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Showing most liked content since 03/01/2004 in Articles

  1. 1 point

    Artillery fungus is tough to fight

    Gene Austin Philadelphia Inquirer March 3, 2001 If your siding, car, fence or any other surfaces around your house have broken out with a rash of black or dark-brown specks that do not want to come off, you are probably at war with something called artillery fungus. It has become increasingly common in recent years, according to experts who have been seeking ways to control and eradicate it. Artillery fungus, also called shotgun fungus or Sphaerobolus stellatus, usually originates in wood-chip mulch that is used around shrubs, flowers and other plants. Wet, rotting mulch breeds small mushrooms that shoot off spores for distances of up to 20 feet. The spores, which are sometimes mistaken for insect waste or bits of tar, cling tenaciously to surfaces such as house siding. "It's just like Super Glue," said Don Davis, professor of plant pathology at Pennsylvania State University's College of Agricultural Sciences. Davis and Larry Kuhns, professor of horticulture, have been leading a five-year study of the fungus, and they expect the study to continue for several more years. Davis said he gets 20 to 30calls a week during the fungus' most active seasons - generally spring and fall when temperatures range between 50 and 68 degrees. Callers are steered to Davis and Kuhns through the college's Internet site: www.cas.psu.edu/docs/casdept/plant/ ext/mulchfun.html. Davis said the rapid spread of the fungus and the growing number of fungus-damaged homes appear to be linked to the growing use of mulches made from recycled hardwood scraps and tree stumps. Homeowners can take a key step to control artillery fungus by cleaning up wood-chip mulch around the house and disposing of it before the shooting starts again in April or May. Here are some additional tips: • Control. Bark mulch appears to be more resistant to the fungus than wood-chip mulch. Davis said pine-bark chunks seem to be the most resistant, and cedar, redwood and cypress mulch also appear to be resistant. "Even these mulches should be replaced every few years," he said. • Davis said stone mulch (usually small, decorative stones) "is the ultimate answer" to artillery fungus. Black plastic, held in place by stones or boards, is also safe, and some homeowners are getting good results with leaf mulch. Kuhns said fungicides do not work well because "it's hard to determine when the mulch becomes infested, making the timing of the application . . . difficult." • Insurance. If your house is damaged by artillery fungus, check with the agent handling your homeowners insurance. Most policies do not cover damage from fungus or mildew, but some do. • Power-washing. Once the fungus becomes attached to a surface, even power-washing is not effective unless it is done within a few weeks of a fungal outbreak. • One power-washing expert said he was able to remove the fungus using 200-degree water, with water pressure of 3,000 pounds per square inch, but this combination of hot water and high pressure can damage some types of siding. • Scraping. Artillery fungus can be removed from windows by scraping with a razor blade. Scraping also can remove some of the black specks from smooth siding, but several homeowners who tried this reported that a brown residue remains and can't be removed. Scraping can gouge vinyl and painted siding. Gene Austin welcomes readers' questions and comments, but he cannot give personal replies. Address correspondence to Gene Austin, the Philadelphia Inquirer, P.O. Box 8263, Philadelphia, PA 19101.
  2. 1 point
    First, lets look at how we used to use social media, and how it has changed. Social media marketing, old school: Hit as many people as possible between the eyes with your product or service, and see what happens. The more people you hit, the more will convert to customers. When Twitter and Facebook came along, businesses thought, “Great! A free way to bombard as many people as possible with advertising promoting my stuff.” This is why many people think social media doesn’t work for businesses, and why so many prospects agree. Is there a better way, though? Marketing model, now: Don’t hit your prospects! Connect with them, and then start listening to social media to see where else they are going to get great content. The idea here is to learn more about them so you can target your marketing more and more, and be more relevant than anyone else. One of the ways you can do this is to use HootSuite or Rebel Mouse to create a stream of your customers tweets, Facebook updates, and Linkedin updates. Use the filters in Rebelmouse to keep only the posts with shared URL’s in them, and then collect them all in a spreadsheet and see if some keep popping up with more regularity. These are the sites that your customers and prospects are going that have good enough content to share. This is where you want to be. In short, listening to social media is your secret weapon to understanding your customer, prospects, and targeting your marketing.
