Where should cleaning chemicals be stored in the workplace?

 

Cleaning chemicals can cause harm to your employees or customers if they are not stored or used properly.

It is easy to avoid any accidents at work by following some simple rules.

Read on to find out how to store your cleaning products to avoid any spills, harm to staff or customers, and how to reduce your cleaning supplies bill.

 

Where should cleaning chemicals be stored in the workplace?

Commercial cleaning chemicals should be stored in a locked and signposted cupboard in your workplace.

They should be stored in a cool, dark space as heat or light can impact their effectiveness.

 

Why is it important to store cleaning supplies properly 

It’s important to store cleaning supplies properly for various reasons but most importantly for the safety of anyone on your premises.

 

 

Prevent harm

If anyone can access your cleaning supplies, then they could be used by people who haven’t been trained how to use them properly which could cause them harm.

It could also cause harm to others such as staff or customers if they are not used properly.

 

Costs

It’s important to store your cleaning products properly and not to overstock them. If you are buying more than you need then it’s wasting your money and causing your cleaning store to be disorganised.

 

Prevent cross-contamination

If certain cleaning items are stored together, it can cause cross-contamination.

If you mix cleaning cloths that are used for cleaning raw meat areas of your kitchen with cleaning cloths that are used for cooked meat areas, then this could spread germs.

 

Are there regulations on storing cleaning products?

There are regulations on ensuring health and safety at your workplace.

The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 states you must ensure “safety and absence of risks to health in connection with the use, handling, storage, and transport of articles and substances.”

There are also regulations on how to handle cleaning products and how to store them such as avoiding or minimising contact with skin and harmful substances, minimising leaks, using PPE when appropriate, and having a well-ventilated workplace.

If you do not follow these regulations, you could be fined, imprisoned, or face disqualification.

 

Do you need COSHH for cleaning products?

All staff should have COSHH training for using cleaning products.

Some cleaning chemicals can be harmful to health and can put the wellbeing of your staff or customers at risk if they are not used properly.

 

Location of cleaning products

Your commercial cleaning products should be stored in a:

  • Locked cupboard
  • Cool and dark area
  • Well-ventilated area

Storage for cleaning supplies needs to be well-ventilated to avoid the build-up of a strong chemical smell and heat can also reduce the effectiveness of cleaning products.

The cleaning supplies should be organised to minimise leaks and spills from happening that can go unnoticed.

 

Cleaning cupboard organisation 

The Workplace (Health, Safety, and Welfare) Regulations state as an employer, you must ensure spillages are cleaned quickly.

Slips, trips, and falls are the most common injury at work, and you don’t want your staff to be harmed and you don’t want to have to pay sick pay and someone to cover their work.

You also don’t want members of the public having an accident in your workplace which could damage your reputation and lead to them filing a lawsuit against you.

Your cleaning store should also be organised not just to avoid spills but to avoid reactions between cleaning supplies.

Solid and liquid products should not be stored beside each other, neither should flammable and non-flammable or acids and alkalis.

 

 

Clearly label cleaning products

Cleaning products must be clearly labelled to ensure they are not mistaken for other cleaning products and used inappropriately.

All products should have their labels facing forward in your cleaning store.

 

Cleaning cupboard signs

If you use signs in your workplace, it can reduce the risk of accidents.

The Health and Safety (Safety Signs and Signals) Regulations 1996 states:

  • Safety signs and signals are required where, despite other relevant measures, a significant risk to the health and safety of employees and others remains.

By using signs to signpost your cleaning cupboard, it ensures only those with authority will use it and customers won’t accidentally enter.

 

Colour coding

Colour coding cleaning is a great way to avoid cross-contamination.

You should store colour coded cleaning items separately or if you don’t use colour coded cleaning, separate cleaning equipment that is used for different areas to avoid the spread of germs.

For proper storage of cleaning equipment, brushes and mops should be stored with their head down which helps to prevent contamination of the handles.

 

 

Mixing chemicals

You should choose cleaning products that don’t need to be mixed to avoid any accidents happening such as adverse chemical reactions or someone handling the chemicals inappropriately and harming themselves.

If you do provide diluting chemical concentrate then you should ensure you have provided good washing facilities and ensure there is no or little contact with skin.

When cleaning with chemicals that need mixed, the liquid concentrate should be added to the diluting liquid and not the other way around unless the manufacturer’s instructions say otherwise.

When items are mixed, they should be sealed immediately, and the outside of the container wiped.

When you are finished, the items used to mix the chemicals should be washed.

 

Safe practices for storing hazardous substances

Under the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) Regulations 2002, employers must assess the risks of hazardous substances including dealing with accidents or emergencies resulting from spillages.

You must prevent or control exposure to hazardous substances and provide staff with information and training.

 

Cleaning cupboard organisation 

When you store items, you should not overstock them to avoid spills.

Items should be kept organised to avoid cross-contamination and heavier items should be stored at the bottom with smaller and lighter cleaning products stored at the top.

 

 

Train staff

You must ensure all staff who use cleaning products are trained on how to use them properly.

 

Use by dates

You must abide by the use by dates on the products.

Not only will they possibly be less effective after this date, but they could cause harm. This is also another reason why you should not bulk buy products as you want to use them as soon as possible and not overcrowd storage areas.

 

Inspections

You should carry out inspections of cleaning storage areas and how staff are using the products to ensure this is being done properly.

 

Accessibility

You should ensure there is always a supply of cleaning products, so your workplace is kept clean and healthy.

You should also ensure if you have a large site, that there are numerous cleaning cupboards to ensure cleaners or staff don’t have to go from one building to another to access the cleaning products.

Not only will this save time and ensure staff aren’t carrying lots of supplies and possibly injuring themselves, but it means staff won’t use substitute cleaning suppliers out of convenience which may not be appropriate.

 

Flammable chemicals

It is advisable not to store flammable cleaning products on your premises or to at least reduce the quantities to a minimum for safety. You should not store more than 50 litres of flammable liquid indoors.

Under the Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 2002 (DSEAR) you should ensure this guidance is followed and when storing flammable liquids, they should be kept closed and in a suitable cabinet or bins of fire-resisting construction.

Flammable liquids should also be stored separately from other chemicals.

 

PPE

If any of the cleaning suppliers, you use requires the use of PPE then you should ensure you provide this to staff.

You should also ensure the PPE is of appropriate quality to protect the health of employees.

 

 

How do you dispose of cleaning products?

It’s important to dispose of cleaning products properly or they could pollute water sources and cause harm to wildlife or people.

Never pour cleaning supplies down the drain, instead arrange for a professional hazardous waste collection, or ask your local council if they provide this service.

You can always check if you can return the items to the supplier.

 

How to choose commercial cleaning products

You should compare commercial cleaning products to get the best ones for your workplace.

Sustainable cleaning products often last longer and are usually better for health because they’re not as harsh.

Not only can they provide better value for money, but you will be making environmentally friendly supply chain choices which could enhance your business’ reputation.

 

Why use Taste For Hygiene cleaning products?

Taste For Hygiene provide sustainable and affordable cleaning supplies to businesses to improve the lives of everyone and promote healthy spaces.

Our products and disinfectants are ready to use which avoids mixing harsh chemicals.

We also offer some of the best delivery rates of any commercial cleaning supplier.

 

 

Browse our cleaning products today.

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