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Keep an entrance looking its best

15 April 2016

Sharni Verity, marketing manager at Heckmondwike FB, looks at the challenges of keeping entrance area floor coverings clean and aesthetically pleasing

Entrances are one of the most challenging areas of a building to keep clean. However, this is made much easier if the right entrance area product is installed which can withstand dirt, grit and heavy foot traffic. Here, fibre bonded carpet is a sensible choice as it helps to maintain the long term appearance of a carpet and prolong its lifespan significantly.

If the ground outside the building means that users will step from a grit or potentially muddy surface into the entrance area then this could cause serious damage to a floor covering. In these cases, fibre bonded carpet is often chosen as it is extremely robust and certain types like Diamond from our range act as an interceptor, cleaning shoes of grit and moisture.

Dirt & moisture

Keeping entrance areas free from excessive moisture and dirt is essential, not just to enhance the appearance, but also to prevent slips, trips and falls, which most commonly occur here. These incidents can occur when people adjust to the different conditions between indoors and outdoors, which is made even worse if conditions are icy outside.

Specialist entrance area carpet absorbs dirt, debris and moisture that is brought in on shoes and acts as a barrier to prevent these kinds of accidents.

Entrance area matting should be as close to the doorway as possible and be large enough to let visitors take several steps before moving onto another surface. It should also be set within the floor, so it is level with the surrounding carpet, which means there is less risk of visitors tripping over loose edges.  

Daily vacuuming is highly recommended, especially with entrance areas, and our research shows that one of the most effective ways is with a twin-motored upright vacuum cleaner.

The aim of the daily vacuum clean is to remove all loose soil and grit, because if it is left to build up, the particles of dirt can have a damaging effect. This in turn reduces the lifespan of the carpet. Extra vacuuming may be necessary in entrances and corridors.

It is usually recommended that at least twice a year an entrance carpet should be deep cleaned, using hot water extraction and a good quality carpet detergent. If a carpet becomes excessively stained, then Granwax High Performance Pre-treatment is a good idea, alternatively you may consider a combination of rotary brush and extraction equipment to improve the results of the deep clean.  

Spillages & stains

When a spillage occurs, it is important to deal with it immediately. If stains are left for a long period of time, it becomes increasingly difficult to remove them and they may require several treatments. After stain removal treatments are carried out, the carpet should be allowed to dry completely and then cleaned with a twin motored upright vacuum cleaner. If carpet tiles are bitumen-backed, then solvent cleaning should be avoided, as it could damage the structure and backing of the carpet. Common stains in entrance areas are from dirty footprints having stepped in mud or sticky substances. 

Chewing gum

Chewing gum can be an issue in entrance areas, as it is usually dropped just outside and is then easily transferred into the building on footwear. To deal with this, it is important to first scrape off excessive gum with a blunt edged knife, then perforate the surface using a fork. A good idea is to apply Prochem’s Citrus Gel and leave for two minutes. Remove the softened gum with a blunt knife, finally wipe away any remaining residue with Solvall Spotter applied on a damp sponge or towel.

One of the main purposes of entrance area carpet and why it often has a rough texture, like our Battleship/Hippo range, is to remove as much dirt as possible from footwear as soon as an individual enters a building. This is only effective as long as the entrance area has a robust cleaning and maintenance regime to ensure the carpet can retain its properties.

From a cleaning and maintenance point of view, the entrance area should be seen as the hub for the collection and retention of grit, dirt and moisture, which should be regularly removed by cleaning. Then this will have a significant impact on prolonging the lifespan of a carpet throughout the building.