Recent Commercial Posts

Hard Water Stains

7/23/2018 (Permalink)

Cleaning companies that have customers in hard water areas, which includes over 85% of the United States, sometime find it difficult to get rid of those nasty hard water stains on windows - especially large office or warehouses with large amounts of windows. The first step begins with understanding hard water and how it affects the buildings we clean, so our cleaning technicians can choose the best solutions to remove it.

Rain contains no minerals as it falls to earth. When it passes through the ground, it absorbs minerals, such as calcium and magnesium, which transforms it from “soft water” into “hard water.” Although hard water is not normally harmful to our health, it can wreak havoc on plumbing, fixtures, appliances, glass, showers, or pretty much anywhere water is used.

Once hard water evaporates, what's left behind are the minerals. These nasty mineral deposits cause crusty scale, stains, film, and mineral rings. This build up can become problematic and permanent if not addressed immediately.

Hard Water Cleaning Solutions for Removing Those Ugly Stains

Cleaning companies go directly to their cleaning chemical and tool inventory when confronted with hard water stains. Acidic and non-acidic, abrasive, natural or manufactured, there are a number of cleaners that have the ability to remove mineral deposits and scale. Make sure the cleaner you choose is the right one for the job, surface or fixture you plan on cleaning. Check the manufacturer's label or test the cleaner in an inconspicuous place first if you are not sure. The last thing you want to do is cause damage to your customers' building.

Usually removing mineral deposits such as calcium, magnesium, and iron requires an acidic product. Most hard water staining can be removed with a combination of the right cleaner, cleaning tool and of course, good old fashioned “elbow grease” for those really tough jobs.

Cleaning tools such as white scrubbing pads, scrub brushes, and steel wool, can be used with the cleaning chemical of your choice to assist in removing difficult deposits. Just remember that none of these tools should be used alone, as they can permanently scratch the surface of the window. Only use these tools when the surface of the window is wet with water or cleaning chemical.

We recommend starting your cleaning process with less harmful chemicals, tools, and methods first, then ramp it up to more aggressive methods should deposits persists. It may take several attempts to remove stubborn deposits.

Beware; strong acidic chemicals are very corrosive and damaging to certain types of surfaces such as stainless steel and chrome and will “eat” through them, so never attempt to use such chemicals without the proper training and testing.

How To Care For Hardwood Floors In A Commercial Building

7/23/2018 (Permalink)

Nothing adds charm more to a commercial building than a lustrous looking hardwood floor. A hardwood floor is a lifetime investment and keeping a hardwood floor looking its best requires proper care and maintenance strategies. As the cleaning professional, it is up to you and your cleaning technicians to provide the solutions to care for and maintain your customers' hardwood floor investment and keep it looking its best for years to come.

Routine maintenance and care of hardwood floors requires:

  1. Protecting the surface finish from heavy wear
  2. Daily cleaning to remove dirt, grit and dust
  3. Protecting the finish from moisture

These three routine tasks and care strategies will help to prevent damage to hardwood floors and to ensure the floor keeps its natural beauty.

It is important to remember that dirt, sand and grit are among the hardwood floor's worst enemies. This grunge will act like sandpaper to a floor's finish and can cause scratches and dents that will dull the floor. An important step to protecting the floor and finish is to place walk-off mats at all building entrances to prevent debris from being tracked onto the floor you are trying to protect. Walk-off matting also absorbs moisture and keeps it from being tracked onto the floor.

TIP: Avoid placing rubber backed entrance matting directly on the wood floor. The rubber backing can discolor the floor.

It is also important to sweep, vacuum or dust mop frequently to remove dirt and dust. A backpack vacuum with a hard floor attachment is the best way to pick up and remove contaminants from a hardwood floor. If you are using a broom, use one that is soft and has fine ends so that dirt and contaminants become trapped and are lifted away. You can also use a high quality microfiber flat mop.

TIP: Always remember to clean underneath the walk-off mats.

Another important preventive maintenance step is to place protector pads on furniture legs. Floor protector pads should be made of soft felt or a similar type material. If you ever need to move furniture, always pick it up and carry it -- never drag furniture across the floor.

