white board strategy work flow diagram

Straightforward and effective, whiteboards are incredibly versatile tools.  And the main attraction of the tool is right in the name.  A whiteboard surface continuously offers a fresh white slate, ready for new ideas, drawings, lists and schedules.  But what happens when a whiteboard no longer stays white?

Walk into many classrooms, offices or homes and you’ll see whiteboards that look slightly worn with remnants of the last lesson or meeting erased but still reflecting on the board.  The process for how to maintain a whiteboard’s peak performance is a simple, inexpensive and quick practice, but many owners aren’t aware that erasing content isn’t enough to keep a whiteboard clean.  Follow the six whiteboard tips and tricks below and you can keep your board looking brand new or transform one that has seen better days back to it’s original shine.

  1. Follow the maintenance instructions: This first tip may seem obvious, but it’s one people often skip or forget about when using a whiteboard.  PolyVision is a world leader when it comes to producing white and chalk CeramicSteel boards for a wide variety of environments.  Scientists at PolyVision say the number one way to keep a board looking new is to take time to read the maintenance instructions before ever writing on the surface.  If you’ve lost your instructions, we have a simple step-by-step process on whiteboard surface care to keep it looking brand new.
  2. Erasing is not enough: While erasing works wonderful at first, it’s effectiveness wears off if more cleaning isn’t done.  “Occasionally we’ll receive a question about boards becoming more difficult to erase over time,” says Becky Lewis, a customer service representative for PolyVision.  “When the customer is asked if they’ve ever cleaned their board, they’re often surprised that it’s something that must be done to maintain performance.  Cleaning the board with a recommended solution always solves the issue of erasability with CeramicSteel.”
  3. Gloss differences cause ghosting:  Chemicals from whiteboard markers build up and form a residue on the board if only erased.  This residue causes a gloss difference on the board between unused areas and areas where content was written.  The gloss differences causes “ghosting” or outlines of previous work even after erasing, which is a top complaint of whiteboard users.  To get rid of ghosting, wipe the board with a cloth dipped in a mix of isopropyl alcohol and water – the most effective whiteboard cleaner.
  4. Cleaners to use:  Again, a mix of isopropyl alcohol and water is the best solution to clean a whiteboard, but there are a variety of other options that work just as well.  Using a cloth moistened with whiteboard cleaner is enough to keep a board clean if used every week.  Warm soapy water, window cleaner and peroxide all work too.  Be sure to stay away wax-based cleaners as they leave a pesky film on the whiteboard.
  5. Frequency matters:  Depending on the use of the board, it should be cleaned at different frequencies.  When a teacher is writing on the board all day long the board should be wiped daily with whiteboard cleaner.  In the office, many teams keep notes and schedules up on a board for a period of time, making erasing and cleaning every day a hassle.  In these instances, the content should be erased and the board cleaned before rewriting the content again at least once a week.
  6. Permanent marker isn’t permanent: Worry may set in if you realise permanent marker was used on a whiteboard, but do’t fear, even permanent marker can be removed.  Trace the permanent marker content with a dry erase marker, erase it and you’ll find a clean slate due to the non-polar solvent in dry erase markers.  Any of the cleaners mentioned above also contain organic solvents like 2-butoxyethanol that can help erase permanent pigment.

The text in this article is provided courtesy of Kevin Buchanan of PolyVision.  PolyVision are the manufacturers of the CeramicSteel surfaces that we use to create the Vista Porcelain Whiteboards in our Australian Factory.

Our Vista Porcelain Whiteboards are the premium product for heavy white board usage such as classrooms and training facilities.  The writing surface has a lifetime warranty.

For more information on caring for your whiteboard we have a downloadable Care Guide or for assistance with selecting the best whiteboard for your needs please refer to our Help Me Choose page.

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