Don’t be deterred by detergent

Roger MooreRoger Moore is back again and this time, he’s tackling a sticky problem.

Floor cleaning detergents can be a bit of a mine field; which to use regularly, which are most effective, which are best for stains, and so on. We can give guidance around these areas easily, and there is plenty of information, including a list of recommended detergents in the cleaning section of our website. When we receive a cleaning-related call to our technical hotline, the use of detergent is often at the root of it – in fact, that can be the case, even when the call doesn’t seem to be about cleaning initially. Let me take you through two occasions that come to mind.

The first is a call we received from a customer who was concerned about marks that had appeared on the floor, which was installed in the toilets of a bar. There were stains around the base of the urinals, plus a stubborn water mark. Not to be too delicate about it, urinals are a common problem area for cleaners, as you can probably imagine. The temptation can be to use an aggressive cleaner, such as bleach, without thinking about how this might affect the floor, and this could cause problems. In fact, using an acidic sanitary cleaner will effectively remove urine stains, lime scale and water marks. Usually for urine and other body waste we recommend an alkaline cleaner but when urine has built up, mineral deposits form which are similar to lime scale in appearance and make-up. At this point a heavy-duty, acidic cleaner is a better choice. In addition to the detergent recommendation, the pattern of the marks pointed to a leak from the urinal which we were then able to bring to the attention of the customer.

The second call was about a kitchen floor with a problem area around one of a number of drains. It was clear that the subfloor was sloping, with the drain and floor then installed on top, causing a raised edge of flooring around part of the drain, causing an irregular amount of strain and wear to be put on the floor. The flooring around the other drains, which were all level, were fine. This issue can be solved by cutting back enough vinyl to grind the floor level even then use levelling compound to achieve a smooth and level finish. The flooring in this area could then be replaced.

However, there was another issue. On the flooring around the affected drain, we noticed a build-up of detergent. Not rinsing detergent away or not diluting detergent correctly is a common cause of discolouration and, in extreme cases, can cause issues such as shrinkage. A build-up like this can also leave a film that reduces the floor’s slip resistance and attracts contaminants, encouraging bacteria – the very opposite of what you want a detergent to do! We recommend checking the detergent manufacturer’s dilution instructions and rinsing the floor post detergent as part of the cleaning regime.

So, something simple –choosing the right detergent, diluting it correctly and rinsing it away post-wash, can avoid problems with safety, hygiene and the perception people have of your space.

To find out more about which detergents to use and when, take a look at our cleaning pages, and if you need any help, just give us a call on 01462 707600.

Until next time, Roger Out.


Posted: 16/01/2020 08:00:00 by Saloni Robinson | with 0 comments