Clarke Karcher Diversey

Cleaning: Floor Care Chemicals
Contracting Profits



Manufacturer Roundtable
part 1: Using Enzyme Cleaners On Floors
part 2: Green Floor Strippers: Addressing Efficacy
part 3: Specialty Flooring: Cleaning And Maintenance

Using Enzyme Cleaners On Floors

By CP Editorial Staff
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In this article, industry manufacturers answer common questions asked by building service contractors.

Are enzyme cleaners more effective or less effective than other types of floor cleaning chemicals in improving static coefficient of friction?

Floor finish static coefficient of friction (SCOF) is determined by the ingredients in the coating and established as soon as the coating is cured. Residue, contaminate or moisture can alter the slip resistance of the floor if allowed to accumulate. Any cleaner that removes soils and contaminates, without leaving a residue, will help facilitate a safe walking environment.

Rebecca S. Kaufold, Chemist, Spartan Chemical Co., Inc., Maumee, Ohio

 

We do not have definite evidence that cleaners improve SCOF. Enzymes are very specific in their action and may not be effective on all soils or floors.

Dr. Vikram Asher, R&D Research Manager, Rochester Midland Corp., Rochester, N.Y.


Recognizing that enzymes can help break down fats and oils, one might draw a conclusion that cleaning products containing them could improve the static coefficient of friction (SCOF). Enzyme-based floor cleaners are hybrid products, providing an initial cleaning effect with the use of common detergent ingredients followed by a residual waste consumption effect. Removing contamination through the initial cleaning process would definitely have an impact on SCOF. I believe that the bacterial enzymes themselves would have little, if any, effect on slip resistance and SCOF on floor surfaces.   

Mike Tarvin, Vice President, Multi-Clean, Shoreview, Minn.


Is surface agitation required with enzyme-based cleaners?

Surface agitation improves cleaning efficiency with any cleaner. Such agitation can be derived through a mop or a machine scrub; however, it is the soil level that determines the agitation level required and not the specific type of cleaner.

Rebecca S. Kaufold, Chemist, Spartan Chemical Co., Inc., Maumee, Ohio

 

Cleaning is achieved by synergy of mechanical and chemical action. Surface agitation or scrubbing provides mechanical action and chemical ingredients in the cleaner provides chemical action. Without synergy of the two, cleaning will not be effective

Dr. Vikram Asher, R&D Research Manager, Rochester Midland Corp., Rochester, N.Y.

 

A floor cleaner that contains non-pathogenic enzyme producing bacteria also contains detergents. As with any cleaner, agitation is beneficial for removing contamination. The enzyme/bacteria produces a residual effect that is not dependent upon agitation.  

Mike Tarvin, Vice President, Multi-Clean, Shoreview, Minn.



Why do enzyme-based cleaners leave behind deposits on the floor?

Enzymes are used like any other active ingredient in cleaners. Given their chemical composition, enzymes function to break down organic soils for a more instant cleaning response. When used properly, enzyme cleaners do not leave deposits on the floor.


Biological-based cleaners are different from enzyme cleaners. These products contain specific bacterial spores that remain in the surface pores once the floor is cleaned. These products are commonly used in drain maintenance and grouted floor applications. The bacterial spores that remain in the floor consume soils as their food source. These spores are only active when the food source is present and only applicable to situations that facilitate their continued growth. Hence, these cleaners are not appropriate for nonporous substrates.

Rebecca S. Kaufold, Chemist, Spartan Chemical Co., Inc., Maumee, Ohio

 

Enzymes gradually digest the soil they are designed to remove even after the cleaner is rinsed off. Soil digested after the rinse leaves a residue.

Dr. Vikram Asher, R&D Research Manager, Rochester Midland Corp., Rochester, N.Y.

 

The term enzyme-based floor cleaner is a bit of a misnomer. These type of cleaners use traditional ‘detergent’ type ingredients with added non-pathogenic bacteria to consume wastes after the cleaning process is complete. These bacteria consume wastes by releasing complex chemicals called enzymes that break down wastes to simpler compounds that the bacteria can readily consume.


Enzyme-based cleaners have a residual, value-added effect once the cleaning process is complete. The enzyme-producing bacteria will seek out food sources and release enzymes to help break down and consume the waste. The food sources can be wastes that normally emit foul odors like urine, feces, fats, oils, protein and other organic residue. This residual effect waste consumption can be beneficial on porous flooring, grouted tile flooring and on absorbent surfaces like carpet that could harbor odor-causing bacteria.

Mike Tarvin, Vice President, Multi-Clean, Shoreview, Minn.

posted on: 6/12/2012


Manufacturer Roundtable
part 1: Using Enzyme Cleaners On Floors
part 2: Green Floor Strippers: Addressing Efficacy
part 3: Specialty Flooring: Cleaning And Maintenance




CleanGuru


Kaivac


Team Software


Rochester Midland


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