Safety Precautions When Using Professional Cleaning Equipment

While trying to create a sparkling and picture-perfect image, we also place ourselves at an added risk. Cleaning can be a satisfying and therapeutic task, but it’s important to keep safety in mind when performing any cleaning job. From using the right cleaning equipment to properly handling cleaning chemicals, there are many potential hazards to consider. 

Fortunately, a few precautions will not only lower your odds of harm but also shrink the time it takes to clean our spaces absolutely. Whether you’re tackling a deep clean or a quick tidy-up, this article will share some essential safety precautions to be observed when using professional cleaning equipment.

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The Importance of Safety Precautions

A clean space can support productivity, contain health risks, enhance safety, and inspire the overall mood of the person cleaning. Knowing the risks ahead can help put appropriate control measures in place to reduce and eradicate these risks, keeping everyone safe and free from harm.

Many professional cleaning procedures involve the use of harmful chemicals and heavy or oversized equipment. Because of this, when using these tools and products, health and safety precautions must become everyone’s top priority.

Making use of cleaning agents can lead to severe risks if they interact with the body because of the presence of chemicals inside. The leading causes of work-related skin disease in the UK are wet work and soap & cleaners. While cleaning, you stand a risk of hazards ranging from manual handling of cleaning equipment to daily skin complications such as like 

  • Dermatitis (sore, dry, flaky skin)
  • Eczema
  • Skin allergies
  • Asthma due to ingredients that may affect humans’ breathing
  • Possibility of skin burns caused by toxic chemicals found in cleaning agents
  • Eye damage

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Common Cleaning Safety Hazards

Several common accidents can occur during cleaning.

  1. Typical injuries that usually involve some falls. Perhaps we lose our balance or trip over something left out where it doesn’t belong. You can also slip or fall when attempting to wipe up spills spread on wet floors.
  2. Burns happen when engaging with appliances that produce heat like ovens or steam cleaners.
  3. You can inhale destructive fumes when you use cleaning products that give off fumes or when you clean in a badly ventilated area.
  4. When you use cleaning products with harsh chemicals, you may fall victim of eye or skin irritation.
  5. Electrocution is possible if you use electrical appliances, like power washers, or vacuum cleaners close to water.
  6. You can cut or scrape yourself when you use a sharp object like scissors or knives, while cleaning.

Situations Where Safety Precautions Must Be Observed

There are cases where it is crucial to take note of safety guides during your cleaning process. Some are:

  1. When you use a ladder or other equipment to reach high areas to clean, such as shelves or windows. Misusing these tools can lead to falls or other accidents.
  2. When you use cleaning items that include unsafe chemicals like bleach or ammonia. These can trouble the skin and eyes and inhaling their fumes can be detrimental.
  3. When you clean up spills or broken glass, it can create slipping hazards.
  4. When you clean up with appliances that produce heat like ovens or steam cleaners, they can risk burns or fires if misused.
  5. When you clean up close to water, like the bathroom or close to a sink, wet floors tend to be slippery and raise the chances of falls.

Safety Precautions You Should Take When Using Professional Cleaning Equipment

There are a lot of things to discuss when it comes to safety precautions. From the storage and treatment of your cleaning supplies and chemicals to the cleaning process itself. It’s crucial to understand the precautions you should take to avoid accidents and achieve outstanding results.

1.    Understand the Cleaning Equipment

From your trusty garden hose to more advanced machines like gas-powered and electric pressure cleaners, it’s essential to grasp how they work and their components. You should be suitably trained in using cleaning equipment like floor scrubbers and buffers.

Embrace safe working practices while understanding and knowing how to use the equipment, follow manufacturer guidelines, store safely, understand safety warning signs, and more. 

2.    Restricting access (To prevent slips)

When cleaning, you should assess the risk of slips and trips and take reasonable precautions. They can be simple assessments like spillages, and wet or dirty floors (most slips happen on wet floors).

  • Always clean at the right time and correctly, 
  • Ensure wet floor signs are always used: there are those people who slip on floors that are left wet post-cleaning. Signs and cones only warn of a hazard; they do not stop people from entering the area. If the spill is not clear, they are usually ignored. If safe, obstruct passage to wet floors with barriers, or by locking doors; or perhaps, simply clean in sections.
  • Ensure the right products and equipment are used for the cleaning job. 

