To attract as many visitors as possible, it is important that leisure facilities make a good first impression. A clean, sparkling floor is often the first thing that a person will notice about a shopping centre, cinema or sports club. In order to achieve such results, rubbish, dust and grime must be removed quickly and efficiently by sweeping or scrubbing the floor surface.
Manual methods such as brooms and mops are not only old-fashioned but also inefficient. Sweeping with a broom is about ten times slower than the smallest powered mechanical sweeper and can create more dust than it collects. Likewise a mop and bucket will tend to just spread the dirt around, whilst collecting not very much of it. A mechanical scrubber will do the job a lot faster!
In determining the correct powered sweepers or scrubbers to use, there are three main factors to consider. The most obvious is the type of debris or dust that needs to be removed. In most leisure environments, litter and spills will be the most common build-ups.
You will also need to decide whether you will use your sweeper or floor scrubber inside, outside, or a combination of both. Shopping centres for example will mainly be indoors, whilst leisure centres can consist of sports halls, tennis courts and astro turf, which will require different types of machine.
Size also matters – the scrubber or sweeper must be big enough to clean the designated area in a reasonable time scale, yet manoeuvrable enough to operate within the confines of the building’s layout. It is important that the size of the area and the amount of time available is taken into consideration, as these factors will dictate the required cleaning performance of the sweeper or floor scrubber, measured in square metres per hour.
There are two main types of cleaning machine: sweepers and scrubber driers.
Choosing between a sweeper and scrubber drier comes down to the type of cleaning required. Sweepers collect dry dust and debris with the minimum amount of hassle, whilst scrubber driers apply water and detergent to the floor, and use a scrubbing action to remove grease, staining and ground-in dirt.
Sweeping machines work on the principle of rotating a cylindrical brush (the main brush) against the direction of travel of the machine. This lifts the dust and debris from the floor. The sweeper’s internal system will then deposit the collected rubbish in a hopper. It does this using a vacuum system and/or throwing the dirt. The hopper will be at the front of the machine if it a forward throw machine, and at the rear if it is a over-throw machine. The over-throw system has the advantage of having the collection hopper at the rear. This puts the driver at the front of the sweeper for a better view and easier manoeuvrability.
Scrubber driers work by applying water and detergent to the floor. Then using a system of brushes, the floor is scrubbed to remove grease, staining and grime. Scrubbers may have one, two or three brushes depending on the cleaning width requirement. The pressure applied by the brushes will be adjustable to cater for different cleaning tasks. Finally the dirty water is collected in waste-water reservoir to be emptied when the cleaning is finished.
Euromec, the UK’s leading supplier of floor cleaning machines, recently supplied two scrubber driers to the Mailbox shopping centre in Birmingham.
As a prestigious retail and lifestyle development, The Mailbox requires high standards of cleanliness. One of its main objectives is to ensure that there is no litter on the floor for more than 10 minutes. Made from Chinese granite, the floor requires the very best in cleaning equipment to maintain its bright colour. So The Mailbox set out to find a machine that would produce spectacular scrubbing results.
Euromec was selected as one of seven companies to demonstrate the performance of its scrubbers. The Metro and GO scrubber driers were chosen as the machines to use. The Metro is a high performance ride-on scrubber with a pre-sweep option and 6000 square metre per hour cleaning capacity, making it ideal for heavy duty industrial or commercial applications. The GO is a low-cost compact scrubber specifically designed for cleaning smaller commercial and industrial areas. Not only does it clean exceptionally well, it also leaves the floor completely dry.
Alison Harper, Operations Manager at The Mailbox was impressed with the floor scrubbers’ ability to achieve a visibly cleaner floor after just one demonstration. “Both the Metro and GO floor scrubbers have proved to be very efficient and a cost effective way to maintain the granite flooring.”
When choosing a floor scrubber or sweeper for use in leisure applications, take time in considering the size of area to be cleaned, what type of debris needs removing, and how long you have to do this. The right machine for the right application will make all the difference in its cleaning performance, and the results you desire to make that good first impression.