  3. 1 point
    Abrasion Abrasion - Wearing away by friction Abrasive Abrasive – A substance used to scour, scrub, smooth or polish. Abrasive particles are found in such products as cleanser, pumice stones, scouring pads and hand cleaners. Accessories Accessories – Various tools that may be used in conjunction with cleaning machines and equipment. ( i.e. drapery tool on a vacuum cleaner) Accrual Accrual – an accounting term for the increase over time of expenses incurred by your business. Acid Acid - A water soluble substance with a pH of less than 7 that reacts with and neutralizes an alkali. Acid Test Ratio Acid Test Ratio – Ratio of cash and accounts receivables to current liabilities. Acrylic Acrylic - Type of polymer in floor finishes Acrylic Styrene Acrylic Styrene - Type of polymer in blended floor finishes Adhesion Adhesion - A necessary component of a floor finish, which cause it to stick to the floor rather than peel, flake or powder off. Aerobe Aerobe – a microorganism that requires air (oxygen for growth) Aerosol Aerosol – an extremely fine mist or fog consisting of solid or liquid particles suspended in air. Also, term used for products which mechanically produce such a mist. Aging Account Report Aging Account Report - the amount of time measured in days that someone has owed you money. Most companies have 3-, 60 and 90 day categories. Alcohol Alcohol –a class of organic compounds containing one or more hydroxyl groups (OH). Alcohol is used in detergent formulations to control viscosity, to act as a solvent for other ingredients and to provide resistance to low and freezing temperatures. Algae Algae – Microscopic single cell plants that contain chlorophyll and require sunlight to live Algaecide Algaecide – Product which destroys algae Algistat Algistat – Product which inhibits algae growth Alkali Alkali – A chemical substance with ph greater than 7 that reacts with and neutralizes an acid. Alkalinity Alkalinity – is useful in removing acidic, fatty / oily soils. Soap and soap based products are alkaline and perform well only in an alkaline medium. Detergent products can be formulated at any level of alkalinity determined by the cleaning task to be performed. All Purpose Cleaner All Purpose Cleaner – A powder or liquid detergent suitable for both general house cleaning duties and laundry. These products may not be as effective for specific cleaning jobs as products specially formulated for the task. I.e. stripping off old floor finish. Amine Amine - A class of organic compounds containing nitrogen. Amines are often used as buffering agents in liquid laundry detergents and as fabric softeners. Ammonia Ammonia – an alkaline gas composed of nitrogen and hydrogen (NH3) 5% to 10% solutions of ammonia are sold as household ammonia. Ammonia is used to aid in removing grease and dirt from surfaces and to boost the cleaning powers in grease cutters, wax strippers and general purpose soil removers. Amortization Amortization – The gradual elimination of debt through periodic payments. Also pertains to the periodic write off and expensing of assets classified as intangible such as patents, copyrights and good will. Anionic Anionic – Negatively charged part of a molecule. Anionic surfactants are widely used in high sudsing detergents. Antimicrobial Antimicrobial – agent which inhibits or destroys bacteria, fungi, protozoa or viruses that are pathogenic Antistatic agent Antistatic agent – A substance that reduces static electricity by preventing friction. Friction causes fabric (especially man made fabrics such as nylon and polyester) to produce static electricity discharge. Antiseptic Antiseptic – A chemical agent that prevents or inhibits the growth of microorganism microbes particularly on the skin Antistat Antistat - substance which reduces static electricity Appreciation Appreciation – Increase in the dollar value of an asset over time. Articles of Incorporation Articles of Incorporation – A legal document that makes your company a registered legal entity. Various forms exist. Asepsis Asepsis – Refers to the absences of pathogenic microorganisms Asset Asset – May be cash, receivables, inventory, land, buildings ( tangible assets) which includes anything your business owns to produce goods, service or revenue Audit Audit – Independent review by a certified public accountant of your business and its records to determine whether its financial statements fairly represent the financial reports. Autoclave Autoclave – A steam and disinfectant method for sterilization in hospitals Automatic Scrubber Automatic Scrubber – Labor saving powered floor cleaning machine that dispenses cleaning solution to the floor, scrubs/agitates it and then vacuums it up into