As a cleaning contractor, you hear quite a bit about the value of mats—they help keep soil and moisture out, which helps keep buildings cleaner and healthier. But you might know less about how to actually care for and clean mats.
If the mats at the facility you maintain are rentals, picked up, and replaced by a service, then only some of the cleaning and care tips in this article apply. But if the building managers you work with have purchased high-performance mats, which are generally considered more effective at capturing and trapping soils, than these tips are for you.
For instance, as warmer weather approaches, it would appear appropriate to roll up mats that were installed for winter weather. However, this is not recommended. Rolling the mats can put pressure on their backing, which can damage them. When storing mats, always lay them flat in an area where they will not be walked on and where nothing will be placed on top of them. This will help ensure they are healthy and ready to go when winter weather returns.
Other matting tips include the following:
Note that the care and cleaning suggestions here typically apply to mats at building entries. But you may encounter many types of mats used for other specific purposes, such as anti-fatigue mats, antimicrobial mats, flow-through mats, and others.
The proper method for cleaning some of these mats—for instance, the flow-through rubber mats—may be obvious to some. Depending on the soiling, a flow-through rubber mat should be cleaned/brushed with a mild cleaner, rinsed with water, and allowed to dry.
But when it comes to the other types of specialty mats listed, it is best to hold off cleaning until you are sure how it is done. Usually the distributor or the manufacturer’s customer service department will provide all the cleaning and care details necessary to do the job.
Mats do a great job of keeping facilities cleaner and healthier. Giving them proper care and cleaning will protect the investment made in mats so they will be effective for years to come.
For more information and tips on matting, including how to install and care for them, and an index of 10 different types of mats, view Adam Strizzi’s article, “More on Mats Than You Ever Thought Possible,” in the March 2015 issue of Cleaning and Maintenance Management.