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    Garage Cleaning 101

    Hey guys, thought I would give for feed back on the garage cleaning industry. We have had a busy year. EPA has been very active in the San Francisco Bay Area. Because of these fines, allot of interest has been directed to the health issues associated with a dirty garage. Pigeon feces is also a request that we get as well. As all of you know, protective clothing and a respirator must be worn when cleaning this type of %^%%&%^. This is a nasty part of garage cleaning.


    Anyway, if you would like to know more on the basics, keep tuned.

    20 YEARS this February, and still going strong !

  • #2
    Moderator Honorary Professor Mike Cooke's Avatar
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    congrats on 20 years good for you guys
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  • #3
    Member 3000 PLUS POSTER Kory's Avatar
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    Hey Jim congrats!

    By the way what are those grate looking thinks at the entrance\exits of parking garages. They look like drains but they are under cannapy's. So they dont catch rain. Looks like a waist to have to recover and test water if thats what those are designed for.
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    Member Professor with Tenure Terry Campbell's Avatar
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    Congrats Jim on being Successful for the last 20 years.
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  • #5
    Thanks to ya all. I have learned allot from reading all the posts here and i hope that i contribute to everyone in some way as well.

    The one thing I did learn to my surprise is that not every state follows or enforces to the full extent of Federal guidelines for discharge of "Grey Water" from cleaning surfaces that are polluted by cars.

    I always thought knowledge is power. Though many states do not follow the "Clean Water Act" by mandating a carbon and oil /water filtration when cleaning oil and or detergent, I hope that other contractors who read these threads realize that it is coming to their state/ county/ city or town and by getting prepared equipment wise, for when it comes, they will be in a position ahead of the rest. They will be able to ask a good wage for their services and competition will almost be non existing. As many of you know, we are demanding, not asking, .24 cents a sq. foot.

    When thinking if water reclamation is for your area, think of this...

    It took years of meeting with the Sanitation Dept's, EPA and Cities. To show them our equipment was able to comply to their standards. When they decided to issuing permits and start enforcing the Act, there were only two of us who could comply. All others disappeared. All of the one's in a Toyota pickup truck's who had under priced the market was gone in two months. Prices increased from 5 to 7 cents to over 12+ cents a foot withing a year.

    In my future threads, I will try to be more "sensitive" when giving any advice about EPA enforcement.

    Those of you that are asking about garage cleaning in your state, I will try to get back to you today. I know that I have been slow in responding. I am taking the rest of the month off and will hopefully have more time to talk to each of you on your Parking Garage Cleaning issues.

    Again, Thanks for all the support.

  • #6
    BS Detector, Esquire 10,000 PLUS POSTER Tony Shelton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim@Garagecleaning View Post
    Thanks to ya all. I have learned allot from reading all the posts here and i hope that i contribute to everyone in some way as well.

    The one thing I did learn to my surprise is that not every state follows or enforces to the full extent of Federal guidelines for discharge of "Grey Water" from cleaning surfaces that are polluted by cars.

    I always thought knowledge is power. Though many states do not follow the "Clean Water Act" by mandating a carbon and oil /water filtration when cleaning oil and or detergent, I hope that other contractors who read these threads realize that it is coming to their state/ county/ city or town and by getting prepared equipment wise, for when it comes, they will be in a position ahead of the rest. They will be able to ask a good wage for their services and competition will almost be non existing. As many of you know, we are demanding, not asking, .24 cents a sq. foot.

    When thinking if water reclamation is for your area, think of this...

    It took years of meeting with the Sanitation Dept's, EPA and Cities. To show them our equipment was able to comply to their standards. When they decided to issuing permits and start enforcing the Act, there were only two of us who could comply. All others disappeared. All of the one's in a Toyota pickup truck's who had under priced the market was gone in two months. Prices increased from 5 to 7 cents to over 12+ cents a foot withing a year.

