Why is it important to have the right cleaning supplies for the job, what are some disadvantages to being ill-prepared?
It’s important to have the proper cleaning tools for any job and to be prepared for many reasons. Accidents and spills happen, and it’s imperative to clean up any mess as quickly as possible to protect affected surfaces from damage or staining. It can also be very costly to repair or replace a surface that has been damaged from spilled paints, stains, or chemical cleaners. If you’re professional, that could be the difference between making a profit on your work or dipping into your margins.
What types of products do you think a painter has to have with them to ensure a quick cleanup and reduce callbacks?
Painter’s should always have a good supply of thick, consistent and absorbent wiping cloths or rags on hand at all times. A good wiping cloth, like our Precision-Fiber® Cloth Rags, will help you to clean up messes quickly and easily. Rags can help quickly wipe up spatter, spills and drips with ease, and when addressed immediately you lessen the chances that you’ll need to use a paint thinner or similar cleaner to help get rid of the mistake. Other good tools and supplies to keep on the job site would be things like sponges, commercial cleaners or paint thinners, or even just a little water.
How do different types of textiles handle different cleanup situations a painter finds themselves in?
There are many different grades of wiping cloths and rags. Each come with their pros and cons for each job.
Traditional recycled rags are a good all-purpose cleaning rag and can be used for many dirty applications. The problem is they are made from recycled clothing and you never really know what you’re going to get when you open the box. Seams, cuffs, stains… even bodily fluids. Usually they are the cheapest option, but not the most professional.
New rags offer more consistent quality, color and performance. Within new rags you’ll have washed and unwashed options and made-to-spec wiping cloths. For professional painter’s, we highly recommend prewashed grades for their absorbency and low-lint performance. Typically, painter’s will stick with the all-white t-shirt knits, and the premium performance of Desert Storm tan knits. Made-to-spec options have come into existence over the past 15 years or so and are manufactured to be a rag. These are typically designed to be ideal for either general cleaning purposes, or specifically for tasks like staining.
You’ll also see painters using terry towels and white shop towels (painter’s towels) for really dirty or really tough jobs due to their strength and versatility. Typically, these are used in surface prep or cleaning prior to the job, and sometimes after a job is complete for a general wipe down of their work area. Terry towels and painter’s shop towels are not typically good for use when cleaning up paint or stain while working as they will lint and are bulkier than a typical knit rag.
A game-changing new entry into the paint and cleaning rags category is Intex’s proprietary Precision-Fiber® Cloth, or PFC® for short. PFC® is a versatile powerhouse wiping cloth that is suitable for all painting, staining and cleaning needs. It’s made in the USA from 100% brand new material. Every piece is identical to the next, and each performs superior to traditional textile wiping cloths and rags. Each piece is super strong and cut to exacting spec, and they are even reusable if rinsed or washed out.