Despite the wide and wonderful array of cleaning products out there at the moment, there are always one or two stains or cleaning challenges that prove too stubborn for even the most advanced of modern chemicals. But the real solution to a lot of the most common cleaning issues might come from an unlikely source - the humble Lemon. Packed with citric acid and capable of a mild, completely organic cleaning agent, a little lemon juice can go a long way to tackling a cleaning problem. For example, every budget or diet conscious office worker knows that Tupperware is indispensable. However, a particularly rich bolognese sauce or chilli con carne can leave your container looking a little less than appetising. Cut a slice off a lemon and rub the inside of your container and you'll watch that unwanted staining disappear - though for containers that have been through the microwave one too many times, leaving the lemon juice to work overnight might be required. Speaking of the microwave, we all know how bad some office microwaves can get - an endless barrage of soups, leftovers and other snacks is enough to get anyone a little grubby. Squeeze a lemon into a microwaveable bowl half-full of water and leave in the microwave for a couple of minutes at full power. After that, any dirt or stains will have loosened right up, meaning it's just a case of wiping clean with some kitchen roll from there. Of course, you can save the hassle of cleaning anything at all by dropping us a call here at Total Clean, where we'll provide a free quote to any office in need of a spring clean.
The use of brass and copper has been a standard in building interiors such as schools, hospitals and offices for decades. Any element that uses a copper base, like brass, has been proven to help fight bacteria on contact over hundreds of years of research. However, brass door handles and panels could be facing an unlikely threat; sweaty palms. The University of Leicester revealed this week that findings from it's latest study show that he salt in human sweat could counter-act the bacteria-beating chemistry of copper. It's understood that the unique make-up of brass creates a small electrochemical reaction on contact with living organisms that disrupts the DNA of nasty germs, preventing them from reproducing. However, a team lead by Dr. Bond say that within an houor of contact, the sodium in sweat can nullify that reaction by corroding the surface of the metal creates an oxidising layer, preventing the hygenic reaction taking place. Dr Bond said: "The antimicrobial effect of copper has been known for hundreds of years. It is thought to occur as a result of a charge exchange between copper and bacteria, which leads to a degradation of the bacteria DNA. We have discovered that the salt in sweat corrodes the metal, forming an oxide layer on its surface, which is the process of corrosion – and this corrosive layer is known to inhibit the effect of the copper. We have shown that it is possible for sweat to produce an oxide layer on the metal within an hour of contact. "While it is well known that sweat corrodes brass, this is the first study to quantitatively analyse the temporal corrosion of copper alloys such as brass in the first few hours after contact between fingerprint sweat concentrations of salt and the metal.” Brass still has it's hygenic uses in offices, schools and hospitals but now we can conclusively say it needs a little help to stay at it's bacteria-busting best. So be sure to drop us a line at Total Clean to help with all aspects of keeping your premises clean at all times of day.
Tackling stains is easy in this day and age - there's a cleaning product for just about every situation! That said, there will always be times when you need to get your 'A-Team' on, and remedy that blemish with items that you'll have in your home or office; be it when you're strapped for time, or after the shops have shut. Which is why we've rounded up five great tips that help you get the better of notoriously tough spills and stains with items you'll have around the house already! 1. Spilling a glass of red wine is just about everyone's cleaning nightmare. A quick solution of equal measures washing-up liquid and hydrogen peroxide is just the one-two combo you need to get your floor back to it's best. 2. Pen ink - despite lids and retractable nibs, put one in your pocket and it will get everywhere. And few worse places can be on something made out of leather, whether that's shoes, purses, wallets or bags. One handy tip is to lightly spray the effected area with common hairspray and rub gently as it's drying. The chemicals in the spray lightly break down the ink, but in small amounts won't damage the leather. 3. Speaking of leather, if you need to touch up your shoes before a meeting but didn't want to risk the potential disaster of putting shoe polish in your handbag or suitcase, a little dab of conditioner from the hotel bathrom or your own personal washbag adds a comparable shine. 4. Wine glasses are often a point of pride for anyone who loves to host company - but what about the stains that accompany them, like lipstick? A little salt rubbed on to the stain can work wonders, breaking down makeup stains and wine, before a regular wash in the sink or dishwasher takes care of the rest. 5. Stains on anything silver can be smoothed off with any household toothpaste, but be wary of going overboard - too much applied too hard will damage silver plate, and will take the sheen off anything sterling silver.