a recovery tank. Bacilli Bacilli – Cylindrical or rod-shaped bacteria Bacteria Bacteria – single cell microorganisms not containing chlorophyll. (Germs ) Bactericide Bactericide – A chemical agent that destroys bacteria Bacteriostat Bacteriostat – a chemical agent that prevents bacteria from multiplying and growing. (Does not kill) Balance Sheet Balance Sheet – A report produced for the purpose of measuring the net value of your company. It is a financial statement setting out assets, liabilities and ownership interest. Base Base (see alkali) – A water soluble substance with pH greater than 7 Biodegradable – Capability of organic matter to be decomposed by biological processes. Basis Basis – Cost of an asset for tax purposes and for computing gain or loss. The basis is the purchase price, plus other expenses and less depreciation or amortization. Bleach Bleach – a product that cleans, whitens, removes stains and brightens fabrics. It also removes stains on some hard surfaces. (Test before full area usage) Blooming Blooming – a white deposit on the surface of a new concrete or magnesite floor, is either soluble salt or magnesium chloride Bright work Bright work – the chrome plumbing fixtures around sinks, fountains and the tops of toilets and urinals Broad Spectrum Broad Spectrum – Killing a wide variety of Gram- (Negative) and Gram + (Positive) organisms. Also in the landscaping and pesticide industries applying to the killing of a large variety of vegetation or insects. Budget Budget – In financial terms, this document establishes your income and expenses for a clearly defined future period. Buffer Buffer - Any substance in a fluid which tends to resist a change in pH when acid or alkali is added. Also a term used in floor care to describe a machine used to scrub or buff a floor. Buffing Buffing – polishing with a floor machine using a pad or brush Builders Builders – a material that enhances and maintains the cleaning efficiency of the surfactant. Used to improve cleaning performance. Built Detergent Built Detergent – a cleaning product containing both a surfactant and builder Burnish Burnish – to buff a floor finish at high speeds to develop a hard surface and high gloss shine. Butyl Butyl - a dangerous chemical, water soluble solvent used in degreasing products. Calcium Carbonate Calcium Carbonate – an insoluble compound that occurs naturally as chalk and limestone that results from the reaction of sodium carbonate and the hard water ion. Capital Assets Capital Assets – Assets of a long-life nature used in the production of income, such as machinery, buildings, equipment, land, etc. Must be distinguished from inventory. Carnauba Carnauba – Natural polishing wax which is derived from the leaves of the carnauba palm tree in Brazil Carpet Freshener Carpet Freshener – a product designed to counteract malodors in carpets Carrier Carrier – a person in apparent good health who carries a pathogenic microorganism (germ) Cash Flow Cash Flow – Your profits before deductions of non-cash items such as depreciation, this figure shows the flow of cash through your company. Castile Castile – Originally soap made from olive oil in Castile, Spain. Now refers to any mild soap made from vegetable oils as well. Catalyst Catalyst – A substance which initiates a chemical reaction in which it does not take part. Cationic Surfactant Cationic Surfactant – a surfactant that is from a positively charge ionic group. The most common cationic surfactants are known as quaternary ammonium compounds such as alkyl dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride. These are used as disinfectants and sanitizing products. Caustic Caustic – Strong base (alkaline) substance which irritates the skin. When the term is used alone it usually refers to caustic soda (sodium hydroxide) which is used in manufacturing hard soap. It also refers to the caustic potash (potassium hydroxide) which is used in manufacturing soft soap. Always use PPE when working with caustics. Chelating Agent Chelating Agent – an organic sequestering agent used to inactivate hard water and other metallic ions in water Chlorine Chlorine - A Powerful oxidizing agent sometimes used as a germicide and in water purification process. Chlorine Bleach Chlorine Bleach – a group of strong oxidizing agents commonly sold in an approximately 5% solution of sodium hypochlorite. As a laundry additive, liquid chlorine removes stains, whitens and disinfects. Chronic Toxicity Chronic Toxicity - adverse affects caused by continuous or repeated exposure to a harmful organism over a period of time equal to ½ of the organisms lifetime. Cidal or Cide Cidal or Cide – Generally refers to agents with the ability to kill microorganisms