In the past, we have often lauded the advantage of microfiber for cleaning. This is repeated today, but with the use of a disposable microfiber as the first step in the disinfection process. Of course, we are talking about cleaning first, then disinfecting. However, the products highlighted in this article are compatible with common disinfectants. These products are Rubbermaid‘s Hygen single-use microfiber swabs and wipes.
WHAT IS A MICROFIBER AGAIN?
Microfiber is a synthetic textile fiber (polyester, polyamide or a mixture) that is very fine and light with a denomination which is less than one decitex. A microfiber (filament) is characterised by its small diameter, the nature of its fiber and its structure. Therefore, not all microfibers are the same or of the same quality. This revolutionary material has quickly become a must in the hygiene, health and automotive sectors. To know more about it, read this article, Spotlight on microfiber!
THE HYGEN LINE FROM RUBBERMAID
The Hygen line was designed specifically for the healthcare industry. It is an excellent option for any facility looking to improve its cleaning efficiency, especially during the COVID-19 period. The HYGEN disposable microfiber pad and wipe contribute to the area cleaning as the first step in the disinfection process.
Microfiber pads and wipes
They eliminate 99.7% or more of the viruses and bacteria tested to help improve cleaning efficiency. And this was tested with water only
Help reduce cross-contamination with disposable pads/wipes that encourage cleaning with new pads/wipes for each area or task
Built-in scrub strips are made of polyester to help effectively remove dirt
DEMONSTRATION OF THE DISPOSABLE MICROFIBER
Here’s a video from Rubbermaid Commercial Products. They demonstrated the benefit of their Hygen disposable microfiber wipe compared to a paper towel and a disinfectant wipe. They use a fluorescent marker to demonstrate and verify cleaning practices.
Thus, using this disposable microfiber with a disinfectant provides an added layer of assurance. They will clean and disinfect well your floors and surfaces by combining the microbe removal power of the microfiber with the disinfectant’s killing power.
The COVID-19 has led us to adopt new protocols to ensure patient and staff safety in healthcare facilities. Having said that, it is crucial to equip yourself with the right surface cleaning and disinfection products in healthcare facilities! What are the right products? How should you clean? Let’s explore them with the help from Rubbermaid Commercial Products, a world leader in the commercial cleaning industry! Of course, in these strange days, depending on the availability of some products, Lalema has suggestions as well ;)!
SURFACE CLEANING PRODUCTS
First of all, here are some products suggested by RCP for surface cleaning. Overall, most of them are available. Otherwise, we have replacements.
Hygen microfiber cloths – Rubbermaid Commercial Products’ all-purpose 16″ x 16″ HYGEN microfiber cloths remove 99.9% of the viruses and bacteria tested on surfaces.
Bowl Brush – This bowl brush has a plastic handle. The brush is made of polypropylene bristles. It is odor and stain resistant.
Toilet brush holder – This toilet brush holder is made of polypropylene. It is stain and odor resistant.
Second, as expectations for cleanliness and hygiene rise, facilities must ensure that they have an established surface cleaning and disinfection process. This includes regular cleaning of high-traffic areas. Below are the best surface cleaning practices used in hospitals around the world today.
Clean systematically, clockwise or counterclockwise – No surface is forgotten, this process saves time and is more ergonomic
Go from clean to dirty – This reduces the likelihood of the spread of infections and contaminants
Clean from the top to the bottom – Any dust or debris dislodged from the upper surface will naturally fall to the lower surfaces
Wipe in one direction (unidirectional wiping) – Unidirectional wiping ensures that the solution is applied over the entire surface, while circular wiping re-contaminates areas
Color Coding – Use single color wiping cloth for each zone. For example:
Red for high risk areas
Blue for mirrors
Yellow for baths and showers
8-SURFACE FOLDING METHODOLOGY
Finally, the 8-surface folding methodology! This is the 8-sided folding for microfiber cloths. It optimizes the use of the cloth while reducing the risk of cross-contamination during the cleaning process. Here are the steps:
8-surface folding methodology by Rubbermaid Commercial Products
Start by opening a clean microfiber cloth
Fold the microfiber cloth in half
Fold the microfiber cloth into four pieces
Clean surfaces with both sides of the cloth exposed
Open the microfiber cloth once to change the sides
Fold over to expose both clean cleaning surfaces
Fully open the microfiber cloth when all four sides have been used
Repeat steps 2 to 7 to use all eight sides
In short, these tips are only general since we could have gone deeper into the details or in further checklists. However, the importance is to set up a methodology for surface cleaning and disinfection and to be equipped with the right products. Don’t forget to wear personal safety equipment! Let’s save the subject of floor cleaning for another day!
Lalema would like to thank and salute all the staff in the healthcare facilities for their services!
