Buying used cleaning equipment might raise a few doubts.
You’re going to invest money on an expensive floor cleaner anyway, why not just buy one brand new? Wouldn’t you be risking poor performance with a used floor scrubber? What if it blows up in your face, literally?
To be fair, if you don’t know what you’re doing, all those risks can happen either way. Whether it’s used or brand new. The performance of a machine will always depend on the user.
Rest assured however, this guide will keep you safe from unlikely explosions and bad decisions. To understand if used floor scrubbers are right for you, let’s run through everything you need to consider when choosing one!
Are Used Floor Scrubbers Worth the Investment?
Used or not, the upfront cost of automatic floor scrubbers will always fall under “investment.” However, 85-95% of the cost of cleaning goes to labor. With that in mind, you’ll realize an automatic floor scrubber quickly pays for itself.
Even quicker if you bought it used.
Price is the most obvious reason for buying a used floor scrubber. For many people, it’s also the most significant factor in the decision-making. Hence, the price difference alone is enough of a reason to choose used over brand new.
For the people who still need convincing, let’s paint a picture. Say you want a floor scrubber on the cheaper end that still comes with all the typical benefits. A great choice would be the Advance® Adfinity™ X20C walk-behind cylindrical scrubber.
This model runs at around $10,000 brand new. If you buy used cleaning equipment from Total Clean Equipment, you can get it for only $6,400. The same product, restored by skilled technicians, for just a fraction of the price.
How Do You Pick the Right Size?
The best floor scrubber money can buy will end up being a waste of money if you can’t get your measurements right. Whip out your tape measure and get the accurate size of the following:
• Area of the surface you’ll be cleaning
• Width and height of corridors and doorways
• Size of fixed features like furniture, appliances, and machineries
• Space for comfortable human movement and turns
Taking all of these measurements into account, bigger doesn’t always mean better. Of course, if you have a large facility that will benefit from getting the biggest equipment you can afford, then you gain more from buying used. The discounted price lets you size up or even upgrade to a better model.
What is the Layout of Your Building?
Spaces and obstacles vary in different areas in a building. You’re lucky if your facility has the floor plan of a warehouse or gymnasium. Unlike a mop and bucket, you can’t just pick up a floor scrubber over staircases, ramps, and inclines.
Plan out a route for your floor scrubber to get to the areas it needs to clean. Consider all obstacles and look for a scrubber that can maneuver around them.
What Are You Trying to Clean?
Learn your floor type and understand the nature of its material. You can get away with more abrasion on tiles and concrete floors. Hardwood, vinyl, and laminate tend to be more delicate so avoid scraping features.
You might also need to clean floors with different materials in a single facility. So, make sure you’re choosing a floor scrubber with the right features for those materials.
You also need to know what you’re trying to clean off of the floors. Look into floor cleaners with special features or attachments.
If you deal with a lot of foot traffic bringing in dirt and large debris, look for a pre-sweep feature. Some scrubbers can deal with spills or even scuff marks.
Where are Your Water and Power Sources?
Your power sources for cleaning equipment like floor scrubbers or sweepers are: corded electric, batteries, propane, diesel, or gasoline. Batteries are the most common power source especially for confined buildings.
The other cordless options like gasoline can have unpleasant emissions. Hence, they’re usually reserved for heavy duty equipment in large facilities.
Corded options might save you money if you can accommodate the wirings. However, they might get in the way of cleaning or even become tripping hazards.
For water, make sure there are accessible drains and water sources. Floor scrubbers are more water-efficient by design. However, you’ll still be generating waste water, so be aware of local regulations.
Who Will Operate the Floor Cleaner?
Think of the person who will be using it the most. If it’s not you, you might want to consult with whoever that is. Whether it’s the facility’s janitor or a family member, if they’ll be using it the most, their comfort should drive your decision.
Different types of floor scrubbers are more ergonomic than others. With your operator in mind, consider these options:
A good ride-on floor cleaner is the pinnacle of cleaning comfort. Improving productivity by 400%, a ride-on lets you cover the most ground with minimal effort. It’s typically the biggest and most expensive option, but it comes in a variety of sizes to fit your need.
If the cost of a ride-on just doesn’t make sense to your budget, a stand-on could be your ideal compromise. This offers better usability than a walk-behind but with a more tolerable price tag than a ride-on.
This is the best option for spaces that are smaller or have more obstructions. It’s easy to maneuver; assisting the operator with forward motion. It’s typically the cheapest option and can work in almost any facility.
Choose What’s Right for You
You might worry that used floor scrubbers won’t work as well or last as long. Those are valid concerns. However, reputable sources will have skilled technicians to restore and test machines before putting them back on the market.
A well-maintained used floor scrubber will have the performance of a brand new machine. The best catch? You can save thousands of dollars.
To keep choosing what’s right for you, check out our other guides!