6 Ways to Create a Clean Office Space Post-Lockdown

Close-up Of Man Cleaning The Floor With Yellow Wet Floor Sign

The pandemic has caused a massive shift to the world, but as businesses are slowly starting to open back up and the end to lockdown is in sight, it’s time to consider how you can create a safe and healthy environment for your workers.

While every business is different, there are some things that each company needs to be doing to ensure that employees can return to a clean workplace. It’s likely that you had a cleaning schedule before that worked well for your business, but now it’s more critical than ever that the areas we spend time in are hygienic and safe.

Post-COVID cleaning needs to go far deeper than the previous cleaning schedule you may have had. And not only does cleaning need to occur on a more regular basis but it also needs to be more thorough, taking into account areas like stairwells and lifts that might otherwise be forgotten about. Here are 6 ways you can create a safer office space for your staff to return to.

Deep clean kitchen spaces

Kitchens can quickly become one of the dirtiest areas of any property, both commercial and residential, and it can become a haven for bacteria and germs. With so many people using the space and touching shared appliances, from kettles and refrigerators to microwaves, it’s vital that this area is thoroughly cleaned regularly. Make sure that all surfaces are disinfected, that handles of appliances are cleaned and that any tables and chairs are wipes down several times a day.

Wipe down desks

Desks are an area of the office that can harbour bacteria, as they’re used each and every day. In addition to spacing them out to accommodate social distancing measures, make sure that table surfaces are wiped down, as well as computer equipment, chairs and drawer handles. Any area that can be touched should be cleaned as this is where germs can build up without us realising. This should also be the case for meeting rooms and conference spaces.

Don’t neglect chill out areas

It’s easy to focus on workspaces and neglect the chill out areas in the office, but these areas are just as likely to become stained and look worse for wear over time. To prepare your office for a return of employees, take the time to clean the furniture in these areas – if the sofas and chairs are particularly stained, you may want to invest in professional upholstery cleaning to get them looking brand new once more.

Tackle flooring and carpets

Considering how many people come in and out of the office each day, it’s unsurprising that carpets become dirty and stained over time. Studies have shown that the average carpet contains hundreds of thousands of bacteria per inch, so keeping the carpets and floors in your office clean is critical – especially when hygiene is so paramount to prevent illness among your staff.

Install touch-free bathroom features

In addition to keeping bathrooms sterilised on a daily basis, it can also help to install touch-free fixtures in commercial bathrooms, such as soap dispensers, hand sanitiser pumps and touch-free hand dryers. This will minimise the amount of people having to touch these items and will minimise the spread of bacteria. For areas that have to be touched, such as door handles, make sure these are wiped down with an anti-bacterial cleaner regularly.

Sanitise communal areas

Stair rails, lift buttons and reception areas are all used by multiple people each day, so don’t forget these busy sections of the office when you’re carrying out a deep clean. Make sure that they are cleaned thoroughly with an anti-bacterial cleaner and that there are hand sanitiser stations easily accessible so that visitors and staff can maintain a germ-free work environment.

Conclusion

The above steps can help you make the necessary changes to keep your employees safe and healthy, and to ensure that everyone is returning to a hygienic workplace post-lockdown. But if you need professional help, get in touch with Apple Clean today. We specialise in carpet, upholstery and commercial cleaning, and we have extensive experience to help ensure your premises are thoroughly cleaned.

4 Benefits of Professional Upholstery Cleaning

Vacuuming Your Sofa

Over time, the upholstery in your home can begin to look dull and stained. In fact, if it’s been a while since you last had your furniture cleaned, you might be surprised by just how dirty it has actually become.

Dust, pet dander and oils from our skin can build up on the surface, leaving upholstery looking dingy. Professional upholstery cleaning can be a great solution to bring the appearance of your furniture back, as well as offering several other benefits. Here are four advantages to professional upholstery cleaning that you may not have considered.

