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Matting: Winter Care Tips

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With the adverse weather afflicting so many parts of the country, building managers turn to matting systems to help ensure occupant safety and keep snow, soil, moisture, and other contaminants from entering their facilities.
However, in order to work effectively, matting systems must be cleaned and maintained.
Christopher Tricozzi, vice president of sales and marketing for Crown Mats and Matting, offers the following "winter weather" matting care tips for this time of year and throughout the year:

• Make sure 15 feet of matting has been installed.  This ensures there is enough matting to remove maximum soil.

•Establish a set, but flexible, mat vacuuming and cleaning schedule with more frequent cleanings performed during adverse weather conditions.
• Vacuum mats with four to eight passes so all soils have been removed.
• Check and remove spots as soon as they are noticed; also, look for and remove gum, tar, oil, etc.
• Mats should be cleaned using the extraction method.  Many matting systems have bi-level construction to trap and hold contaminants.  An extractor will have the power to remove deeply embedded soiling.
• When extracting, use slow, deliberate strokes and vary the direction of the strokes.  This improves agitation and makes sure all areas of the mat are thoroughly cleaned.

•  To expedite drying time, use high velocity air movers.  Avoid installing the mats until thoroughly dry.
"Although it does not specifically address cleaning and maintenance, the type of matting selected also makes a big difference during tough weather conditions," says Tricozzi.  "Higher quality mats, those that are typically selected through a distributor, invariably perform better and are easier to clean and maintain."