Cleaned-in-Place Cleaned-in-Place (CIP) – The cleaning and sanitizing of food and dairy processing equipment in its assembled condition by circulation of detergents, rinse and sanitizing solutions under appropriate conditions of time, temperature and physical action Cleanser Cleanser – a powdered or liquid cleaning product generally containing an abrasive, a surfactant and frequently a bleach agent. Cocci Cocci – Spherical shaped bacteria Colony Colony – A visible growth of microorganisms on a culture medium or food source Communicable Disease Communicable Disease – One whose causative agent is directly or indirectly transmitted from person to person. Concentrate Concentrate – The undiluted form of a dilatable cleaning product. Conductive Floors Conductive Floors - Special resilient tile that is designed to drain off or prevent static electricity. Usually coated with a zinc free / metal free floor finish Contamination Contamination – entry of undesirable organisms into some material or object. Contract Contract – An agreement between 2 or more parties/companies that create or modify a legal relationship. Generally based on offer and acceptance. Oral contracts may be binding but are difficult to enforce Corporation Corporation – A legal entity created through “articles of incorporation” usually within the state the company is located. Corrosion Corrosion – Process of gradual eating away by chemical action Corrosion Inhibitor Corrosion Inhibitor – substance which protects against oxidation of metal surfaces Corrosives Corrosives – substance which causes skin and eye damage if exposed. Cross Contamination Cross Contamination – the process of transferring bacteria from one person or surface to anther person or surface. Crystallization Crystallization – a method of polishing marble floors to remove light scratches and restore luster using an acid and steel wool bonnets on a weighted floor machine. Damp Mopping Damp Mopping – mopping with a mop wrung out tightly in a clean solution containing mild or neutral cleaners, detergent, disinfectant or sanitizing agent Debt-Equity Ratio Debt-Equity Ratio – A comparison of your total debt to your total equity (or net worth) Defoamers Defoamers – substance used to reduce or eliminate foam in recovery tanks of carpet cleaning machines and sometimes automatic scrubbers Degreaser Degreaser – a product specifically formulated to remove grease, oil and greasy soils. Delegation Delegation – The process by which you assign jobs, responsibilities and authority to individuals within your organization. Deodorant Deodorant – a product for destroying, masking or eliminating offensive odors. Depreciation Depreciation – The estimated cost of a capital asset over the expected life of that asset. A capital asset costing $10,000 that is expected to last for 5 years can be depreciated at the rate of $2,000 per year. Detergent Detergent – Synthetic cleaning agent (other than soap) which is useful in physical removal of soils. Direct Costs Direct Costs – The amount you spend that can be related to a service of your business. Disinfectant Disinfectant – An agent that destroys harmful bacteria and / or viruses on inanimate surfaces (except spores). Most common types include Quaternary Ammonium Compounds, Phenolic compounds, Pine Oil at 70% or higher. Products making a disinfectant claim must be registered with the EPA and state it on the label with a registered EPA number Distributor Distributor – A firm that buys and resells merchandise to other merchants for commercial use. Normally does not sell direct to consumers. Diversification Diversification – Investing in various areas so that adverse results in one area will not threaten the success of the overall program. Drain Cleaner Drain Cleaner – a chemically strong product formulated to clean plugs of solid grease and other varied materials embedded in drains. Dusting Dusting - the process of removing light soil particles from any surface Emollient Emollient – an ingredient for making skin soft or soothed. Used in lotions and hand soap. Emulsification Emulsification – The action of breaking up fats, oils and other soils into small particles which are then suspended in a solution for easier pick up and removal Emulsion Emulsion – a dispersion of small oil particles in a solution Enzyme Enzyme – Protein molecules produced within an organism that are used as catalysts for biochemical reactions. Often used to enhance cleaning products and now are designed for specialty jobs such as oil spill clean ups. Equity or Net Worth Equity or Net Worth – Assets, minus liabilities; what you actually own of your business once your financial obligations are taken into account. Etch Etch – a chemically