TOP>SERIAL PROJECT>No8 Chapter 3. “Ueki’s Laws” to make cleaning easy

SERIAL PROJECT : To make cleaning easy creates new added value!

Chapter 3. “Ueki’s Laws” to make cleaning easy

 
"Ueki's Laws" to make cleaning easy that I am going to introduce here for the first time is devised by Teruo Ueki, a professional cleaner and the author of this paper. By applying these laws, house cleaning will be easier. Moreover, the principle also works as a guidepost to make cleaning of different objects easy.
"Ueki's laws" are applicable in a wide range of fields. This is because everything that is made by people and used constantly needs cleaning/ maintenance, including not only buildings but also furniture and electrical appliances. Products that incorporate cleaning/ maintenance into their design qualify as eco-products that are hygiene and usable for an extended period of time. This time, I will introduce the laws with a house as a case.



3.1 Some houses are easier to clean than others.
House cleaning consists of not only architectural materials used inside and outside the house for different parts such as floor, wall, window, and ceiling, but also lighting and air-conditioning equipment, and furniture. Things we need to clean are diverse because of the concern for human health and maintenance of overall building.
I have been in the business of cleaning for more than 15 years and cleaned different buildings from individual residences to office buildings, and from new buildings to old buildings. From such experience, I noticed that some houses are easier to clean than others. "Easy-to-clean houses" have various common factors such easy-to-clean materials (architectural materials) and places (work environment). It was predictable that building a house by incorporating such factors would ease the future labor of cleaning. With the basic knowledge of cleaning in addition to my experience in a long career, I devised the laws to make cleaning easy.

 
 
3.1-1 Devising the principle of making the cleaning easy
No matter how efficient you do the cleaning by applying the basic knowledge of cleaning, cleaning is, in the end, a hard work. If you take into consideration the future cleaning work at the design stage when you build or remodel your house, however, house cleaning will be easier. Based on such premise, I devised the laws of lesser and easier cleaning from my experience of cleaning in different situations and the basic knowledge of cleaning.

● equation → law
From the equation of cleaning, set up the prevention measure to make house cleaning easy. The first to do in the equation of cleaning is analysis of present condition of contamination. If no obvious flaws are found, it means cleaning is already easy or needless.

 
   

 
Knowledge of dirt
Cleaning is removing dirt from the house after it is inhabited. Dirt attaches mainly to the surface of finishing materials. If you think about the cause of contamination, you will realize the importance of creating the environment that is less likely to get dirty. Ultimately you do not have to clean unless it gets dirty. This is, however, nearly impossible at this point. Hence, our focus would be on creating the environment that is less likely to get dirty.
★ Steps for analyzing dirt
Source ②type ③condition ④chronological change

 
Knowledge of architectural materials
What measures do we have for the dirt already attached? As mentioned above, dirt attaches mainly to the surface of finishing materials. It can be said that by using dirt-resistant easy-to-clean material for the architectural material where contamination is likely to occur, we can make cleaning easy. In sum, use easy-to-clean materials.

★ Where? Steps for analyzing architectural materials
①the type of architectural materials and their location → ② water resistance and detergent resistance →  ③surface configuration and hardness, and water absorbability and hygroscopicity.
*Things that are less likely to get dirty are easy-to-clean.
*Things for which removal force is applicable are easy-to-clean
*Things for which cleaning techniques are applicable are easy-to-clean

I will focus on the surface configuration. A Flat and solid surface tends to keep off dirt and is easy to clean when it gets dirty. A Rough and lacunal surface attracts dirt and is hard to clean.
This principle is also valid if you take it to the larger scale and apply to the whole indoor space. The Existence, number, and form of asperity greatly influence the way it gets dirty and the way we clean. I also noticed that not all asperity attracts dirt and is hard to clean.
Considering the above argument, to eliminate the asperity or to carefully select the location and the type of asperity is an important element in creating of the environment that is less likely to get dirty and also in choosing of the easy-to-clean material.

