Organize Your Cleaning Car

Organize Your Cleaning Car Angela Brown Ask a House Cleaner
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What are some tips to organize your cleaning car? There is no one-size-fits-all for organizing cars, since they're all different.

What are some tips to organize your cleaning car? There is no one-size-fits-all for organizing cars, since they’re all different. You have to make sure that everything you need can fit inside your car, but how you organize your car will be unique to you and your car. Here is how you do that.

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Hey there, I’m Angela Brown, and this is Ask a House Cleaner. This is a show where you get to ask a house cleaning question, and I get to help you find an answer. You can find this and 400 other answered questions in this series on our YouTube channel.

How Do You Organize Your Cleaning Car?

Organize Your Cleaning Car, Happy House Cleaner OutsideHow do you organize your cleaning car? Now we have somebody that called into the show and they asked this question.

Hi Angela. My name is Michelle and I just wanted to know if you could do a video on how to organize your car. I’m a solo professional cleaner and I always struggle to try to find new ways to organize my supplies in my cars, like my vacuum, my mops, and all of the extra products and my microfiber cloths, and so, yeah, if you could help me out with that, that would be great and I appreciate everything you do.”

Every Car is Different

Organize Your Cleaning Car, Car in GarageAll right, I wish I could say put your cleaning caddies on the left, put your vacuum on the right, you’re good to go. Okay, every car is different based on the different styles of cars for the different types of cleaners, the different people that you’re carrying in your car and the different houses that you’re cleaning. The different supplies that you’re carrying are also important.

So there is no one size fits all. Now, there might be a suggestion if you are part of a franchise and they have a particular style of car. Or if they have a particular set of caddies and cleaning equipment that you take with you, they may have a very specific way you set up your car. The important thing is that everything that you need fits inside your car.

Only Carry What You Need For the Job

Organize Your Cleaning Car, Cleaning Supplies on CounterNow I have a personal philosophy that you only carry with you exactly what you need for the job for this reason. If you need something else on the job that’s not part of what it is I’m carrying with me, that’s probably a special project that we did not agree to.

So when I get to the house and you say, “Oh, can you throw this in today?”

I can’t, I did not bring those supplies with me today. That’s a special project and we charge extra for that and if you’d like to call our office. I’ll be happy to schedule a special time where we can do the special project and bring the special equipment and we charge a special price for that, okay.”

So there’s a reason I don’t carry all the cleaning supplies that will possibly fit in the back of a car.

We Recommend Using the Client’s Vacuum

Organize Your Cleaning Car, Vacuum and CatBut that said, we are now in the COVID era and I’m of the belief that it is a great idea for us to use the customer’s vacuum. The customer’s vacuum stays at the customer’s house and it goes up and down all the customer’s floors. We’re not taking that vacuum in our vehicle and then passing it along to all the other homes and dragging it all over all of their floors.

So what happens in your home stays in your home. We will clean and tidy up your vacuum when we’re done, we will empty it and leave it at your house. So that’s how we’re doing it right now.

I do recommend though that you carry a spare vacuum, that’s cleaned and sanitized in your car. Just in case the customer’s vacuum, for whatever reason broke. But I’m going to request that you use the customer’s vacuum, all right.

You Have to Make Sure Your Vacuum Fits in the Car

Organize Your Cleaning Car, Vacuum in CarSo I want to make sure that your vacuum fits. And I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone to a car dealership to buy a new car for my cleaning company and I’ve said. “Before we agree on this car, I need to open the doors and I need to make sure my vacuum fits in that car,” and the salesman is like, “What?”

I’m like, “I know, really, because my vacuum has to fit,” and I have numerous times stretched the vacuum across the backseat. I want to drop the trunk. I want to know exactly how that vacuum is going to fit in the event that I have to drive from house to house and cart a vacuum along with me. So I do want to make sure that it fits in your car.

