To get the most for the least, call now to schedule in-home estimate appointment.
It is free, it is informative,
and it is required
before the first cleaning.
Our crews spend almost as much time preparing your carpet as they do cleaning it. The technicians vacuum your whole carpet with a commercial machine to remove dry soil and agitate the carpet’s pile. They also brush in the pre-spray into the carpet’s entire surface — not just the high traffic or soiled areas.
Only then they deep-clean your carpet with a five-jet wand that spins to make 650 cleaning passes a minute. The wand’s jets receive the hot water from our truck-mounted pumps and shoot it through the carpet’s pile, washing all the dirt off the fibers.
At the same time, the wand’s suction inlets are extracting the dirty water from the carpet and hurling it back to the truck’s receptacle, leaving minimum moisture behind. Note that the advanced Ph neutral cleaning solution which we mix into the hot water leaves no sticky soapy residue in your carpet.
After the deep-cleaning our technicians inspect the results and if any of the stains or spots persist, they work on each one again until they disappear. At this point the technicians work in the optional fiber protector and groom your carpet for uniform looks and fast drying.
And this is just an outline of what they really do to restore your carpet. So, once our guys reposition your furniture and tidy up after themselves, first your carpet will surprise you with its cleanliness — and then it will surprise you with how long it stays clean — guaranteed.
This standard describes the procedures to be followed and techniques to be used when performing professional, on-site carpet cleaning.
The purpose of this standard is to define criteria and methods for assessing carpet type, characteristics, and conditions, and for establishing procedures for appearance retention, soil removal, and environmental quality.
This document provides a set of procedural standards for carpet cleaning. It was not written to teach comprehensive carpet cleaning. Numerous manuals, videotapes, workshops, and seminars are available to teach carpet cleaning.
This standard was created for use by professional cleaners, carpet manufacturers, retailers, distributors, industry suppliers, specifiers, property managers, homeowners, facility managers, housekeepers, insurance companies and others involved with the carpet cleaning industry. Every carpet has unique characteristics and each carpet cleaning project should be carefully evaluated to determine proper application of this standard. In extenuating circumstances, deviation from portions of this standard may be appropriate. Carelessness is never acceptable and common sense should prevail in all cases.
To develop this standard, the documents listed in this section served as primary references. Other documents of interest to users of this standard are listed in the "Resource List" section of this standard's companion Reference Guide. When using reference source, make certain the most re+ edition is used.
Cleaning, Restoration, inspection and Safety (CRIS) Glossary, L.J. Bishop, 1999 edition.
Fairchild's Dictionary of Textiles, Fain Publications, 1996.
//CRC Standard and Reference Guide Professional On-Location Carpet Cleaning, Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification, 1994.
//CRC Standard and Reference Guide Professional Upholstery Cleaning, S300. Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification 2000.
//CRC Standard and Reference Guide Professional Water Damage Restoration, Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification, 1999.
MasterBlend Carpet Care Manual, Aaron Groseclose, 2000 edition.
More Answers Than You Have Questions About Carpet Cleaning, Volumes I and II, L.J. Bishop, 1997 edition.
Distinctive terms and definitions associated carpet cleaning exist. The following are term, definitions used in this standard. A comprehensive index of industry terminology appears in Reference Guide to this standard.
Cleaning: the traditional activity of removing contaminants, pollutants and undesired substances from an environment or surface to reduce dam harm to human health or valuable materials. Cleaning is the process of locating, identifying, containing, removing, and properly disposing of unwanted substances from an environment or material.
Grooming: the process of pile setting for cleaning and after treatment (e.g., fabric protector application).
Highly recommended: when the term recommended is used in this document, it means the practice or procedure is the generally accepted method to be followed.
Interim cleaning: interim cleaning (surface/appearance cleaning) is a high production, fast drying cleaning process often used between regular restorative cleaning processes, This process is characterized as a light surface cleaning. Frequency of interim cleaning depends on the carpet's location, use and exposure to soiling. Interim cleaning should be performed by trained technicians using the procedures outlined in this standard.
