International Janitorial Cleaning Services Association   

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IJCSA News Blog

  • 29 Jun 2017 9:01 AM | Jamila Fanfair

    According to an article published on the July 1, 2016 by CNN entitled Dangerous Chemicals hiding in everyday products, “It was long believed that you could acquire "better living through chemistry" But that may really not be the case.” 

    For centuries consumers have been utilizing harmful commercial cleaning products which contain high concentrations of chemicals for the purpose of everyday cleaning. This is not just because of ordinary choice but also because in many cases consumers are led by marketers to believe that certain brands and products deliver splendiferous results and benefits over others because of the high level of chemical concentration contained in these products. The products promise a better clean, that they will get the job done faster and to be the cheapest available on the market. However, what is not highlighted in most instances is the numerous harmful effects these products, which we have grown to trust over the years have on our overall health, economic wellbeing and the environment at large.

    Everyday cleaning chemicals in a major contrast to natural green products contain a series of toxic ingredients which have potential adverse health effects from exposure to these chemicals. As listed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency chemicals such as ammonia phosphorous, nitrogen and others which are found in various commercial household cleaning products such as window cleaners, hand soaps, deodorizers, carpet cleaners etc are among these.

    Further, some of the Chemicals found in these products are Volatile Organic Compounds which means that they evaporate into the air and contribute to the formation of smog in the ozone layer. Natural Green Cleaning products on the other hand are not Volatile Organic Compound  but are instead made with all natural compounds which are biodegradable meaning that they can be broken down into carbon dioxide, water and biomass which are all useful to the environment and poses little to no health risks to our person.  

    The uses of these toxic household cleaners against green cleaners have several adverse economic, environmental and health effects on not just our customers and company but also the workers who are responsible for the use and handling of these products. Unlike with Green Cleaning products which are made from all natural or sometimes homemade ingredients, everyday harmful cleaning chemicals which are predominant in general consumer cleaning products such as artificial fragrances, aromatic hydrocarbons, aluminum, chlorine bleach, ammonia, phthalates, etc can cause respiratory, neurological, reproductive, dermatology issues such as irritation of the lungs, issues breathing, irritation of the eyes, asthma, Reproductive abnormalities, penetration of the skin leading to dermatitis. These are all health issues which can become life threatening for persons residing into the homes we offer services to. At our company the aim is to always provide reliable quality services with guaranteed satisfaction to our customers so that they can be happy and healthy. It is never the aim of the company to create health risks to its customers and even further the environment which is why we utilize Green Cleaning Products and practices which are free of these toxic chemicals thereby eliminating many of the identified adverse health effects. Green Cleaning involves many eco-friendly practices such as steam cleaning, the use of green- no toxic brands for example Simple Green which will not cause toxicity.

    The everyday cleaning chemicals are contributors to a series of environmental risks which create an unsafe environment for now and the future generation. These chemicals when burned, evaporated or even used in their normal state can be the cause of air and water pollution. The use of some laundry detergents, dish soaps and more when used can find their ways into drains, sewage and then discharged into nearby waterways thereby threatening the water quality needed for the survival of our fishes and other wildlife that consume this water. Research information taken from The Organic Consumers Association states “In a May 2002 study of contaminants in stream water samples across the country, the U.S. Geological Survey found persistent detergent metabolites in 69% of streams tested. Sixty-six percent contained disinfectants.” Thus, confirming the harmful effects of these chemicals on the environment. Especially when considering the level of air pollution that can be caused from the use of toxins.

    With the implementation of Green Cleaning products against the use of the regular everyday cleaning chemicals we are able to mitigate the number of harmful economic effects which may arise for companies through the use of the everyday chemical products. Use of these can lead to liability on the company’s part if a customer or worker may ever fall sick. Further it could decrease the level of productivity and incur higher costs on customers or the company for damaged surfaces. Taking all of this into consideration we should seek to make advancements towards creating eco-friendly green environments and clean homes by visiting the IJCSA Green Cleaning Directory  for information on company’s and business which provide  friendly and efficient Green Cleaning Services which can keep us happy, health and financially stable.

  • 28 Jun 2017 10:37 AM | Beverley Brathwaite

    Commercial cleansers, which contain 25 to 30 percent ammonia are extremely dangerous because they are highly corrosive. Higher concentrations of ammonia may cause corrosive injury including skin burns, permanent eye damage or even blindness. It can also cause immediate burning of the throat and respirator tract.

    sodium hydroxide can burn and eat away at any part of the body that it contacts. Breathing sodium hydroxide dust or mist causes mild or serious effects, depending on the amount of exposure. Effects may include sneezing, sore throat or runny nose.

