Cleaning services and products have a tremendous impact on the environment. According to the website facilitiesnet.com, commercial buildings and institutions consume 6.2 billion pounds of chemicals, 4.5 billion pounds of sanitary paper (about 30 million trees), and 1 billion pounds of janitorial equipment per year. Most of these cleaning products are petroleum-based, which is a non-renewable resource. We need to seek long-term solutions to reduce the commercial cleaning industry’s impact on the environment. You may find yourself wondering, “Where do I start? What kind of difference can I make?” Well, I’m glad you asked…
The ten most effective commercial cleaning tips that are also eco-friendly are:
- Use steam instead of concentrated chemicals when cleaning carpets
- Use reusable bottles for cleaning supplies
- Implement recycling programs to reduce paper waste
- Use washable microfiber cleaning cloths in place of paper towels
- Change air conditioning filters regularly
- Use vinegar to clean sink fixtures
- Implement natural cleaning solutions
Replace Concentrated Cleaners With Steam
Who says that you need to use harsh cleaners to get carpets clean? According to Better Homes and Gardens, steam can clean as effectively as harsh chemicals without the harmful side effects. Steam can quickly and effectively kill 99.99% of all germs and bacteria found in carpets, floors, and other surfaces. I know what you’re asking. How can this be true? How does steam clean so effectively?
Steam cleaners heat water to very high temperatures exceptionally quickly, causing Vapor molecules to penetrate surfaces. These Vapor molecules then lift dirt out of these surfaces, where it is vacuum away. Now that you know what effective cleaner steam can be, you’re probably wondering what surfaces can be cleaned with steam. I use steam to clean a wide variety of surfaces, including hardwood floors, tile, grout, carpet, drapes, upholstery, countertops, sinks, tubs, mattresses, ovens, and stovetops.
By making the switch from concentrated cleaners to steam, your clients will breathe easier, knowing that you are using the most natural and most effective cleaner possible. That’s not only good for your clients but also good for the environment.
Reuse or Replace Plastic Cleaning Bottles
This is her house, the easiest step to take towards becoming an eco-friendly cleaning service. It is also one of the most cost-efficient, as well as one of the most practical. According to Mighty Nest, it takes the equivalent of 1/4 of a bottle of oil to produce one plastic bottle. While this may not initially seem like much, I would like you to keep the facts in mind.
A purse is that over 29 billion plastic bottles are purchased every year in the United States. The second fact is that it takes over 17 million barrels of crude oil to make these bottles. That’s quite a bit of oil once you put it into perspective.
There are two easy recommendations to reduce the amount of plastic your commercial cleaning business is using. The first recommendation is perhaps the most obvious. When purchasing cleaning supplies, make sure your commercial cleaning business is buying cleaners bottled in recycled plastic.
The second recommendation I can make to reduce the amount of plastic waste caused by your commercial cleaning business is to switch to glass bottles for storing your cleaning supplies. By implementing any of these changes, you will be doing your part to reduce plastic waste, as well as reducing crude oil waste.
Implement a Recycling Program
Americans are incredibly wasteful. Mr. Rooter Plumbing states that the average American is responsible for using approximately 700 pounds (85,000,000 tons) of paper products per year, which accounts for 25% of landfill space and 33% of all municipal waste. To put things into perspective, the average American uses about seven trees per year, totaling over 2,000,000,000 trees per year used in the United States. That’s enough wood and paper to heat 50,000,000 homes for 20 years!
You may be wondering, “How do I stop the madness?” I have often found myself wondering if I could make a difference. The answer is simple. You can make a significant difference in your commercial cleaning business’s impact on the environment by implementing something a small as a recycling program to reduce paper waste. Whether you recycle newspapers, magazines, paper towels, plates, or printer paper, the difference starts with you.
Use Microfiber Cleaning Cloths
I want to take a moment to expand on paper waste and its impact on the environment by making another small suggestion. While this suggestion may initially seem small, it can make a massive difference over time. By switching from paper towels to reusable microfiber cleaning cloths, you can not only make a difference for your planet, but you can also save some money in the long run. Microfiber cloths are relatively inexpensive, in some instances costing as little as $1 each.
Aside from the environmental and financial advantages, Towel Supercenter has also listed a few other Newbridge) benefits of using microfiber cloths. Some of these include:
- Microfiber cloths can clean better than paper towels.
- Microfiber cloths are more effective at removing dirt and germs than paper.
- Microfiber is better for your overall health, as opposed to using harsh chemicals.
For these reasons, as well as three financial and environmental impacts you can make, I think that switching from paper towels to microfiber cleaning cloths is a win for your clients, your cleaning business, and the planet.
Change Air Conditioning Filters Regularly
Have you ever wondered what dust was made of? Better yet, have you ever wondered how it manages to cover everything? Fortunately for you, I have the answer to both of these questions. Per Wikipedia, dust is composed of solid matter, such as soil, volcanic eruptions, and pollution. If that’s not disturbing enough, 50% of the dust found in office spaces, buildings, and homes is made of dead skin cells. That’s pretty disgusting. Now that we know what dust is, how does it spread so widely and quickly?
