Adapting Cleaning Protocols In Automotive Manufacturing

In fast-moving automotive production facilities, dust and dirt can pile up quickly. Without a reliably effective cleaning program, worker safety and operational efficiency suffer. Automotive manufacturers operate several different types of facilities – from warehouses to production floors. Each comes with its own set of cleaning challenges, and requires specialized protocols to clean effectively.

Production Floors

A clean manufacturing facility is a safe, productive facility. Built-up dirt and grime can damage equipment if left for too long. Greasy, wet floors create slip and fall hazards. And pests, bacteria, and mold can accumulate in hard-to-reach areas. Keeping the production floor clean requires both regular and periodic deep cleaning.

A production floor cleaning plan should have detailed guidelines for cleaning all kinds of surfaces in the facility. For instance, factory floors are typically made of resilient concrete but they require regular, proper maintenance to maintain that resiliency. The same goes with machinery. Each piece of machinery requires its own specialized cleaning processes, which are outlined by the manufacturer. Failing to follow manufacturer-prescribed cleaning protocols can lead to damage or performance issues.


A minor cleaning error can lead to a major accident in a warehouse. Leaving loose objects or spilled liquids on floors can cause slips and falls. Clutter impacts visibility, increases the risk of fire, and can even harbor pests. Everyone working in the warehouse should be trained to keep aisles clear of debris and quickly report spills. Cleaning processes should follow a “top-to-bottom” approach, starting with racks, windows and the ceiling. Cleaners should work their way down to the floor, which should be swept of all debris, then scrubbed.

Whether cleaning is performed in-house or outsourced, expertise is critical to properly maintain the range of environments that are unique to automotive manufacturers. Effectively cleaning all areas of an automotive facility promotes worker safety and improves overall operations.

Al Smith is a Vice President of Onsite Services at ABM Industries. Learn more about ABM’s specialized cleaning programs for automotive manufacturing environments here.