The best place to prevent soil is before it gets to your floor by means of high quality, well maintained walk off mats to protect the surface beneath. That is why a good set of floor mats is crucial to a complete floor care program. Matting captures and stops the soils before it gets on the floor so long as they are maintained.  The minimum of fifteen linear feet of matting is your first line of defense.  Make sure the mats lay flat to minimize claims of tripping hazards.

Outside mats should catch large soils where inside mats should capture moisture and finer soils still on the bottom of a person’s foot.  Investing in quality walk off mats will pay for itself by simply reducing floor work as well as adding to the appearance of a key area: the entrance.  It is a lot less expensive to stop soil here than to let it in the building and pay to gather it up and take it back outside.  Regular and frequent vacuuming to remove these loose soils before they become embedded is crucial the life of your carpeted areas and rugs.  Remember the old axiom:  “Carpet does not wear out; it uglies out.”

Of course, maintaining all mats is crucial and should include frequent vacuuming, brushing, and extracting (especially in high moisture or salt areas).  It does no good to purchase a high quality mat and allow it to become soiled so that as people walk on it, their shoes simply exchange the dirt, grit and oils from outside for the ones left in the mat by a prior person.  

Your comments and questions are always welcome.  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