While the majority of dust is brought in on the feet and clothing of customers and employees, dust is spread throughout the workplace via the air conditioning unit. If you are wondering if there is a practical solution to this problem, there is. Changing the air conditioning filters in an office building regularly can not only reduce the amount of airborne dust but can also significantly reduce allergens in the office.
Through an act as simple as regularly changing air conditioning filters, you may free up employees to focus on other areas which may be in dire need of attention by reducing the amount of dusting your cleaning service has to do.
Use Vinegar for Bathroom and Kitchen Fixtures
Vinegar has many purposes. However, would you have ever thought that vinegar would be a powerful and effective cleaner? I’m here to tell you that it most certainly is. If you find yourself wondering what makes vinegar such an effective cleaner, the answer is simple. The website thekitchn.com states that the reason vinegar is such a potent cleaner is due to its high levels of acidity. Aside from removing soap scum, hard water stains, and glue, vinegar is good for removing any buildup you can imagine.
It’s only natural if you find yourself wondering how to use vinegar in your commercial cleaning business properly. Aside from the previously mentioned uses, a simple paste made with baking soda and vinegar can be an effective way to remove stubborn stains from fabrics. However, you must make sure that you are not using vinegar on delicate fabric, as the high amount of acidity can ruin the fabric. Distilled white vinegar also makes a fantastic glass cleaner.
Purchase Natural Cleaning Products
The market for natural and eco-friendly cleaning products is becoming a booming market. There are far more choices available than in years past. The website goingzerowaste.com has compiled a list of several environmentally friendly cleaning products. Besides listing if the product is biodegradable, there is also information on packaging, eco-friendly initiatives, and if the products are n natural or organic. A few of the manufacturers l listed are:
- Pure Home
- Clean Cult
If you do not want to purchase any of the Brands listed above, you always have the option of making homemade cleaning products. I find that some products that I make in my kitchen work better than those purchased from the store. I have already mentioned the efficacy of vinegar as a cleaning solution. Lemon juice and baking soda are also highly effective cleaners as well.
By either purchasing eco-friendly cleaning products or by making your cleaning products, you can make a significant impact on the environment through not only the natural resources used to make the products but also through the resources used in the packaging. This will make a difference that you and your clients can be proud of.
As you can see, there are several ways in which you can incorporate eco-friendly cleaners and techniques into your commercial cleaning business. I have always believed that there is no better catalyst for making an impact than by staying with yourself. I would suggest starting with small changes first, such as switching to reusable microfiber cleaning cloths, incorporating recycling programs, or switching to glass bottles for your cleaning solutions.
Once you have implemented these small changes, you can then thoroughly research your cleaning products or possibly start making your all-natural cleaners. If you do this, in conjunction with a little more elbow grease, you can be well on your way to making a difference for the planet while providing a cleaner space for those who live and work here as well.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the proper procedure for cleaning an office building?
There are several ways to clean office space or a business. Fortunately,City Wide has broken up commercial cleaning into four sections. Daily chores include emptying trash cans, vacuuming and cleaning floors, cleaning the reception area, and general organizing. Dusting all office furniture and accessories, cleaning restrooms and kitchens, and refilling paper products should be done weekly. Monthly cleaning chores consist of polishing wooden surfaces, spray buffing wooden floors, and wiping down hand dryers and paper towel dispensers. Carpet scrubbing, and stripping, and refinishing floors should be fine semi-annual.
How much does it cost to hire a commercial cleaning service?
Though there is a broad spectrum of fees a commercial cleaning service can charge, Thumbtack states that the average rate charged by a commercial cleaning service is $39 per hour, with $200 being the average cost of commercial cleaning. However, these are just average, with the cost of commercial cleaning services being in the range of $25 to $90 per hour, with complete cleanings costing as low as $110, based on the square footage of the office space or building.
Please note that the contents of this blog are for informational and entertainment purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Any action taken based on the information provided in this blog is solely at your own risk. Additionally, all images used in this blog are generated under the CC0 license of Creative Commons, which means they are free to use for any purpose without attribution.
About the author. Entrepreneur and Cleaning Business Fan.
Hi! I am Shawn and I am a happy individual who happens to be an entrepreneur. I have owned several types of businesses in my life from a coffee shop to an import and export business to an online review business plus a few more and now I create online cleaning business resources for those interested in starting new ventures. It’s demanding work but I love it. I do it for those passionate about their business and their goals. That’s why when I meet a cleaning business owner, I see myself. I know how hard the struggle is to retain clients, find good employees and keep the business growing all while trying to stay competitive.
That’s why I created Cleaning Business Boss: I want to help cleaning business owners like you build a thriving business that brings you endless joy and supports your ideal lifestyle.