How to Properly Apply Ice Melt in Winter

Winter brings it’s usual challenges of extra layers of clothing and unpredictable driving conditions. And for those of us who are building service contractors (otherwise known as professional cleaners), it also means five months of cleaning buildings that are extra messy.

Cleaning up wet, muddy floors is a given. But to add “salt” to the wound (excuse the pun), we are often faced with extra clean-up due to misuse of ice melt. With of the huge liabilities that businesses face with slip-and-fall injuries, there is no doubt ice melt is a must have when the snow falls. What many people don’t’ realize is there is some knowledge required to using this product properly.

We got a call from one of our clients who noticed a white chalky residue left on their floors. Of course, the floors had been properly cleaned the night before but when daylight came the residue was noticeable. It didn’t take long to discover that around their building was an excess of ice melt on the sidewalks and around the doors.

The easy solution to the floor surfaces inside the building was to use a neutralizer.  It’s acidity has a chemical reaction to the salt residue and then this reaction turns the alkaline nature of the ice melt to a neutral pH. The result is that the residue will then have the same basic neutral pH state as faucet water and therefore becomes as easy to wipe up as water.

We then recommended to our client that less ice melt be used. Not only will this help with less of the product tracking into the building and causing havoc with the floors, it will also help prevent excess de-icer eating away at the metal trim on their building’s exterior. In addition, we mentioned that good quality tracking mats inside and outside the doors will help keep the ice melt outside, where it belongs.

The best way to ensure your de-icing efforts are doing more good than harm?  Do your research to find the right kind of ice melt and then make sure you are using the right amount. A simple solution to a common problem.

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EFS Clean is Calgary’s locally-owned-and-grown commercial cleaning company. Our services include janitorial services, construction cleaning, ceiling tile cleaning, electrostatic disinfecting, low-rise window cleaning, tile/hard surface deep cleaning and quality assurance inspections. Let us help you get a better clean by calling 403-949-3344 or send us a message on our Contact Us page.

 

 

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