    In my future threads, I will try to be more "sensitive" when giving any advice about EPA enforcement.

    Those of you that are asking about garage cleaning in your state, I will try to get back to you today. I know that I have been slow in responding. I am taking the rest of the month off and will hopefully have more time to talk to each of you on your Parking Garage Cleaning issues.

    Again, Thanks for all the support.
    I would like to talk to you about garage cleaning, Jim, but in the past I have found to you be "insensitive" to my needs. But I'm willing to give you another chance.
    Sonitx 845 S. Kenny Way Las Vegas, NV 89107 702-358-7477 Air Filter Service - Coil Cleaning - 2 month Payback


  • #7
    BS Detector, Esquire 10,000 PLUS POSTER Tony Shelton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tonyshelton View Post
    I would like to talk to you about garage cleaning, Jim, but in the past I have found to you be "insensitive" to my needs. But I'm willing to give you another chance.
    PS that was a joke.....sorry for being insensitive.....
    Sonitx 845 S. Kenny Way Las Vegas, NV 89107 702-358-7477 Air Filter Service - Coil Cleaning - 2 month Payback


  • #8
    Quote Originally Posted by tonyshelton View Post
    PS that was a joke.....sorry for being insensitive.....

    You are just to much !!! With all the BS I get, you now owe me lunch !!!


    lol

  • #9
    Griffs Services PowerWash 2000 PLUS POSTER 810f250's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim@Garagecleaning View Post
    Thanks to ya all. I have learned allot from reading all the posts here and i hope that i contribute to everyone in some way as well.

    The one thing I did learn to my surprise is that not every state follows or enforces to the full extent of Federal guidelines for discharge of "Grey Water" from cleaning surfaces that are polluted by cars.

    I always thought knowledge is power. Though many states do not follow the "Clean Water Act" by mandating a carbon and oil /water filtration when cleaning oil and or detergent, I hope that other contractors who read these threads realize that it is coming to their state/ county/ city or town and by getting prepared equipment wise, for when it comes, they will be in a position ahead of the rest. They will be able to ask a good wage for their services and competition will almost be non existing. As many of you know, we are demanding, not asking, .24 cents a sq. foot.

    When thinking if water reclamation is for your area, think of this...

    It took years of meeting with the Sanitation Dept's, EPA and Cities. To show them our equipment was able to comply to their standards. When they decided to issuing permits and start enforcing the Act, there were only two of us who could comply. All others disappeared. All of the one's in a Toyota pickup truck's who had under priced the market was gone in two months. Prices increased from 5 to 7 cents to over 12+ cents a foot withing a year.

    In my future threads, I will try to be more "sensitive" when giving any advice about EPA enforcement.

    Those of you that are asking about garage cleaning in your state, I will try to get back to you today. I know that I have been slow in responding. I am taking the rest of the month off and will hopefully have more time to talk to each of you on your Parking Garage Cleaning issues.

    Again, Thanks for all the support.
    Jim, what is the least elaborate/expensive (not cheap), pressure cleaning setup you would recommend (minimum requirements) if you were a new contractor about to start parking garage cleaning.

    Break it down for us: specific manufacturers, engines, BTU's, flow, surface cleaners, crew requirements, safety, rinsing, hand scrubbing , chems, vacuums, price ranges, filtration, filtration, filtration

  • #10
    Member 7000 PLUS POSTER Scott Stone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 810f250 View Post
    Jim, what is the least elaborate/expensive (not cheap), pressure cleaning setup you would recommend (minimum requirements) if you were a new contractor about to start parking garage cleaning.