Must: when the term must is used in this document, it means that the practice or procedure is required or mandatory.
Professional: when the term professional is used in this document, it refers to a paid and specially trained or certified individual or company using industry accepted processes.
Recommended: when the term recommended is used in this document, it means that the practice or procedure is advised or suggested.
Restorative cleaning: restorative cleaning (corrective cleaning) is the process of extracting or rinsing deeper soils and residues than can be removed with interim cleaning processes. The characteristics of restorative processes are higher moisture levels, lower production rates, and slower drying. Frequency of restorative cleaning depends on the daily maintenance and effectiveness of interim cleaning processes. The frequencies also are determined by the carpet's location, use, and exposure to soiling and traffic.
Soil: any undesired substance that is deposited on, or that is foreign to, the construction of a textile material. Soil results from environmental conditions and use (e.g., dust and particles, shed fibers, foods and oily substances).
Soil suspension: the use of chemical action, heat or temperature,
agitation and time to separate soil from fibers and materials, so that the
soil may be more readily removed or extracted.
Use-life: the actual years carpet or rugs are used, rather than indicating the physical damage. Generally, the average use-life of residential carpet is 12 years while the average use-life of commercial carpet is approximately 8 years.
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 provide requirements for workplace safety and health. The Act is administered by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) under the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). The safety concerns on carpet cleaning projects can vary based on the cleaning method used, type of carpet, and location of carpet. Therefore, it is impossible for this standard to address compliance with 29 CFR 1910 and 29 CFR 1926 in a complete manner.
Cleaning contractors shall comply with all applicable federal, state, provincial, and local laws and regulations or requirements for protecting the health and safety of their employees, building occupants, the public, and the environment. The contractor shall comply with all applicable OSHA regulations. Contractors in countries outside of the U.S. shall comply with their national regulations. If the requirements of these standard and such regulations do not agree, then the more stringent requirements shall always apply.
Depending on soil generating sources and the frequency of maintenance and cleaning programs, indoor environments typically accumulate a quantity of soil, much of which settles upon and becomes trapped within the carpet pile.
Soil accumulates progressively within carpet. If not prevented from entering an environment, or if not removed during routine maintenance, soil can build to unacceptable levels. When soil buildup becomes excessive, more aggressive cleaning techniques are required. The majority of carpet soil is particulate matter that accumulates over the use-life of carpet. If not well maintained, a significant reduction in the use-life of the carpet can occur. Further, the health or productivity of occupants may be compromised. It is important to remove particle soils before they sift downward into the carpet pile and become more difficult to remove. The primary responsibility for this effort lies with the carpet owner or facility manager. If maximum carpet use-life and appearance is to be achieved, it is highly recommended that vacuuming be accomplished according to the maintenance frequency recommendations included in the Reference Guide.
Carpet soil is a mixture of organic and inorganic materials including animal fibers, vegetable fibers, pollen, silica, quartz, clay, limestone, feldspar, animal, mineral and vegetable oils, bacteria and fungi. There are three general classifications of soil found in carpet. The accumulation of each class depends upon outside soil sources, maintenance programs, and soil-generating activities that take place within the building. The classifications of carpet soil are (1) dry particles consisting of sand, quartz, clay, carbon, limestone, feldspar and animal and vegetable fibers; (2) animal, mineral and vegetable oils; and (3) water- soluble soils, such as foodstuffs.
The majority of the accumulated soil in carpet is particulate and has the potential to be removed most easily and economically with dry vacuum systems. Most dry vacuum systems can effectively remove particles as small as one to five microns in size. Some specialized vacuuming technologies can remove particles one micron or smaller in size. The cleaning objective is to remove as much particulate soil and biopollutants without redistributing them into the indoor environment. Unhealthy particles, especially those that are respirable, are usually less than 10 microns in size. The smaller the size, the more harmful the particle. Smaller particles can penetrate deeper into the lungs. Biopollutants of all sizes may also be a concern.