Extends the life of your furniture

As with any item you invest in, the more care you give it, the longer it will last. The same can be said of your furniture, which can be expensive to replace. The longer contaminants stay on your furniture, the harder it can be to remove them and the more likely it is that they’ll break down the fibres of the furniture. Regular upholstery cleaning can keep them looking great for longer and prevent staining and damage from ruining the appearance. With a professional handling the job, you can also ensure that protectants are added to prolong the condition even further.

Minimises odours in your home

Upholstery can absorb smells over time which can leave your furniture emitting unpleasant odours. It’s not just pets that cause this issue – cigarette smoke, cooking and other smells can get trapped in the fibres of the upholstery. Many household products simply mask these smells with fragrance. But the odours will just return shortly after, leaving the issue unresolved. Professional upholstery cleaning removes them from the fabric entirely, leaving the item and your home smelling much fresher for a much longer time.

Fresher air quality

If you or a member of your family suffers with allergies, your furniture can be a trigger. This is because dust and other allergens can be trapped in the fibres, which then get pushed back into the air when the furniture is sat on or moved. And if you have pets, this can be an even bigger problem, with hair and dander getting lodged between the fibres.

A professional cleaner will use tools and cleaning products that can reach deeper into the fabric to remove these contaminants, along with dirt and grime, to keep the air cleaner and to minimise an allergy attack. This is particularly beneficial in the warmer months when allergies can be a problem for so many people.

Less damage to your furniture

Cleaners that you can buy in the supermarket can be too harsh for certain fabrics and this can lead to more damage if they’re not used correctly. So, when you’re dealing with expensive items like sofas, it’s important to approach with caution so as not to cause any issues. Professional upholstery cleaning services ensures that the job will be carried out properly, as the cleaning operatives will have the necessary expertise and knowledge to use the right products to clean thoroughly without causing further damage.

How often you get your upholstery cleaned depends on how often you use the item and whether or not you have children or pets, as this can lead to the appearance deteriorating quicker. It’s a good idea to maintain a regular schedule though to protect the fabric of your furniture, so a professional clean every six months can help to maintain the upholstery for the long term. Investing in a professional service can wind up being more cost-effective than buying cheaper cleaning products that won’t do an effective job and could even damage the fabric. If you would like more information on our upholstery cleaning services, contact our team today. We have extensive experience in professional cleaning, from carpets and rugs to curtains and sofas, so we’re well equipped to help you with your upholstery cleaning needs.

6 ways to maintain a clean home every day

Woman Cleaning Kitchen Countertop

Maintaining a home can be very time-consuming – there are plenty of areas of a property that require cleaning, especially now we’re spending more time than ever before indoors. But the key to maintaining a clean home is to do smaller jobs on a regular basis, so that the house always looks tidy and stays under control. Here are four ways to keep each area of your home clean and tidy that won’t take up too much of your day, so you can focus on other tasks.

Rinse plates after each meal

Going to bed with dirty dishes sitting in the sink sets your following day off to a bad start. Plus, it’s all too easy to leave them to pile up with the intention of cleaning them later on, only to find yourself with a massive task on your hands. An easy way to avoid this problem is to rinse your dishes after each meal – it’s a task that will only take you five minutes if you’re doing it regularly, and it prevents an untidy kitchen which can quickly become one of the messiest areas of the home. You can also wash cooking utensils and any items you used while preparing meals while your food is cooking.

Enforce a “no shoes” policy to keep floors clean

Your floors are a haven for dust and dirt, but one way to keep carpets clean and to maintain the appearance for longer is to enforce a policy in your home that shoes should be taken off at the front door. Not only is this better for those with allergies, as we step through allergens on our shoes from outside, but it also prolongs the lifespan of your carpet and minimises how often you’ll need to vacuum up mud and dust that’s been walked in from outside.

Wipe down sinks and surfaces each day

At the end of each day, rinse the sinks, taps and surfaces in your kitchen and bathroom, and wipe them down with a cloth to keep them cleaner for longer. It’s a job that will only take a few minutes if you do it daily, but dirt and stains can build up if you leave them for longer, giving you a bigger cleaning task when you do get around to cleaning each room more thoroughly. Little and often is a great way of speeding up the process of cleaning your home and maintaining its appearance more efficiently.

