Arnold Fredrick

Arnold Fredrick

Western Division Manager

For me cleaning in a systematic routine is best.

Restroom The systematic approach ensures that I not only don’t forget any items, but also make sure everything is completed to the best of my ability. I have segmented cleaning for restrooms into eight easy steps that follow an order and purpose. This approach has worked well for me, and I am positive it will work well for you. The steps are as follows:


  • STEP 1 Inspect
  • STEP 2 Spray Disinfectant
  • STEP 3 Dust (Hi / Low)
  • STEP 4 Restock Dispensers
  • STEP 5 Trash
  • STEP 6 Clean / wipe
  • STEP 7 Sweep & mop
  • STEP 8 Inspect



Inspecting the restroom is a simple step that takes about eight seconds. All I am doing at this point is looking for any “oh my’s”. I don’t think I need to define this…. If you have ever walked into clean a bathroom, and “oh my” was your first thought, then you know what I mean. All I can say at this point is – Glove Up and Dig In. You have to remove the “oh my” before the rest of the cleaning can begin. If there are no problems that stand out, we then move on to the next step.



Spray your disinfectants on all high touch and porcelain surfaces and fixtures. Spray heavily so they will remain wet for at least ten minutes, or until you clean them.



Dust surfaces. Start with high dusting, followed by dusting the lower surfaces.



Refill items in the restroom that need to be replenished. When I do this I will open all dispensers and refill them. but will leave them open.



Remove all trash in the restroom and dispose into a large barrel container. Never place the trash directly on the ground because of items that may leak out and cause a new mess to clean up on another floor surface.



Clean and wipe all fixtures, sinks, toilets, urinals, and counters. Spray more disinfectant, if needed, and then wipe clean. As I wipe the dispensers, this is where I close the cabinets and double check that I filled them properly. Next, I will spray the glass cleaner on the mirrors and wipe them clean.



Sweeping: Sweeping the floor sounds easy but there are many spots that get custodians in trouble. Areas under or behind the trash can, behind the restroom door, or behind toilets are commonly overlooked or neglected.

Mopping: Before going to detail on proper mopping procedures in restrooms, I want to take a moment to define the difference between damp mopping and wet mopping for those who are either new to the industry or are not familiar with the difference between the two terms.

Damp mopping refers to the method where after submerging the mop into the bucket, it is heavily wrung out leaving the mop only mildly damp. This method is commonly used by those who seek to clean quickly and have the floors dry relatively quickly.

Wet mopping refers to the method where after submerging the mop into the bucket, it is not heavily wrung out. This leaves the mop head in a soaked state with ample water and solution to be applied on the floor. This method leads to much longer drying times.

When possible I would prefer to wet mop the floor. Damp mopping just does not leave enough disinfectant on the floor to help kill bacteria. So, when time permits, I will wet mop. I start on the edges working my way around the room perimeter, going toward the back and then working my way to the door keeping the mop off the walls to prevent “ring around the restroom”. There is a unique phenomenon that happens when someone mops like they are parting the red sea and pushes dirt from the middle of the floor to the sides and up onto the ways – thus creating the ring we see on the bottom four inches of a wall around most restrooms walls.



This inspection is also a quick and easy step. Many times this is over-looked. When I owned and operated my cleaning business, customers sometimes called to complain about the cleaning job performed from the previous night. Well, many of the complaints could have been solved by simply following the last step. Simply remembering to put a new roll of toilet paper in an empty dispenser or not leaving a bottle of disinfectant behind afterward are easily correctable errors that will be easily picked up during Step Eight.





Neil Flynn, Janitor on SCRUBS (ABC)

Let’s talk about the penny game. If you have never heard of the penny game, it is played when cleaning a commercial building restroom. In every building I have cleaned I have found pennies left behind in the oddest places (behind the door, behind the toilets, and under the trash can in the corner, on top of a partition wall). I believe that these are lonely and sad people who need others to play with. So I like to pick up these pennies and make a nice stack of them and place them on my main contact’s desk at that account with a note letting them know that I found these “on the bathroom floor and Have A Great Day!” This normally results in the penny game coming to an end soon. Your contact will not be happy with your “present” that was on the bathroom floor and if you leave this from multiple nights they will find out who is doing this and make sure it stops asap. I love this game and like to see the contact squirm when I leave the pennies for them.