for foodservice and food preparation areas will eliminate the possibility of cleaning product odors reducing food quality.
  • Reducing the amount of unnecessary chemical compounds is a basic green principle.

If you have more questions or want to learn more about specific green cleaning products, contact National Purity. Our staff is knowledgeable about green cleaning products and methods and is happy to guide you to the green cleaning solution you are looking for.

“Image Credit: housecleaningservicesnj.com

Public Restroom Myths Debunked

restroom-sign

Most of us can agree that using a public restroom isn’t always a pleasant experience. But are they really as bacteria ridden as we’ve been lead believe?

Clean Link, an online cleaning resource, recently took the time to debunk some of the most common myths associated with public restrooms. Check them out below:

The Stall Farthest from the Door Is the Cleanest

False: Research studies have indicated that the stall closest to the door is actually the cleanest. Why? It’s used the least.

Poor Hand Hygiene Is Usually Related to A Lack of Hand Soap

True: This is actually true. Studies have shown that poor hand hygiene is often related to a number of restroom maintenance inadequacies. People are less likely to wash their hands in restrooms that appear dirty or unkempt; they’re also less likely to scrub up when hand soap or paper towels are unavailable.

The Dirtiest Touch-Spot In the Ladies Restroom Is the Floor

False: No doubt, the restroom floor is a germ hotspot, but the sanitary napkin bin ranks as the dirtiest touch-spot followed by the floor, the sinks and the underside of the toilet seat.

Women’s Restrooms Contain More Germs Than Men’s

True: Women often spend more time in the restroom than men; they’re also more likely to bring young children with them, which accounts for the increase in bacteria.

Toilet Seats Can Put Your Health at Risk

False: Though the idea of touching or sitting on a public toilet seat might make you cringe, they aren’t actually as dirty as you might think. In fact, most common viruses and bacteria die off incredibly fast — so fast that by the time they reach the toilet seat they’re already gone. Furthermore, most skin-to-skin germ transmission is only a concern if there is an open wound.

Just Because A Restroom Smells Clean Doesn’t Mean It’s Actually Clean

True: Odors aren’t necessarily linked to cleanliness. A fresh, clean scent says more about the brand of the cleaning product than it does about it’s cleaning power.

Image Credit: Pixabay

Cleaning Tips for Foodservice Floors

Restaurants and foodservice facilities are held to a high standard of cleanliness. And rightly so: food safety and customer satisfaction are at stake. Health department requirements make it clear how clean floors need to be, but getting them spotless is up to business owners. Cleanliness is also important for safety. Foodservice floors can easily become unsafe from grease, spilled ingredients and other hazards. A proper cleaning regimen will keep your foodservice floor clean, hygienic and safe.

Using effective bulk cleaning products to maintain your foodservice floors is essential. Using them properly is even more important. Use this list of tips as a guideline for maintaining a clean and safe foodservice floor:

  • Make sure floor drains are clear and in proper working order before cleaning food service floors. Clogged or dirty drains should be addressed before you put them to use with water and other cleaning products.
  • Seal food ceramic service floors with low or anti-slip coating. This type of coating fosters proper sanitation and reduces accidents.
  • All floors in food service spaces should be cleaned before food handling and processing equipment is cleaned. Soil, debris and other contaminants can land on workstations and equipment when floors are being cleaned.
  • Clean or change mops and mop buckets on a daily basis. Dirty mops and buckets are breeding grounds for bacteria and other germs. Using dirty mops and buckets will effectively spread contaminants across the foodservice floor, making your food preparation space dirtier than it was before.
  • A long-handled squeegee can be used to usher wetness and moisture into floor drains to speed up drying time. Puddles or standing water can also become safety concerns if left standing in high-traffic areas.
  • Use a floor buffer at least weekly to aid in the removal of dirt, grease, and oil on foodservice floors.  Smaller machines are better for cleaning around counters and cooking areas in kitchens with hard-to-reach areas.
  • Store mops, buckets, squeegees, chemicals, and all other floor care equipment on rack and shelves that are off the ground. Keeping them up will help them stay clean and will prevent pests from gathering in or on them.

National Purity supplies a full line of bulk cleaning products for the food service industry. Our family-owned company has been supplying high quality and effective cleaning products for nearly 90 years. Contact one of our representatives today to discuss your foodservice cleaning needs and to determine which National Purity products are right for you.

“Image Credit: wikimedia.org

New Hand Washing Statistics Released

hand washingDespite recent flu epidemics and the rapid spread of other communicable diseases — American’s still aren’t very good at washing their hands.

In fact, a new study published in the Journal of Environmental Health has found that only 1 in 20 Americans properly wash after using the restroom.

And though it takes between 15 and 20 seconds of vigorous washing to eliminate germs, the average wash only lasts about six seconds.

“It’s horrifying,” said Carl Borchgrevink, the study’s lead author.

To collect these statistics, researchers set-up shop in bars, restaurants and other public establishments to observe people washing (or not washing) their hands. A total of 3,749 people were included in the study results.

The Worst Offenders

This may or may not be surprising, but men were particularly bad at hand washing. Fifteen percent didn’t even bother washing their hands at all (compared to 7% of women).

And when they did wash their hands, only half used soap (compared to 78% of women).

“Maybe some men don’t like being told what to do or they feel they’re invincible or they think it’s unnecessary,” Borchgrevink said.

Take Away Message

Nearly 80% of all infectious diseases are spread through the act of touch. And according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), hand washing is the most effective strategy for stopping the spread of infectious disease.

Collectively improving our hand washing practices has the potential to save thousands of lives every year. And as a facilities manager or business owner, you have the power to increase hand washing rates by upgrading your cleaning strategies.

Previous research has indicated that men and women are more likely to wash their hands in public if the restroom is clean and orderly. Automated foaming hand soap, hands-free faucets and hand dryers as well-stocked paper towel dispensers can make a huge difference. Restroom signs can also encourage increased hand washing.

Image Credit: Flickr