Maintaining a clean and healthy environment should always be a top priority. With Covid-19 still affecting our daily lives, it should now be priority Number One.
For designers, architects and facility managers, this brings an increased level of responsibility. Today, more than ever, these professionals must be highly knowledgeable of a product’s role in creating healthy spaces.
Previous blog articles show how carpet plays a critical role in creating healthy interior spaces. Carpet is effective at trapping airborne particles, such as dust and pollen, thus improving indoor air quality. It also provides a higher coefficient of friction than a smooth or hard surface product, which can reduce slips or falls.
Like any other product, whether it’s a hard surface such as LVT or a carpet, your floor covering must be properly maintained. When this is done, it brings additional health benefits. It also enhances its performance, look and longevity.
Carpet Care Requirements for Covid-19
When it comes to carpet’s role in preventing the spread of COVID-19, it’s important to know the facts and a few definitions.
A Wall Street Journal article, “How Exactly Do You Catch Covid-19? There is a Growing Consensus,” sheds light on research about the virus’s transmission. Citing numerous experts, the article states “It’s not common to contract Covid-19 from a contaminated surface, scientists say.”
The CDC also supports this claim. On its website, it states that the “transmission of novel coronavirus to persons from surfaces contaminated with the virus has not been documented.” In fact, the “transmission of coronavirus occurs much more commonly through respiratory droplets than through objects and surfaces, like doorknobs, countertops, keyboards, toys, etc.”
Nevertheless, it’s wise to take every precaution to remain safe from viral transmission. The CDC cautions: “Current evidence suggests that SARS-CoV-2 may remain viable for hours to days on surfaces made from a variety of materials. Cleaning of visibly dirty surfaces followed by disinfection is a best practice measure for prevention of COVID-19…”
Of course sanitizing and disinfecting are not the same. Carpet, because of its properties, can be sanitized. Sanitization, as defined by dictionary.com “is the act of making something free from dirt, germs, etc., as by cleaning or sterilizing.” Disinfecting is the “act of cleansing of infection” with the intent “to destroy germs.”
4 Quick Steps for Commercial Carpet Maintenance
Properly maintaining a commercial carpet does not have to be a time-consuming or costly proposition. There are several steps that you can take that will keep the surface as clean as possible for maximum health benefits. These include:
Step 1. Adopt a Maintenance Plan
Any good maintenance plan requires taking a strategic approach. Your carpet maintenance plan is no different. First, start out by using a floor plan to mark the different areas where there is carpet in your facility. From there, you should identify the level of foot traffic each area experiences. Entry ways, for example, will have higher foot traffic than a seldom-used office.
Once you know your building’s foot traffic patterns, you can tailor a carpet care schedule. ShawContract suggests vacuuming 1 time per day in high traffic areas such as entrances and break rooms. Low-traffic areas, such as private offices, only need vacuuming 2 times a week.
Step 2. Use Proper Vacuuming Techniques
According to the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI), regular vacuuming is one of the most proven ways to keep carpet clean. Doing so regularly also ensures your carpet will continue to trap airborne particles and allergens, enhancing the air quality of your commercial space. In fact, 80 to 85 % of dry soil can be removed by proper vacuuming. The CRI recommends several tips for effective vacuuming, including vacuuming in both directions and vacuuming slowly. ShawContract also has a list of carpet maintenance tips, as well as a suggested schedule for carpet care in commercial spaces.
Step 3. Don’t Skip the Basics
Whether your building has a hard surface, a soft surface or a combination of both, any flooring type requires regular maintenance. Basic steps that should not be overlooked include:
- Stop Dirt at the Door — Place mats outside and inside building entryways to capture dirt and other particles before they enter the interior of the building.
- Catch Debris in High-Traffic Areas — Place textured mats underneath desks and in popular lounge areas, where there is a higher level of foot placement during the day. These mats will catch excess debris before it gets into the carpet.
- Ventilate — Try to ventilate your space with fresh air as often as possible by opening windows and doors.
Step 4. Use the Best Equipment and Resources
A carpet is a significant financial investment. It also serves as an important design element. And, as we’ve learned, it also supports healthier and safer interiors for occupants. Protect this investment by following the steps above. And be sure to use CRIs’ Seal of Approval products, such as carpet cleaners, pre-spray and extraction products.
For more information, be sure to visit the Zeftron website to learn how a premium fiber like Zeftron nylon provides commercial carpet with exceptional performance, style and sustainability benefits.
To receive weekly educational content, follow Zeftron on our social channels. We cover commercial carpet trends, color theory, and inspiring design projects. Find us on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.