Microfiber – Is it worth the switch?

Microfiber – Is it worth the switch?

Looking for a quick and easy shift towards preserving environmental resources? Switching to microfiber can help. With an increased focus on reducing cross contamination in schools and hospitals during the COVID-19 pandemic, microfiber can make your life easier and help reduce the spread of germs. When compared to traditional cleaning methods, utilizing a microfiber system will help your facility operate more efficiently, safely, and will reduce your overall spend.

What is Microfiber?

Microfiber is a synthetic fiber that typically consists of polyester, which provides structure, and polyamide, which adds density and absorption. These fibers have been split into very fine strands that are porous and dry quickly. These micro fibers are able to get into harder to reach areas of your facility, and the nylon component produces a static charge that attracts dirt. Traditional cleaning cloths and mop heads are often made of large cotton fibers that can’t perform to the same standard as microfiber. These large cotton fibers tend to leave behind residue and push around dirt and liquid instead of absorbing it and require more liquid when mopping. So… why make the switch?

Cross-Contamination

Cross contamination was already a hot topic, but now with the COVID-19 pandemic it’s even more important to ensure you’re taking steps to reduce the spread of germs. When a traditional cloth or mop touches a surface it becomes contaminated. As soon as you put it back in the mop bucket water or move it around the room, it contaminates the water and the next surface. Microfiber attracts 99% of particles, which is 3x more than cotton does. It attracts more dirt since the fibers in it have a positive charge which attract dirt and germs, and it can hold particles tightly since it’s so porous. That means it picks up and removes contaminants and germs rather than redistributing them around the room. This is especially useful for the return to in-person learning at schools and for reducing HAIs in hospitals.

Increased Productivity

Using a microfiber mop eliminates the process of dipping and wringing out a cotton mop. As long as the microfiber mop is not put into the cleaning solution, the custodian doesn’t have to change out the solution between tasks either. Healthcare professionals that are required to change out the mop/cleaning solution every room can save labor time while still complying with state requirements. Since microfiber attracts more dirt than traditional cleaning methods it makes cleaning more productive, and microfiber leaves behind little to no residue compared to cotton solutions.

Less Water and Chemical Usage and Reduced Risk of Injury

Microfiber applications require little to no chemical when compared to their cotton counterparts, and you will see your water usage reduced as well. A study done for a hospital by the Sustainable Hospital Project showed that using one cotton loop mop for a day requires 21 gallons of water and 10.5 ounces of chemical, while a microfiber mop requires the use of only one gallon of water and half an ounce of chemical. In the same study for every 20 rooms that were mopped with a cotton mop, 22 were mopped with a microfiber in the same amount of time.

Since you’re using less water and chemicals and don’t have to carry around a heavy mop bucket all day, it makes sense that microfiber solutions lead to increased worker safety and reduced injury liability. Microfiber mops weigh significantly less than other mops, making them ergonomic and easier to use. Less back strain from lifting less weight and reducing the amount of time bending over to ring a mop out leads to less injuries.

Other Factors

It’s always important to take long term savings into consideration when choosing solutions for your facility. Switching to microfiber can cost more than cotton mops and cloths up front, but you are guaranteed savings in the long run. When taking into account increased productivity and reduced water and chemical usage it makes sense to switch. You will have a reduction in chemical purchases, more life-cycle savings since microfiber is reusable, and a reduced risk of injury at the workplace. Workers are able to move in and out of areas quickly, increasing productivity and reducing labor costs.

Cost Savings? It’s In The Bag!

Did you know trash can liners can amount to 20-25% of your overall spend?

The first step in any sustainability program is to reduce consumption through efficiency measures. Reducing the energy necessary to constantly change liners by ensuring you’re using correctly sized liners, consolidating liner and receptacle stock, and conducting a waste assessment are all ways to make your facility more sustainable and save on cost. Although the process of waste reduction can seem mundane and isn’t a cure-all, it’s an essential part of the process of enhancing sustainability.

To select the proper can liner, it’s important to think about what’s going into your bag. If a sharp object is going into your bag it’s best to choose a linear low-density bag that’s more resistant to ripping. These bags handle a lower capacity than high-density bags so it’s important to remember what applications the bag will be used for. High-density bags are good for higher loads but less resistant to tearing especially once they’re punctured (by plastic eating utensils, industrial waste, etc.).

Determine the correct liner size in gallons or dimensions, estimate how much weight will be going to the bag, and use a dimension guide based on the amount a receptacle can hold if needed. For example, if you have a rectangular receptacle in the bathroom that is 24”x18”x46” (l x w x h) and will mostly be used for paper towels, it’s best to use a 42×61 high-density star seal style bag. This makes sure there is little to no chance for tearing and this type of bag maximizes carrying capacity while nearly eliminating leaks.

To learn more you can visit colonialbag.com and refer to their training manual. Ask your sales professional about ways we can help assist with a waste assessment which will help set clear measurable goals to prevent waste and establish recycling programs.