caused change on the outside of a smooth surface which causes the surface to become rough Factoring Factoring – The selling of your company’s accounts receivables. The purchasing firm is called a ‘Factor’ Fatty Acid Fatty Acid – an organic (most commonly tallow & coconut oil) substance which reacts with a base to form soap. Filming Filming – the development of a thin covering or coating Fixed Asset Fixed Asset – Machinery, furniture or fixtures used in the service or production of other assets or services. Their service life extends beyond the limits of a single accounting year or tax period. Fixed Expenses Fixed Expenses – Costs that remain constant within a narrow range, regardless of your company’s sales volume. Flash Point Flash Point – the temperature at which the vapor from a product will ignite Floor Machine Floor Machine – (buffer) - a powered machine used to scrub or buff floors. Floor Finish Floor Finish – a floor coating used on vinyl composite tile and other related surfaces to create a sacrificial surface to protect the tile, also adds to the beauty of the tile and overall building appearance by having a high shine or deep gloss. Foam Foam – a mass of bubbles formed on liquids by agitation Fomites Fomites – any object or substance, other than food, that harbors or carries infectious organisms Fungi Fungi – Vegetable organisms that lack chlorophyll and are filamentous after such a structure. Fungus includes mold, mildew, yeast and mushrooms Fungicide Fungicide - A chemical agent that destroys fungi Fungistat Fungistat – Chemical which inhibits the growth of fungi Germicide Germicide – Any substance that kills germs. A disinfectant. Gluteraldehyde Gluteraldehyde – a chemical relative of formaldehyde, used in cold sterilization Gram Positive or Negative Gram Positive or Negative - Classification of bacteria by their reaction to staining. A dye is applied to bacteria, those that remain permanently stained are Gram +. If the stain is easily removed they are Gram -. Staph and strep are examples of Gram + bacteria. Pseudomonas and salmonella are examples of Gram- bacteria. Gross Income Gross Income – The total income, either actual or estimated derived from your business. Gross Margin Gross Margin – Net sales of a business, minus the cost of goods sold; often expressed as the percentage of gross profit. Gross Profit Gross Profit – Profit after the deduction of all costs of material, labor and overhead but before selling and administrative costs. Grout Grout – Matrix between ceramic tile on walls or floors. Halogens Halogens – the elements chlorine, bromine, iodine, fluorine which have strong disinfecting properties Hand Cleanser Hand Cleanser – A cleaner designed to clean hands with an emphasis on removing oils, grease and other occupational soils Hard Water Hard Water – Water containing soluble salts of calcium and magnesium and sometimes iron Heeling Heeling – Technique of applying pressure to the side of a floor machine to remove black shoe marks and persistent soil or wax build up Hexachlorophene Hexachlorophene – One of the synthetic phenol compounds currently used in prescription antiseptic soaps High Speed floor machine High Speed floor machine –any floor buffing or burnishing machine that operates at over 750 rpm. Can be electric, battery or propane powered Indirect Costs Indirect Costs – Expenses for labor and incidentals that are necessary for doing business but which do not vary directly with the volume of sales. Inert Inert – Substance not active in a formula Inhibit Inhibit – Bacteriostatic action is to inhibit the growth of bacteria rather than kill the bacteria Inorganic Inorganic – A substance not made of the combination of carbon & hydrogen Lather Lather – foam consisting of very small bubbles formed when soap or detergent is agitated with or in water. Leveling Agent Leveling Agent – Substance added to coatings which allow it to flow evenly in the application process Liabilities Liabilities – Amounts that a business owes to suppliers and to other creditors for financing purposes. Marginal Contribution Marginal Contribution – How much (in dollars) the sale of one service contributes towards the profits and the payment of fixed expenses. Market Research Market Research – The organized study of information relating to the marketing of your goods or services. Metal Interlock Metal Interlock – Detergent and water resistant type of floor finish with a metal salt in the solution. Removable with various strippers. Micron Micron – 1/25,000 of an inch Mildew Mildew – A growth, usually white or black, produced by a fungus. Mold Mold - A woolly appearing growth produced by fungus Molecule Molecule – The smallest unit into which a substance can