Footwear and foot traffic can cause damage to hardwood floors. Soiled work boots or any footwear that has rocks, mud, or gravel stuck into the treads can dent or scratch the floor. Remind your customers how important it is to invest in walk-off matting to help protect their investment.

Water is also an enemy of hardwood floors. Water and spills can warp or permanently damage a floor's finish. Spills should be cleaned up immediately before they have the opportunity to set in and stain or warp the floor. Wipe up spills with a soft, damp cloth or microfiber cloth, and then follow up with a cleaning solution if needed and a dry, soft cloth.

Another factor to remember is that direct sun can discolor a hardwood floor. If a floor is exposed to direct sunlight, recommend to the customer that they close curtains or blinds or add sheer drapes to protect from the floor from the sun's harsh UV rays.

To stay looking their best, wood floors need periodic cleaning with a professional wood floor cleaning product. If you know the type of flooring, follow the manufacturer's recommended cleaning system. But if the specific type of hardwood floor is unknown, use a wood cleaner that does not leave a residue. Most finish manufacturers do not recommend wetting wood floors with water. When you use a cleaner that requires mixing with water follow the directions carefully and do not mix over the wood floor itself.

When taking care of wood floors avoid the following:

  • Using saturated mops on the floor
  • Using ammonia on the floor
  • Using household type dust cleaners
  • Using products that are not recommended for wood floors

Don't let hardwood floors lose their luster. Spending a little time every day protecting and properly caring for hardwood floors will go a long ways towards keeping the floor looking great and keeping your customer happy.

10 Steps For Dusting An Office Building

7/23/2018 (Permalink)

Following the steps outlined below will make your dusting faster and more effective:

  1. Dust high surfaces first and work downward. Start at one end of the room and move in a clockwise or counter-clockwise direction.
  2. Move objects (phones, paper weights, pictures, etc.), dust under them, and then replace them to their original position. However, desk papers should not be moved. Dust around any papers left on desks or tables. Papers in a pile can be moved slightly so you can dust under and around them unless your customer has instructed you not to disturb any paperwork.
  3. Do not carelessly flick your dust cloth, static duster or extension duster as you dust. This will only spread the dust, not capture it. Instead, wipe the surface. 
  4. Wipe spots and smudges on walls, desks, etc. with a damp green microfiber cloth as you move throughout the office area. Remember to rinse the cloth when it becomes soiled, using only water.
  5. When cleaning computer monitors or conference room flat TV screens, use a dry, microfiber cloth and lightly (and I do mean very gently) wipe. Never use paper towels, tissue paper, or window cleaner, they can scratch or damage the screen. If there are finger prints or smudges, you can use antistatic wipes designed for computers and LCD screens. Some offices do not want you to clean either computer screens so be sure to follow your clients' wishes.
  6. Dust wood tables and desks with the grain, applying furniture polish per customer's request. Chairs should be dusted from top to bottom. Start by dusting any trim on top, then the sides and work your way down to the bottom legs. 
  7. When dusting blinds, first dust across the top. Then close the blinds and dust the entire surface. Close blinds to the other side and dust the newly exposed surface area. Another way to dust blinds is to use a back pack vacuum with a brush attachment.
  8. In hallways and corridors, make sure to dust fire doors, fire extinguishers, exit signs, bars on exit doors, door frames/jambs, hand rails, light switches, show cases, and any other horizontal/vertical surfaces.
  9. Make sure to dust any areas where dust can accumulate, such as clocks, picture frames, cabinet tops and sides, the sides of desks, partitions, air vents, lights, baseboards, and window sills. If there is a surface, dust will accumulate.
  10. Use a back pack vacuum to remove dust and clean hard to reach areas and upholstered furniture.

Proper dusting will help to ensure that your office buildings have a neat and tidy appearance. Dusting is necessary to ensure a clean building and healthy work environment. SERVPRO of Woodcrest/El Cerrito/Lake Matthews can help with all of your commercial cleaning needs. Give us a call! (951) 398-3240

Restoring Your Commercial Property After a Water Loss

6/5/2018 (Permalink)

Flooding and water damage events at Riverside County commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO of Woodcrest/El Cerrito/Lake Matthews

SERVPRO of Woodcrest/El Cerrito/Lake Matthews specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.