How to Organize Your Cleaning Caddy

Organize Your Cleaning Car, Happy House Cleaner in KitchenNow, as far as cleaning caddies go, I do recommend that if you’re doing two houses in a day, that you have two cleaning caddies. Make sure they’re both stocked with whatever equipment you need for that house. Again, you’re not cross-contaminating one home to the next, by carrying the same cleaning caddy with half-used supplies from the last job.

I want a full cleaning caddy, that’s been cleaned and sanitized and dedicated to that home when I show up and I arrive, all right. Those are my rules. That is the image I’m projecting.

Have a System to Keep Your Car Organized

Organize Your Cleaning Car, Cleaning Cloths SortedWhen I get back to my car, I do have a sorting system and the sorting system is also in the trunk of my car. You can have separators, you can have grocery bags, you can have laundry bags, you can have shoe bins.

It depends on how you want to split it up. I pull out all the different colored microfiber cloths, and I sort them in my car before I go to the next job for this reason. If they’re sorted and they’re in those bins, there’s never a chance that any of my cloths will accidentally get in the new cleaning caddy that’s going to the next house.

Those are all folded. Those are all nicely stacked. They’re in their own space. So when I go to the next house, I simply open up my trunk, pull out those items and I go to the customer’s house, right?

Your Customers Will Notice Your Organization

Organize Your Cleaning Car, Woman on ComputerWhen the customer sees me coming and they see all of the cleaning equipment that I have, it looks like it’s a brand new package. It looks like whoa, they have all these neat, full supplies. This is tidy. It’s clean and it’s just for my house.

It doesn’t look like I’m rummaging through the trunk of my car and I’ll grab this while I, this cloth isn’t very much used, I’ll use it again. People are scared of cross-contamination because of the germ epidemic that we’ve had.

So I like to make it look like, of course, it’s not cross-contaminated. I specifically set this up when I did my inventory last night for your home. Here we go. It’s just for you. Then when I get back to my car and I put everything away, I do all the sorting and whatever so there’s never a mistake of cross-contamination.

Figure Out What Kind of Car You’re Going to Use

Organize Your Cleaning Car, Car DealershipSo my recommendation is to figure out what kind of car you’re going to drive. Whether it’s a hatchback, a van, an SUV that has a great big trunk.

You have to figure out whether you’re going to pop the seats down, or you’re going to use the back seat as a way to hold some of your stuff.  It really depends on what you’re carrying and how much of it you’re carrying.

Don’t Leave Chemicals in a Hot Car for Too Long

Organize Your Cleaning Car, Cooler in TrunkIf you live in an area that has super-hot months, you might consider carrying a picnic cooler with you to keep your cleaning supplies in. So if you have some cleaning chemicals, instead of leaving them in your car and having them evaporate or explode or leak. It’s great to put them inside a cooler where they will be temperature regulated. That way your cleaning chemicals don’t ruin your car.

So there are a couple of rules that I have for that if you live in a really hot area. I live in Charlotte, North Carolina and so in the summertime, with the humidity and the doors closed off the car, it can get really hot inside.

So that’s kind of a safeguard to make sure that my cleaning chemicals are protected and that they are stable. Meaning that they don’t weaken or become ineffective when I take them to another house and they’ve been sitting in a hot car for days or weeks.

Take Everything Out of Your Car at the End of the Day

Organize Your Cleaning Car, Vacuum and Cleaning SuppliesSo we don’t leave cleaning chemicals in our car at the end of the night. When you ask, how do I organize my car? What you’re going to use for that day and I’m very keen on at the end of every day, I want everything to come in from the car. I don’t want to be the car that’s sitting in front of a home that has last week’s cleaning cloths inside it.  I don’t ever want to get caught mixing supplies out of the trunk of my car. That’s the wrong image that you want to portray.

So when you bring everything inside, then you get to do an inventory. Then you get to check and find out exactly how much cleaning supplies you’re using and that way it helps you track from a financial standpoint, how much we used at this particular house.

Are we using one ounce are we using five ounces? Are we using 32 ounces at this particular house? That will help you keep your costs in check if you are aware of what it is you’re using from house to house.

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