be divided that still retains all of the chemical identity of that substance. Muriatic Muriatic – Commercial name given to hydrochloric acid Neutral Cleaner Neutral Cleaner – non-alkaline, non-acid cleaner. The pH of mild neutral cleaners may be as high as 10 and not contain harsh alkalis [/url] Neutralizer Neutralizer – Chemical to change the pH of a surface so that residues will not interfere with floor coating adhesion Non-Chlorine Bleach Non-Chlorine Bleach – A product containing peroxygen compounds, which release active oxygen in water. This type of product produces gentler bleaching action than chlorine bleach. Non-ionic Surfactant Non-ionic Surfactant – A surface active agent that contains neither positively or negatively charged (ionic) functional groups. These surfactants have been found to be especially effective in removing oily based soils. Oncogenic Oncogenic – Produces or induces tumor formations in living animals Opacifier Opacifier – Substance which does not permit the transmission of light. A clouding agent. It is used to reduce soap’s translucence or to make a bar of soap white or another desired color. Operating Costs Operating Costs – Expenditures arising out of current business activities. Operating costs for any period of time represent what it costs a company to do business—the salaries, electricity, rental, vehicles, etc. –involved in performing the business dealings. Optical Brightener Optical Brightener – Substance which makes color appear brighter in the presence of sunlight and ultraviolet light. Common additive in carpet cleaning chemicals Organic Organic – A substance composed of carbon and hydrogen, commonly referred to being ‘natural’ Organism Organism – Any individual animal, plant or bacterium Overhead Overhead – What you spend that is not directly related to production and sales of your service. Rent is a primary example. OSHA OSHA – Occupational Safety and Health Agency established to enforce laws relating to worker safety and worksite safety. Oxidation Oxidation – The reaction of oxygen with a metal, rusting. Oxidized Oxidized – To bleach. Pathogen Pathogen – Any disease producing organism Pesticide Pesticide – Agent which prevents, repels, destroys or mitigates pests and includes insecticides, rodenticides and herbicides pH pH – A chemical scale which expresses the degree of acidity or alkalinity of a solution. The pH scale runs from 0 to 14. 7 is the neutral point. Numbers below 7 indicate acidity with 0 being 10 times more acidic than 1, 1 is 10 times more acidic than 2, etc… Basically, 0-3 is strongly acidic, 4-6 is moderate acidic. Above 7 is the alkaline side of the scale. 8-10 is moderately alkaline, 11-14 is strongly alkaline. Alkalinity is also 10 times more at each full number rise on the scale. Phosphates Phosphates – A widely used water softening, builder and sequestering agent used in detergents. Phosphoric Acid Phosphoric Acid – The most common acid based on phosphorus sometimes called orthophosphoric acid. Used a mild bowl acid and in formulations of light duty detergents. Pitting Pitting – Small craters on the surface of concrete and terrazzo floors which will grow in size with traffic and chemical exposure unless protected. Plasticizer Plasticizer – An ingredient added to some floor finishes, varnish and polymer floor finishes to make it flexible rather than brittle. Polymer Polymer – A large molecule of multiple units formed into a singe building block linked together. The formation of multiple units of these molecules is called polymerization. Common types of polymers include styrene, acrylic, polyethylene, urethane, bakelite, vinyl and epoxy. Powdering Powdering – a condition caused by poor adhesion of floor finish to the surface. Affect is like seeing small crystals on your hand when rubbed on the floor surface. PPB PPB – Parts per billion. One part per billion equals 1 pound in 500,000 tons PPM PPM – Parts per million. One part per million equals 1 pound in 500 tons Precipitate Precipitate – Material settled out of a solution Preservative Preservative – A chemical agent that inhibits aging such as decay, discoloration, oxidation and microbial growth. Pre-soak Pre-soak – A soaking operation to remove stains that precedes the regular cleaning process Profit Margin Profit Margin – The difference between selling price and costs, often expressed as a percentage of the selling price. A reasonable profit margin is necessary for survival in business P.S. I. P.S. I. – Pounds per Square Inch ( Pressure indicator) Quaternary Ammonium Compounds Quaternary Ammonium Compounds – A class of chemicals used as disinfectants and softening agents ( Quats) Re-emulsification Re-emulsification – A chemical process