Janitor Cart Buyers' Guide
Whether you're running a restaurant, hotel, or medical facility, cleanliness is necessary for both complying with health codes and meeting customer expectations. A thorough cleaning program can require a lot of supplies, and the best way to transport those supplies to where they are needed is a cleaning cart. These carts are generally modular and there are plenty of accessories available, allowing you to find the best setup to serve your business' needs.
Most carts have the same basic structure: a platform on casters, with an area in the center for storage, and modular options on either end. The center area may have bins, cabinets, or open shelves, used to store items like cleaning chemicals, cloths, and sponges. On a housekeeping cart, this middle section is usually larger than on janitorial carts to allow room for towels and linens to be transported easily. This section also often has a rack attached to the outside that allows brooms, mops, dust pans, dusters, or light vacuums to be hung by their handles. There may also be a horizontal bar to hang spray bottles from, or hooks to store caution signs.
Both ends of your janitor cart can typically be customized to meet your needs. On most carts you will need at least one trash receptacle, which on a janitorial cart usually comes in the form of a large vinyl bag. If you want to have trash bags on either end for recycling or hazardous waste, you can purchase the bags in a variety of colors to help keep them organized. On a housekeeping cart, a laundry bag may be required on one end. It is also common to use one end as a platform to transport a mop bucket, though you will need to make sure the dimensions of the open platform and the bucket are compatible. Any part of the platform used to transport a mop bucket should have a raised lip around the rim to keep the bucket in place.
There are several special features and accessories available to help create a janitor cart that meets every need of your cleaning staff. Some are available standard on certain models, while others may need to be purchased separately.
- Locking cabinets help keep cleaning chemicals and other supplies safe when the cart is left unattended. This not only protects your supplies, but also prevents small children from accessing potentially dangerous chemicals.
- Dome tops keep supplies on the top of the cart shielded, whether you are using a shelf or bin on top. This dome can be locked to keep products underneath safe when not in use, or it can be more for aesthetics to cover cleaning supplies and help the cart blend into the surrounding décor.
- Wood panels and cabinet doors are available on some janitor cart and housekeeping cart models for use in high-end businesses that want to maintain a sleek appearance.
- Under-deck shelf kits, often made to hold dish racks, can be mounted underneath the main lower platform of the cleaning cart. This is especially helpful in hotels where cleaning staff will remove soiled glasses from rooms.
- Caster options allow you to change out standard casters for those with higher weight capacities, quieter operation, or pneumatic casters if your janitorial cart will often be rolled across uneven outdoor surfaces.
- Trash can lids help contain odors and add a more streamlined look to your cleaning cart. Some of these are made with storage built into the lid.
- Utility drawers are wide and shallow, and are meant to be added underneath the top shelf of the janitorial cart. They are ideal for storing small items like brochures, keys, and pens. Many come standard with a lock.
- Mop bucket locking systems are available from Rubbermaid. These systems allow you to attach a mop bucket to the back of the cart so that it rolls along behind the cart instead of taking up space on the platform. This system only works with certain Rubbermaid carts and mop buckets, so be sure to check compatibility.