*A Close examination of architectural materials, particularly with a microscope reveals the diversity of superficial configurations. Since "roughness" is surely not a sufficient indicator, we need to take into account the "frequency of asperity" and the "form of asperity." For instance, even with the same frequency of asperity, the one with sharper or more complicated projection and depression gets dirtier and is harder to clean. My belief is that this fact is applicable not only to the surface of the material but also the overall design of the house.
 

Knowledge of cleaning technique
Even multiple preventive measures will not entirely prevent contamination that comes with age. By designing the suitable working environment for cleaning from the start, you can make cleaning easier if you think about the cleaning technique. To put it short, to secure the optimal working environment for cleaning is an important element to make cleaning easy.
 
 

 3.2 "Ueki's Laws" for making cleaning easy

Ueki's Laws
① Create the environment that is less likely to get dirty
② Eliminate the asperity or to carefully select the location and the type of asperity
③ Use easy-to-clean materials
④ Secure the optimal working environment for cleaning
Each law generates greater effect by combining together in a way they do not contradict each other.

 

   

  
Though the contents of these laws seem like a common sense, they are not necessarily practiced. Ueki's Laws are basically to make cleaning easy by taking these four points into account while you plan building a new house or remodeling. These laws enables us to think up with measures to tackle the problem of cleaning by seeing it from four points of view and adapting as many measures as possible. Even when one of the measures becomes dysfunctional by an accident, you can still make up with other measures. Flexibility like this will, in the long run, make cleaning/ maintenance easy.
 

 
3.2-1 Create the environment that is less likely to get dirty
By creating the environment that is less likely to get dirty, we can make cleaning easy. Ultimately you do not have to clean unless it gets dirty. This is, however, nearly impossible at this point. Therefore, the most important thing to make cleaning easy would be creating the environment that is less likely to get dirty.
To create the environment that is less likely to get dirty, we must first think about dirt. We need to specify the dirt that we target and come up with prevention measures to create the environment that is less likely to get contaminated by such dirt, based on the analysis of factors such as source and disposition of contamination.
 
Steps to create the environment that is less likely to get dirty
Specify dirt → analyze factors such as source and disposition of contamination  →  device preventive measures

   

let's think about the measures to reduce the amount of dirt or to prevent or protect from contamination of material (finishing material, etc.) that we clean. If this is an indoor situation, we can reduce the amount of dirt by blocking dirt from getting in from outside. Even if dirt does get inside or dirt is produced inside, we can prevent to some extent dirt from attaching to architectural materials by taking measures to clean dirt immediately. If dirt is biological, it is important to stop it from breaking out or developing. As seen above, knowledge of the source and disposition of dirt and combination of different measures based on such knowledge will lead to the environment that is less likely to get dirty. It is also important in creating such environment to apply other laws such as eliminating indoor asperity, using easy-to-clean materials, and securing the optimal working environment for cleaning.
 

 
3.2-2 eliminate the asperity or to choose with a little ingenuity the use location or the form of asperity
Basically the less asperity in the shape of the building or the surface of architectural materials, the easier cleaning will be. On the contrary, the more frequent asperity is, the more area for dirt to attach. Hence the more labor is needed for cleaning. Furthermore, the more complicated the asperity, the more difficult to remove dirt. On the other hand, asperity renders aesthetic quality of texture. Fortunately, I found out by looking at it from a cleaner's perspective that some asperity is less likely to get dirty than other. Some asperity is less susceptible to contamination and some is easy to clean. Some can be used to secure the optimal working environment for cleaning. To sum up, we can make cleaning easy by considering the location and use of different types of asperity. Moreover, we can make cleaning easy by adapting other laws to where asperity is ubiquitous, which is possible only if we are aware that asperity generally requires more cleaning.

