What is the Difference Between Cleaning and Janitorial Commercial Cleaning?

Maintaining a clean and hygienic environment is essential for businesses of all sizes. However, there is often confusion about the terms “cleaning” and “janitorial commercial cleaning.” Understanding the difference between these two services can help businesses choose the right type of service for their needs. If you’re considering janitorial services in Syracuse, here’s a comprehensive guide to help you understand the distinctions and benefits of each.

Understanding General Cleaning

General cleaning typically refers to basic cleaning tasks that are performed to keep an area tidy and free from everyday dirt and dust. These tasks are usually straightforward and can be completed relatively quickly. Here are some common aspects of general cleaning:

Routine Tasks:

 General cleaning includes routine tasks such as dusting surfaces, sweeping and mopping floors, vacuuming carpets, and cleaning windows and mirrors. These tasks help maintain a clean appearance and prevent the buildup of dirt and grime.

Surface Cleaning:

The focus of general cleaning is often on visible surfaces. This includes wiping down countertops, desks, and other flat surfaces to remove dust and spills.

Spot Cleaning:

General cleaning may also involve spot cleaning, which means addressing specific areas that have become dirty or stained. For example, cleaning up a spill on a carpet or wiping fingerprints off a glass door.

Delving into Janitorial Commercial Cleaning

Janitorial commercial cleaning encompasses a broader and more comprehensive range of services compared to general cleaning. This type of cleaning is typically more thorough and is designed to maintain a high standard of cleanliness in commercial and institutional settings. Here are some key elements of janitorial commercial cleaning:

Comprehensive Cleaning:

Janitorial services cover a wide array of cleaning tasks that go beyond basic surface cleaning. This includes deep cleaning carpets, stripping and waxing floors, sanitizing restrooms, and cleaning high-touch areas.

Scheduled Maintenance:

 Unlike general cleaning, which might be done as needed, janitorial services are often scheduled regularly to ensure consistent cleanliness. This could be daily, weekly, or monthly, depending on the needs of the business.

Specialized Tasks:

Janitorial services often involve specialized tasks that require specific skills and equipment. Examples include pressure washing exterior surfaces, cleaning HVAC systems, and performing minor repairs.

Sanitization and Disinfection:

A critical component of janitorial services is the thorough sanitization and disinfection of surfaces to eliminate germs and bacteria. This is especially important in environments like schools, hospitals, and offices where health and safety are paramount.

Key Differences Between Cleaning and Janitorial Services

While both cleaning and janitorial services aim to keep spaces clean, there are several key differences between the two:

Scope of Services:

General cleaning tends to be more surface-level, focusing on basic tasks to keep an area presentable. Janitorial services, on the other hand, offer a more extensive range of cleaning tasks that ensure deeper cleanliness and maintenance.

Frequency and Scheduling:

General cleaning may be performed on an ad-hoc basis or as part of a less frequent schedule. Janitorial services are typically more regular and can be scheduled to occur daily, weekly, or monthly to maintain a consistently clean environment.

Expertise and Equipment:

Janitorial services often require more specialized skills and equipment to handle a variety of cleaning tasks. This includes the use of industrial-grade cleaning agents, machinery for floor maintenance, and tools for high-reach cleaning.

Health and Safety Focus:

While general cleaning can help maintain a tidy appearance, janitorial services place a greater emphasis on health and safety. This includes thorough sanitization and disinfection to reduce the spread of germs and ensure a healthy environment.

Benefits of Janitorial Services for Businesses

Investing in professional janitorial services offers several benefits for businesses, especially in busy areas like Syracuse:

Improved Cleanliness and Hygiene:

Janitorial services ensure a higher standard of cleanliness, which can lead to a healthier and more pleasant environment for employees and visitors.

Enhanced Professional Appearance:

A consistently clean and well-maintained workspace creates a positive impression on clients and customers, reflecting professionalism and attention to detail.

Increased Productivity:

A clean environment can boost employee morale and productivity. Employees are more likely to feel comfortable and motivated in a tidy workspace.

Cost Savings:

Regular maintenance through janitorial services can extend the lifespan of fixtures and furnishings, reducing the need for costly repairs and replacements.

Compliance with Health Regulations:

Many industries are subject to strict health and safety regulations. Professional janitorial services ensure that businesses comply with these standards, avoiding potential fines and legal issues.

Choosing the Right Service for Your Business

When deciding between general cleaning and janitorial services, it’s important to assess the specific needs of your business. Here are some factors to consider:

Business Size and Type:

Larger businesses or those in industries with higher cleanliness standards (such as healthcare and food service) may benefit more from comprehensive janitorial services.


Consider your budget and the level of cleaning required. While janitorial services may have a higher upfront cost, they can provide greater value through thorough cleaning and maintenance.

Specific Needs:

 Identify any specific cleaning requirements your business may have. For example, if your facility has specialized equipment or areas that require regular disinfection, janitorial services may be more suitable.

Frequency of Cleaning:

Determine how often you need cleaning services. Businesses with high foot traffic or those that operate in sectors like healthcare and hospitality might require more frequent cleaning to maintain hygiene standards.

Understanding the difference between general cleaning and janitorial services can help businesses in Syracuse make informed decisions about maintaining a clean and healthy environment. By choosing the right service based on their specific needs, businesses can ensure they provide a safe, productive, and professional space for employees and visitors alike.


What is the main difference between general cleaning and janitorial services?

The main difference is the scope of services. General cleaning focuses on basic, routine tasks to keep an area tidy, while janitorial services offer a more comprehensive range of cleaning tasks, including deep cleaning, maintenance, and sanitization.

How often should I schedule janitorial services for my business?

The frequency of janitorial services depends on your business’s specific needs, the level of foot traffic, and the industry standards. Common schedules include daily, weekly, or monthly services.

Are janitorial services more expensive than general cleaning?

Janitorial services typically cost more than general cleaning due to the broader scope of tasks, specialized equipment, and regular scheduling. However, they offer greater value through thorough cleaning and maintenance.

Can janitorial services help with compliance to health regulations?

Yes, professional janitorial services can help businesses comply with health and safety regulations by ensuring thorough sanitization and disinfection, reducing the risk of illness and maintaining a healthy environment.

What types of businesses benefit the most from janitorial services?

Businesses with high cleanliness standards or those in industries like healthcare, education, hospitality, and food service benefit the most from janitorial services due to their need for thorough and regular cleaning.