    Break it down for us: specific manufacturers, engines, BTU's, flow, surface cleaners, crew requirements, safety, rinsing, hand scrubbing , chems, vacuums, price ranges, filtration, filtration, filtration
    This is an impossible question to answer. I can give you a few ideas, though. You want a minimum of 5.5 GPM and 3000 PSI. You also want to take care to pretreat any stains, oil, blood, urine, etc so that you stand a chance of getting them removed.
    For recovery, you will need a way to block the water, and pick it up. A sump pump can work, and a vacuum can work. I have a Fury system, and it works great, but is not an entry level piece of equipment. If you are going to use an electrical vacuum, you will not want to use a standard shop vac. You will need to pay attention to duty cycles. A Home Depot shop vac will burn up after an hour, if you get them to last that long, because they are not designed or intended to run for hours on end.

    Filtration is pretty easy, but you also will need a place to dispose of the water at a pretreatment facility. A three part separator can work, but you will need to be certain it operates properly, and that you can provide documentation to your customer.

    As for Tony buying Jim lunch...Well, I have seen Jim, and feel fairly confident that he has not recently missed a lunch, no matter who had to buy.
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  • #11
    Exterior Restoration Specialist 21000 PLUS POSTER Ron Musgraves's Avatar
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    As for Tony buying Jim lunch...Well, I have seen Jim, and feel fairly confident that he has not recently missed a lunch, no matter who had to buy.
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  • #12
    Member Junior Undergraduate MMI Enterprises's Avatar
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    Sacrilege but here ya go..... http://enterprisesupply.com/rekrete_products.htm
    Sacramento Surface Interventions performed by ~Kevin T.
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  • #13
    Quote Originally Posted by MMI Enterprises View Post
    I have seen this product. It more or less "covers" the problem. The powder gets on your shoes and travels with you. Your foot steps can be seen after you walk through this stuff. Cars that go through it will leave a "Light Grey Color Tire Marks" leaving the surface onto the asphalt.

    The oil is not removed and oil will continue to penetrate through the cement to the floor below.

    This is NOT deep cleaning, rather an expensive cover up.

  • #14
    Cleaning with Aloha Graduate Student ckingclean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MMI Enterprises View Post
    "Clean concrete without water, chemicals, or pressure washing"

    That must work really well!
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  • #15
    Griffs Services PowerWash 2000 PLUS POSTER 810f250's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Stone View Post
    This is an impossible question to answer. I can give you a few ideas, though. You want a minimum of 5.5 GPM and 3000 PSI. You also want to take care to pretreated any stains, oil, blood, urine, etc so that you stand a chance of getting them removed.
    For recovery, you will need a way to block the water, and pick it up. A sump pump can work, and a vacuum can work. I have a Fury system, and it works great, but is not an entry level piece of equipment. If you are going to use an electrical vacuum, you will not want to use a standard shop vac. You will need to pay attention to duty cycles. A Home Depot shop vac will burn up after an hour, if you get them to last that long, because they are not designed or intended to run for hours on end.

    Filtration is pretty easy, but you also will need a place to dispose of the water at a pretreatment facility. A three part separator can work, but you will need to be certain it operates properly, and that you can provide documentation to your customer.

    As for Tony buying Jim lunch...Well, I have seen Jim, and feel fairly confident that he has not recently missed a lunch, no matter who had to buy.
    Happy belated birthday Scott, thanks for the reply.

    When you say 3 part separator can work, what do you mean?

    The reasons I asked Jim to "break it down" for us here on the board, is because his website implies that standard pressure washing equipment fall short of the heat rise to effectively break the bonds for oil in concrete. What is the temp requirement 212F ?
    Secondly he mentioned that while basic filtering is "ok" better than none, he is surprised that basic filtration is being accepted in most other parts of the country (that is : media type oil/water separator) and that wash water requirements is in place in many states, but not enforced and would eventually be.
    I have called both my local EPA office and sewer department. The laws and the discharge specs are in the books in various counties in Maryland but little to no policing of non-significant greywater contributers. This does not mean you cannot be stopped by the authorities, and even then a lot of leniency is left to the enforcement officer. If you are performing no capture, you can get a warning, fine or none of the following; if you are capturing and filtering (basic filter) and then putting to sanitary sewer, you can be given credit, asked to produce your permit and/or filtration system testing documentation to ensure that you meet the discharge requirements.
    Accepted filtration practices and differences are huge across the country.

