Industrial warehouses both large and small spaces, must present suitable conditions. This applies not only in common areas such as aisles free of obstacles, but also in the overall health of the building such as airborne germs and toxins, equipment and employees.
In this post, we will not only explain why it is so important to keep your buildings hygienic but also how to accomplish this warehouse cleaning plan most effectively.
Why Do We Clean Warehouses?
Warehouses can be used for industrial manufacturing, distribution centers, cold storage and a variety of other business operations. They carry a large number of products in stock and depending on their nature, may hold unstable chemical elements, be perishable, fragile, heavy, flammable, and countless other conditions. This requires management to pay particularly extra attention, to avoid deterioration or damage both to the reduction of its value and to the health and safety of their workforce.
Keeping a clean warehouse limits the number of accidents, spread of infectious diseases such as the current pandemic Covid-19 incorrectly known as the Coronavirus, and prevent dangerous situations such as fires or acid burns.
Here’s a few more reasons why we clean these types of buildings:
- One: The cleaning of warehouses within industrial setting increases the production efficiency. Workers respect owners and management who pay attention to the details and care about their well being. When there’s no clutter, dangerous spills to slip on or other obstructions there is less to avoid and more time to focus on production.
- Two: The organization and cleanliness of warehouses increase the safety of workers and departments. A clean warehouse HVAC system prevents the travel of infectious diseases and airborne toxins such as carcinogens from traveling and getting employees sick in other sides of the building.
- Three: Efficient cleaning of warehouses, helps to avoid the decline of the stocks, avoiding unnecessary losses. A simple spill that has gone unattended could be the catalyst of an employee tripping, falling, and damaging thousands of dollars in inventory as well as potential medical bills.
- Four: Including the cleaning of warehouses within the general maintenance program of all the facilities of business, improves the image of the companies.
Now, that you have clear the idea of the importance of maintaining proper cleaning of warehouses, let’s see the basic aspects and goals during this job.
How to clean your warehouse
Cleaning a warehouse is no easy feat. But this little guide should be able to help you. There are 4 primary phases we urge warehouse operators to focus on: Organization, Elimination, Deep Cleaning, and Control.
Emergency Preparedness Plan
First step is to organize a plan of action. A complete walkthrough of the facility is required taking note of any openings, spills, hazards, fallen inventory, or other walkway obstructions. All common surfaces are to be cleared and inventory either removed or placed in one side of the facility. This leaves an open layout to begin work.
The second objective will be to eliminate the general dirt, dust, debris as well as any other type of airborne agent. Having a faulty HVAC system can propel the travel of airborne diseases rapidly. A certified HVAC technician will be able to give you a solid idea on your risk of airborne pathogens as well as a plan of action.
Simultaneously we recommend doing a thorough inspection with a certified pest control technicians to ensure there are no rodents or other pests in the facility that can carry disease and spread around the facility.
Light fixtures, corners and ceilings of the building need to be attended to prior to the disinfection and deep cleaning period. Make sure there are no employees outside the dusting technicians as this could be a hazard.
Once the risks of disease and toxins spreading have been taken under control a deep clean is the next recommendation. All equipment, surfaces, and common areas such as staircases (and hand rails) are to be wiped down and disinfected.
Since merchandise gets stored closer to the ground, and usually piled on pallets, the highest concentration of germs are stored in the floors.The washing of floors in large areas is done with high powered surface cleaning machines attached to hot water power washers and heavy duty chemicals. Walls and other machinery can be pressure washed too however it is highly recommended all electricity is disconnected at this period of time. Do not attempt to do this without prior experience. Water must be vacuumed and disposed of in the proper facilities according to EPA recommendations.
If floors are concrete and have cracks we would recommend filling those cracks after floors have been deep cleaned. Sealing the floors is even more recommended to prevent the build up of moisture and mold release into the air.
Waste Containment and disposal
All corporations, despite their activity, must have adequate control of the trash they generate, and depending on their activity they must use the appropriate containers for each type of waste or packaging, as well as taking into account quantity and capacity to collect all this waste.
Post Clean Plan of Action
Along with your technicians develop a semi annual cleaning plan of action. While there is upfront cost to cleaning such large facilities, the loss of production, inventory, and other expenses are much greater than any cleaning company could charge.
Tips to maintaining warehouse cleanliness:
- Create a cleaning schedule for after hours technicians to maintain a good environment
- Set a calendar of deep cleaning of the warehouse, at least with each change of season, or at a minimum end of fall when merchandise leaves for Christmas shoppers and before the new season begins
- Cleaning tasks must not only reach surfaces and storage spaces but must also be carried out on cargo vehicles, machinery, and tools used in the warehouse.
- And last but not least, all warehouse operatives must be told to keep the order and general cleanliness of their section. It is a basic policy in most organizations that any company must demand from its workers, to keep order and cleanliness in their workplace.
We understand that this is a huge undertaking and requires careful planning. But operating such large facilities while creating and executing a plan like this cannot be done with one person. It is easier and far more affordable an option to outsource this project to a team of qualified professionals such as R&R Chicago Property Services. Our team of experts will not only create an immediate plan of action but also get you on a schedule and automate the entire process. If this is something you’d be interested in give us a call – 708-789-9693.