House Keeping

The term Good House keeping means wider cleaning including up-keeping of all industrial activities in orderly manner to minimize the accidents due to improper planning, placement, arrangement, handling etc., everywhere in the industrial premises.

In short Good House Keeping explanation as a place for everything and everything in its proper place.

Benefits of Good Housekeeping

  • It is an essential routine support to industrial safety and health.
  • We can eliminate a large number and wide range of accidents due to bad housekeeping by good housekeeping.
  • It aids to good maintenance and working as complementary to it and increase overall safety and productivity.
  • Clean, hygienic and safe plant environment increases attractiveness and morals of the employees.
  • Machines, tools and equipment work better in clean condition and boost up the workmanship.
  • Utilization of much floor space or area because of proper access to machines and equipment for cleaning and maintenance purpose.
  • The fine and sophisticated instruments equipment and personal protective equipment give better results when kept in good and deal condition and checked regularly.
  • Time spent in locating tools and appliances and wastage of time is controlled resulting in increase of efficiency.
  • Reduction in damage to person and property likely to occur due to disorder resulting in loss control.
  • Reduction in loss due to misplacement of costly items due to proper placement and order.
  • We can control losses due to outbreak of fires to a great extent by proper housekeeping. Minimisation of losses on this account alone justifies the effort.
  • We can prevent reduction in values of materials and machines if we maintain it properly.
  • Increase in overall life and utility of plant, building and equipment due to good housekeeping.
  • Majority of small fires result from and spread by poor housekeeping conditions. We can prevent sources of ignition due to oily cotton waste, solvent spillage, oil dripping, friction, sparks, flames, smoking etc. by good maintenance and housekeeping.
  • We can operate clean and well maintained plant at a lesser cost.
  • Production increases due to reduced obstacles and wastage of time and speedy availability of material, equipment, tools etc.
  • Employee morale is boost up due to orderly things, neatness and cleanliness, sufficient space to work, good lighting, colour and ventilation and mostly due to reduced possibilities of accidents and injuries.
  • Outside visitors, market people, Government authorities, local community and the top management are attracted and overall image of the company rises up.

How effect of colour used to improve and aid good house keeping.

It is important to note here that proper colour selection for walls, ceiling, passageways, machines, piping, railings, fencing, guards, boundaries, fire equipment, lifting machines, warning signs, danger zones etc., play vital role in improving housekeeping and safety.

Follow Statutory or IS for colour-code, if any, otherwise the selection should be based on the best effect and necessary contrast. The colour and lighting influence vision and contribute to the wellbeing, morale, attitudes, housekeeping, quality, productivity, health and safety.

In industry, we ca use colors to:

  1. Improve lighting conditions.
  2. Decorate the environment.
  3. Increase efficiency and productivity.
  4. Improve quality of workmanship and normal skill.
  5. Improve labor morale and interest in work.
  6. Reduce accidents and increase safety.
  7. Reduce ‘rejects’.
  8. Reduce absenteeism.
  9. Raise standard of good housekeeping.
  10. Improve building and machinery maintenance.
  11. Reduce hidden costs of dull and gloomy atmosphere, and
  12. Improve overall psychological and physiological effects on workers for better work performance.

General housekeeping is a preventive measure for safety

  • The concept of good housekeeping is emerged from the results of bad housekeeping, which is the direct cause of many accidents.
  • Poorly maintained plants and equipment, improperly stored materials, tools and tackles, irregular or inadequate plant inspection, unsafe environment and persons not conscious of all these are a potential cause of many accidents.
  • Accident statistics by the experts highlighted some causes are to pay more attention.
  • Majority of these causes viz. Stepping over or striking against objects, handling goods or articles, use of hand tools, falling on floor or in pit etc., hot or corrosive substances are because of poor or bad housekeeping.
  • These causes of accidents ‘can be removed by good house keeping.
  • This indicates the basic need of good housekeeping.
  • The term Good Housekeeping is sometimes loosely understood as simple floor cleaning or broom stick operation. But it is not so.
  • It has a wider Cleaning including up-keeping of all industrial activities in orderly manner to minimize the accidents due to improper planning, placement, arrangement, handling etc., everywhere in the industrial premises.
  • In short it can be explained as a place for everything and everything in its proper place.
  • It pays attention on removing all unsafe conditions in the plant and thereby increasing safety and productivity.
  • Housekeeping is not just a need-based cleaning. It is more than that.
  • In addition to regular daily cleanliness, it includes orderly arrangement of tools, equipment, materials and process flow. It is an integral part of industrial activity that reduces accidents, increases cleanliness, attractiveness and comfort, production and improves employee’s morale and public relations.

