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How Often Should You Clean Your Data Center?

Nov 19, 2021 8:15:00 AM / by The Pegasus Team

If there is one thing we learned since Spring 2020, it's that cleaning needs to be an integral part of every workspace’s schedule. This is as true for your data center as it is for anywhere else. 

A clean data center is likely a well-functioning data center. If dirt, dust, and debris are allowed to build up in your data center you run the risk of damage to both your servers and the humans who work with them. 

There are several levels of cleaning that should be considered part of the regular work schedule, daily, weekly, and deep. While this may seem like an additional stress on an already tight labor budget, the possible side effects of not following a data center cleaning procedure are a far greater risk to your budget. 

Daily Cleaning 

At the end of every shift a quick but complete cleaning should be done. This includes wiping down every work surface with an antibacterial cleaner to prevent the spread of disease and to remove any dust or dirt. All waste receptacles should be emptied and the floor should be vacuumed or dry mopped, depending on the surface.  

Brooms should never be used on the floor of a data center as they can build up static electricity and push small dust particles into the air. The next time these particles settle it may be on the ventilation system or other sensitive areas. 

Benefits of Daily Cleaning 

  • Cut down the chances of viruses or bacteria spreading from one person to another. 
  • Dust and debris are removed before they can build up and cause problems. 
  • Protects the servers from much of the ambient dust 

Risks of Not Doing Daily Cleaning 

  • Spread of infectious illnesses 
  • Dust and dirt build up to the point where they begin to reduce the flow of air through the ventilation filters leading to potential overheating problems 
  • Overflowing waste receptacles lead to the possibility of slipping or tripping 

Weekly Cleaning 

Weekly cleaning involves wiping down the hardware and servers themselves to remove dirt and debris. This should be done with a slightly damp disposable cleaning cloth. Be sure to pay particular attention to connectors and ports as the dust can become trapped inside of them. 

If the floors are dry mopped, now is the time to bring a vacuum with a Hepa filter. Make sure the vacuum has attachments that allow you to get into the tight spaces.  Keyboards should be cleaned with forced air and then wiped down. 

Benefits of Weekly Cleaning 

  • Reduces the chances of electronic failure due to debris build up in connectors or ports 
  • Keeps dust from building up on the servers or hardware and away from the cooling fans 
  • Prevents the buildup of debris in unseen spaces 

Risks of Not Doing Weekly Cleaning 

  • Cooling fan failure and overheating issues 
  • Interruption of data or electricity flow through soiled ports or connectors 
  • Unseen dirt and debris build up and becomes much more difficult to remove 

Deep Cleaning 

There is some debate as to how frequently you should schedule deep cleaning of your data center. In large part the frequency is determined by the amount of traffic your data center sees on a daily basis. The most commonly suggested timing is every 3 to 6 months. 

During a deep clean, you are going to be cleaning in and around the many cables and wires. In some data centers, these are found in the space between the drop ceiling and the actual ceiling. In others, they are stored under a raised floor. Regardless of where they are located, during a deep clean these areas will be opened and the cables and surrounding areas cleaned with slightly damp disposable cloths. 

Now is also the time to thoroughly clean cooling fans and ventilation systems. 

Benefits of Deep Cleaning 

  • Removal of dirt and debris from unseen spaces where it could buildup and become a fire hazard 
  • A chance to check all wires and cables for wear and tear 
  • A chance to check for rodent or insect infestations 

Risks of Not Doing Deep Cleaning 

  • Fire or other electrical problems due to damaged wires or cables 
  • Unchecked problems with insects or rodents 
  • Damage done by clogged filters on the ventilation system of fans that are too dirty to effectively cool the hardware. 

Pegasus Can Assure You a Clean Data Center 

All of this cleaning may seem like a lot of work that your current staff is really not up to accomplishing. If so, Pegasus may be the solution for you. We have been helping companies keep their workplaces clean and safe for over 50 years and we know how to do it right. Get your Data Center Cleaning instant quote now.

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