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Whether during the COVID-19 pandemic or just as a general rule of safety, cleaning supplies are a necessity in any given warehouse.

However, what a lot of people are surprised to learn is that when you use your cleaning products can be just as important as how in many cases. Not every sanitation product can fight all bacteria, and part of keeping your warehouse clean and sterile is knowing when to employ different cleaning methods, and why.

Overtime, certain bacteria or viruses can start to “outsmart” the usual methods of cleaning, becoming immune to the products you use every day the same way we might become immune to certain strands of the common cold through exposure. Various government agencies have begun to create and suggest regulations surrounding the rotation of certain cleaning products into and out of your daily cleaning routine, including (but not limited to):

  • Alcohol-based disinfectants
  • Bleach products
  • Ammonia
  • Hydrogen peroxide

and others. The thinking behind this rotation is that a very small percentage of bacteria can survive any given cleaning product, and if those bacteria spawn or reproduce, they can be immune to the same product going forward.

 

A solid plan for rotation, then, would include two major factors: the surfaces being cleaned, and the time between cleanings.

Many different surfaces in a warehouse will already have different cleaning requirements. Different products and cleaning methods will be needed for the wire shelves than the steel shelves, not to mention the various devices and office furniture you’ll encounter in a warehouse. The first step would be to take inventory of everything you use to clean different surfaces and different areas, and understand why they are used on those specific surfaces. This can give you a better understanding of what you’re working with, as well as knowing what products can be added to the rotation as needed.

 

From there, you’ll need to set a schedule. By now your warehouse should have a clear-cut rotation and schedule for what gets cleaned when. Review this schedule and cross-reference it with your list of cleaning supplies – for example, if your shipping/receiving area gets wiped down at the end of every shift, use this time to alternate between two cleaning products (bleach wipes vs. an ammonia solution spray, for example) to cover more ground and prevent any localized bacteria from having the chance to “get used” to your cleaning products.

By adding a schedule and rotation to the products you use to clean, above and beyond the standard schedule you already use to clean various areas of the warehouse, you can add an increased layer of precaution to your cleaning routines and keep your team, customers, and products safer than ever.

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