Cleaning the carpets is the single most troubling part of household cleaning according to new research put together by our team here at Total Clean. Collating the data from dozens of Google searches revealed that more people search for help with carpet cleaning online than any other household task. Beating out such unenviable tasks as cleaning the bathroom tiles, unclogging drains and more, carpet cleaning is the one household task that leaves mane homeowners scratching their heads and turning to the internet for help. Whilst cleaning windows and furniture are all catered for with special products, many households will likely lack the specialist shampoos and equipments required to get carpets looking back to their best. Our staff here at Total Clean tackle hundreds of metres of carpet cleaning every day around the offices of London, and can certainly attest to the fact they need a lot of love after being walked all over all day. Thankfully, our teams are kitted out with the latest carpet vacuums and carpet cleaners (including our franchise partners) as well as the expert know-how to bring even the most down-trodden carpet back to it's best.
Everyone knows the benefits of a clean and tidy office; improved concentration, less sick days, better morale etc. but - unless you have a cleaning company on hand - it can be hard to stay on top of. With more and more people working from home, in small teams or hot-desking, here's 13 ways to keep your desk tidy and your office clean. Sticky Tape Keyboard Cleaner If you need to break out the mop, try this handy tip from Reddit - fill your bucket without having to hover it over the sink with a dustpan. Tension Rod For More Space If you have a set of shelves or a cubicle, use a spring-loaded or twist tension rod to hang light knick-knacks that you don't want on your desk or on the floor. Never Underestimate Magnets If you've run out of drawer space but need your supplies at hand, employ a magnet or two around your desk to give your implements a new, handy home. Coffee Filter Screen Cleaner If you want your monitor, projector lens or laptop to have a dust and smear-free finish, try using a coffee filter as an impromptu cloth. The porous design lends itself to perfectly clear glass and screens.
Organic. Natural. Eco-Friendly. There's more pressure on both commercial bodies and households than ever before to make their products and services kinder to the environment and nasty chemical-free. Even in the world of commercial cleaning, where people expect industrial-strength detergents and high-powered equipment, regulations to protect the environment are consistently being tweaked. Whilst we wouldn't necessarily use any of these in our duties of office cleaning in London, here are 5 unlikely organic cleaning alternatives you could use in your own home or office. 1. Lemons One of the old favourites and the inspiration for a million cleaning products (or at least, their fragrance) the natural acidity of lemons has made them a firm favourite in the world of cleaning. Cut a lemon in half and it becomes the ideal cleaning tool for wood. Spruce up chopping boards and wooden surfaces with this citrus solution. 2. Coffee Grinds Have a coffee machine in the office? Use the grinds to clean greasy surface and as an unlikely deodorant. As something that is readily available in any London office, we'd suggest using it to give the communal microwave a new lease of life and doing everyone's food a favour by placing an open zip-lock bag full in the fridge. 3. Walnuts Is your office home to a lot of wooden floors or furniture? Then it's inevitable there's going to be some chips, scraps or scratches making things look unsightly. Take the edge off any damage to wood anywhere by chopping a walnut in half and rubbing on the offending area. The natural oils help fill in the surface without damaging any of the surrounding area. 4. Olive Oil If there's anything stainless steel in your office that needs a bit of a buff, olive oil is a great alternative to specialist polish. But if it's more of a scrub you're after, mix the oil with some coarse salt for a solution that's perfect where a job requires a little more elbow grease. 5. Cream of Tartar Something that should be in any good baker's cupboards, cream of tartar is a slightly acidic ingredient that seems to have limited uses. But with a couple of drops of water per tablespoon, you'll have a paste works miracles on cleaning pots and pans. If your selection of cookware now boasts brown spots where it was once silver - this is the solution to your problems!
