Halloween Cleaning Tips
28 October 2013
Halloween can be a messy time for anyone from the homeowner to the business. We’ve all got treats prepared for those in costumes, but businesses out of hours are always under the threat of a cheeky trick. Carl Robinson, marketing manager for cleaning and FM specialist Nviro, details how to get rid of those nasty stains that can linger well past October 31st.
So it’s that time of year again, when we all don costumes for office parties and our children descend onto the streets to go trick-or-treating. The tradition in the UK for All Hallows’ Eve may not be as strong and as celebrated as our American friends, yet when the celebrations are over and normal services resume to start November, you’re left with an abundance of "tricks” to clean up. For businesses starting trade the morning after, it’s imperative that any mess is cleaned up swiftly, as having egg on the face of your business doesn’t bode well at all.
From toilet paper, shaving foam, pumpkin and the notorious egg, you could be fooled into thinking these are harmless and easily cleaned. However, if left too long some of the stains will stay with you for many years to come. As a leading cleaning contractor, Nviro know a thing or two about cleaning the biggest of messes from schools, offices and even crime scenes, so we thought we should offer some much needed expert advice on how to get your business back into shape after the Halloween period.
The act of egging is prominent in the form of protest to embarrass high profile celebrities and political figures, so it’s not surprising that it’s the bane of many people’s lives when it comes to Halloween, when children are determined to throw them at any surface they’ll stick to. They may seem harmless, but when left to dry they can actually corrode paint surfaces and can continue to cause damage when being cleaned. To remove egg that is still wet, a pressure washer is the best option. However, when dry, the better approach would be warm water. And in the spirit of environmental cleaning - one part vinegar and a smidge of washing up liquid will give great results without the use of powerful chemicals. Always remember to remove shells so they don’t scratch any surfaces and be careful to loosen the egg before scrubbing away to avoid further damage to paint and facades.
Another classic "trick” kids are into is grabbing their dad's shaving foam and making an awful mess, which for the most part is absolutely harmless. Yet, some types are known to leave stains when dried so don’t simply ignore it. Grab a power washer or an abrasive sponge along with some environmentally-friendly multipurpose cleaner. It may not be the type to leave a stain, but you don’t want to risk hanging around to find out.
"Teepeeing” is another all too common occurrence at Halloween. If you aren’t familiar with the name, you’ll have certainly come across it. Rolls of toilet roll draped over your car, house or office block may seem like an easy mess to rectify. Although, with rain more than likely in the winter months, there’s a good chance a downpour will clump that paper together and these new hardened blocks of tissue will prove harder to remove. Use an extendable pole to reach and pull the reels of paper down, or wrap some sticky tape inside out around a pole to reclaim the papery mess. If solid, it may require a bit more elbow grease and some added water to loosen the clumps, but always be careful not to get over zealous and end up damaging windows or exterior paint.
If you’re partial to a few sculpted pumpkins around the office during October then you’re probably aware of the nasty stains they can cause. A common mistake is leaving them out for too long until they start to get mouldy, or placing them in areas where they are easily knocked over. Either way you’re going to end up with a stain so you’ll need to be prepared to clean it up. The polyphenolic pigments in pumpkin, which give it the all familiar bright orange exterior, are also responsible for producing very stubborn fabric stains. Unfortunately there is no magic solution once a stain has been embedded in carpet or any other fabric. However, a combination of stain pre-treatment, soap-free laundry detergent, white vinegar and rubbing alcohol should do the trick. Remember, as with any fabric stain, always test a small area first and if successful, carry it out across the whole stain.
Fright night can be a messy affair, but by putting these tips into action you can quickly get your business back in shape. This way you’ll only have the embarrassing office party stories to worry about, not the smell of rotten egg lingering in the air.