As we all know, the cleaning and disinfection of premises and surfaces have never been more critical with the COVID-19 pandemic. We often talk about disinfectant cleaners, but this time the focus is on microfiber cleaning cloths and tools. Since its commercial introduction, microfiber has been part of everyday life because of its reliability and effectiveness in cleaning and wiping.
WHAT IS A MICROFIBER CLOTH?
Microfiber is a synthetic textile fiber (polyester, polyamide or a mixture) that is very fine and light with a denomination which is less than one decitex. The decitex is a unit of measurement: 1 decitex = 1 g / 10 km of yarn. In fact, the term “microfiber” is used when 10 km of yarn weighs less than one gram.
A microfiber (filament) is characterised by its small diameter, the nature of its fiber and its structure. Therefore, not all microfibers are the same or of the same quality.
This revolutionary material has quickly become a must in the hygiene, health and automotive sectors. See how it is made.
THE “STORIES” OF MICROFIBER
No one is entirely sure where and when microfiber was developed. However, here are two interesting stories/versions:
According to Texasmicrofiber: “In the late 1950s, various spinning techniques were used to produce ultra-fine fibers. At that time, experiments had resulted in random length pieces, and the first real success occurred in Japan in the 1960s.
Dr. Miyoshi Okamoto and Dr. Toyohiko Hikota worked on this project to finally find microfibers suitable for industrial use. Ultrasuede fiber was one of the first success stories, and reached the market in the following decade. This led to an explosion in the value of microfibers in the textile sector. »
According to Maboutiqueecolo: “It would have been invented by the Swede Rudolf Nordine in the 1980s. The invention of microfiber is said to have come about by chance during the manufacture of “towels” for hairdressing salons. These were so absorbent that they could suck out the dye from freshly dyed hair. Nordine was quick to file a patent to protect this discovery. He was awarded a prize at the Lépine competition in 1998 for this invention at the International Invention Salon in Paris. »
USE AND EFFECTIVENESS
Microfiber has the power to clean and dust different kinds of surfaces without necessarily adding a cleaning product. This is why it can be seen as an organic and ecological product.
Microfiber cloths can be used dry or wet. First, when used dry, they attract dust and trap it in its microfibers (micro-filaments). Then, when wet (with or without a cleaning product), they trap grease and dirt.
During a pandemic, it is used with a disinfectant cleaner to disinfect surfaces. Lalema also suggests using a microfiber cloth with a tuberculocidal disinfectant. This Myosan TB starter kit is an example:
There are several types of microfiber products for all kinds of surfaces: cloth, pad/mop, feather duster, towel, etc.
HOW TO TAKE CARE OF THEM?
Microfibers are economical and environmentally friendly. They can be reused up to 500 times. “Avez-vous le pouce microfibre?” by Kim Beauregard is an article about the maintenance of microfibers. Unfortunately, it is in French only. But here are key elements:
Wash the microfibers separately from other textiles and items
Use a small amount of liquid laundry detergent while washing.
Do not use a softening agent
Wash them in cold or room water
Dry the microfibers at low temperature or without heat
So, microfiber is a revolutionary material in the world of cleaning. Whether it is used as a cloth, a pad/mop or a duster, it is the ultimate cleaning tool for cleaning and wiping in many sectors. Finally, microfiber cloths can replace disposable wipes. Use them with a disinfectant product to disinfect the surfaces in your environment.
Today it’s undeniable that microfibers are superior to cotton fibers. Although the official recommendation of the Ministry of Health and Social Services privileges the use of microfibers, cotton fibers are still pretty common in disinfecting procedures.
What are the differences between cotton and microfibers?
The difference between microfibers and normal fibers are the size of filaments as well as their structure. You can see their superior effectiveness in the image.
It is in fact for this reason that the Ministry of Health and Social Services recommends the use of microfibers for cleaning in hospitals, as their mechanic cleaning ability is greatly increased.* Up to 90% of microorganisms can be removed from a surface by simply rubbing it with a microfiber cloth.
It is also important to keep in mind that natural fibers such as cotton can decrease the effectiveness of the disinfectant. In fact, quaternary ammoniums may permanently bond with the natural fibers and lose their ability to react on the surface. Although quats of the 4th and 5th generation are much less sensitive to the type of fiber used, it’s still recommended to use synthetic fibers. The same holds for peroxide and oxidant based products such as chlorine; these products may interact with natural fibers. If you don’t have access to synthetic fibers, we strongly suggest not soaking your cotton cloths in the disinfecting solution for too long.
Quality of your microfiber cloth!
Beware of microfibers imitations, certain low quality products won’t have the same mechanical effect on surfaces. Also, low quality microfibers often shrink after washing and are more sensitive to hot water and oxidants. At Lalema, our microfiber cloths are all supplied by first choice suppliers. Although a little bit more expensive, these microfiber cloths are more durable and represent the best choice for quality cleaning.