Author Archives for Stephen Lewis

How Resilience and Sustainability Work Together

Sustainability is a common theme in the cleaning industry. By incorporating cleaning products and processes that are sustainable — providing environmental, social and economic benefits over their entire life cycle — facility managers are doing their part to be environmentally responsible. Why is sustainability important? Focusing on sustainability has several benefits beyond just helping the environment, such as qualifying for United States Green Building Council (USGBC) certification programs for sustainable buildings, called Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). There are a number of LEED categories that partnering with a sustainable floor care company like milliCare can help facility managers... read more

5 Quick Action Tips for Carpet Spills

No matter how pristine the carpet in your facility is kept, spots and spills are inevitable. When an accident does happen, address it quickly. The sooner you target a spill, the easier it will be to remove. The longer the spill is left, the more likely it is to become a permanent stain. Take action as soon as possible using the following steps. 1. Remove solid material Before taking any other action, remove as much solid material as possible with a spoon or spatula, and then vacuum the area. Removing these objects will ensure particles are not being crushed into... read more

5 Steps to Implementing a Green Cleaning System

As facility manager, you are constantly looking for ways to improve the workplace. You know that implementing a green cleaning system will be beneficial to both the environment and the health of your employees. But such a huge change can seem time-consuming, expensive and, frankly, overwhelming. Mark Twain said, “The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.” Read on for five steps to get you started on incorporating a green cleaning system into your facility. 1. Assess current... read more

The Biggest Threat to Sustainable Carpet

While installing carpet that’s from a sustainable source is an environmentally responsible decision, it can certainly be costly. Maintaining that investment is a top priority — that’s why it’s important to know that the biggest threat to sustainable carpet is moisture. How moisture damages carpets Sustainable carpets made of natural fibers (from animal or plant sources like wool or bamboo) have a greater risk of water damage than those made of synthetic fibers (from man-made, recycled materials like nylon or polypropylene). The reason they are especially susceptible to moisture is that natural fibers are extremely absorbent, making them more difficult... read more

4 Considerations for Wool Carpet Maintenance

With recent sustainability trends, wool carpet has made a comeback. That’s no surprise given wool carpet’s luxurious feel, superb insulation and outstanding resilience. Perhaps the reason wool lost some popularity in the first place was the belief that it’s difficult to maintain. While yes, wool carpet requires more maintenance than synthetic carpet, it’s well worth the effort. Here are some wool carpet maintenance tips — some dos and don’ts to keep your wool carpet in top-notch shape. Beware of moisture When maintaining wool carpets, avoiding moisture should be a top priority. In some cases, water can actually damage the fibers.... read more

What You Need to Know About VOCs and Carpet Care

Due to the amount of time we spend indoors, indoor air quality (IAQ) is a growing concern for any facility manager. In the interest of energy efficiency, buildings are becoming more airtight, so that the air inside any building is re-circulating. When much of that circulating air is chemically infused with synthetic materials and VOCs, IAQ is a real issue. What are VOCs? VOCs are volatile organic compounds. “Volatile” means they are chemicals that evaporate easily at room temperature, and “organic” means they are carbon-based. Some may emit odors, but others are odorless. While some VOCs are harmless, many are... read more

WoolSafe Approved: What It Means and Why It Matters

In 1791, William Sprague started the first woven carpet mill in the United States. His chosen carpet material? Wool. Although synthetic materials replaced wool’s popularity in the 1950s, wool carpet remains on the market, especially for buyers who are shopping for sustainable carpet materials.  Many imported rugs and carpets are woven from wool for durability. Because wool needs to be carefully maintained, the WoolSafe Organisation was born. About the WoolSafe Organisation The WoolSafe Certification has been widely recognized throughout the world as the standard for carpet care for decades. The WoolSafe Organisation promotes best cleaning and maintenance practices for all... read more

What Green Cleaning Means to Me

I joined the milliCare Network more than 15 years ago, which means that I’ve seen it grow as new franchisees come aboard, and seen it change as new services are introduced. One constant through the years has been the Network’s focus on green cleaning: this is something that is personally important to me. I value the fact that part of milliCare’s mission is to be environmentally responsible and efficient with resources so that we can all work and live in a healthier world. Moreover, being “green” is important to the people we serve. In today’s world, Facility and Property Managers... read more

How to Choose a Carpet Care Vendor

As a facility manager, your days fly by while you struggle to find balance between budgeting, sustainability objectives and dealing with the latest crisis. The constant demands on your time leave little room for vetting vendors. From floor care to textile care, this means that you must trust your service providers to save you time and money, without sacrificing quality. Service provider best practices can help to build up trust. Certainly, knowing that the people who are coming into your facility after hours are background-checked and in uniform offers reassurance. But, how can you be sure that they are working... read more

Does IICRC Certification Matter?

From software programmers to facility managers to nurses, certified industry professionals rise head and shoulders above others in the field because they have put in the effort to demonstrate their knowledge and expertise. In the cleaning and restoration industry, certification has its place, too. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) has spent 40 years as a standards development organization. The nonprofit organization strives to advance ethics, communication and technical skill throughout the inspection, cleaning and restoration fields. Those who achieve certification through the IICRC have demonstrated: Top-Notch Techniques. On the surface, having certification signifies to the consumer... read more