    Triclosan is a known endocrine disruptor  and a suspected carcinogen. There is a good reason to believe that the over use of products with triclosan has contributed to bacterial resistance in the same way we are cautioned against the use of antibiotics. The persistent nature that is connected to the use of triclosan being washed down our drains daily and effecting water life.

    In order to change ammonia into a green cleaning product that is safe for home and commercial use combine 1/4 cup vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon liquid soap or detergent, and 2 cups of water is a spray bottle. This makes the best green window cleaner. Shake to blend and spray.

    Sodium hydroxide is usually used as a scrubbing agent. You can get the same cleaning cleaning and scrubbing power from baking soda and water that will make this into a safe green cleaning product. Mix a little baking soda with water until you have a thick paste. This mixture will clean even the toughest greasiest job.

    The green alternative for Triclosan is vinegar. Most types of vinegar are great for killing surface bacteria. When diluted in water vinegar is gentle enough to use on most furniture and even may be used topically on the skin if desired. Most find the smell to be unpleasant. For this reason it is often recommended to not only dilute with distilled or purified water but also to add some fragrant essential oils.

    Find A Green Cleaning Service Here


  • 27 Jun 2017 11:57 PM | Andrew Baynes

    When a customer looks for a cleaning company they are looking for the best solutions for all of their cleaning needs.  Many times the offices and commercial buildings I work at have carpet that needs a semi-annual cleaning to get rid of high traffic patterns and general grime.  The customer does not want to shop that service as well, they expect anyone they hire as a cleaner to be able to clean whatever is in the building.  Simply put, they expect their cleaner to be able to clean their building top to bottom.

    As the cleaning business my clients hire I have two options, sub out the work or to do the work myself.  Hiring a sub-contactor is an insurance liability and also puts money somewhere other than my pocket.  Doing the work myself is rewarding not just financially but also as a matter of pride.  Educating myself and learning a trade keeps me from losing future business.  Not to mention having to apologize for a subs lack of personal care.  If they do sub par work they don't have to fear losing an account that they did not have to work to gain. 

    In the end, I would want my clients to view me as a one stop solution to all their cleaning needs and that would include their carpet cleaning also.

  • 26 Jun 2017 7:19 AM | Brandon Lanford

    When you call a plumber, you not only want the plumbing problem fixed; You also want to have the peace of mind that you can allow the plumber to work without you having to constantly watch him. Trust is a huge deal to us as members of society, and being able to trust someone who is directly dealing with your property is paramount. As members of the IJCSA, we understand that the customer places a huge amount of trust in us, and we treat that trust with dignity and respect. Without customers, we are out of business, and no matter what type of janitorial services you may need, you can trust that the members of the IJCSA will put your mind at ease. 

    IJCSA members don't treat customer service as another box to check on the to-do list; for us, it's our priority. Attention to detail, face to face relations, fair pricing, and all around top quality service are attributes that you can ensure in when choosing any Janitorial Service from the IJCSA Database. Our membership and certifications are not just handed out, they are earned by each and every individual that owns the company listed. We do our best to make ourselves stand out to you so that we can truly show you the difference in quality between a standard company and a company accredited by the IJCSA.

    Find A Professional Cleaning Or Janitorial Service Here

  • 21 Jun 2017 1:19 PM | Beverley Brathwaite

    Since joining IJCSA in 2016 we have completed the green cleaning service program and have implemented it in our business. we keep a list with the prohibited chemicals and before we place an order we go each product Safety Data Sheet to make sure we are compliant in providing green cleaning services.

  • 21 Jun 2017 1:03 PM | Beverley Brathwaite

    By using green products workers and occupants reduce the chances of developing asthma and other chronic illnesses. It reduces pollution in our waterways and in the air and minimizes your impact on ozone depletion and global climate change

    The cost of buying green products have become much more competitive which allows us to buy environmentally friendly products cheaper than most harmful products.

    Find Our Green Cleaning Service Here

  • 20 Jun 2017 9:09 AM | Andrew Baynes

    As a small business owner in beautiful Charlotte, North Carolina I think it is imperative to our community to offer my clients a "green" alternative to meet a growing demand from the areas client base.  We are a growing metropolis and have managed to build in parks, streams and natural areas into our sprawling city.  Once folks viewed the green movement as a fad, but as many studies of harmful additives corporations are including in their household and industrial cleaners come out, the need to go green is more real than ever.  We as an industry can help spread the benefits of a green cleaning program.

    Not every business is ready to jump on board however as my dentist explained to me during a recent visit.  He told me that in his profession there is an extreme need to have effective products and that unless a "green' alternative product can offer him a minimum of 5 years of successful testing backed by major healthcare monitoring agencies that he has no interest in them.  For him, the risks are too high and he appreciates the peace of mind that the industry standards give him.  He did state however that with those 5 years of studies and at a competitive price he would like to implement those products that give him the option of being more green.