Whilst we're all about office-cleaning, many people forget that a commercial cleaning company's duties don't always end at the door. Many of our clients have fleet vehicles or company cars that need the same TLC as any other working environment, and one of our biggest requests is how to keep your car in order. For some it's just a means of getting from A to B (and on the weekends, C and D) but for others, it's a mobile office, a first impression or a tool of their trade - so why is it our cars are clutter magnets? Never fear, though as your motor will be back to it's neat and tidy best once you've put this list of car cleaning tips into effect. SPACE For anyone that's heard of Julie Morgenstern’s SPACE method, this guide will sound awfully familiar. For those who haven't, the SPACE method of cleaning makes your task easier by splitting it into five smaller, more easily-accomplished tasks. The result will be a perfect baseline, that you can then go on to manage more easily from then on. So, grab yourself a heavy-duty bin-bag and roll up your sleeves - it's time to get stuck in! S - Sort Start off by removing everything from the car that was not in there when you bought it. No excuses, it doesn't matter how small and insignificant it may seem - once you start letting one nicknack keep it's place, you'll start making excuses for others! Once everything is out on your driveway or depot floor, it's time to put sort into action. Divide up all the items you now have into logical groups. We can't lay these out for you, as they'll depend on what line of work you're in, but for us, it's something like documents (insurance, manual, service history) Work-related, (rubber gloves, cleaning solutions, janitorial supplies) Electronics (Sat-Nav, iPod cable, Bluetooth Kit, SatNav) and so on. Once you've got over the shock of all the stuff you keep in your car, it's time to go to step 2… P - Purge It's time to set aside your feelings and start being ruthless - it's time to start binning the things you don't need. And remember - everything you bin here, will save you time later. Start with the obvious; any old food packaging, receipts, parking dockets, water bottles and so on should be the first thing to go. Then, move on to the things that are broken, now-useless or pointless. Do you really need all ten of those pens? Of course not, put some back in the office. How about that outdated road atlas? No, no-one on eBay will want it. Bin it. Now your car is freshly purged, grab the vacuum if you have one and give the surfaces a clean with a damp cloth. A - Assign Now you've established what you really need in your car, it's time to find a place for it all. If you're cleaning a company car you might be using to pick up clients, you'll want to keep everything out of sight, so maximise the glove-box and storage compartments in the door. If you're in a company van or vehicle with a large boot, consider buying a box to keep in the rear of the vehicle for all your work-related items - freeing up the glovebox and centre console for things you need to have on hand quickly. E - Equalise The final hurdle is the hardest - and the longest - this step means looking after your car from now on. Set a time when it's convenient to sort out the inside of your vehicle, first thing on a Monday or last thing on a Friday are personal favourites to carry out a quick whip-around; put all your rubbish in a plastic bag, scoop up that loose change and - please - don't eat that chewing gum you just found under one of the mats.
Mould - of all the signs that something is in need of a good clean, this is the one with the most negative attitudes directed at it. Whilst you can usually get away with a dusty surface or a mug that's seen one teabag too many, any visitor to your office is going to assume the worst if they see and mould growing on your window seals or ceiling. Which is a shame, as mould can grow essentially wherever there is moisture and it's a fairly common in just about every building. But the good news is, it's as clean-able as it is fast-growing - and we've got ten tips to help you break the mould when cleaning your office or workplace: 1. The Number 1 tip for tackling mould is knowing that it feeds on moisture in dark corners - In the words of Sun Tzu; know your enemy. 2. This means reducing humidity in the air. We know from working in London offices during the summer, the air get seem a little 'heavy' - invest in a dehumidifier, especially if you work in a basement. 3. Is mould growing in somewhere seemingly random? Check behind the wallpaper for signs of condensation - you might have a leak from an outside wall, or even worse - problems with a pipe inside your wall. 4. Crack open a window! The easiest way to prevent mould growing is be having fresh air circulating and a way out for moisture. Leave a window open during office hours - this is especially important in office bathrooms. 5. Don't leave any spillages! If someone spills a mop-bucket or there's a leak in the ceiling, you'll have about 24-48 hours before mould will start to take root - dry everything as best as you can, as often as you can to stop this happening! 6. Hard surfaces are just as susceptible to mould as anywhere else - but tend to be cleaned much more easily! A little detergent with warm water will get most spores off. 7. As for softer surfaces like ceiling tiles, your best bet is a thin-bleach solution. Handle with care and be prepared for discolouration on anything other than white, but mixing a thin (not thick bleach, like Domestos) with water will be absorbed more readily by the material - don't leave it on for more than a few minutes, though! 8. If you know a good janitorial supply company (hint, hint…) professional mould cleaner is your secret weapon. It's anti-fungal properties stop the mould growing back, making your cleaning a more worthwhile endeavour. 9. Never just paint over it! Covering a damp or mouldy spot on a wall might make you feel a bit better for a week or so, but masking it in this way only serves to hide a bigger problem. 10. Let the sun shine! Sunlight actually helps remove the staining formed by some strains of mould - so where possible, leave the curtains or blinds open and keep the room well-ventilated for an organic way to remove mould!