   
 
 

3.2-3 Use easy-to-clean architectural material
House dirt attaches to architectural materials. Some architectural materials are easier to clean than others. Therefore, it is of importance to consider not only design and functionality but also the ease of maintenance when you choose exterior and interior materials. Disposition, form, and use location of architectural materials will greatly affect cleaning. In terms of physical disposition, a flat and solid surface tends to keep off dirt and is easy to clean when it has got dirty, while a rough and lacunal surface attracts dirt and is hard to clean. In terms of chemical disposition, architectural materials with water/ detergent resistance are easy to clean, while materials without such disposition are hard to clean.
Residential facilities such as kitchen, bathroom, and toilet should be seen as aggregate of different architectural materials and easy-to-clean materials should be used. Choosing architectural materials with cleaning in mind is a very effective measure to make cleaning easy. As a conclusion, some architectural materials are easy to clean and we can make cleaning easy by using them.

   

 

3.2-4 Secure the optimal working environment for cleaning (design, architectural materials, etc.)
By securing the optimal working environment for cleaning, it is possible to reduce the amount of time and labor of cleaning. While you are still at the planning stage, picture yourself cleaning the house and take necessary measures to make it easy for yourself. If you consider at this point the working environment for not only residents but also professional cleaners, the long-term maintenance will be even easier. For example, the place to put cleaning apparatus, basic utilities for cleaning (the location of electric outlets and taps), and access holes (on floor, wall, ceiling, etc.) need to be considered to make the easy working environment for cleaning and maintenance.

   

The more "Ueki's Laws" you apply when you plan building a new house or remodeling, the easier cleaning would be.

   

   

 

 
 
Vol.2 How to build an easy-to-clean house (Chapter 1 Create the environment that is less likely to get dirty・・・)

* "The Way to Make an Easy-to-clean House" can be found in Japanese on our website.
Note
"How to build an easy-to-clean house" that I am going to introduce here is the original draft of "Vision 2007" (with a partial modification) that was completed in 2007. Although the basic contents that I showed in vol. 1 are intact, three visions for "How to build an easy-to-clean house" from vol.2 have already been finished(?) by today (2009).
Those are only visions and not definite contents. This should be noted because my personal passion for making cleaning easy sometimes causes misunderstanding in readers. The vision is only a hypothesis based on the author's experience and knowledge of cleaning, and a variety of text resources (because the easy-to-clean house has never been constructed so far). Therefore, it is readers who judge the validity of my argument.
Three visions for "Healthy house/ easy-to-clean house"

① 2007 vision for "Healthy house/ easy-to-clean house"
I conceived "Vision 2007" to make my own "Healthy house/ easy-to-clean house." It is one example of packaging up-to-date (to 2007) construction technology and residential facilities into "healthy house/ easy-to-clean house" with actual construction of a house in mind. I will introduce this "Vision 2007" in this serial. Since this is the first version, some parts might be a little roughly structured.

*For those who want to know the contents as soon as possible
The serial "How to build an easy-to-clean house" that started in October 2008 in Nikkei Home Builder (five entries from October 2008 to March 2009) is a simplified version of Vision 2007, written so that professional readers who are active in home-building industry can introduce "easy-to-clean house."
You can purchase back issues or articles (PDF) from Nikkei BP. I have a feeling that these are probably easier to understand than the original draft of "Vision 2007."

② 2008 vision for "Healthy house/ easy-to-clean house"
More research from 2007 vision made me realize that there are cleaning problems that current technology and architectural materials cannot solve. To tackle this situation, I worked out "Vision 2008" (120 pages drafts and 25 new ideas +α) that contains various ideas for new products that reflect my wish; "if only we had this technology and that material or facility to make cleaning easy..."
Though I was flooded with new ideas as I was writing "Vision 2008", I did not include all because I was not sure if they are realistic enough.

③ 2009 vision for "Healthy house/ easy-to-clean house"
In 2009, I finally made up my mind to build the first "healthy house/ easy-to-clean house." And "Building an easy-to-clean house" was selected as an anniversary project for Nikkei Home Builder that will be ten years old in July 2009. Concurrently I produced "Vision 2009" for "healthy house/ easy-to-clean house" that contains the latest construction technology and residential facilities and also more new ideas. This will proceed as a cooperative project with Nikkei BP.

 

 

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