Why Traditional Cleaning Methods Are Not Always Best

Here at Fresh Foam, we’ve touched on traditional cleaning methods and why our foam is better. It’s better for the residents, the budget and the environment. What we haven’t discussed are the implications of using these traditional cleaning methods on the equipment, especially older construction buildings. Not many people realize the traditional method of power washing their system can actually cause damage.

Many buildings with trash chutes are older construction, some, pre-war. The age of the trash chute is typically the age of the building and many decades ago trash chutes were constructed of brick and mortar which led directly to an incinerator. While incinerators are no longer active and have been replaced with trash compactors the brick and mortar tunnels remain. Shooting a stream of high-pressure water is not an effective way to clean and maintain these older types of equipment.

Brick is a very porous material and it will absorb the water used in pressure washing. Bricks are fired from clay which creates a hard outer layer. Over time the pressure of the water repeatedly being sprayed onto it will cause the harder surface to crack and eventually break off. Once that happens the inside of the brick which is a much softer material is exposed. The softer insides are more porous and will absorb the liquids at a much faster rate. As the insides start to absorb the water it causes them to become pitted and eventually crumble and fall apart leaving holes. The mortar holding the bricks together suffers too. Any bits that have become loose or cracked over time can be knocked right out by that stream of water.

This deterioration leaves wide gaps on the inside of the tunnel that are perfect entry points for water from future cleanings. It seeps into the structure behind the chute and causes mold and bacteria growth. Additionally, any loose debris from garbage being discarded down the chutes can get stuck in there and result in some very funky odors. While we turn our noses up to those smells rodents and bugs love them. The smells attract them and those gaping holes are the perfect place for them to move right in and breed. Before long you can have a cockroach or rat infestation on your hands that requires a lot of extra work, time and money.

Using Fresh Foam to clean your brick and mortar chutes can greatly decrease the probability of those situations. It is gently applied to the surfaces so no high-pressure streams will cause damage. Plus it clings to the interior so one quick application will do the trick instead of 20 or 30 minutes of high-pressure liquid pounding on the bricks. Fresh Foam also uses very little water so even though the bricks may be damaged and therefore more likely to absorb liquids, there won’t be much for them to soak up. Applying Fresh Foam to the insides of your brick chute will not only disinfect but it will not result in any excess wear and tear to the surfaces.

Besides speeding up the deterioration process of the chute, pressure washing causes damage to the compactors at the bottom. All the tiny metal parts holding everything together like rivets, nuts, and bolts take a beating every time they are sprayed. The degradation of these tiny parts may seem insignificant however the wearing down or loosening of one rivet is all that’s needed for water to seep in. Once a leak has started it can go undetected and do more damage until you’re faced with an emergency repair.

Power washing your equipment is no longer the best way to clean and maintain your equipment. It beats up the interior of the chutes, damages the trash compactors and speeds up the deterioration of your overall system. Pressure washing will undoubtedly shorten the life of your trash disposal equipment and cost you more money over time. Making the switch to Fresh Foam will extend the useful life of your chutes and compactors. It is a much safer and more effective way to maintain your equipment. Replacing the traditional method of power washing with the Fresh Foam method will not only keep your chutes and compactors in tip-top shape it will add years of function to your system and save you money and time.