Bacteria and viruses can live on surfaces for days, even weeks in some cases. Reducing the spread of these invisible, illness-causing microbes is one of the best ways owners can protect customers, keep employees healthy, reduce downtime, and protect the overall health of the business.
Daily cleanings, however, aren’t enough to keep restaurants, retail shops, or even offices clean. Employee desktops, for instance, usually contain more bacteria and viruses per square inch than the office bathroom. Killing microbes on workplace surfaces with antimicrobial products before they can spread is necessary to win the battle against bacteria.
Max Tripodi, a licensed general contractor, has helped business owners make health and safety upgrades to their facilities for over 30 years. He helps owners of restaurants, offices, retail centers, and any number of businesses improve the safety and wellbeing of their customers and employees by adding antimicrobial products throughout facilities.
For restaurant and retail owners, lots of foot traffic is good for business. But, with every foot that walks through the door, millions of germs walk in with it. Investing in an antimicrobial floor can help tame bacterial growth and help destroy bacteria and viruses that find their way onto the floors of restaurants, retail stores, or busy office spaces.
Owners have a few options when purchasing antimicrobial contract floors. Some floors are naturally easier to clean and disinfect than others – tile is a good example. The best way to ensure that a contract floor will reduce the spread of bacteria and viruses is if that floor includes an antimicrobial finish. Some finishes are applied as a coating while others are baked into the surface during the manufacturing process. Contract floors with these finishes built in are a smart and effective long-term safety investment as most will retain their antimicrobial properties for the life of the product.
In addition to the floor itself, contract flooring underlays can minimize the spread of bacteria. A high-quality underlay with built-in antimicrobial protection doubles-up efforts against harmful bacteria sticking around and reduces the risk of mold, mildew, and odors developing. Many antimicrobial underlays provide cushion and insulation so they can also add comfort to your floors and relief to your energy bill.
Handles on the doors of a retail shop, restaurant, office, or any public space are coated with millions of potentially harmful bacteria. Business owners can do a lot to protect customers and staff from the moment they walk through the door with door handles and other hardware coated with an antimicrobial finish. Many contract door hardware manufacturers are now investing in antimicrobial finish technology by partnering with the companies that are leading the development of these safeguards for the commercial market. Together, they’re giving businesses more antimicrobial hardware options than ever before and making it easier for business owners to feel confident that they’re employees and customers stay safe.
Whether a restroom is used by just a few office employees or an entire restaurant full of guests, regular cleanings once or multiple times a day aren’t enough to mitigate the spread of a virus or certain types of bacteria. Office and restaurant bathrooms should be outfitted from top to bottom with antimicrobial products that keep germs from spreading.
Today, business owners can choose from several types of antimicrobial restroom products available to make bathrooms cleaner and safer, including:
The restroom surfaces that tend to collect the most bacteria are the floor and the sink. Antimicrobial products and finishes are an easy upgrade for both of these germ-filled areas. Replacing the current floor, sink and vanity with easy-to-clean materials coated in antimicrobial finishes is a big step forward in the health and safety of any business. Business owners can even look at copper and copper-based metal finishes for things like sink faucets and dispensers. Copper’s natural antimicrobial properties are proven to be an effective solution for killing viruses and other harmful microbes.
From a full cook’s kitchen fit to feed the masses to a small office kitchen where employees make lunch, the kitchen countertop can collect and harbor more illness-causing bacteria than many other surfaces. Commercial kitchen countertops coated with an antimicrobial finish can make all the difference in stopping bacterial growth and even act as a line of defense in protecting the spread of bacteria from the kitchen to other areas of the restaurant or office.
There are two steps businesses can take to reduce the spread of germs and viruses in the kitchen. The first step is to choose a countertop material that’s less likely to harbor bacteria and is easy to disinfect – like ceramic, hardwood, copper, or stainless steel. The second step is to apply a food-safe antimicrobial finish to the countertop for maximum microbe protection. Do your research or work directly with a contractor when selecting a food-safe finish to ensure the coating is in fact safe and that it can hold up to heat and heavy-use.
Curtains, blinds, and shades are all important to consider when making antimicrobial upgrades. Even though employees and customers aren’t touching wall covering nearly as frequently as the restroom sink or desktop, these surfaces will catch and hang onto the millions of microbes floating through the air if they’re not protected. And, because most businesses and establishments don’t include washing the curtains as a part of the daily or weekly cleaning schedule, these soft surfaces can get overlooked and become a potential breeding ground for microbes.
Today, most contract wall-covering manufacturers offer fabrics and other materials coated or directly infused with antimicrobial finishes. What’s great about these finishes is that beyond killing illness-causing bacteria and viruses, they can also act as a protective layer for the material and prolong the life of the fabric.
Interior paint is another great option for adding a layer of antimicrobial protection. There are high-quality antimicrobial paints out there created specifically to prevent the spread of bacteria and viruses that end up on walls. These paints are especially effective in hallways, stairwells, or near light switches where walls tend to be touched much more. Interior paints with anti-virus protection should be considered for every office and restaurant bathroom, kitchen, and any other area where dangerous bacteria can linger and multiply.
Antimicrobial paints and coatings should also be considered for office basements, storage areas, or other underground or near-ground areas of your building where moisture can collect and mold and mildew can grow. Mold is especially dangerous to health and safety. Not only can it cause just as many health hazards as a virus, but those wet surfaces where mold prospers are also surfaces where microbes flourish as well.
Regular deep cleanings are necessary for every office and restaurant now more than ever. But, outfitting today’s workplaces with antimicrobial flooring, bathroom fixtures, countertops, wall coverings, and more is the best defense against the spread of illness-causing viruses and bacteria.
To learn more about how Max Tripodi and RCA Contractors can work with you to increase the health and safety of your business with antimicrobial product upgrades, contact him at (954) 716-8643. He’s happy to take your call and answer your questions.
Max is a Florida General Contractor with over 30 years of experience in commercial renovations, including restaurants, office buildings, retail locations, and more. He’ll work hard to help you create a healthy, safe location for your employees and guests and make the process easy for you and your team.