Vote for America’s Best Bathroom

Public RestroomIt’s that time of year again… Cintas’ annual America’s Best Restroom Contest!

When it comes to public restrooms, most of us really appreciate a little creativity and a lot of cleaning. There’s nothing more unpleasant than an unkempt public restroom, but sometimes there’s just no way of getting around it.

Fortunately, there is a growing number of companies that are going the extra mile to create the most memorable (in a good way) restrooms imaginable.

Check out this year’s finalists below:

  • Buc-ee’s New Braunfels, Texas
  • Da Marino Ristorante Italiano New York, New York
  • Gitane Restaurant San Francisco, California
  • Hollywood Bowl Hollywood, California
  • Lane Stadium/Worsham Field at Virginia Tech Blacksburg, Virginia
  • Liberty Market Gilbert, Arizona
  • Mie N Yu Restaurant Washington, DC
  • Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel Chicago, Illinois
  • Vanity Nightclub Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Walker Art Center Minneapolis, Minnesota

This year you can view photos of the finalists and vote for your favorite online. The polls are open through Friday, October 26, so you better cast your vote quick!

The winner and runner-up will be announced during a nationally publicized event in November.

 

Image Credit: Flickr Creative Commons

Industrial Cleaning Supplies FAQs: Cleaning, Disinfecting and Sanitizing

cleaning supplies
What’s the difference between cleaning, disinfecting and sanitizing?

Though these three industrial cleaning supplies are often used interchangeably, they aren’t the same thing. Cleaning is an action performed to remove dust, dirt and residue from a soiled surface. While surfaces may appear hygienic after a thorough cleaning, basic cleaning does not address harmful microorganisms.

Disinfecting on top of cleaning adds another layer of safety because it’s performed to remove 100% germs and bacterial that can spread disease or infection. Like disinfecting, sanitizing works to remove harmful microorganisms, however, it’s not quite as strong. Sanitizing reduces the number of microorganisms to a safe level, but it does not eliminate all of them. Sanitizers also cannot kill viruses or fungi.

In general, disinfectants are frequently used in healthcare settings, while sanitizers are often required in the food service industry.

How are germs spread?

Germs are spread through three different mechanisms: direct contact, indirect contact, airborne spread.

1) Direct contact means that germs are spread from one infected person to another. An example of this is when an infected person coughs or sneezes into his or her hands and then touches another person before washing.

2) Indirect contact means that germs are spread from an infected person to another person through a common surface or object. An example of this is when an infected person shares eating utensils with another person.

3) Airborne spread means when germs are spread through the air from an infected person to an uninfected person over short distances. When someone coughs or sneezes, small germ-filled droplets are sprayed into the air. Anyone within a three foot radius can be infected.

Is it possible to clean and disinfect at the same time?

The short answer is sometimes. In order to properly disinfect, the disinfectant must come into direct contact with the target surface area. This may not be possible if there is a heavy barrier of dirt, grime or grease present. In other words, it’s possible to simultaneously clean and disinfect, but only under slightly soiled conditions. An industrial cleaner containing bleach may be able to clean and disinfect at the same time.

What does it mean when a disinfectant is “EPA-registered”?

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates the production and sale of all  disinfectants. All EPA-registered industrial cleaner disinfectants must comply with several regulations regarding raw materials, label strength, processing, safety, efficacy and shelf life.

Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons

Why Choose Green Commercial Cleaning Products?

green cleaningMaintaining a clean and sanitary office or work environment is an essential component to good health. The last thing you want to do is to introduce harmful chemicals into these environments.

Unfortunately, many of today’s commercial cleaning products contain harmful chemicals that have been linked to a variety of health conditions such as an increased risk of allergies, respiratory diseases, reproductive problems and even cancer.
By choosing green commercial cleaning products and supplies, you are reducing the risk of exposure to harmful chemicals and abrasive products.

Are Green Commercial Cleaning Products More Expensive?

Though many fear that green cleaning products will increase costs, they may actually reduce costs (especially on a large scale) in the long run. This is because many concentrated forms of commercial cleaning supplies require additional steps and safeguards for proper disposal.
By purchasing less hazardous cleaners, you may actually reduce or eliminate costs associated with disposing hazardous chemicals.

5 Tips for Choosing Green Cleaning Supplies

From equipment, to cleaning procedures to products, green sanitation involves a lot of consideration. If you’re thinking about going green, check out the tips below.

  1. Don’t buy products that contain harmful chemicals such as ammonia or chlorine. These chemicals can comprise air quality and irritate the eyes, nose or throat. These products are also very toxic. Too much exposure can be deadly.
  2. When it comes to vacuuming, choosing a HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) vacuum will minimize the effects of allergens and other airborne pollutants.
  3. All purpose and surface cleaners should contain plant-based solvents.
  4. Avoid green products that fail to disclose a list of ingredients on the product label. Always choose products you can trust.
  5. Products should be pH neutral (7.0), which is safer for both the environment and people.  Alkaline or acidic products may burn your skin.