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Most of us probably remember our childhood summers seeming like they lasted forever.
Students of 2020 will certainly remember this summer. And school buildings will never sit quiet for this long again (hopefully).
Even if you’ve already used that time to perform some of your standard summer deep-clean tasks, you probably have a to-do list you’re looking to whittle down. Here are three tips you can keep in mind to continue to use your summer hours wisely.
Tip #1: Take a top-down approach.
With quieter buildings and more easily controlled conditions, summer is a great time to deep clean a school. But it can be paralyzing when you think of all the work that needs to be done. Where do you even begin?
That’s where it can be smart to take a top-down approach. Start with the ceiling and work your way down. Change and clean the lights, the walls, desktops, all the way down to the floors. Sanitizing in the COVID-19 era has gotten even more important, so keep that in mind as you clean.
FROM THE PROS: We’ll even go a step farther. Take the top-down approach to where you’ll work — start on the top floor in the morning. As many of us know, school buildings can heat up in a hurry on hot summer days. Taking care of the highest floors first can save you some stress and a whole lot of sweat.
Tip #2: Do your homework.
Floor restoration work is one of the most important tasks for school maintenance crews. It’s also one of the most difficult tasks to find time to do outside of the summer. That’s because restoration work must be approached differently to ensure the safety of workers and building occupants, to avoid disruption, and to avoid increased cost or time.
Fortunately, by doing your homework you can make sure that you complete this essential task while avoiding those pitfalls along the way. Identify floor surfaces ahead of time to determine the right course of action and gather the right equipment and supplies to complete the job. Check the warranty ahead of time in case there’s coverage and to ensure you don’t do any damage that won’t be covered.
Finally, prepare yourself and your team. Crews should have the safety equipment they need to avoid injury during restoration projects. Personal protective gear is vital along with tools to make moving furniture and fixtures easier.
FROM THE PROS: Take a look at the forecast if you’re planning on refinishing a floor. If it’s looking particularly humid, try to hold off on the laying the wax down to reduce cure time.
Tip #3: Get the full view of your floors.
Taking a good, hard look at your floors from several angles is really important during the summer. You don’t want to miss an opportunity to deep-clean or refinish the floors while fewer people need them.
Take refinishing a floor, for example. Depending on how much wax is left, you may not have to strip it. You could just deep-clean, burnish and buff to bring it back to life.
On the other hand, you might know that it needs to be stripped and refinished and you will certainly want to complete that task during the summer. If you’re unsure, get the full view of your floors by looking for the worn, discolored areas that are a dead giveaway for a floor that needs refinishing.
Bathrooms are another area to consider for a deep clean. Melamine pads are specially crafted floor pads that can clean grout and tile without the need for harsh chemicals that can damage them.
FROM THE PROS: To help you decide if your floor needs refinishing, use a neutral cleaner with a damp mop — when the floor is wet, you’ll get a sneak peek at where a new coat of wax is most desperately needed.
Summer hours are precious, even in a year when summer is anything but ordinary. Hopefully, these tips will help you make sure your building is prepared when summer’s over.