Wet and Dry Cleaning in the Food and Drink Industry

Clean Sweep UK
April 14, 2016

When it comes to cleaning and sanitising in the food and drink industry, what was thought best practice ten years ago is certainly not considered so today. In fact quite often there are new developments within the past year or even sooner which businesses must adapt to, and those who do not can face stiff penalties or worse.

Cleaning cooking equipment with steam cleaner

This of course is the same for most industries, as scientific advancements and new technologies bring with them a litany of new criteria regarding health and safety standards. Therefore it is crucial that those involved in the beverage and food industry cleaning services are kept regularly abreast of these changes and are able to implement them into their own cleaning processes.

So what are the general recommendations today for those involved in the industrial cleaning of food and beverage facilities?

The first thing you must consider is when you are going to begin the cleaning process. In the past cleaning of machinery or vital components could only be completed before or after the day’s work, unless the production line was shut off entirely.

Steam Cleaning Systems

Now however it is considered more efficient and sanitary to implement inline cleaning systems which can steam, vacuum and extrude waste materials in one go, as this can be done whilst production continues. Short term steam cleaner hire makes it extremely easy and inexpensive for businesses in the food and drink industry to clean their production line, and ensures your business suffers minimal downtime in the process.

Cleaning kitchen tiles with steam cleaner


Next you must decide whether to approach the area at hand with a wet or dry cleaning process. There are some tasks where a wet approach using detergents is necessary, and in order to achieve a full sanitisation of the area you must follow a series of simple steps.

The area must be prepared for cleaning by removing any parts which are unsuited to wet cleaning, after which a pre-rinse must occur, followed by foaming and scrubbing and a final post-rinse to remove detergents and excess soiling. Once you have inspected the items at hand you may then sanitise the area using your chosen method, either chemically or using steam, before reassembling the equipment for further use.

Dry Cleaning Methods

Alternatively you may decide that a dry cleaning method is more appropriate, as is often the case with certain machinery which will rust and break if it comes into contact with excess water. It is also beneficial to use dry cleaning procedures if there are floors or furnishings in the area which cannot be exposed to water, but regardless of the situation the following steps must be followed.

First remove anything which could be potentially damaged or warped, and ensure that any loose soiling has also been removed or vacuumed from the area. You may then proceed and use your dry steam cleaner to clean your equipment or surface, ensuring throughout that materials loosened by your efforts are removed and vacuumed away.

Regardless of whether you use dry or wet steam cleaning you may also find it useful to employ fluorescent cleaning markers to fully audit your cleaning processes. If there are areas of your premises which must be thoroughly sanitised, a fluorescent tool can be used to mark them with materials only visible when a fluorescent torch is employed.

Once the cleaning process is complete you can simply use the torch to identify areas which have been missed, and continue cleaning until there are no fluorescent markings available. When used in combination with a steam cleaner, this modern approach ensures that both your employees and customers will enjoy the benefits of a fully cleaned and sanitised workplace.


Kärcher SGV Steam Wet and Dry Vacuum Cleaners available to rent from Clean Sweep Hire UK are an innovative combination steam cleaner and wet and dry vacuum cleaner with all the functions and features you need to clean your food and drink industry. These innovative cleaning machines feature a compact design, high build quality, robustness and stability. Dramatically reduce cleaning time and improve your results.