Do You Have Ice Melt Residue In Your Entryway?

It’s just about that time of year; the snow will soon be melting and temperatures will begin to rise in the coming weeks. While I know the winter may still seem far from over now is the time to begin planning for your spring cleaning. Over the next several weeks I will be discussing various areas of facility maintenance that certainly need attention after a long winter. Today I will begin with entryway cleanup, specifically ice melt residue. I will discuss cleanup as it pertains to solid flooring and will address carpet cleanup in a later post.

Step 1: Sweep or vacuum up any debris that may have accumulated on the surface

Step 2: Mop surface with a chemical that can remove the residue

It is important to use a new mop head as buildup and grime that have accumulated in an old one will inhibit the effectiveness of your cleaning efforts. We recommend a microfiber mop head because it does a better job picking up dirt off the floor, but more importantly the dirt rinses out of them better than a cotton mop head. What we personally recommend for the chemical component is R-65. It is a soap film remover, but also does an excellent job at cleaning up ice melt. I am always curious as to how these products work so to answer this question we put in a call to the chemist responsible for R-65. He explained that it is the amount of chelating agents (also known as sequestering agents) that allows R-65 to work well on ice melt. It is these chelating agents that bond with minerals such as calcium, magnesium and sodium (common ice melt ingredients) and allow other ingredients in the product to clean surfaces easier. Without the chelating agents the calcium, magnesium and sodium would reduce the cleaning effectiveness of the product by bonding with the surfactants (a class of cleaning agent).

Step 3 (optional): Burnish your floor

Burnishing your floor can restore shine and gloss. While not all businesses need to have their floor look like this, some rely on that elegant look to increase appeal.