that occurs when a film of floor finish has not completely dried and is re-liquefied by a subsequent application of finish. It doesn’t appear until the floor has dried and then appears to be streaked or dull. Resins Resins – the basic solid content of wood and concrete floor finishes that are composed of solvents. Rinse Agent Rinse Agent – A wetting agent used in the last rinse during washing to improve the draining of the water from surfaces. Rinse Aids Rinse Aids – Surfactants which aid in the rinsing property of water by lowering its surface tension. Sales Analysis Sales Analysis – An aspect of market research that involves computation of sales statistics by customer or territory. Sales Forecast Sales Forecast – Projected estimate of sales under a proposed marketing program for a specified period of time. Sanitizer Sanitizer – An agent that reduces the number of bacteria, usually in food service areas, to a safe level as judged by public health requirements. Saponification Saponification – The process of converting a fat into soap by treating it with an alkali Sealer Sealer – a coating designed to penetrate and provide the initial protection to a surface. Slip Coefficient Slip Coefficient – A measurement of the angle of the point at which a person’s foot begins to slip on the instrument used to test the static coefficient of friction of a surface. U.L. considers 0.5 or above as the safe limit. Soap Soap – A natural cleaning agent produced by the reaction of a fat or oil and an alkali. Soda Ash Soda Ash – Sodium carbonate Sodium Bicarbonate Sodium Bicarbonate – Baking soda Sodium Hypochlorite Sodium Hypochlorite – Bleaching and disinfecting agent Soil Load Capacity Soil Load Capacity – The amount of soil a chemical may hold in suspension before these soils effect the efficiency of the product. Solid Content Solid Content – The amount of ingredients in a finish that do not evaporate or volatilizes at 105◦ C Solvent Finish Solvent Finish – Finish that the solid content is carried in a solvent rather than water. Solvents Solvents – Substances used to solubilize other materials. A liquid that can dissolve another liquid Spray Buff Spray Buff – A procedure to clean and shine wear areas of a finished floor. Utilizes a sprayed solution, a floor machine and a synthetic floor pad. Usually a machine with higher speeds than a standard floor machine. Spore Spore – A special hard shell-like cell structure of a rod shaped bacteria which has an inactive form and is the most resistant of all living things to heat, chemicals and drying. Sterilization is normal method of destruction. Stain Stain – A visible discoloration Streaking Streaking – the appearance of residue on a surface, or uneven application of a product or cleaner. Stripper Stripper – Specially formulated detergents which break the bond of a finish when used as directed. Surfactant Surfactant – Surface active agent which increases the emulsifying, foaming, dispersing, spreading and wetting properties of a product. Suspension Suspension – An evenly dispersed mixture of insoluble particles in a liquid Synthetic Detergent Synthetic Detergent – A washing or cleaning product that utilizes synthetic surfactants rather than traditional soaps. Tackiness Tackiness – A sticky or adhesive condition that is a property of applied finish that is not completely dried. Telescopic Handle Telescopic Handle – An adjustable length pole used with window washing tools or dusting tools to extend reach beyond normal arms reach. Trend Analysis Trend Analysis – Analysis of financial or other data to identify patterns over a period of time. This statistical technique may be used to determine changes in sales situations and to forecast sales or costs. Traffic Lane Traffic Lane – High traffic areas that show worn or soiled lanes on flooring or carpeting. Tri-sodium Phosphate ( TSP) Tri-sodium Phosphate ( TSP) – a water softener used as a cleaning agent, banned now in many states as environmentally damaging. Use-dilution Use-dilution – the final concentration at which a product is used. Variable Costs Variable Costs – Those costs that vary directly with the level of business activity. Virucide Virucide – a chemical agent that kills viruses Water conditioner Water conditioner – A material that improves the quality of water for a given application or use. Water Softener Water Softener – Substance which removes or counteracts the hardness of water. Wax Wax - A natural protective coating for hard surfaces Wear and Tear Wear and Tear – The gradual deterioration of property, resulting from use, passage of time and weather. Wetting Agents Wetting Agents – A chemical which reduces surface tension of water, allowing it to spread more freely.
