When supplying large facilities with cleaning chemical, management faces a major question – should I purchase ready-to-use (RTU) chemical or concentrated solutions? Although RTU solutions are convenient, they can be more difficult to transport and store. While concentrate makes storage simpler, it also presents several health and safety issues. How can facilities that need concentrated solutions mitigate risk? Below, I take a look at how facility managers can arrive at a solution regarding dilution.
Pros and Cons of Concentrate
Ideally, facilities would always opt for RTU cleaning solutions. Not only do they simplify training and use, but they remove the uncertainty associated with diluting chemicals in-house. However, not all facilities have the storage capacity to keep enough RTU chemistry on the premises. Additionally, carrying large quantities of solutions across facilities causes strain to cleaning staff. Since facilities have made cleaning and disinfection practices more visible to assure the public during the COVID-19 pandemic, keeping enough supply on hand is more challenging than ever.
Choosing concentrate enables facilities to have a large capacity of solutions on hand without crowding limited storage space. Concentrated chemicals are also lightweight and easy to carry throughout the facility before they are diluted. However, storing these potent chemicals creates a host of safety and environmental issues.
Firstly, common chemicals like bleach, ammonia and hydrochloric acid can harm people and the environment. They can cause skin and eye irritation and release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that impact indoor air quality (IAQ). Some chemicals in cleaning products have been shown to cause asthma or other long-term illnesses. The greater the amount of toxic chemical that enters your body through the skin, eyes or inhalation, the more harm it will cause, making concentrated solutions especially dangerous.
Requiring employees to dilute chemicals can potentially increase the risk of exposure, dangerous mixtures or ineffective cleaning. Diluting by hand makes exposure and chemical mixtures that can release toxic gasses more likely. The process of dilution adds another step where impurities such as dirt, dust or other chemicals can enter the solution by accident. Impurities can cause poor cleaning performance and leave residue on surfaces with conventional chemistries. Additionally, facilities can’t validate whether staff dilute the chemicals properly. Staff may unintentionally over-dilute the solution and render it useless, or under-dilute and harm people and surfaces.
Although conventional chemical concentrates are packaged with less plastic than typical RTU chemicals, these containers also require special handling and disposal because they contain hazardous waste. Providing the training and safety measures to handle these chemicals costs facilities time and money.
Discovering the Dilution Solution
If concentrate is the best fit for your situation, opt for concentrated chemicals that minimise risk and are proven to not be hazardous in the concentrated form. PathoSans® PS600-CT Concentrate Generator and Remote Dilution Stations are designed for large facilities such as office buildings and school campuses that require large quantities of cleaning solutions at multiple cleaning sites.
The generator produces PathoClean®, a cleaner/degreaser that removes soil from surfaces, and PathoCide®, a sanitiser/disinfectant that eliminates pathogens of concern. The two electrochemically-activated solutions (ECAS) are produced using just water, salt and electricity and do not contain caustic ingredients or added fragrances.
Cleaning staff can carry the lightweight PathoClean and PathoCide concentrates to dilution stations located throughout your facility and have the solutions ready in just minutes. The stations are closed dilution systems with a preset and locked dilution ratio to avoid concerns related to over- or under-dilution. The locked transport containers prevent user error and unintentional mixtures.
The PathoSans concentrate units deliver the benefits of concentrate without the risks of toxic conventional chemicals. Unlike typical concentrates, PathoClean and PathoCide do not release VOCs or contain chemicals that can explode or corrode surfaces in high concentrations. They are proven to be safe to handle in the concentrated form and do not require disposing of hazardous waste. Since they are generated on site, they also eliminate the plastic waste and greenhouse gas emissions associated with shipping either concentrate or RTU solutions.
Demonstrating Care with a Safer Concentrate
Facility managers are focused on keeping facilities clean while also maintaining the safety of their staff and guests. When concentrate is the best solution for distributing cleaning chemicals around large facilities, choosing ECAS in concentrate form keeps buildings free from toxic chemicals and assures staff that you care for their wellbeing.
For more information about cleaning and disinfecting with care, contact us today.
Tyler Williams is Director of Scientific Services at PathoSans, a leading provider of on-site generation (OSG) devices that produce ready-to-use, highly effective cleaners and sanitisers known as electrochemically activated (ECA) solutions. To learn more about effective cleaning and disinfecting solutions compatible with electrostatic technology, visit www.pathosans.com.