Indicators of bad House keeping

It is essential to know the items of poor or bad house keeping so for recognition, detection and removal. Indicators of poor housekeeping are many and a list may become long. List of Some main indicators are as below:

Objects & Materials on Floor:

Excessive material, waste, debris, tools lying anywhere, spillage of oil, grease, acid etc., dropped or thrown down materials and disorderly piled material as obstruction.

Poor Storage Practices:

Unsafe store design and unsafe piling i.e. too high or improper piling, overloaded waste bins, storing in aisles or obstructing doors, passage ways, storage of excessive material in work room.

Equipment out of Place:

Wrongly parked vehicles, trucks, trolleys and wrongly placed tools, equipment, material, ladder, wire ropes etc. where they should not be.

Dirty walls, windows, ceilings, floors etc. :

Dirty walls, windows, ceilings, floors, lighting fixtures, lint and dust on bearings or moving parts, open locker/drawer, slippery or dirty washrooms, latrines, urinals, canteens and workplaces.

Poor waste disposal system:

Failure to provide receptacles or containers for waste and scrape, overflowing pans, dripping containers and unsafe handling of cutting oils etc., inadequate or leaking exhaust system, scrubber, treatment plant etc., emission of gas, fumes, vapors, accumulation of dust and no provision for cleaning device.

Fire Hazards:

Accumulation of rubbish, oil, oil soaked rags or cotton waste, paper and packing material, substances causing spontaneous ignition e.g. dusts, oils, solvents, fertilizers, sugar, leather scraps, jute, hemp, hay etc., uninsulated, hot piping, hot bearings, sparks, welding-cutting in flammable area or unsafe manner.

Chemical Hazards:

Nowadays chemical factories are increasing and workplace pollution due to chemical exposure is also increasing. This spoils the atmosphere and housekeeping. Splashes, leakage, dripping and escape of chemicals pose danger to health and safety and result in bad housekeeping.


Poor lighting, dark colors, poor ventilation, noise and vibration, broken tools, ladders, stools etc., open or loose electric wiring, no hand railing, no toe guard, no machine guarding, no fencing on pits, platforms and floor openings, drawers left open etc.

Enumerate the typical accidents due to bad house keeping

Accidents due to poor or bad house keeping :

  • Striking against or falling over machine parts.
  • Materials or other obstructions left lying in passageways.
  • Cuts from objects left striking out from benches and especially on construction sites, punctures by nails striking out from objects or lying anywhere.
  • Falls on floor left slippery, greasy or damp, badly stacked materials.
  • Fires due to accumulation of combustible waste or leakage of flammable materials.
  • Cabinet drawers left open.
  • Dangerous dust or chemicals on floors and not cleaning them quickly.
  • Congested aisles.
  • No toe-guards or hand rails.
  • Overloaded waste containers, broken lockers and washrooms.
  • Dirty and unsafe walls, ceilings and windows.
  • Lint and dust on bearings of machines.
  • Tools left on machines or walkways.
  • Poor lighting.
  • Unsafe handling of chemicals.
  • Spillage of oil, grease, acid etc. on floors.
  • Pipes of air, water, steam and oil not properly maintained.
  • No marking of safety and traffic signs, signals.
  • Loose or unsafe wiring etc.

Above should be the targets of planning for good housekeeping.

Role of preventive and productive maintenance for housekeeping

Preventive maintenance

  • It is a scheduled or regular periodical maintenance of plant and machinery.
  • Its purpose is to prevent sudden or accidental failure, stoppage or breakdown of plant and machinery.
  • Without waiting for breakdown or failure, periodical oiling, greasing, tuning, changing of parts, testing and examining to keep the machinery in efficient working condition, smooth running without excessive noise and vibration, leakage etc. and it helps to maintain good housekeeping.
  • Sometime ‘shutdown’ is planned for such preventive maintenance.

Productive maintenance

  • It is for the purpose of improvement in production. If speed or output is decreased, noise, vibration, out running, reject,
    breakage, leakage etc. may increase, then such maintenance is carried out to remove these losses.
  • Even without such losses or disorder, modification is carried out to boost up or increase the production rate or to achieve desired quality or quantity of products.

Breakdown or corrective maintenance

  • It is compulsorily required when plant or machinery stops due to breakdown, sudden failure, stoppage, accident or leakage etc. Then without urgent repair, restarting is not possible, otherwise it adversely affects housekeeping.