Opening a Restaurant or Coffee Shop: 5 Essential Commercial Cleaning Products You Need

If you are opening a new restaurant or coffee shop, you need to have commercial cleaning supplies on hand. Even if you plan to outsource most of your cleaning, you still need a few basics on hand for accidents, emergencies and cleaning between sessions with professional cleaners. To get started, here is a look at the basics every restaurant, bar or coffee shop needs.

1. Lots of rags

When running any type of eatery, you need lots of rags. You need rags for grabbing pans and wiping up spills in the kitchen, rags for cleaning off steam wands on the espresso machine and rags for drying spilled beer off the bar.

Most restaurateurs work with a laundry service who delivers rags, picks them up when dirty and then drops them off again. Even if you opt to wash your own rags, invest in as many as you can, and consider having different colours for rags designated for different areas or surfaces.

2. Toilet cleaner

Your clients may occasionally leave an icky mess in your toilet, and if you sell alcohol, you risk even larger mess of vomit. For this reason, you have to have toilet cleaner on hand as well as a scrub brush. Don't forget the disposable gloves; if you have a barista, a server or any of your other employees tackle the task, they will want some protection.

3. Mop, bucket and warning sign

Like preparing for potential toilet messes, you also have to prepare for floor messes. Spilled coffee, dropped plates of food or other messes are likely to happen in any eatery. Make sure you have a mop, and considering getting two—one for the bathroom and a separate one for all other areas.

You also need a commercial-sized mop bucket, and don't forget about your liability risk either. Anytime, you have a puddle, you need a "Warning: Wet Floor" sign.

4. Caustic cleaner and steel wool

Wherever you cook, you risk burning bits of food onto the stovetop or crusting pots and pans with old food. Obviously, your daily or weekly cleaners aren't going to tackle this job so you need to be prepared. Have some caustic cleaners on hand as well as steel wool.

5. Window squeegees

Window cleaning is something that most restaurateurs outsource. However, there are going to be times when your windows get dirty in between scheduled cleanings. If a kid rubs his hands all over your glass or if a drunken patron stumbles into the glass and smears it, you need to be able to clean it quickly and efficiently.

To do this, a window squeegee is an essential purchase. If you want to be extra prepared, consider having a large squeegee for your outside windows and a small one for your bakery cabinet or other glass display area.