Last Sunday was our first TRADE Show event on the Island, and I have to say, I was extremely impressed with all the work the POW Chamber of Commerce and their volunteers put into preparing for the big day!
Thanks to their work, it was really easy setting up and fun to be on the business side of the booth. Yes, I was in the same area for nearly the whole time, but I found it very engaging to meet all the new people who came by to say Hello! and learn more about what we had to offer them and the POW community!
The number one interest at our booth was definitely the carpet shampooer. We carry The Big Green carpet shampooer and a variety of Bissell cleaning solutions to fit a wide scope of mishaps, stains, and smells. For more examples of our Big Green at work, click "here" to see before and after pictures of one of our latest carpet cleaning jobs.
That being said, we offer a wide variety of services from business janitorial, exit cleanings, and regular house cleanings, to carpets, windows, and even chores like laundry and dishes. We make it a point to help you with whatever cleaning needs you may have! If you don't see what you needed help with, simply contact us with your request and we will see if it fits into our scope of expertise!
I wanted to take a moment and give a big "Thank You" to all those who shared their cleaning tips/tricks and asked questions about how we clean or what chemicals we use.
In response to those who asked about our cleaning solutions due to various health conditions, sensitive skin and noses, or various allergies, we will make a concerted effort to carry more gentile (yet still effective) cleaning solutions as an alternative to the more commonly used cleaning compounds in our scrubbing arsenal. All you have to do is tell us your cleaning chemical preferences, and we will do what we can to make it happen!
In closing, I look forward to working with you all and seeing you at the next TRADE Show!
In my last post, I talked about when and how to use Mop&Glo. Most importantly, it is not recommended for unsealed/worn wood or unsealed ceramic surfaces. *If applied to these surfaces, it can leave spots, streaks, and/or discoloration that can be very difficult and sometimes impossible to remove.
In this post, I want to help identify these types of floors and how to tell if they are sealed or not.
To tell if your wood floor is sealed, find an inconspicuous area, dab a drop of water on the surface, and see if it soaks in or beads on top. If the water drop beads on top of the wood, your floor is sealed. Surface-sealed floors are stain and water-damage resistant and easiest to clean. Unless the floor is worn, it should be ready for Mop&Glo or other acrylic and wax applications.
Ceramic tile can come un-glazed or glazed. Glazed ceramic tile does not usually require sealant because the glaze itself acts as a seal against general stains. However, glazed or not, unsealed grout could be negatively affected while using a product like Mop&Glo. If you want to make or keep a shine on these types of tiles, make sure un-glazed tile and unprotected grout are sealed before applying waxes or products like Mop&Glo.
If the tile has been sufficiently sealed, when you do the bead test, you should see that the water beads up on the surface and will also ‘roll’ across the tile as you blow on it. If not – then either it has not been sealed correctly, or it requires preparation and re-sealing. As with ceramic floors, the grout also needs to be sealed before using waxing or floor shine products.
Most laminate flooring is sold already sealed, but it is obtainable in an unfinished state. To tell if your laminate floor is sealed or not, go to an inconspicuous area of the floor (the back of a closet perhaps) and start with the water bead test. If the water soaks in or the floor changes color, it is unsealed. Another way of testing for sealant is to gently scrape a small area with a blade edge or a coin. If you see a bit of clear material on the edge, it is most likely sealed.
If you do not want to do the bead or scrape test, look for signs like lifting edges at the seams, especially in water-prone areas, such as the bathroom and kitchen. The laminate or adhered wood skin can begin to peel off the manufactured base over time, especially if it was left unprotected and wet.
Mop&Glow seems to be a very popular in-home product here on the Island, so it will be the focus of our first tip of the week!
In my opinion, Mop&Glo is a mixed bag. When applied correctly to a properly prepared floor, the results can be stunning, leaving you with a satisfying protective shine to enjoy on those wonderful sunny days. However, we have noticed that there are a few common mistakes that are easy to make, though sometimes intensive to fix. The most common issues being either dirt and hair being trapped between the layers of dried product or the buildup and/or discoloration of floors due to extra solution or using on the wrong kind of floor.
So, the first question:
When Should You Use Mop&Glo?
Mop&Glo is used predominantly for tile, vinyl, hardwood, marble, linoleum, ceramic and other no-wax floors. It's main purpose is to create a protective surface that not only shines, but helps prevent everyday dents and scratches from marring the flooring underneath. Most importantly, it is not recommended for unsealed/worn wood or unsealed ceramic surfaces. *If applied to these surfaces, it can leave spots, streaks, and/or discoloration that can be very difficult and sometimes impossible to remove.
How Often Should Mop&Glo be Applied?
