The Science of Cleaning

The Science of Cleaning
published in Cleaning How-Tos

It might surprise you to hear that there is a whole science behind cleaning your house. Understanding this science is the difference between a cleaning which makes your home look better, and a cleaning which makes your house a safer environment for you and your family.

The science of cleaning is not something that many homeowners consider when choosing house cleaning help. They may look only for someone who loves to dust and vacuum and make the house look and smell sparkly fresh. Without understanding the science of cleaning, that same cleaner may be just moving the soil around, and be causing damage to your appliances, counters, and floors. This is why it is important for homeowners to choose house cleaning professionals who are trained in the science of cleaning and are using the correct solutions for your home.

Removing, Not Moving

Great artists need more than talent and technique to create a masterpiece - the right brushes make a difference. Quality cleaning also requires technique. We practise the best-practise of cleaning from top to bottom, to remove the most amount of dust and soil from a room. Quality cleaning also needs the right supplies and tools. We use professional-grade microfibre cloths because of how effectively they remove particles which are smaller than the eye can see. Cotton cloths, poor quality microfibres, and microfibres which have not been laundered correctly do not effectively remove soil - they move it around. Visually the surface may look better, but soil and allergens remain. If your family has asthma or sensitivities to dust, you want a cleaning service which will remove the soil, not just move it around.

Understanding the pH Scale

Remember high school science? The pH scale measures the acidity or alkalinity of a substance. It ranges from 0 to 14, with 7 being the neutral point. If the pH scale indicates anything less than 7, you’re dealing with an acid, and if the number is above 7, the substance is alkaline.

Acid-based cleaners are effective in bathrooms because they dissolve soap scum and hard water deposits. Alkaline-based cleaners are usually used in the kitchen, where soil is fat-based

The Risk of Untrained Cleaners

If your cleaner doesn’t understand pH and how it interacts with surfaces, they may be causing permanent damage to your home. An acid based cleaner will dissolve any calcium carbonate-based stone, called etching. An alkaline cleaner will also cause damage, creating a yellow or cloudy finish. What does this mean? Be concerned if you have marble, travertine, or limestone. If your cleaning person is spraying a brand-name cleaner from the grocery store in your home, it will damage your beautiful stone counters and floors. We’ve seen many damaged finishes which can’t be cleaned away - restoring etching damage is an expensive and intensive process.

pH values also matter for your beautiful hardwood and laminate floors. An alkaline floor cleaner like an oil soap may leave your home smelling fantastic, but it will leave a film on your floors which will dull the appearance over time. Even worse - that soapy film will attract dust and soil to your floors, so they get dirtier faster!

Bottom line: Hiring a professional service who understand the science of cleaning, provides pH neutral cleaners, and trains technicians on the proper use of acid and alkaline cleaners is an investment in protecting the finishes and fixtures in your home. Reach out to us today to discuss a cleaning routine for your home with one of our trained technicians.

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