‘Green’ floor cleaning is good for the health of individuals, businesses and the environment 18 May, 2014
Natalie Dowse, Marketing and Product Manager for Truvox International Ltd, gives advice to organisations looking to implement more sustainable floor cleaning regimes.
The increase in 'green' cleaning that we have seen in recent years is no mere trend - it more of a movement. The vast majority of organisations, whether private or public sector, now aspire to limit the effects their activities have on the wider environment, and that means finding more sustainable ways to procure and provide services.
The contract cleaning industry has evolved from simply cleaning for appearances to cleaning for health. By that I mean the health of individuals, businesses and the wider environment. A holistic view of sustainable cleaning is the best approach to take, and any environmentally responsible cleaning regime should aim to:
- Conserve valuable resources, such as energy and waterReduce the use of harsh cleaning agents
- Improve environmental health and indoor air quality
- Increase health and safety outcomes for operatives and facility users
- Reduce noiseUse recyclable and reusable machine components to keep waste to a minimum
Innovative technology is helping to develop floor cleaning machines that deliver these aims. For example, environmentally responsible vacuum cleaners must meet certain requirements regarding soil removal and dust containment. This is usually accomplished via filtration systems that trap dust and other contaminants, together with more advanced HEPA filtration systems that help to improve indoor air quality. Less dust reduces cleaning needs, helping to minimise maintenance costs, and reducing airborne allergens also helps to improve the health of building users.
Cylindrical brush technology is another way in which floor cleaning machines are evolving. Reducing the amount of water and chemicals needed to clean floors is a key ambition, what our US colleagues call ‘low moisture floor care’. Independent tests, conducted in America, have found that cylindrical brush technology can use as much as 30% less water than conventional rotary machines. This technology also has further possible sustainable benefits. It is claimed that cylindrical brushes last as long as 100 rotary machine pads, minimising waste and cutting down on consumables.
Companies looking to be more green and healthy when it comes to floor care equipment should also consider looking for the following:
- Powered floor maintenance machines – including electric and battery-powered floor buffers and burnishers – that come with vacuum systems, guards and/or other devices for capturing fine particulates
- Battery-powered equipment that uses environmentally preferable batteries
- Ergonomically designed equipment that minimises vibration and user fatigue
All things considered, green cleaning should perhaps be referred to as ‘cleaning for health’. By taking a more environmentally responsible attitude towards the procurement of your cleaning equipment, not only will the health of the environment, your building and employees improve, your business’s bottom line should also increase, by saving on energy and consumables, and becoming more aware of the resources you use.