Carpet and fiber manufacturers agree that carpet should be routinely maintained to prevent the buildup of soil. Further, manufacturers recommend that their products be periodically cleaned professionally to reduce soil buildup to a manageable and healthy state. The age, condition, and maintenance history of the carpet, along with the type and amount of soil present are important factors in setting expectations for cleaning results. If a proper maintenance plan is in effect, the three industries accepted levels of cleaning as defined in 6.4 to 6.6 could achieve the intended results. In the case that the carpet condition is poorly maintained, this may limit the restorative appearance level of the carpet. Salvage cleaning as described in 6.7 may be necessary in attempting to achieve an acceptable appearance. A combination of methods may be necessary to effectively clean carpet requiring restorative or salvage cleaning. These combinations can vary when cleaning residential versus commercial carpet.
Warning signs must be posted at locations where potential hazards exist. Examples include, but are not necessarily limited to, slip-and-fall hazards in areas where carpet transitions to hard surfaces and trip hazards from hoses and electrical cords. Premature removal of warning signs may result in personal injury.
Specification, carpet choice, installation, soiling, and use are some of the conditions that must be evaluated before beginning the cleaning process. It is highly recommended that evaluation findings be listed in writing on a work order.
Even when the normal standard of care is followed, unforeseen conditions could produce undesirable results. Examples of these problems include shrinkage, dye loss or migration, yellowing, rippling or bubbling and appearance or texture changes.
Preventative Maintenance Cleaning is defined as a process used to minimize the impact of soiling and its effects on the carpet's appearance. These procedures include strategic placement of walk off mats, properly cleaning and maintaining indoor and outdoor hard surfaces, regular vacuuming, and immediate spot removal. Preventative maintenance cleaning helps extend the use-life of the carpet.
Interim cleaning is defined as surface/appearance cleaning. It is a high productivity, fast drying process often used between restorative cleaning processes. The frequency of interim cleaning depends on the carpet's location, use, and exposure to soiling. A cleaning frequency chart is located in the reference guide. Interim cleaning should be performed by trained technicians using the procedures outlined in this standard.
Restorative cleaning is defined as the process of extracting or removing entrapped soils and residues. Typical characteristics of the restorative processes are higher moisture levels, lower production rates, and slower drying. Frequency of restorative cleaning depends on the daily maintenance and effectiveness of interim cleaning processes. The frequencies are also determined by the carpet's location, use, and exposure to traffic and soil.
Salvage cleaning is required when the carpet condition has been severely compromised due to abnormal or abusive soiling or staining. Due to the aggressive nature of this process, which may include a combination of cleaning methods, additional customer authorization is highly recommended.
The objective of carpet cleaning is soil removal. That objective can be achieved using any of a variety of cleaning methods. Before a cleaning method is selected, factors such as the carpet's type, use, condition, and soiling must be assessed. This standard describes five (5) primary methods of cleaning. However, there are basic principles of professional carpet cleaning which are common to all methods. These basic principles are defined in the following sub-sections.
Dry soil removal is accomplished primarily with powerful, professional vacuum cleaning equipment. It is highly recommended that cleaning techniques and frequencies be selected based on an understanding of how and where soils accumulate in carpet, their impact on occupant health, and their ability to remove maximum amounts of dry particle soil. It is highly recommended that vacuum stroking patterns and speeds that result in maximum particle soil removal be employed.
The Carpet and Rug Institute has developed testing criteria for vacuum cleaning systems under its voluntary Vacuum Cleaner Indoor Air Quality Testing program. Using closed-chamber testing, this program evaluates the ability of both residential and commercial vacuum cleaning equipment, using high-efficiency soil collection systems, to remove carpet soils without exhausting them into respirable air. Appropriate vacuum cleaning systems must be selected for a particular application.
