Road Salt & Your Floors: How to keep the winter from damaging your workplace

The back side of a snow plow spreading salt and sand on the road

When winter rolls in, so does winter prep. That means that sidewalks, roadways, and parking lots are often laden with road salt (or ice melt) and sand, which can not only make your workplace look dirty when tracked in by the many feet that may visit you, but can also damage or destroy your flooring or carpeting. Here’s what you can do to minimize impact to your flooring and keep it looking better:

Use salt & Ice Melt appropriately

We know that you want your customers and employees to be safe, and you certainly don’t want anyone to slip on ice or snow outside of your workplace. If you’re not the person overseeing salting and shoveling, make sure the person who is, isn’t overdoing it. Piles of ice melt or sand , concentrated in one area, isn’t going to help your visitors and employees and will only end up being tracked into your workplace. Make sure ice melt, salt, and sand are spread evenly, and only used when necessary.

Recognize salt & ice melt deposits

Salt or ice melt are pretty easy to spot. You can see it when snow or ice melts, and a ring of white residue remains. It’s highly visible on the road, and may also be highly visible on your rugs, carpeting, and flooring. Still, not all salt (especially ice melts) may be visible, so committing to routine mopping and vacuuming can help keep down the amount of residue that lingers on your flooring.

Clean with a neutralizer

If you have wooden or tile flooring, you may be doubly concerned about the damage salt and ice melt can do to your flooring. Mopping, when performed inadequately and improperly, can result in spreading excess salt around. Utilizing a salt/ice melt neutralizer is important for cleaning up residue. Neutralizing solutions change the pH of salt and ice melt from alkaline which will help dissolve and remove the residue without causing further damage.

Utilize Extra Mats

Routine cleaning is the only method to keep road salt and sand from hanging around longer than necessary, but you can still minimize the damage to floors. Placing out area mats that can be easily swapped out or cleaned in high traffic areas can help keep your lobby or workplace from looking dirty. 

Recognize a damaged floor

Tiles that have lost their sheen and shine are often scratched and damaged and may need resurfinishing. If you recognize your floor may need some help, it’s best to wait until the snowy season has passed so a freshly refinished floor isn’t immediately damaged by salt, ice melt orsand.

Employ a routine cleaner

If you don’t have someone cleaning up nightly, it may be time to schedule a routine facility cleaning service like EcoSource! Reach out to us today and tell us about your workplace. We’d be happy to help you get into a green cleaning habit.

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