9.1 What to Look For
The secret is quality over quantity when it comes to cleaning equipment. You only in actual fact need a few items that can cover the majority of your cleaning activities, as long as they are suitable and of reasonable quality.
Therefore look at your bread-and-butter items that you will use every time, and get them right. You can then source some good quality ones that are reasonably priced, which doesn’t necessarily mean being the best brand.
Also, for those one-off instances where you do need extra equipment, see if it is easier to in actual fact hire or temporarily use them just for a time.
9.2 Flip Signs
These are your typical yellow signs in an inverted ‘V’ shape you often see on wet floors that have been mopped in areas like motorway stations and restaurants. They’re relatively cheap to purchase, and can be ‘flipped’ back into a flat shape to easily store.
Two things to watch out for though are firstly that they are in the correct position to warn people but not get in their way and be a trip hazard, and secondly to make sure they are taken away when not needed, as people will take them more for granted and ignore them if they are always there even when the floor is dry.
9.3 Cloths & Dusters
Essential for wiping surfaces and areas, whether that’s a quick wipe or more substantial one to remove stains and grime. While dusters just focus on a quick wipe of dust with or without suitable spray, cloths are more for detailed wiping.
In terms of where are cleaning cloths kept, these are often in convenient places to access but still with some form of security to stop, say, children accessing them, for example on high shelves in a locked cleaning cupboard.
Two popular cloths are the disposable J-cloths, which can be simply thrown away afterwards, and microfiber cloths at the other end of the spectrum which can be washed time and time again for re-use in the future.
These are popular with a wide variety of types and brands being available, but most will do a similar function. So an all-purpose spray is helpful for kitchens and bathrooms as well as more specific kitchen and bathroom ones you come across.
There are also separate glass cleaner sprays for windows and glazing, and separate deodorants and air fresheners for making things smell better. In addition, there are also hand sanitisers as a form of ‘spray’ to wash hands between tasks as a cleaner, and for areas like sinks for users,
In addition to ready-made in their own bottle ready to go, you can make your own up by adding substances to water, say, in a clear spray. Make sure these are correctly mixed, labeled, and to hand though.
Becoming more popular, this is where robotic devices can move along the floor to carry out basic cleaning. More of a novelty than serious cleaning, and obviously at a notable price, but still worth considering for basic works.
In terms of which cleaning robot is best and how cleaning robots work, you can find out good reviews online like the Which? ones.
9.6 Buckets & Carry Trays
Carry trays are handy to carry items around, and buckets in a similar way can act as a carrier of items as well as their usual use of holding water and liquids.
Specialist mop buckets can have additional sections to rinse a mop head out, and they must be carefully used so as not to be a trip hazard and should be easily moved.
In conjunction with mop handles they can be used to wipe floor surfaces with suitable water and substances. Microfiber ones are becoming more popular which can be easily cleaned and re-used, and various designs in the actual mop or bucket can help with easy grip of the mop to rinse out the water after a few strokes of use.
The way they are used is also important, in terms of how often the water is changed or how they are squeezed out, the type of mop and bucket used, and the substances used with them.
These range from long-handled ones for either internal or external floor surfaces, to more hand brushes with a pan for smaller areas. Also, even smaller scrubbing brushes and sponges can be used on stubborn stains and marks.
Make sure they have the correct stiffness of bristles, and they are themselves kept clean as they will tend to attract a lot of dirt within them.
9.9 Vacuum Cleaners
Popular for sucking up bits from a floor surface, and common on carpets, however also possible on hard floors and even hand-held ones for more upholstery areas. In addition, they can remove high-level cobwebs from, say, near the ceiling or behind hidden areas.
Two popular distinctions are upright and non-upright vacuum cleaners, along with varying motor powers and methods of holding and removing items in bags. You can also have a variety of head parts, for example a large head for usual carpet cleaning, a smaller brush for corners, and small funnel head for under furniture.