Cleaning a critical environment like a pharmaceutical laboratory or manufacturing operation shouldn't be left to chance. There are specific procedures that must be followed to avoid introducing dangerous contaminants into a controlled space.
Cleanroom Entry Procedures
An effective cleanroom utilizes positive pressure to keep clean air inside. This airflow design allows materials to enter one end of the room and exit the other.
When entering a controlled environment, there is a set of guidelines for safe entry and exit. Members of the cleaning team must:
- Wipe feet and cover with overshoes or booties
- Remove excess street clothing
- Remove any make-up
- Make sure all hair, including facial hair, is tucked away
- Thoroughly wash and dry hands
- Walk on cleanroom sticky mat to pick up any excess dirt and debris from shoes
Procedures for Cleanroom Changing Area
Anyone entering this room is advised to move slowly and carefully while dressing to avoid moving or disturbing air particles.
Proper equipment can vary depending on the environment or facility. Typically, professional cleaning teams gown from the top-down, allowing disturbed particles to fall from the head to the ground. They will dress in this order:
- Hairnets and facemasks
- Headcover or hood
- Booties or overshoes
All equipment must be inspected for damages, like rips or fabric tears. Cleanroom users should touch masks and hoods only on the inside, and tuck in all hair and facial hair before adjusting. It's also important that all garments, including gowns/coveralls, fit properly, and there aren't any gaps. Hands should be sanitized before putting on gloves. If possible, the team should walk over a second sticky mat to remove any remaining dirt, dust, and debris that may have accumulated during this process.
Cleanroom Exit Procedures
When exiting the cleanroom, the team must exit the area slowly and in a similar fashion to the way they entered. Removing equipment or de-gowning is performed in reverse order, starting with the feet and ending at the head.
- Remove booties or overshoes
- Take off coveralls/gowns
- Remove gloves, hoods, facemasks, and hairnets
- Discard disposable materials
- Separate gowns, coveralls, and hoods and place in proper receptacles for cleaning
The Importance of Following Cleanroom Entry and Exit Procedures
It doesn't take much for debris to infiltrate a delicate environment and damage expensive equipment or property. Cleanrooms must comply with the ISO standards for air particulates. Changes in airflow patterns, air pressure, temperature, humidity, and even lighting can create uncontrolled particle levels. Even the smallest amount of contaminants can disrupt the manufacturing process. In a laboratory, bacteria or fungus could wind up in medications or on medical devices, making people sick.
Maintaining any facility, cleanroom, or laboratory requires the use of innovative techniques and well-trained professionals. Pegasus Building Services provides high-quality commercial cleaning to data centers, high-tech manufacturing spaces, telecommunications sites, and cleanrooms.
We wanted to share our expertise with you, so we’ve created a cleanroom cleaning guide to help you keep your cleanroom safe and operational >>.