Straighten blankets and sofa cushions

Plump up sofa cushions to put them back into shape and straighten out any blankets or throws you have on your furniture to protect them from stains and general wear and tear. Over time, sofas and armchairs can become worn and they can bring down the look of the room, so it’s beneficial to get into the habit of putting them back to their proper shape on a regular basis so that they continue to look great and stay comfortable.

Put items back where they belong

As you walk through your home during the day, if you spot something that is out of place, pick it up and put it back where it belongs. By doing this as and when you see items, you won’t have as big of a job to do when you’re doing the housework, especially if you’re already walking past them during the day.

Pick up clothes from the day

Pick up any clothes that are lying around the house and either put them in the laundry basket to be washed or hang them up for future wear. Piles of clothing can make your home look messier than it actually is and it also makes it difficult to know what you need to clean when it comes to doing the laundry. If you tackle the task at the end of each day, you’ll be better prepared when laundry day comes around and your home will look tidier.

Conclusion

Everyone’s schedule looks different, but with all of us busy each day, it can be hard to find the time to do a thorough clean-up of our home when balancing work and other commitments. Instead, tackling smaller jobs more regularly will keep your home in order, maintain its appearance and ensure that when you do put time aside to do the housework, there’s less to do.

Some jobs can be harder to deal with quickly, however, and that’s where we come in. Apple Clean offer a variety of cleaning services, from carpet cleaning and rug cleaning to stain removal and upholstery cleaning. Get in touch today to find out more about how we can help you.

New curtains? Here’s how to look after them

Woman opening window curtains at home

They say that the windows are the eyes of the home, and attractive window dressings are an essential element of any interiors scheme. If you’ve invested in new curtains for your living room or bedroom, it’s important to know how to care for them. At Apple Clean, we know a thing or two about curtain cleaning and maintenance, so we’ve put together some useful advice to share with you.

Hanging new curtains

Whether you’ve bought your new curtains custom-made or ready-made, chances are they will come folded. A light iron may be needed to get rid of visible fold lines before you hang them, but do check the care instructions (or ask your curtain maker) for details of temperature and whether the fabric should be ironed on the face or reverse. Once your curtains are up, any remaining fold lines should drop out.

Hanging new curtains is best done with the help of a ladder and an extra pair of hands – there may be a lot of fabric to manoeuvre into position! Make sure the curtain fabric or lining does not come into direct contact with the window pane where there may be condensation.

With tape headed curtains, once all the hooks are in place, you need to pull the strings to get the desired curtain width for your window, and tease curtain pleats into position with your fingers once curtains are in situ. At Apple Clean, we would recommend fitting a track with a pull cord to avoid handling delicate fabrics including velvet.

Curtain maintenance

The appearance of your curtains can be materially affected by many factors, chief among them sunlight, dust and moisture. Dark coloured fabrics are more likely to absorb light, leading to colour fading over time. Blackout lining or additional window blinds may help.

Many people neglect curtain maintenance since they don’t appear to get too dirty compared to other areas in the home. After all, they just hang there! However, curtains can hold a lot of dust and dirt that may be invisible to the eye but affect the air quality in your home.

That’s why it is important to regularly clean your curtains to avoid the build-up of dust and dirt and keep them looking sharp for longer. You can use the brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner as an easy, efficient way to keep dust at bay – once a week is ideal, once a month should be the minimum.

How to clean your curtains

In addition to regular vacuuming, it is recommended that you give your curtains a periodic clean. Depending on the fabric, you may be able to wash them at home – either by hand or by machine – or get them cleaned professionally. Silk, for instance, is too delicate for a washing machine and could get damaged. Check the care label before you do anything rash – it’s there for a reason. You wouldn’t want your beautiful (and expensive!) curtains to become damaged through misadventure, would you?