Whilst it's been said that a bad workman blames his tools, here at Total Clean, we understand the value of high-quality janitorial supplies to help us in our office-cleaning duties around London (as well as good ol' fashioned elbow grease, of course!) So, here's a guide to a few essential janitorial supplies you'll never find us without... The Kitchen - Bactericidal Cleaner and Disinfectant
After recent studies have revealed just how much of a breeding ground for bacteria the office kitchen can be, everyone wants to be safe in the knowledge their theirs is safe. Whilst this is news to some, we've always known the value of a clean kitchen (it's where you make the tea, after all - and what's more important than tea?) which is why we not only use, but supply super-strength Bactericidal Cleaner and Disinfectant to offices throughout London. Why is the right cleaner and disinfectant so important? As well as making sure it kills 99.999% of bacteria - you also have to make sure your choice of cleaner won't leave a harmful residue when your staff come to prepare their food after use. The Windows - Specialist Window Cleaning Liquid Cleaning windows should be easy; they're big, flat and it's easy to see what you've missed a spot. But if you want streak-free, film-less and dermatologically-friendly clean windows, it sometimes feels like you're asking for the world. We make life as easy as it should be; if you know janitorial supplies like we do, we know exactly which brands and formulas to use for windows of every kind. Floor Treatments and Carpet Cleaning - Carpet Detergents & Rinse-Free Polish For something that gets walked on all day, there's a lot to be said for a clean floor. Which is why we use carpet detergents specially-diluted for high traffic environments like London offices. Team that with a combination of janitorial supplieslike chewing gum remover, spot cleaners and dry foam, and there's no floor we can't bring back to it's best!
Laundry, doing the washing, ironing - whatever you call it, it's still one of the most common stumbling blocks in anyone's cleaning routines. [caption id="attachment_472" align="aligncenter" width="451" caption="8 Tips to Cleaner Clothes - Help with your laundry from totalclean.co.uk"][/caption] In an age where washing machines contain more computing power than the Apollo 11 capsule, how is it I can put a load of clothes in and have my favourite jumped transformed into bobble-covered mess and my missus' dresses come out two sizes smaller? Well, if you're anything like some of the Total Clean staffers, you'll no doubt want to print out our Guide to Perfect Laundry and pin it up in the utility room, as we're going explain how to make your whites that little bit whiter. So your clothes smell of petrol after dry cleaning and that ketchup stain is nowhere near gone. If you’re laundry service isn’t satisfying your cleaning needs, it’s about time you changed it. Esther Lennaerts, Executive Chairperson ofPressto dry cleaning gives us all the dirt on a good laundry service. · Always check your pockets! We've all done it - from tissues and receipts to phones and money, it only takes a moment to makes sure your pockets are clear before you turn the washer on. · If you're tackling a stain, always read the label of your garment and the detergent. Some cleaning agents can seriously damage more delicate fabrics. · Going to the Dry Cleaners? Be wary of anything that isn't Perchloroethylene - or 'Perc'. As the standard solvent in the Dry Cleaning industry, it's proven to be gentle on fabrics. · Make sure you're ironing or pressing your clothes correctly. Research has shown that ironing or pressing in the wrong places is one of the top causes of damage to clothes, due to the extreme heat used. Don't be too proud to ask someone (or Google it!). · Never store a garment with a stain because the stain will penetrate the fibre and become impossible to remove. · If you spill a liquid (e.g. the dreaded red wine!) - always dab the stain (never rub) and always put a tissue underneath the wet spot, to prevent it soaking through to the next layer. · Be wary of clear spills! Things like champagne, vodka and rum all have sugar in them, that will eventually turn brown if left unwashed. · Before you store any of your garments, allow them to air for at least two hours to let the smells disperse - especially handy if you or your friends are smokers.