Domestic Cleaning Glossary

Abrasion — The wearing away or cleaning by friction.

Abrasive — A product that works by abrasion or scouring action.

Acid — A compound that ironises in water to produce hydrogen irons — used in toilet cleaners, rust removers and hard water stain removers.

Acrylic Floor Finish — A water based product that dries hard and glossy.

Alcohols — Compounds that contain one or more hydroxyl group. Alcohols used in cleaners are; ethyl, methyl, propyl and butyl.

Algaecide — Products that destroy algae.

All Purpose Cleaner — A powder or liquid detergent suitable for general house hold cleaning.

Anhydrous Soap — Soap that contains no water.

Anionic Surfactant — Negatively charged molecule widely used in high sudsing detergents.

Antibacterial — Counteracting bacteria.

Antimicrobial — An agent that destroys bacteria, fungi, protozoa or any virus that is pathogenic.

Antiredeposition Agent — Ingredient used in detergents to help prevent soil from redepositing on surfaces or fabrics.

Bacteria - Microscopic single cell living organisms responsible for illness in humans

Bactericide - A chemical agent that destroys bacteria

Bacteriostat - A chemical agent that prevents bacteria from growing but doesn’t kill it

Bleach - A product that helps whiten, brighten and remove stains. Bleaches convert soils into colourless, soluble particles that can be removed by detergents and carried away in the wash water.

Blushing - Whitening effect that sometimes occurs when a solvent finish dries

Brighteners - Optical or fluorescent enhancers found in product cleaners

Buffing - Polishing with a pad, cloth or brush

Builder - A Material that upgrades or protects the cleaning efficiency of a surfactant

Build—Up - Heavy deposit of floor finish, wax, grime or dirt

Burnish - To buff a protective floor coating before it dries to give a hard finish

Carpet Cleaning - The cleaning of a carpet. Home is offers a specialist carpet and soft furnishings cleaning service that will bring your carpets, sofas, upholstery, rugs and mattresses back to life.

Cationic Surfactant - Disinfectants and sanitisers such as alkyl dimenthyl benzyl ammonium chloride known as quarternary ammonium compounds

Caustic - Having a burning, corroding or dissolving chemical reaction

Chelating Agent - Additives in detergents for inactivating the minerals in water that interfere with cleaning

Cidal or ‘Cide’ - Agents with the ability to kill micro—organisms

Chemical Cleaning - A method that uses chemical cleaning agents to remove soil instead of mechanical or abrasive agents

Chlorine Bleach - Strong oxidising agents found in sodium hypochlorite. It removes stains, aids soil removal, whitens disinfects and deodorises laundry

Clarity - The clearness of a liquid

Cleaning - Locating, identifying, containing, removing and disposing of undesirable substances from the environment

Cleanser - Powdered or liquid product containing abrasives, surfactants and bleach

Concentrate - An undiluted form of a dilutable cleaning product

Contaminate - To pollute, make unclean or dirty

Corrosion Inhibitor - Protects the wearing away of surfaces

Damp Mopping - Process of using a damp cloth or mop lightly wrung in detergent and water to remove lightly soiled surfaces

Decontaminate - To remove the contamination

Defoamers - A substance used to reduce or eliminate foam

Degreaser - A chemical product specially formulated to remove grease and oil

Deodorant - Destroys, masks or eliminates offensive odours

Detergent - Cleaning and washing agent used for the removal of soils with a composition other than soap

Dilute - To reduce the strength of a concentrate by adding water

Dirt - Any foul or filthy substance

Dirt Retention - A high level of which is when soil has been worked into a surface easily

Dirty - Unclean, undesirable or unpleasant

Disinfectant - A product that destroys microorganisms on inanimate surfaces.

Domestic Cleaning - The cleaning of the home. Home is offers a professional domesitc cleaning service that is unique to your home and tailored to your individual requirements.

Drain Cleaner - Chemical product that cleans solid grease and other materials embedded in drains

Dry - To remove moisture from a surface

Durability - The wearing quality of a finish

Dust - Light particles suspended in air

Dusting Product - Product that dispenses a fine mist or spray that picks up and retains light dust and soil

Eliminate - To remove an undesirable substance

Emulsification - Detergent action that breaks up fats and oils into small droplets

End of Tenancy Clean - Whether you are an estate agent, landlord or tenant, we can offer you a hassle-free, ‘one stop shop’ for end of tenancy and pre-let cleans. This includes general cleaning, as well as oven, carpet, curtain and upholstery cleaning; we can also offer external window cleaning by one of our reputable partners.