    Here is the link to the discharge requirements of the major sanitary sewer facility in Maryland. See page 13

    http://www.wsscwater.com/rsg/Industr.../Chapter8.pdf\

  • #16
    Member 7000 PLUS POSTER Scott Stone's Avatar
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    Jim runs his machines at 300 degrees. If I did not trust Jim, I would not believe it. The ONLY way that water is able to get to that high of temperature is because it is under so much pressure. If the pressure was normal, it would be physically impossible to heat the water that much.
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  • #17
    Vetran Washer 30 Years Plus 5000 PLUS POSTER The Cleaner's Avatar
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    That would be steam at that temp? I beleive you reach steam at about 215 F, The more pressure you add to that temp the more it becomes super heated.
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  • #18
    Member Junior Undergraduate MMI Enterprises's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim@Garagecleaning View Post
    I have seen this product. It more or less "covers" the problem. The powder gets on your shoes and travels with you. Your foot steps can be seen after you walk through this stuff. Cars that go through it will leave a "Light Grey Color Tire Marks" leaving the surface onto the asphalt.

    The oil is not removed and oil will continue to penetrate through the cement to the floor below.

    This is NOT deep cleaning, rather an expensive cover up.

    Same for the CAAPS?. What you describe sounds like dry cement.

    Haven't tested the rekrete so can't say anything of it on tracking color or effectiveness. Just know that some say it gets the oil stain shadow up. How the CAAPS is described on that site it would seem able to get to the deep stuff via it being wet and having a higher specific gravity. All I know is I am open to the idea that oil eating enzyme can do some level of work on a oil/greasy slab. Would luv to see some actual test samples of hot high pressure against it...Think Ron said something maybe on having done some stencils over it but since we really can't know that is what somebody prior might have used I would say a test is in order. Such would have to involve sections done with both method followed by pics and then some amunt of time would have to be allowed for the enzyme product to do its thing before some secondary pics are taken...Who's got some, who can do it?
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  • #19
    Quote Originally Posted by MMI Enterprises View Post
    Same for the CAAPS?. What you describe sounds like dry cement.

    Haven't tested the rekrete so can't say anything of it on tracking color or effectiveness. Just know that some say it gets the oil stain shadow up. How the CAAPS is described on that site it would seem able to get to the deep stuff via it being wet and having a higher specific gravity. All I know is I am open to the idea that oil eating enzyme can do some level of work on a oil/greasy slab. Would luv to see some actual test samples of hot high pressure against it...Think Ron said something maybe on having done some stencils over it but since we really can't know that is what somebody prior might have used I would say a test is in order. Such would have to involve sections done with both method followed by pics and then some amunt of time would have to be allowed for the enzyme product to do its thing before some secondary pics are taken...Who's got some, who can do it?
    Did not know that you was in Sac. That is only 40 minutes from me.

    Enzymes or bacteria is not recommended by the local sewer companies in our area. They will not allow it into their system because it may disrupt their bacteria / enzymes. That means you most likely could not use a pressure washer and would have to pick it up by vacuum or brush. Also, the temperature and humidity have to be in a tight range for the product to work to its full potential, otherwise the bac / enzymes will be non effective.

    For others outside California, check with your local sewer plant to see if they will allow you to dump with this product into their system.

  • #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Kory View Post
    Hey Jim congrats!

    By the way what are those grate looking thinks at the entrance\exits of parking garages. They look like drains but they are under cannapy's. So they dont catch rain. Looks like a waist to have to recover and test water if thats what those are designed for.
    Take a photo of it, but if it is what I am thinking, then they are drains with grates that cars drive over when entering or leaving the garage. These drains usually ( depending on the year of the garage was constructed ) go to the storm drain. Newer garages go to the sewer, a dry well or a oil / water separator.

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