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Gas Station and Convenience Store Cleaning Checklist

A warm, inviting store starts with cleanliness. Our checklist will keep you on-track.

By Conner Howard | Last Updated:06/28/2023
A gas station with it's lights turned on as the sun sets behind it.

An In-Depth Maintenance Checklist for Gas Station Attendants and Operators

A quality customer experience begins with an organized, comfortable environment. At gas stations and convenience stores, patrons expect to stop in, get what they need fast, and be on their way. An unkempt — or even worse, unsafe — operation can drive patrons to your competition.

We checked in with Jeff Lenard, Vice President of Strategic Industry Initiatives with the National Association of Convenience Stores, for expert insight into what it takes to maintain a safe and clean gas station and convenience store environment.

A person throws out plastic into a trash bin.

1. Empty Trash Cans and Restock Pump Islands

According to Lenard, the majority of Americans say that when they fill up their car, they also threw trash away at the nearest trash can. Since there are few things more inconvenient than an overflowing trash can, it’s important to regularly check and empty outdoor receptacles.

This can even be done during floor sweeping shifts to save time. Encourage your staff to regularly check the gas pump service islands and ensure that paper towels and windshield cleaning supplies are in stock.

Ideal frequency: Multiple times per shift

Remember, your efforts to keep your cans clean and ready for trash are only successful if you have a reliable waste hauler who can keep up. Request a waste audit from our experts to find out how we can save you time and money.

Jeff Lenard headshot.
Jeff Lenard, Vice President of Strategic Industry Initiatives | National Association of Convenience Stores

"Because trash cans at the pump can fill up regularly, it’s imperative to empty them so that they don’t present a sloppy appearance or allow collected trash to become litter. Some stores also are using recycling bins at the pump to both help collect recyclable cans and bottles and send a message about the importance of a clean environment."

An employee sweeps a brick walkway outside a store.

2. Sweep Interior and Exterior Walkways Regularly

It’s important to maintain a clean floor both inside the convenience store and around the gas pumps. Even a small amount of trash on the ground or dust gathering in corners can negatively affect a customer’s impression of your gas station.

If staffing allows, assign separate employees to sweep the indoor and outdoor areas, as different brooms and tools are usually needed for each task. A rotating schedule can also help supervisors ensure this job is done several times throughout the day.

Ideal frequency: Multiple times per shift

NACS logo.
Jeff Lenard, Vice President of Strategic Industry Initiatives | National Association of Convenience Stores

"It’s common for shift managers to begin their day with a walk around the lot to see what needs attention or has changed over the past day. This includes inspections of the fueling pumps and the perimeter of the store to see if there is litter or anything else that needs their attention."

A clean and empty bathroom.

3. Check Restrooms Hourly

A poorly maintained restroom can rapidly sink your convenience store’s reputation. Consistent checks and preventative upkeep go a long way. Make routine checks, ideally once an hour at least, to clean and restock as needed.

Similar to the sweeping routine, restrooms benefit from a rotating maintenance schedule that all staff members contribute to. A clipboard-mounted checklist in each restroom can also help staff document their routine restroom checks.

Ideal frequency: Every hour

Jeff Lenard headshot.
Jeff Lenard, Vice President of Strategic Industry Initiatives | National Association of Convenience Stores

"Roughly one in five convenience store customers use the bathroom (18%) when they come inside a store. And that means that they start their shopping experience the moment they leave the bathroom. A clean bathroom sets the stage for a positive experience while a dirty bathroom certainly would tend to discourage food or drink purchases."

An employee power washes the curb outside of a store.

4. Power Wash Oil and Gas Spots

Leaking automatic fluids can create stains on concrete and asphalt. Your gas station may benefit from the occasional use of a power washer to scrub these stains out. Work with an equipment vendor to determine the best water temperature and cleaning products to use or hire a commercial cleaning service. If you plan to handle routine pressure washing yourself, make sure some members of your staff are properly trained to use the equipment safely.

Ideal frequency: Weekly or on an as-needed basis

How to Clean a Gas Station Pump

The gas pump is one of the most important fixtures of your business and must be carefully maintained. Low-impact cleaning is key, with degreaser and damp hand towels being your team’s best bet for keeping the pump presentable. The concrete base can be cleaned as needed with a pressure washer, with extra attention given to any oil stains.

An employee scrubs windows from the outside.

5. Keep Windows and Glass Surfaces Presentable

Your windows are the first impression your building gives. That's why maintaining a clean and professional appearance is essential. Windows can be cleaned at the beginning or end of each shift, depending on need. Don't forget any window signs. Ensure they are hung neatly and evenly to show your store's professionalism.

Ideal frequency: At the beginning and end of each shift

Brain Icon.

Pro Tip

Employees should be careful to avoid leaving streaks on the glass by wiping in circles, then vertically and finally horizontally.

A well-stocked cooler aisle at a convenience store.

6. Restock Aisles and Merchandising Displays

Refresh the presentation of your store’s products periodically and ensure your displays are easy to navigate. While restocking, keep an eye out for opportunities to consolidate displays and cut down on cluttered space.

Make sure to rotate products according to their expiration date to avoid wasting inventory. If space allows, consider rearranging aisles and displays to leave more room between shelves. That way, customers have room to move around and aisles are easier to clean

Ideal frequency: Weekly or daily, depending on need

An out of service sign on a gas pump.

7. Practice Preventative Equipment Maintenance

Broken equipment often leads to unnecessary downtime and lost profits. Have your staff keep a close ear out for any reports of faulty gas pumps, point-of-sale systems or other machinery. Address any malfunctions as quickly as possible. Provide staff with a binder containing necessary contact information to report malfunctioning equipment and schedule repairs.

If any of your employees are trained to repair any of the equipment in your convenience store, have them perform routine maintenance checks to prevent breakdowns.

Ideal frequency: Daily or as needed

NACS logo.
Jeff Lenard, Vice President of Strategic Industry Initiatives | National Association of Convenience Stores

"The old adage, ‘If you have time to lean, you have time to clean’ applies here for employees who are not at the registers. Tending to any spills or trash on countertops or floors is critical to keep a store looking its best and feeling welcome to customers."

A front load dumpster inside a closed wooden dumpster enclosure.

8. Maintain Your Dumpster Area

If your front load dumpster is visible to customers, schedule routine cleaning of the area to get rid of any litter. If you don’t have a dumpster enclosure yet, consider installing one to keep your container out of sight. Make sure to measure your dumpster and available space to provide enough space for trash collection service.

Ideal frequency: Daily, during outdoor sweeping shifts

Need a New Trash Service?

Our business waste solutions are designed to handle any amount of trash, whether you need one dumpster at a single location or garbage and recycling containers for multiple addresses nationwide. Get started with your dedicated account team today at 833-499-7510.

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Drive Customers Your Way

Consistency is key to keep customers coming back. Equip your employees with this simple, easy-to-follow cleaning guide to direct their daily efforts, create effective maintenance habits and enhance your gas station’s reputation and image.

Expert Contributors

Jeff Lenard headshot.

Jeff Lenard

As the VP of Strategic Industry Initiatives for the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS), Jeff has spent over two decades representing the Arlington-area organization, leading industry-wide campaigns to communicate the economic impact of convenience stores.

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