- September 21, 2020
The equipment checklist below is your best defense against hiring the wrong cleaning company and keeping your workplace safe and healthy. Ask these questions before you sign your next janitorial cleaning contract:
1) Do you use string mops?
If they answer yes, this is a big red flag. Many companies still use outdated string mops that spread dirt and germs around. Microfiber flat mops are a better choice and an accepted standard.
2) Do you dilute chemicals by hand?
Many companies still dilute cleaning solutions by hand. Manual methods of dilution are unreliable and can be dangerous. Automated dilution systems are the cleaning standard today.
3) Are all bottles labeled according to OSHA standards?
OSHA requires labeling on all cleaning products to prevent improper use. This is for the safety of your building’s occupants. Is the company OSHA compliant?
4) Do you use green clean certified products?
Green cleaning products are safe and non-toxic. They are not required, but are becoming an accepted standard in many facilities.
5) Do you use microfiber towels?
Microfiber towels are the accepted standard for surface cleaning and disinfection. Paper towels and cotton rags cannot remove dirt or soil as effectively and are out of favor. Many companies use paper towels to avoid using microfiber towels that require ongoing laundering services. To minimize the spread of infections janitorial companies should endorse disposable microfiber towels.
6) Do you use a color-coded system for towels?
Color-coded towel systems prevent the spread of germs from one area of your facility to another. You don’t want a janitorial worker using the same towel to clean your bathroom and desk. Color-coding prevents this from happening.
7) Do you use HEPA certified vacuums?
HEPA certified vacuums capture very fine dust particles. They improve indoor air quality and remove more soil than other vacuums. This is an accepted cleaning standard, especially in hospitals, medical offices, schools and child care centers. Many cleaning companies use in-expensive, less effective vacuums. Poor air quality has been associated with headaches, fatigue, trouble concentrating, irritation of the lungs and other health issues, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
8) Will you be using EPA registered, hospital grade disinfectants?
There are many disinfectants available for purchase over the counter. However, the accepted standard and more effective practice is to use commercially available, EPA registered disinfectants.
9) Do you use a laundry system to clean and disinfect towels and rags?
If a janitorial company doesn’t have a separate laundry bag for used towels, it’s another red flag. Accepted standards include frequent changing of microfiber towels to prevent the spread of dirt and germs, aka cross contamination. After towels have become soiled, they should be stored in a “dirty” bag until laundered. This sounds like a simple process, but you’d be surprised how many cleaning companies don’t have a laundering system in place.
10) Do you have a disinfection plan if there is an outbreak in your workplace?
Electrostatic spray disinfection is a highly effective method of applying an EPA-registered disinfectant to surfaces and objects. The disinfectant is sprayed on electrostatically, causing it to cling and wrap around the surface or object, providing a more thorough and effective disinfection.