A reader writes: “You never seem to mention chemical or equipment brands. This could really help me in deciding what to use.”

That is a rather astute observation. My reason is simple: I have a policy of NOT endorsing one product over the other since there are many great manufacturers and distributors on the market. Although I have my preferences based on past experiences with certain brands, I do not believe it would be appropriate to recommend a brand to you. First of all, your situation is probably different. Secondly, you need to test and research the products and equipment that best suit your needs.

Following are some basic criteria to consider:

1. Is the product (chemical) green or at least safe? For instance, you probably do not need much 26 percent hydrochloric acid for your day to day cleaning.

2. Is the product effective when used as directed? Please do not compare most new green products to the older, stronger products that were usually instantaneous in results but were oftentimes flammable, carcinogenic and just plain dangerous.

3. Is the product color coded and numbered? This is important in that you should standardize your processes, training and systems so that everyone is working from the same page.

4. Does the manufacturer provide training and support for their products? If you do not need such support, then buy wholesale and take your own risks at outcomes. You may save a few dollars but one slip up and you will be contacting a distributor for support.

5. Do your workers understand how to use the products safely? This is very important since you should never assume that they know what to do and how to do it. Train, observe and train again.

We will look at equipment in a future article.

Your comments and feedback are always appreciated. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean...

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net.