Machine-wash your curtains with care. Check the recommended temperature for washing and drying. Treating fabrics with hot water can cause them to shrink – you have been warned. Delicate fabrics should be washed on a cold, slow cycle while coloured fabrics should be washed separately using a special colour care detergent. For the avoidance of doubt, never use harsh detergents, abrasive washing up powders or bleach.

Whether you hand-wash or machine-wash your curtains (depending on the care label instructions), rinse the fabric thoroughly and hang up the freshly cleaned curtains while damp, so they can air dry with minimum creasing. Any creases should drop out as the fabric dries, otherwise iron the material according to the care label.

Professional curtain cleaning

The safest way to look after your curtains is to have them professionally cleaned. This is an area where Apple Clean have been excelling for over 20 years. We offer in situ curtain cleaning for anything from large theatre curtains to domestic living rooms and bedroom curtains including linings, pelmets, swags and tails. We can deal with all types of fabric including those that are ‘dry clean only’.

Better still, we come to you, cleaning your curtains at home without the fuss and bother of having to take them down and rehang them. Best of all, in situ curtain cleaning means no drying time, saving you both time and money.

If you are looking for professional advice on how to look after your curtains, Apple Clean is only a phone call away. We operate across the East Sussex, West Sussex and Surrey, so please get in touch for a free, no-obligation estimate.

6 essential care tips to keep your sofa looking great

Comfortable navy blue plush sofa and colourful flowers

A new sofa is a major home investment and you will undoubtedly expect this key furnishing item to give you many years of enjoyment. The typical lifespan of a new sofa is around 7-15 years but this does depend on how well you look after it. Are you in the habit of eating while watching TV or putting muddy shoes on furniture? Do you have a pet or children? A regular cleaning and maintenance routine for your sofa is highly recommended.

Apple Clean offer a wide range of professional upholstery and sofa cleaning services including stain removal and Scotchgard protection. We may be a small company but we do have the latest cleaning technology at our disposal and highly trained operatives who will expertly attend to carpet, curtain and upholstery cleaning jobs. It’s what we’ve been doing for more than 30 years!

Here are our key recommendations on how to look after your sofa:

1 – Weekly vacuuming

Use the small head, brush and crevice tool attachments of your vacuum cleaner and make short work of any debris on the sofa once a week. Check for coins or other small items that may gave slipped down the side of the seat. Avoid vacuuming with the main head since dirt and debris can rub up against the seat fabric, which will gradually wear away the weave and pile more quickly than you want.

2 – Fluffy cushions

It’s a good idea to get into a regular habit of plumping up your seat and back cushions, pulling them back into shape when you’re finished with the sofa at the end of the evening (or the morning after). That way, your sofa cushions will continue to keep their shape and look smarter for the longest possible time.

3 – Fabric protection

Preserve the longevity of your upholstery with throws and blankets. Consider using arm covers (you can get them custom made) to protect heavy duty areas from spillages and perspiration that can cause long-term staining. Be particularly careful with light coloured suites – the dye from non-colourfast clothing can transfer to the upholstery and permanently discolour it. For long-term protection that extends the life of your sofa, ask us about Scotchgard.

4 – Sun fade

When you decide where to place your sofa in the room, please bear in mind that not all sofa fabrics are sun-proof! Direct sunlight can cause fabrics to fade permanently – you have been warned. For leather sofas, it’s best to keep them away from radiators an other heat sources as these can cause the leather to crack.

5 – Pet hair care

If you have a cat or a dog, it is even more important to place throws on your sofa for added protection. Make sure blankets can be machine washed easily and regularly. Have a lint roller on standby to catch pet hairs on upholstery – it’s good to make this a routine habit too. You can also wear rubber gloves, running your hands over the sofa fabric before washing pet hair off in hot water.

6 – Stain removal

Spills and stains can happen; the most popular culprits are tea and coffee, wine, juice and chocolate. Act fast for the best chance of avoiding permanent staining. Blot up as much as you can with white kitchen paper, then gently clean the area with warm water, working from the outside in. It’s a good idea to check for colourfastness first! Wash or dry clean loose covers according to the care label. And if you are in any doubt about how to tackle a particular stain, give us a call for professional advice!

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