    My business provides our largest client a chance to mix in the use of vinegar and less caustic chemicals but still keep other non green products available in the rotation for certain jobs as well.  I believe that the key to implementing my green program will be communication to my clients.  When I make a listing of chemicals I plan on using on their property I also have a separate column that lists a green alternative to that chemical when available, leaving the choice to the consumer and ultimately allowing the business owner to say they made a great choice, not only in the choice of cleaning products, but with the business that is providing them with the choice.

    In general, I am very happy to provide my accounts with a chance to be a better member of the community.  When I educate my clients as to the risks of using most over the counter cleaners vs. their natural alternatives I feel that I have leveled the playing field a bit by giving them information that they don't get in the big corporation's hyped up TV ads. 

     Find A Green Cleaning Service Here

  • 19 Jun 2017 7:27 AM | Jamila Fanfair

    In recent times Green Cleaning has emerged as a globally accepted movement which employs effective cleaning that incorporates solutions which make considerations for both human and environmental health and protection. It seeks to thoroughly address these with the continuous use of green products, equipment, tools and practices. These products and practices usually avoid the use of toxic cleaning products and chemically reactive products which cause respiratory, dermatology and many other life threatening effects.

    Our company plans to embrace the continuous progression towards a greener and more resilient economy by way of the implementation of a green cleaning service program into our daily operations. The program will see the use of more green friendly, Non-Toxic products such as the Simple Green Products which we are currently using, the utilization of more homemade substitutions for cleaning chemicals which encompasses mixtures made from common household ingredients namely vinegar, salt, lemon juice etc., the increased use of recyclable and biodegradable cleaning materials as well as other basic green cleaning techniques.

    The continued implementation of a green cleaning service program will provide several benefits for our company, its employees and valued clients who we aim to provide a Reliable Quality work with guaranteed satisfaction. These benefits will range from Health - Economical – Social and from the health perspective will include added improved respiratory, dermatology and overall health for all from the use of less toxic chemicals when cleaning hence making homes and the environment much safer for us to dwell and socialize in. It will protect the environment, thereby protecting us by reducing our exposure to these deadly cleanings. Not forgetting to mention that green cleaning products also helps to eliminate odors thus making it much easier for us to breathe. The program will also provide much needed economic benefits for the company and its customers since green cleaning products helps to protect surfaces longer so our customers can save money, it will reduce the liability of our company by reducing the chances of our employees or customers becoming ill due to exposure with toxic chemical, improve the level of business productivity and so much more.

    Green Cleaning will help to protect us and our environment for generations to come. 

    Find A IJCSA Green Cleaning Service Here

  • 14 Jun 2017 9:07 AM | Kevin Munger

         As owner of Big River Janitorial , I feel that good customer service is the most essential key to a successful business. And you will find that with any IJCSA member associate.

         The IJCSA offers members the opportunity to learn the customer service skills that will promote  growth and success in the commercial cleaning industry. While many try their hand at the commercial cleaning industry few really achieve success because they fail to take the time to learn the skills needed to successfully deal with their customers. Membership in the IJCSA  which can be found at offers many training opportunities in all areas and specialties associated with the  commercial cleaning industry.

  • 13 Jun 2017 9:38 AM | Yaira Orellana

    The term "green" is all the rage now.  Eat your greens, drive green, and what's important to our industry "green cleaning".  The term green cleaning is used widely in the environmentally conscious society we live in.  A question any cleaning company should ask itself is "would my company benefit from having a green cleaning program?" The answer to this question is: OF COURSE!  The next question we should ask our self is , why? Well, most cleaning products are made up of harsh chemicals which are not only bad for the environment, but for your health, and those that are subjected to be around them.  

    The next question one may ask as a cleaning professional is "what are the benefits of green cleaning?" Well, for starters, when using regular cleaning agents, these toxic chemicals are not only absorbed by our skin, but also breathed in by the person cleaning and those in that environment.  With a green solution, this will not be toxic for us and those around us.  The safer products used as green cleaning agents aren't corrosive and meet strict rules regarding toxicity combustibility and skin absorption.  Green cleaning promotes better air quality, you will not have the strong chemical odors that promotes asthma and other breathing problems.  Green cleaning is also better for your wallet.  The price of green cleaning products is less than conventional chemical-filled cleaners.  Using environmentally friendly cleaning products also reduces your risk of getting sick or causing skin burns or irritating your eyes.  So it definitely puts more money in your pocket.  All in all, you're providing a much better service for your clients and saves their health, your employees health and the environment! 

    Find A IJCSA Certified Green Cleaning Service Here

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