Epoxy - A shortened name for a class of synthetic resins

Finish - A protective coating used as a top coat

Floor Machine - A Power driven machine used to remove soil by scrubbing, buffing or burnishing floor surfaces

Foaming Agent - A material that increases the production of bubbles in liquid

Fungi - Advanced multicellular organisms that are infectious and harmful, examples are mold and mildew

Fungicide - Chemical agent that destroys fungi

Furniture Cleaner/Polish - Liquid, paste or aerosol product to remove dust and stains from furniture

Germicide - Substance that kills germs

Gloss - A surface lustre

Grease - Soft or melted animal fat, especially after rendering

Hand Cleanser - Cleaner that removes oil, grease and other products from your hands

Home is - Home is started trading in early 2006 under the umbrella of Myhome, initially covering the Wokingham area and expanding rapidly into Henley-On-Thames, Marlow and Reading. For more information visit the About us section.

Hydrochloric Acid - Used in different quantities to clean toilets

Hydrophobic Fibres - Fibres that do not absorb water easily

Hydrophilic Fibres - Fibres that absorb water easily

Inorganic Alkaline Detergent - Water soluble detergent that contains no soap or synthetics

Low Sudsing - Name which describes a product that cleans without foaming or any significant amount of foam

Mechanical Cleaning - Process of removing dirt or soil by manual scrubbing or use of abrasives

Mild Cleaner - A product that is non damaging to the surface being cleaned

Neutral Cleaner - Non—alkaline, non—acid cleaner

Non-Chlorine Bleach - A product used in laundry for bleaching that contains peroxygen compounds which releases active oxygen in the water

Nonionic Surfactant - Active agent found to be especially effective in removing oily soil

Oven Cleaner - Oven cleaners are formulated to be as thick as possible to allow the product to cling to the soiled, greasy, vertical oven surfaces.

Oven Cleaning - The cleaning of an oven. Home is oven-cleaning technicians are fully trained experts who use safe, eco-friendly products and specialised equipment to get your kitchen appliances sparkling.

Pathogens - Micro-organisms that cause disease

Pesticide - Agent which destroys, repels and prevents pests

Phosphorus Acid - Common acid used in bowl cleaners and in light duty detergents

Pine Oil - Oil processed from gum trees, used in hard surface cleaning and disinfecting.

Pine Oil Cleaner - A liquid cleaner containing pine oil and detergents. Used to dissolve fatty acids, paints and tars whilst disinfecting, sanitising and deodorising

Polish - To shine, make smooth or glossy

Post Builders Clean - Once the builders have packed up tools, our team of professionals can ‘clean up’, leaving your home spotless, sparkle and dust free.

Pre-Soak - A soaking operation before washing to remove stains

Pre—Spot - Removal of obvious stains before general cleaning

Redeposition - A condition of soil settling back on a cleaned surface before the cleaning product is removed

Rinsability - The ease of being rinsed or completely washed away

Sanitiser - An agent which reduces but doesn't completely destroy bacteria

Saponification - Process of converting fat into soap or to remove grease and oil

Sealer - A coating designed to protect a surface

Soap - A natural cleaning agent produced by the reaction of a fat or oil to an alkali

Sodium Hypochlorite - Bleaching and disinfecting agent

Soils - A group of substances that attach themselves to surfaces creating a pollutant

Solvents - A liquid which dissolves another substance, water being the most common

Speciality Cleaning Services - Those odd cleaning jobs that don't fall into other categories. From a one-off cleaning blitz after the builders leave to an end of tenancy clean.

Spray Buff - A Floor cleaning procedure that cleans, removes black marks and shines an area of flooring

Spring Clean - thoroughly clean the entire house, often done only once a year. Our professional cleaners follow our unique iFresh cleaning system used for regular cleans, to ensure that every part of your home is immaculate.

Squeegee - A tool with a rubber edge to remove water from floors and windows

Sterilisation - Process of killing all forms of microbial life including fungi, viruses, spores and vegetive bacteria

Stripper - A detergent that breaks down wax or paint without damaging the underlying surface

Suds - A foam or lather generated on or in a detergent solution

Surfactant - Surface-active ingredient that increases foaming, dispersing, spreading, emulsifying and wetting properties of a product

Suspension - Cleaning products that hold insoluble dirt and grime and keep them from being deposited back onto the surface

Synthetic (Soapless) Detergents - Made from the by—products of refining crude oil, they lather better and do not form a scum in hard water

Tack Rag - A damp cloth used to remove dust and lint before coating

Tackiness - Being sticky or adhesive

Unclog - To remove an obstructing object

Viracide - A chemical agent that kills viruses

Washing - Cleaning in an aqueous environment

Wax - A natural protective coating for hard surfaces

Wet Mopping - Process of applying a liberal amount of cleaning solution

Wetting Agent - A Chemical which allows water to spread more freely