A reader writes: "I wish you would name equipment brands that you like rather than being so general. What’s up?"

Great observation and you are on target. Please understand that this forum is not for me to endorse a favorite brand for many reasons. First, I have limited experience with a limited number of products; whereas there are some great brands that I simply have not encountered. Second, your needs and values may be different from mine. It would be unprofessional and inappropriate for me to tell you that you will be satisfied something that I like when I do not know your background, your current challenges, your location, your experience level, your budget and a whole lot more things that could play into your decision of what to purchase.

You have to do your own homework as to testing and evaluating buffers, burnishers, autoscrub machines, carpet cleaning systems, etc. since your local distributor will only carry a limited number of brands. If he/she provides support and service for those brands, then you need to give them our business. Of course, make them earn it by researching other brands, speaking to peers who have had positive or negative experiences not only with the brand but the local dealer as well.

I recently came across a report that gave some great comparisons. It indicated that a 17 inch 175 RPM machine generated 2,700 SF/Hour (22.2 minutes) in unobstructed and 2,025 SF/Hour (29.6 minutes) Obstructed. Now if you are maintaining a small areas, this unit might be just what you need. Due to its size it should be relatively portable and can get the job done. If you need to polish a larger area, you might consider a corded 2,500 RPM 20 inch burnisher 18,000 SF/Hour (3.8 minutes/1,000) Unobstructed and 14,025 SF/Hour (4.3 minutes/1,000). If you take the time to compare the two you will note that the burnisher covers a lot more territory. Will is cost more? Yes, but it is not the cost of the equipment; rather the savings in labor over the life of the machine.

If you are willing to compare and research you will benefit in many ways.

Your comments and questions are important. 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.