  4. 1 point
    Beth n Rod

    FAQ's on House Washing

    Cold Water vs. Hot Water Water in itself is a universal solvent and is a formidable cleaning tool. The temperature of the water changes how it affects solids in their existing state. Oil for example is not emulsified by cold water and in fact becomes more adhesive to itself as the temperatures drop. As the temperature of water is increased, it starts to break up the oils adhesive characteristics causing emulsification (suspension into solution) and makes it easier to remove. Hot water also allows chemicals mixed into it to work better and to be absorbed into solution easier. This can be observed by mixing a powdered cleaner into cold water and noting an undissolved residue at the bottom of the pail, while mixing the same powdered cleaner to hot water will dissolve easily leaving little or no residue at the bottom of the pail. What is that chalky substance on the sides of a house? This is caused by oxidation. It occurs when paint has been oxidized by exposure to either sunlight or a strong oxidizer like bleach (Sodium Hypochlorite). The exposed paint is broken down and the original color is lost in this process which is seen on painted homes and siding like aluminum. It can also be seen on vinyl type siding that has been exposed to high concentrations of bleach. What is a 2 step process for cleaning a house? This is referring to 2 types of chemicals being used one after the other. First an acid based detergent is applied to one side of the house and then an alkaline based detergent is applied on top of it before the first is allowed to dry. This sets up a reaction with the 2 that helps to break up and dissolve many pollutants that can be found on homes siding. Then both are rinsed away with a pressure washer using a wide nozzle, usually 40 degree tip for the least impact on the surface. What types of acids and alkaline detergents are used in a 2 step process? Acid based detergents contain active ingredients like Hydrofluoric, Hydrochloric, Sulfuric and Phosphoric acids. Alkaline based detergents contain active ingredients like Sodium Hydroxide, Potassium Hydroxide, Sodium Metasilicate and Limonene. Are these compatible with bleach? It is not recommended that you mix bleach with any of these active ingredients due to the possibility of causing a fire, release of hazardous gases or causing pressurization in a closed container which could lead to an explosion. What happens if you get a lot of water behind the siding when washing? The weep holes under the edges of the siding are large enough to allow moisture in small amounts to escape, but not large enough to handle large volumes of water introduced by pressure washing. The result is a cascade of water flowing down behind the siding that can then wick its way under the insulation and create moisture penetration into the framework of the home. The result could be water damage to the interior of the home, electrical shorts and circuit failures, mold and mildew proliferation and siding that will be bulged out wards due to water absorption into the particle board used in home construction. How do I wash a house without creating a problem behind the siding? Washing a home with a low pressure approach helps to minimize the introduction of water behind the siding. Although it does not prevent it, there is much less water for the weep holes to drain. Other methods include using a brush or rotary brush to remove any unwanted soil from the siding. Low pressure washing involves keeping the pressure below 300 psi like what is available out of the hose bib. Low pressure washing is applicable for removal of microbial infestations such as mold/mildew and algae with an antimicrobial cleaner. For removal of oxidation, egg, bat and wasp excrement, higher pressure may be required to agitate the surface in order to remove these unwanted contaminants. Am I liable for any damage behind the siding? Without a damage waiver, the answer is yes. Because you are the contract cleaner, you are supposed to be aware of the potentials for causing or creating damage in the processes you will use to clean a house. The best practice is to inform the home owner of the potentials and if they wish to proceed, they should be asked to sign a waiver to the fact. While this may leave the homeowner with the problem to deal with in the future, ultimately it is their choice whether or not the wash is to be done. How do the chemicals I use to clean the house affect the plants? Left alone to continue their action, chemicals can damage or even kill many plants found growing around a home. Thorough and frequent rinsing can help reduce the impact on them often will leave them well watered. I heard that Hot water can be bad on vinyl siding, why? Hot water in excess of 120 degrees can cause some types of vinyl to buckle, shrink and warp. This is one case where hot water can be bad for the surface you are cleaning. Note, in cold weather that using hot water in excess of 180 degrees can cause some windows (lead depression era glass and others made during that period) to crack. How do I reach those high places when the ground isn’t suitable for a ladder? There are “at the gun” nozzles called X-jets or M-5 jets that allow you to throw chemicals up higher to reach these areas. To rinse, using an extension pole of 18-24 feet helps to get you close to the surface in high places. Should I use a wax after cleaning a house? This is up to the customer, but the benefit should be explained for their consideration. House waxes can help to keep the surface clean for a longer period before needing another wash. They can also make the surface more resistant to mildew and algae reformation. The benefit to the homeowner is a better looking home for a longer time and that can equate to savings for them. Waxes costs pennies on the dollar and are easy to apply. Some techniques for application will include the wax in the cleaner if it can withstand the solution. The best results are achieved by applying the wax once the house has first been cleaned and rinsed. The benefit for the operator is that you make more money on the job by up-selling this service and the return service will be easier to clean.