Monday, January 07, 2013

Annual "ice melt" warning

Severe snows throughout the northern states means ice melt compounds will be used on streets, sidewalks and parking lots and will be tracked inside. These compounds are usually salt (sodium chloride) but in weather below zero calcium chloride is often used. Calcium chloride is exothermic (releases heat when it dissolves) and is effective even at minus 40 degrees F. It's great for melting ice but it creates problems for building maintenance people.

When it's tracked in, calcium chloride absorbs and holds moisture which makes walk off mats and hard floors wet and slippery. Calcium chloride reacts with the alkalinity of normal detergents used in extraction cleaning or mopping which converts the calcium chloride into calcium hydroxide (lime). Lime is almost completely insoluble in water and causes walk off mats, carpet and hard floors to take on a dull white appearance.

To remove calcium chloride from carpet or mats, add eight ounces of Brown Out® to each gallon of clear water in the solution tank of your Bane-Clene® base unit and extract the carpet or mats. The difficult-to-remove white discoloration will be easily removed. With equipment that is not stainless steel and may be harmed by the acid in Brown Out, spray an eight ounce per gallon solution on the fibers with a stainless or plastic sprayer, groom in and extract with clear water.

Be sure to thoroughly rinse your equipment and sprayers after using Brown Out.

©Bane-Clene® Corporation 2012 Reprinting or electronically publishing this article is strictly prohibited without permission from Bane-Clene Corp.

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