Cleaning tips for ESD workstations
In this article, we’ll talk about cleaning EPA areas that contain ESD-protected furniture.
Does dirt have an impact on the ESD protection?
Dirt is the most common cause of change in surface resistance. We have identified the parts in the industrial workstations that are most often touched and used in most workplaces and are therefore the most important points to clean.
In EPA areas it is vital to regularly clean the floor and the wheels on trolleys, drawer units and chairs. They are the usual suspects when ESD measurements do not stay within the range.
Clean carefully in any industrial workstation:
- Workbench, cart, and drawer unit tops
- Push buttons (e.g. lights, electric height adjustments)
- Back side of chair back rest (the non-upholstered side of back rest)
- Hand cranks and armrests
When cleaning an ESD workstation pay attention to
- The floor
- The wheels on carts, drawer units and chairs.
How to clean an ESD workstation?
When the ESD protective feature in the furniture is in the materials used, make sure to clean with suitable supplies and detergents. If these materials are cleaned uncarefully, you’ll risk damaging the ESD protective features. Use only ESD specified cleaning detergents that do not contain any strong solvents. Clean with detergents containing wax or with detergents that leave a coating on the surface. Wax and coatings will create an insulated layer on the surfaces.
Avoid contact with sharp objects (e.g. brushes or abrasive cleaning tools) that might cause damage to the surfaces and therefore hinder the ESD protective features. Use only soft cloth to wipe the surfaces, e.g. microfiber wipes. Advise the cleaners carefully and ensure that they understand the importance of the ESD protective surfaces.
Note! ESD jackets and other clothing can be washed normally. There is a specific ESD shoe testers available that will indicate the need for cleaning or replacing shoes.
Tips for cleaning the EPA area
- Get high-quality and appropriate cleaning supplies and keep them easily accessible.
- Leave sufficient time for the task.
- Ensure proper lighting.
- Follow the dosage instructions on the packaging of detergents and disinfectants. Too much of the substance will not improve the cleaning result and may possibly damage the surface and create irremovable stains on the surface.
- Use only soft cloth to wipe the surfaces, e.g. microfiber wipes. Abrasive cleaning materials must not be used
- Cleaning directions: a) From top to bottom, b) From clean towards dirtier areas.
- Always wipe the surface with a dry or only slightly moist cloth and leave to dry.
Maintain the protection rate in your EPA area by cleaning regularly
Measure and write down the ESD values to in the ESD control plan after cleaning. By following your ESD control plan, cleaning and measuring, the protection rate of your EPA area will stay at the same level for many years. But you should also train new employees and regularly remind all employees about the importance of ESD protection as people tend to forget things that become part of their daily routines. ESD damage is insidious as you can neither see it nor feel it all time so it is easy to forget such a risk.
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