Entryways are the first line of defense against many contaminants. Special effort should be focused in these areas. This begin by cleaning outside walkways leading into the building, especially during inclement weather.
The main job of matting is to stop as much dirt as possible from progressing further into the building. When I perform a walk-through of a new facility, I begin my inspection at the entrance, taking special note of the matting, or lack thereof.
If possible, there should be combination of mats, including a scraper mat just inside the door, and one or more finer, carpeted mats, that will continue to capture dirt and debris as individuals walk into the building. Think of mats as entrance filters, because they filter the dirt that comes in from the outside.
It is estimated that every pound of dirt that enters a building takes about $700 to remove. The more dirt captured by entryway matting, the less time is needed cleaning throughout the rest of the building. By using sufficient matting, it is estimated that you can capture up to 85% of the dirt on the shoes of those entering your building.
Not only does this extra soil make your building appear dirty and affecting indoor air quality, it can also cause wear and tear on the flooring, both hard floors and carpeted.
You should try to provide 12 to 15 feet of matting at the door. This will stop about 80 to 85 percent of the dirt. The more matting, the better. People don’t always stop to wipe their feet, so you want each person to get at least four or five steps on the matting.
Entryway mats are very important, however, interior mats also play a key role in keeping your facilities clean and healthy.
Interior mats are typically found throughout the building in main walkways, before elevators, escalators and stairs, at food service areas, and at transition areas, where a hard surface floors meet a carpeted floors.
Interior mats are designed to prevent soil and moisture being transported from one area of the facility to another. Usually these are wiper mats specifically designed to wipe dust, moisture, soil, and contaminants from shoes as they are walked acrossed.
As I mentioned above, the soil drug through your building can destroy your flooring. Interior mats will help protect your floor's finish and reduce floor care costs by reduces refinishing cycles, which can be a major cost savings for any facility.
Not all interior wiper mats are the same. Mats should be a blend of microfiber and olefin. The combination has much higher dust and soil retention properties. Also, microfiber is positively charged, attracting lint and dust, and preventing them from becoming airborne or being tracked throughout a facility. The olefin matting is designed to hold moisture, which promotes safety as well as prevents it from traveling over floor surfaces.
The mat's backing is also important. Some interior mats have a thermoflex vinyl backing. Not only can this be more cost effective than a rubber backing, it helps prevent yellowing or negatively impacting the floor finish underneath.
So in summary, matting can not only make your facilities cleaner and healthier, they will save you money!
Whether you rent or purchase your mats, they will benefit your building's occupants and save you money on cleaning and floor maintenance cost.
As an additional note, purchased floor mats tend to be of higher quality and more effective at protecting your facility. Invariably they cost less in the long run.
Feel free to ask me for an evaluation of your building, including a cost comparison of your current matting and cleaning program.