Professional Carpet Services in Sooke, BC
Which Cleaning Method Is The Best?
All will make your carpet “LOOK” cleaner when performed properly. However, they are not equal in there overall effectiveness in actually cleaning the carpet.
AND remember, the IICRC Standard says the carpet should be THOROUGHLY Prevacuumed before any method is performed.
The first three methods are termed the “DRY” or “LOW MOISTURE” methods. Their main purpose is for INTERIM CLEANING or large commercial work. The main advertisement is that they “Do Not Leave A Soggy Wet Mess”! This may be true but they do “wet” the carpet to a degree.
All methods use water.
DRY FOAM OF ENCAPSULATION
The carpet cleaner applies foaming solution to your carpet, then without rinsing, either immediately vacuums up the soiled foam solution, or allows it to dry before trying to vacuum the dried soiled soap crystals. In some instances the cleaner will leave it for the customer to vacuum.
This is one of the oldest cleaning methods. There are several types of machines for this method and it is gaining more credibility with better chemisty being developed.
It isn’t the most favoured for residential cleaning however, this method is becoming more popular for Commercial cleaning. The newer machines and encapsulation formulations are preforming very well. Also, it is more preferred since large areas can be cleaned in a short period of time and it dries rapidly.
ABSORBENT PAD (BONNET OR OSCILLATING PAD CLEANING):
With the development of better solutions and more absorbant pads some cleaners have demonstrated some excellent results with this method. Its still debated as to how much soil has been removed esp if the pads are not changed frequently, but it can make a carpet look clean when done properly.
In some instances when the carpet needs to be dry very quickly or in the rare case when steam cleaning is not recommended this could be the better method because it is a relatively fast cleaning system which dries quickly. This makes this method very popular for large commercial cleaning.
This method is similar to dry foam. Instead of shampoo, a detergent/solvent solution is sprayed over the face of the carpet pile. The carpet is then “buffed” with large absorbent cotton or microfibre pads on a floor polishing-like machine. The rotating or oscillating motion causes the pad to agitate and absorb dirt and moisture from your carpet.
DRY ABSORBENT POWDER
The dry-compound method uses a absorbent powder, moist with water or a dry solvent, which is first spread over the carpet. A double-brush machine works it into the pile, supposedly absorbing soil off the fibres. The powder is allowed to dry and is then vacuumed out. The benefit is the carpet is ready for use almost immediately.
The biggest complaint about this method is that these dry sponge particles can be left at the base of the carpet. It has limited ability to clean heavily soiled carpet and because the carpet is not rinsed, many pollutants could still remain. This method does have its place but is the least preferred method by professionals.
HOT WATER EXTRACTION (STEAM CLEANING)
This a technical way of saying that a hot water cleaning solution under high pressure is forced into your carpet and then sucked out of your carpet. This is the only method which truly flushes your carpet and fabrics. This is the most popular method of cleaning carpets because of its ability to restore heavily soiled carpet, removing the maximum amount of soil load. It also requires the greatest investment in equipment and training. In a recent Technical Bulletin, Shaw Industries, the world’s largest carpet manufacturer, “recommends the hot water extraction system, which research indicates provides the best capability for cleaning.”
You can choose from two different types:
- Truck-mount extraction, which is done with a large machine mounted in a truck or van, OR
- Portable extraction, which is done with a smaller, more portable unit, used for high rises and areas hard to access with a truck mounted unit.
On which type to choose, Shaw’s Technical Bulletin states:
“[Cleaning] can be done from a truck-mounted unit outside the facility with only the hose and wand brought inside, or where a truck mounted unit cannot reach, by a portable, self-contained system brought into the facility.”
As you can see, Shaw recommends the truck-mounted unit first. And this isn’t surprising. You see, the truck-mounted unit cleans much better because it heats the water to a high temperature and shoots the cleaning solution into the carpet at higher pressures. This better breaks up the dirt, bacteria, chemicals and pollens in the carpet. The machine also produces stronger vacuum to extract the dirt and chemicals out of your carpet.
There have also been advancements in equipment, chemistry and techniques which make HWE even more efficient.
No question, the most effective way to clean carpeting is with a hot-water unit mounted in a truck. It’s the most powerful cleaning machine on the market and the only machine that cleans your carpet of dirt, harmful bacteria, fungus, chemicals pollens and tobacco residue and dust mites. After evaluating each method, its pros and cons, I have chosen Hot Water Extraction as my primary method of cleaning.