July 1st Product Launch:New Genesan Micro Dilution Caps

Genesan Caps

New Product Alert! We get so excited when we get to share great new products with our customers and the new Genesan Micro Dilution Caps are definitely worth the buzz! Available starting July 1st, the caps provide a new method of product dilution that is safe, mobile, accurate and sustainable. The proportioned caps come in a variety of chemicals and eliminate the risk of chemical splash in addition to being able to be used anywhere, at anytime. You always have 100% accurate dilution!

Contrary to popular belief, caps are cheaper than RTU chemicals. First of all, by buying caps, you eliminate the bulky packaging and high freight costs associated with shipping RTU. With caps, you eliminate the coast of shipping the water. Secondly, PORTION CONTROL! Portion control ensures the exact amount of chemical is being used, this creates an accurate inventory and an accurate process. Using caps also cuts labor costs as custodians no long need to return to closets to use dilution systems as they can refill bottles at any sink in the facility.

Contact us for more information on Genesan Micro Dilution Caps!

 

Foaming Hand Soap – The Key to Staying on Budget

EZHH_usage.lgWith the growing influx of hand hygiene education to prevent germ spread, we have seen an increased use of hand soap. While awareness of proper hand hygiene has resulted in more people washing their hands, it has naturally increased the amount of soap consumption as well as added pressure to the facility manager’s budgets. Hand soap is one of the largest consumables in a restroom budget. 

 Luckily, there is a solution that allows for increased hand washing and reduced budgets! By simply switching liquid soap to foam soap, facilities could see some big savings. Kutol did the match and found that switching to foam soap saves $6 per 1,000 hand washes over liquid soap. Foam soap can double the number of hand washes from on refill as compared to traditional liquid soap saving money in both product and labor. Kutol further tested to find that traditional liquid soap dispensers dispense between 1.0 – 1.5 mL per hand compared to .75 mL with foaming hand soap which results in a 25-50% savings when using foam hand soap.

 Read the full Kutol Report here!

 Call Pike Systems today for more information on the Foam Soaps we stock!

Stop Using Bleach!

620466077c427f141effa294382f5fba_XLTraditionally, people turn to bleach as the ultimate cleaning product. It has such a strong smell, why wouldn’t it’s cleaning ability match, and destroy any and all dirt on a surface? There is a huge misconception in our society that bleach cleans and disinfects. While bleach is able to disinfect and kill bacteria on a surface, it doesn’t posses any cleaning agents to actually clean the surface. In fact, when used as a cleaner, the oxidizing effect of bleach gets tied up in the soils thus reducing it’s killing ability. Bleach also expires quickly, losing 50% of its strength after just 90 days of being packaged.
 
In addition to lacking cleaning capabilities, with continued use over time, bleach can destroy the surfaces it is used on. Surfaces will fade in color, floor polishes will dull or haze and the bleach will slowly eat away and degrade the surfaces.
 
There are also dangers associated with the use of bleach. Per OSHA, when using bleach in a workplace, you are required to wear gloves and a mask as the bleach can cause problems with the eyes, skin and respiratory track.
 
This is why, at Pike Systems, we recommend using Vindicator or Contact 256 to both disinfect and clean surfaces. These have the same capabilities of bleach, with the addition of a cleaning agent, without the harsh smell.  Do you know what your facility uses as a multi-purpose surface cleaner?

Analysis and Management for Bettering Practices for a Cleaner, More Efficient Facility

There are always ways to do something better, be more time-efficient, and spend less money, but finding the time figure out what these procedures are and learning how to evaluate the current procedures in use can be hard.  Pike Systems uses Hillyard Ccap (pronounced ‘cap’), a cloud based custodial management tool to do just that. Ccap analyzes, manages and trains to help facility directors deliver the best results.
 
Our program can help you answer these questions: 
  • How many people does it take to clean our facility? 
  • How much product should we be using? 
  • How can we improve productivity?
  • How do we manage quality outcomes?
  • How do we lower cleaning costs?

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Analysis: 
 
Ccap analyzes facility data (square footage, floor type, fixtures), cleaning staff, supplies and equipment. The program then establishes a baseline cleaning program and optimizes it to deliver better cleaning results within a budget. Ccap includes an extensive database of industry standard cleaning times and procedures.
 
Management: 
 
There are 3 critical tools that the Ccap Program utilizes to successfully operate a high-performing custodial department: 
  • Task Manager – Manage staff workloads
  • QC Manager – Monitor and measure cleaning quality
  • Report Generator – Generate reports at the touch of a button as well as fast access to procedure and department manuals
Train: 
 
Ccap assists in training custodians on cleaning processes that are designed to reinforce best practice cleaning techniques that result in improved cleaning quality and greater productivity.
 
One of the best aspects of the Ccap Program is it’s accessibility – all you need is an internet browser! Access your program 24 hours a day, 7 days a week from work stations, mobile devices, tablets or laptops. It is literally better practices right at your fingertips!
 
Contact us today to learn how your facility can benefit from our program!