How to Choose the Right Floor Scrubber
The purchase of a floor scrubber is no small investment, which is why it’s essential that you pick a product that offers the greatest features within the commercial floor cleaning machine segment, that is perfect for your needs.
With a number of options out there, it can be difficult to know exactly which floor scrubbing machines meet your needs, while offering the right features to help you clean large floor areas in the shortest amount of time. With that in mind, let’s unpack how you can choose the right floor scrubber to help you out with your next purchase.
Upright Floor Scrubbers
Designed to be portable, agile and adaptable, upright floor scrubbers are the entry-point into the market, and provide exceptional results for smaller areas like offices, kitchens, classrooms and compact areas.
Upright floor scrubbers offer a healthy balance between powerful cleaning, in a compact, manoeuvrable package that can reach difficult-to-access spots in your workplace.
- Compact design allows for cleaning of tight spaces
- Perfectly suited to small to medium spaces
- Time-consuming when used in large areas
- Limited water volume
Automatic Walk-Behind Floor Scrubbers
These floor scrubbers have been designed primarily for those that need to clean medium to large, relatively open spaces in a short period of time.
A walk-behind floor scrubber can make the process easy for the operator with an assisted wheel-driven motor.
- Ease of use
- Cleaning power
- Not ideal for very large open spaces
Ride-on Floor Scrubbers
Ride-on floor scrubbers are the largest floor cleaning machines on the market, making them perfect for those that need to clean the floor of their warehouse, large lobbies and high-traffic hallways.
They make the process comfortable for the operator, while offering a high level of cleaning power and speed.
- Fast cleaning of large floor areas
- Large volume tanks offer seamless cleaning
- Superior operator comfort and ergonomics
- Limited mobility in tight areas
Single vs Dual Brush Design
An important factor to consider when purchasing a floor scrubber is the brush design.While a single brush design is more than adequate for smaller areas, utilising a dual brush floor scrubber enables a larger cleaning area
This means that a floor scrubber with a dual brush design can decrease your cleaning times and increase your overall efficiency and productivity.It also offers better penetration into grout lines, while offering nearly double the downward pressure per square centimetre. The i-mop, for example, uses a dual brush design that offers cleaning coverage between 37-62cmwhile applying more pressure to lift stubborn stains from your floor.
How to Work Out the Cleaning Power of Your Floor Scrubber
Sometimes it can be difficult to get a clear picture of just how much power is on offer in your chosen floor scrubbing machine. Thankfully, there’s an easy way to work this out.
To find out the cleaning power of your floor scrubber, you simply multiply the revolutions per minute (RPM) of the brushes by the weight applied to those brushes.
You can see below that the i-mop’s high speed brushes result in a significantly larger cleaning power figure than a conventional floor scrubber that has brushes spinning at a lower RPM.
Edge Cleaning & Manoeuvrability
You can have all the cleaning power in the world, but if you need to clean tight, compact areas, having a floor scrubber designed with edge cleaning and manoeuvrability should remain a key priority.
A traditional floor scrubber/drier often requires you to leave a gap between the unit and the edge of the wall so it can be turned around. This means that there’s a sizable gap that needs to be either mopped by hand, or with a smaller unit.
The i-mop is a great example of a flexible, manoeuvrable package that is able to turn 360-degrees on the spot, allowing easy access to tight areas.
Size & Weight
As you move from upright scrubbers to larger walk-behind units, they are significantly bulkier and heavier. It’s important to remember that a larger unit doesn’t guarantee a better cleaning result, so opt for a scrubber that meets your needs and comes in a reasonably-sized package.
As you can see, the i-mop XXL offers brush coverage of 62cm, which is more coverage than a 200kg walk-behind floor scrubber. This becomes an important consideration when we think about moving the floor scrubber, with a more compact unit offering far more flexibility than a hefty unit.
A number of floor scrubbers are powered by a lead/acid or a gel battery pack, which are overall less suited to regular use and long lifespans that lithium-ion battery packs offer, and also require more maintenance.
It’s essential to consider the depth of discharge, or DOD figure, which simply means the percentage of the battery being discharged relative to the runtime capacity of the battery. Lead/acid and gel batteries experience significantly reduced cycle life if they’re discharged below 50% of their overall capacity.
This means that while some floor scrubbers advertise four-hours of use time, but has a recommended DOD figure of 50%, you should be fully recharging the battery after two-hours of use to maintain the health of the battery.
Lithium-ion battery packs, on the other hand, require zero maintenance, and can be continuously discharged up to 100% DOD with no impact on the cycle life, meaning they last 3-4 times longer than a gel or lead/acid battery.
Run-time and Charging Times
Regular floor scrubbers fitted with lead-acid or gel batteries often offer 3-4 hours of run-time, while requiring at least 8-10 hours of charging time, due to their battery chemistry. The lithium-ion batteries powering the i-mop, however, offer around one-hour of run time, requiring one hour to recharge the batteries.
Better still, the i-mop features an interchangeable battery design which allows you to change packs on the fly, for uninterrupted cleaning of your floors. In fact, the i-mop can be used continuously for 24-hours a day, if required, due to its one-hour run and charging times.
Emptying and Refilling Tanks
To make the process of cleaning large floor areas as seamless as possible, you have to consider how the scrubber is emptied and refilled while in use. Large walk-behind and automatic floor scrubbers often require a hose or dosing station to refill and need to be taken outside to empty their waste or recovery tanks.
Clever floor scrubber designs like the i-mop, however, can be refilled using any standard kitchen or bathroom tap, while the process of emptying the recovery tanks is just as easy thanks to the portable tank design.
Meet the Range of i-team Commercial Floor Scrubbers
The i-mop range comes in lite, XL and XXL sizes, combining the cleaning power of an auto scrubber with the targeted agility of a mop.
Specialising in cleaning hard-to-reach areas, the i-scrub 21B features a 360-degree adjustable head making it perfect for tight quarters cleaning.
For those looking for the ultimate in large-scale floor scrubbing technology, the i-drive makes cleaning open floor spaces and warehouses a simple, streamlined experience and features an onboard i-mop Lite mount.