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3.    Only pursue correct procedures

Following an effective cleaning procedure is vital for preventing health and safety risks. It ensures that harmful microorganisms are entirely removed and not inadvertently spread and that any additional risks are minimized. 

Cleaning frequency and access to handwashing and hand-sanitizing facilities should increase as the number of people using the space increases, whether entering or exiting the setting. 

Always follow through with safety precautions that come alongside cleaning products. For instance:

  • If rubber gloves are instructed, use rubber gloves.
  • If the product includes harsh products and chemicals, contemplate sporting a facemask.
  • If the information proposes that you aerate the room while using it, let the windows and doors open and turn on the fans and vents.

4.    Storage, handling of cleaning supplies, and use of containers 

Keep chemicals contained and appropriately sealed in their original containers specified for the cleaning mixes. Label the cleaning supplies so they do not mingle with other supplies. Store them properly and upright to avoid leaking or evaporation of your cleaning agents.

Many people buy their cleaning solutions and items in bulk and decant them into mini-sized containers to take to cleaning jobs or onto sites. When this happens, always ensure that all containers are appropriately labeled. You must also follow the manufacturer’s procedures for decanting hazardous products and ensure that the allocated containers are used or stored away labeled.

It is improbable that any adult would ever think of drinking a cleaning substance intentionally. However, now and again, you find drink or food containers as storage for hazardous cleaning substances. This is not right. Ensure that, when a container is unlabelled, it has no content.

5.    Mixing safety of Cleaning chemicals

Read the instruction list (or the bottle) of the chemicals you intend using. Ensure to label any new blends in chemical-safe containers. Do not mix chemicals that are unadvisable when mixed or that create harmful mixtures, caustic smells, or fumes. 

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6.    Dealing with Chemicals and Detergents

Make sure to use chemicals specifically for the cleaning job and surface. Consider using gentle or natural cleaning formulas like water and soap or vinegar and water to support a favorable work environment. 

7.    Ventilation

When harsh fumes are part of the cleaning job, you want to let in fresh air into the space the best way you can. Whether it is a simple task of opening a window or setting up fans for fierce smells, take the extra step to ensure the space is safe for everyone involved.

8.    Chemical Spillages

Take the correct steps to mop, sweep, or soak up the chemicals, and carefully discard junk correctly in sealed plastic bags and metal cans. Also, refer to the bottle for other suggested alternatives for cleanup and removal.

General Safety Precautions 

  1. Do not drink, eat, or smoke around your cleaning supplies. Be safe around cleaning and hazardous chemicals. Always take a break and time away when necessary.
  • Examples of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) are safety shoes, gloves, uniforms, goggles, etc. Ensure that the right kit is worn by all responsible to help reduce or avert injuries, accidents, and diseases.

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  1. Appropriate footwear should be worn to provide a more effective grip in areas susceptible to spills or when floor cleaning is carried out.
  2. Make gloves available to protect your skin when mixing and using cleaning chemicals. 
  3. Opt for eye protection, like goggles, to be safe around hazardous chemicals.
  4. Consider durable aprons, boots or shoes, or work clothes, should there be a splash or brush up of any cleaning solutions against your clothing. 
  • When performing any cleaning operation on any equipment like kitchen appliances, observe that everything is turned off at the power source. When using your hands, be careful when handling sharp objects.  
  • Take note of fire exits and be aware of the location of the nearest fire extinguisher. Knowing the use of fire extinguishers and when to operate them is an integral skill when cleaning, mainly when focused on the kitchens.  

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In summary, it’s essential to use the chemicals for their planned purpose only, use ideal PPE when managing substances, and keep away all chemicals properly. You should know the chemicals that are in use, and all areas should be cordoned off properly while cleaning is in progress.

Conclusion

Safety should always come first. By taking note of these safety precautions, you can be assured that your cleaning routine is effective and safe for you and everyone around you. These tips will help you keep your home clean and safe. So, keeping these precautions in mind, you’ll be on your way to a cleaner, more beautiful living space in no time. 

Uchechukwu Ufoh Kyrian

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