Keeping the floors clean is a key priority in the hospitality industry and other commercial spaces, especially where food is prepared or served. State health and safety regulations, as well as the health and wellbeing of patrons and employees, require special attention be paid to flooring surfaces. That said, cleaning the kitchen floors can also be one of the most time consuming tasks of the day for food service personnel.
Below are a few tips from Restaurant-Hospitality.com1 to help operators ensure that the task gets the attention it requires:
Before cleaning food service floors, make sure floor drains are unobstructed and working properly.
Food service floors, which are typically quarry or ceramic, should be sealed with a low- or anti-slip coating to foster proper sanitation and reduce the possibility of a slip-and-fall accident.
All floor care work should be performed before food handling/processing equipment is cleaned; this helps prevent floor soils and debris from becoming airborne and landing on workstations or equipment.
If using mops and buckets, they should be cleaned/changed daily. Soiled mops and buckets can spread contaminants across the floor, increasing contamination concerns.
A squeegee should be used to move moisture into floor drains for quicker drying.
A 175-rpm buffer should be used at least once per week, or daily if necessary, to loosen soils, grease and oil that may build up on floors. Use a blue or green scrubbing pad along with a 17-inch or 20-inch floor machine; a smaller machine can better maneuver in and around counters and cooking areas in a food service kitchen.
Mops, buckets, squeegees, chemicals and all floor care equipment should be stored off the ground on shelves or racks. This helps keep the equipment clean and deters pests.
Operators must also ensure that employees are addressing any anti-fatigue or floor mats that are used in the kitchen area. The mats should be removed to be cleaned and sanitized at closing, then allowed to air dry before the facility reopens1.
Another option for restaurant operators is to install flooring with Microban® antimicrobial product protection built into the flooring itself. The technology is not a substitute for cleaning practices, but it does help keep the surface of the floor cleaner for longer by helping to inhibit the growth of stain and odor causing bacteria.
One such flooring provider is Polylast Systems™. Polylast offers a flooring solution for the hospitality industry that not only contains antimicrobial product protection, but is also permanently affixed to the subsurface and can be cleaned in place, providing an alternative to the costly chore of frequent removal and cleaning of rubber mats. In addition, the flooring systems are much easier to clean – you simply scrub the floor with dish soap, then rinse with water2.
Polylast flooring systems are slip-resistant, reduce noise and provide a cushioned effect for the comfort of employees. Each Polylast flooring product can be made in a wide range of colors, absorbencies, rigidities, and finishes, and the company offers a particular advantage in its ability to control every aspect of the application with certainty – guaranteeing production of the perfect product to fit any need.