This depends on your floor as well as the rate of foot traffic across the floor in question. If you have heavy foot traffic and want the shiniest floor you can have, apply Mop&Glo two times a month maximum. For low or regular foot traffic, I find that applying once a month is all you need, which saves you product and greatly reduces the amount of build-up that eventually accumulates around the edges of the floors.
If you are nervous about using Mop&Glo on your hardwood floors or have already sworn it off due to a bad experience, watch the video below for an alternative way to keep your hardwood floors clean and shiny:
How to prepare and apply your floors for Mop&Glo
Technically, you can mop your floor straight with Mop&Glo as long as you pick up any leftover particles during or right after mopping. However, I find it better to sweep/vacuum and mop very well beforehand, let the floor dry, then apply Mop&Glo, picking up any particles still left (they always seem to come from somewhere, huh?). My opinions aside, here are the official steps to applying Mop&Glo, according to manufacturers instructions:
"Before applying Mop & Glo, sweep or vacuum the floor.
Common Issues with Mop&Glo
The most common issues I see after people have used Mop&Glo are dirt or hair stuck in the layers of dried applications and a grayish buildup around the edges of the floor, near the baseboards. Other common complaints are sticky areas, discoloration, or a dull/milky appearance after drying.
Trapped dirt and hair often arise from not cleaning the floor well enough before applications or unexpected foot traffic before drying. The discolorations and sticky buildup usually occur if the floor was unsealed/worn wood, unsealed ceramic or porcelain tile, or after many applications of the product.
Sometimes wood and tile floors come out milky, hazy, or streaky. I believe this is most often caused by over-applying, or using on previously oiled or waxed floors. Since Mop&Glo is acrylic based, it may not mix well with previously applied waxes and oils.
How to remove Mop&Glo from your floors.
Applying Mop&Glo can be easy and produce satisfying results, but when things do go wrong, it can be a pain to remove.
According to the manufacturers, "If your floor shows signs of build-up or discoloration, regularly remove the older layers of polish with the following process:
Mix 1/4 cup all purpose cleaner (non bleach containing), and add 1 cup ammonia in 1/2 gallon of warm water and spread over floor. (Do not mix bleach based products with ammonia, test in an inconspicuous area first.) If your sealed hardwood floor shows signs of build up, remove the older layers of polish with a commercial floor stripper product suitable for your flooring..."
Other methods people have reported to work for them *use at your own risk:
So, it's gotta be asked:
Well, yes and no.
Yes, it can be hard to juggle a family and keep your own house in order while cleaning other people's places. After a day (or several days) of particularly hard work, who wants to come home and clean house? I have to admit, there are days that I just ignore it all and save energy for my clients. And that is okay! It's my choice, and that is the beauty of it!
On the flip side, I find it rather rewarding to go into a building and leave it better than I found it, especially when the client is unable to do it themselves. Despite the energy expended during a job, I find a certain satisfaction in seeing everything put back to order and knowing that my honest, hard work will help others live healthier and happier lives in their home and work spaces.
As for the pay, while cleaning does not create a fortune (for most cleaning businesses at least), it is enough for our family to pay the bills, put food on the table, and even squirrel a little money into savings, which is why we work, right? I feel cleaning is often taken for granted, but that it is a service that people will always need (like nursing, food production, or construction) and therefore offers a basic level of job security, if you are willing to work for it.
So, here comes the most important question: Why start a professional cleaning business?
The answer to this question is different for everyone, however, the biggest driving factor for us was to spend more time together as a family. We felt that the regular 9am-5pm work week prevented us from having the family-time we craved. With a toddler added to the mix, we found it was quite stressful for one of us to be gone all day and sometimes not even see our little-one due to sleep schedules, much less have the energy to play or fully interact if he was awake. This coupled with an unsustainable living situation and the need to move to Hollis, AK, we had the perfect storm for change.
So after some brainstorming, we did the unthinkable. We both quit the jobs that were keeping our family apart, moved to Hollis, and used our skills to create an opportunity to work as a family: Southeast Clean & Care!
Sure, there are some days we look back and wondered if we made the right decision, but we have never been stronger as a family, than after we started working for ourselves. There is a certain satisfaction in not only being with my family all day, but also creating the ability for ourselves to decide our own schedules and to be fully responsible for our own income.
This is the first post for the Southeast Clean & Care blog, so stay tuned for more tips, tricks, and insights into general cleaning and running your own cleaning business!
I am an adventurous homemaker with a passion for wandering the forest trails of Alaska. When not exploring under every leaf, twig, and rock with my husband and two year old son, I tend to busy myself with keeping habitat trails from forming around the house. After more than 10 years of experience cleaning under various companies, we decided to make our own path and that is how Southeast Clean & Care started!