Every year, there’s a high-tech solution that makes the cleaning industry rethink the way restrooms are cleaned. While many of these solutions are innovative and can save money and time, there are certain essential truths about restroom care that will never change.
Let’s dig into some of the real truths about restroom care, share the little-known facts cleaning industry experts rarely share, and dispel common restroom care myths with Cleaning & Maintenance Management.
How often should you disinfect a toilet?
Facility teams must strike the perfect balance between the frequency of cleaning and the risk of contamination in restrooms. Most experts agree, that the recommended disinfection frequencies for toilet seats, as well as other high-touch surfaces, depended on traffic. But after COVID, disinfection is performed certainly more often than ever before.
COVID changed all the rules
It used to be appropriate to clean restrooms once a day, but it has changed in the post-COVID-19 era. Our habits and frequencies have gotten much more intense and they will probably never go back to what they used to be – experts agree.
There is no hard and fast rule for how frequently you should disinfect a toilet. To determine cleaning frequencies, it is a good starting point for FMs to do the math based on occupants, total restrooms, and the total amount of a specific surface. If 100 people work in a building, that means they will each use a restroom four times during a typical eight-hour shift. That means the restroom is being used 400 times in those eight hours. “Looking at these numbers, the frequencies for disinfecting and cleaning high-touch surfaces will become a lot clearer”- Joel Craddock, president of Doc’s Facilities Solutions points out.
The most overlooked surface in a restroom is…
Professionals leaked that the most often overlooked surface in any restroom is the latch inside the stall. Nearly everyone who uses a restroom touches this small fixture, and yet most restroom care procedures ignore it. Being the last thing you touch before leaving, the back latch is often the dirtiest part of the restroom. Proper training protocols need to emphasize its thorough cleaning.
New imaging technologies can show soil levels in a restroom like never before, using advanced photo-spectral imaging to reveal contamination on a wide variety of restroom surfaces. This advanced level of detection can help you maintain high levels of cleanliness in all types of facilities. “It’s not a matter of negligence. It’s just the simple fact that for years, facilities have been leaving these surfaces off of the radar screen.”- says Mark Warner, national sales manager at Bullen, a cleaning products manufacturer.
Damp mopping leaves stinky bathroom
As experts highlight: damp-mopping a restroom floor is the worst mistake you can make dealing with a commercial bathroom of ceramic tile floor and a drain. This simple myth often leads to major odour-control issues. So, only damp-mopping such floors you end up with discoloured grout and a stinky bathroom.
The general procedure recommends cleaning with a piece of equipment—from a microfiber mop to a wet vac—that uses excessive water. Grout lines are built so the water will flow into the drain. In turn, drains are built to hold water, which prevents sewer gas from travelling back up into the building. It’s very simple: if that drain becomes dry, the bathroom is going to stink.
Today’s odour control goes far beyond the spray on a counter
Many facilities have relied on heavy fragrances to help hide odours instead of directly treating the source of the odour. Investing in a proper floor care program and training can go a long way toward cutting off the source of odours. Still, many facility managers are so busy that unless there is a complaint, they don’t have odour control included in their daily tasks.
Today’s odour control options go far beyond the traditional spray can on a counter. By learning about the science of airflow, facilities can place deodorizers strategically to make a restroom user’s experience much more pleasant.
“Sometimes the restroom is the only place in a building where an occupant can have privacy. Investing in the care and design of a restroom can have an impact on ROI (return on investment) for the entire building. It is a place to show that you care, and a chance to convey your building’s worth and value to everyone who comes into your building.”- says Julie Howard, vice president and general manager of Towel, Skincare, and Aircare Systems at GP PRO.