The best way to clean hard floors

I am often asked after polishing clients Stone floors, buffing wood floors and steam cleaning tile and grout, "how do I keep my floors looking good?" and "do you have any products that you can recommend?". As a floor care expert, along with the many years in the janitorial industry, I absolutely do have a list of products and processes that I have tried and used and have come up with the best way to clean hard surface flooring. Let's start with the product and why it works.

Product: Neutral floor cleaner is a category of floor cleaning solutions in and of it self it is not one product but more of a description of a category of products that are natural in ph and safe for use on all hard surface floorings. Why do I recommend neutral floor cleaner? Other cleaners have ether a highly acidic base or a high alkaline base that will leave your floors either acidic or alkaline, neither being ideal for the floor. If it is higher then a 7 neutral pH when complete then it will feel sticky, what's happening scientifically is that the positively charged solution is trying to pull the dirt off your shoes or feet, with great success i might add, this is why your floors look so good for a short time and why you need to clean them so often. The second scenario is an acidic solution like chlorine, ammonia, and vinegar based products. These might be ok for certain types of floors like ceramic tile, but detrimental to grout lines, natural stone, wood floors, and many more. The reason it is not good on every floor type is that anything below 7pH is what is called acidic and will etch most floorings. Bleach will even turn grout yellow and if your wood floors were treated with any type of sealing that will also yellow and dull and it could just burn right through the coating all together. On most natural stone it will eat away at the stone and create small cavities and worse. The damage is occurs over time with the bulk of it being while wet. Deep cleaning by a professional is recommended on a scheduled time line ether bi-yearly, yearly, or other depending on the amount of use and products that are being used on the flooring. So why is a neutral solution so much better? it has all the sanatizational properties of harsh acids and alkalines without the damage and attraction to dirt. When using neutral floor cleaner you will notice that you do not have to clean as often and that the floor has no sticky feeling. The goal of cleaning is to sanitize and remove dirt and that is exactly what you get with neutral floor cleaners. 

Process: Now that we know what to use the next question is how to use it? I have found that string mops and some microfiber mops work best on most surfaces because they hold allot of dirt. I say "most" microfiber mops because there are some cheep low end "microfiber" mops that do not hold allot of dirt and do not do well at cleaning. Choose carefully when buying ether microfiber or string mops. Microfiber has the added benefit of being naturally antibacterial.

 

Steam Cleaning VS. Deep Scrubbing What you need to know

the process of proper carpet cleaning can be compared to the proper process of brushing your teeth. It is impossible to get a proper cleaning with mouth rinse alone or simply by swishing water in your mouth, your teeth need to be brushed, and so does your carpet. What the brush does that the steam cannot achieve is agitation. thats what helps to loosen the plaque on your teeth and thats what helps to loosen the dirt on your carpet. Just as there is flossing for the real stubborn stuck dirt on your teeth there are methods we in the carpet cleaning industry use to clean specific stains in your carpet.

There are many types of scrub brushes and machines out there, and there are many reasons why a carpet cleaning company would choose to use one or another. some of the most common are counter rotating single bonnets and or brushes, cybex triple brush machines and CRB counter rotating brush. a bonnet scrub system will do general scrubbing. the way it works is that there is a looped fabric with agitating strips. The looped fabric absorbs the dirt while the strips work the dirt out of the carpet. this is good for most general scrubbing however it does not get deep into most thick carpets. brushes will get deeper into carpet but will not remove the dirt from the carpet. i have found that brushes work magic on pet hair especially scrubbing the hair in to big clumps that can easily be vacuumed up after the scrubbing process. cybex machines and single brush scrubbers will scrub in a very similar manor. The CRB machines scrub the carpet upwards which pulls the dirt away from the carpet and dispense the dirt in trays off to the side of the machine. these machines unique method of scrubbing that has been approved by the largest manufactures of carpet. It is not always necessary that your carpet be scrubbed if your carpet is brand new or has been treated and maintained with utmost care a steam only cleaning may be exactly what you need. if your are however like the rest of us you need scrubbing with your steam cleaning.

 

The Steps to a Truly Deep Carpet Cleaning

One of our most popular services is carpet cleaning and we are well known for our deep cleaning option for heavily soiled carpets with high traffic areas that require deep scrubbing. When it comes to deep cleaning carpets, there is no better machine to do that then a good CRB duel brush machine. Now, the first step of any good deep cleaning process is inspection. Inspecting the carpet is essential and the first time that the cleaner will be able to assess the job requirements. After inspection, it is best to treat the stains and pre-spray the areas that are to be cleaned with a good pre-spray. We use an all natural and very powerful probiotic solution. In many cases, a good degreaser must be used in high traffic areas and areas were food has been spilled. We won't go into detail on all of the products and methods that we use for special situations though, it should be noted, that a good carpet cleaner has an extensive knowledge of the chemistry of stains and stain removal that can be acquired from the IICRC, CCA, and other organizations that teach and certify technicians. The next step in the process is using the deep scrubbing machine. It should be noted that the only machines that are currently approved by all major carpet manufacturers for the scrubbing of carpet are the CRB method machines. The CRB helps to release and bring to the surface all of the deep dirt and hair that has been locked into the fibers of the carpet. This dirt is trapped and cannot be removed by simply vacuuming. Using the CRB will restore the carpets fibers to the state that they were from the manufacturer bringing them back up right un-matting fibers. Next, it is time to steam the carpet. A good truck mounted unit or heated portable unit will produce approximately 240 degrees of heat. It is physically impossible to achieve a higher temperature without damaging the equipment and the carpet. So if a carpet cleaner tells you that he is using more heat, you may want to refer him to the neighbor you don't like. Next, is the dry pass. As with steam cleaning, a lot of water is produced to flush the carpet, remove soap and dirt. The dry pass will help the carpet to dry quicker, wick less, and if it drys quick there will be no possibility for mold or mildew so it will stay fresh. Last is post inspection. We like to walk every room to make sure nothing was missed and test the dryness of the carpet. 

Thank you for taking the time to read this article. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave us a comment in the comment section or call us any time. I hope you find this information helpful.