This step should precede dry vacuuming, particularly when higher pile
residential carpet exhibits crushing, matting or tangling in entry, pivot or
Pile preparation is achieved with an appropriate brush, comb, carpet groomer or pile lifter.
As the first principle of cleaning, it is highly recommended that dry vacuuming procedures be employed before cleaning carpet. On occasion additional agitation and edge brushing may be required to remove the buildup of dust and fine particle soils that inevitably occurs. A vacuum incorporating high-velocity suction and pile agitation is specifically recommended. A pile lifting device may be needed in soil-impacted areas for maximum soil removal. Vacuums must capture soil that is removed from the carpet with a high-efficiency filtering system to prevent the redistribution of fine particles into respirable air.
Soil suspension is the second principle in professional carpet cleaning. This procedure suspends or separates ground-in or adhered soils, which were not removed with vacuuming. Once suspended, soil may be extracted. Maximum soil suspension incorporates four fundamentals including: chemical action, heat, agitation and time. When one of these four fundamentals is decreased, one or more of the others must be increased. Each method of cleaning addresses the fundamentals of soil suspension with different emphasis. The ultimate objective of each cleaning method, however, is to fully suspend or separate soil from fibers in order to prepare for its subsequent extraction. The fundamentals involved in the soil suspension process are described in sections 7.2.1 to 7.2.4.
Biodegradable detergents, builders, and/or selected solvents are used to
suspend, emulsify, peptize, or saponify the various soluble or insoluble
soils. The cleaning products used and the manner in which they are applied
must be in accordance with manufacturer label instructions. Cleaning
products used on stain-resistant nylon fiber are anionic, nonionic or
combinations thereof, with a pH of 10 or less. Cationic products are not
recommended for use on stain-resist nylon. Cleaning products for wool fiber
must be within a pH range of 4.5 to 8.5.
A pH greater than 10 may be used on other synthetic fiber such as olefin, polyester, acrylic, or non stain-resist nylon. High pH products may also be used in heavy soiling and "salvage" cleaning.
Increasing temperature accelerates most chemical reactions, thereby causing cleaning agents to function more efficiently. Thermal acceleration may reduce the quantity of cleaning agent required, which may result in fewer residues following cleaning.
Agitation provides uniform distribution of cleaning products, thereby enhancing soil suspension. Agitation of cleaning products may be achieved with hand brushing or mechanical action, such as cylindrical or rotary brush or with water pressure. Agitation procedures may vary according to the cleaning method. Improper agitation or lack of detergent lubrication may cause yam distortion or damage.
Soil suspension is not instantaneous. Chemical products require prolonged contact or dwell time for adequate fiber penetration and soil suspension to occur. Based on chemical formulation and application temperature, dwell time can vary. Follow manufacturer's label instructions.
Soil extraction is the third principle in professional carpet cleaning. Once soils have been suspended as uniformly as possible, they must be physically extracted. Methods of extraction include absorption, wet vacuuming, rinsing, or dry vacuuming. Substances extracted by any method must be disposed of in accordance with all local, state, provincial, and federal regulations.
Pile setting or grooming is the fourth principle in professional carpet cleaning. The purpose of pile setting or grooming is to assist with evaporation, decreasing drying time, and enhancing the carpet's final appearance by removing rotary swirls or wand marks or distortion from the pile. Grooming also aids in the uniform distribution of protectors or other post-cleaning treatments
Drying is the fifth and final principle in professional carpet cleaning. When cleaning carpet, it is highly recommended that drying occur within six to eight hours or less: however, drying time must not exceed 24 hours. Failure of the professional to implement drying procedures could result in a variety of after-cleaning problems. Often, occupant cooperation is needed to expedite drying. Chapter five of the Reference Guide contains further information on drying.
Airflow with proper ventilation assists the total cleaning process. Airflow also assists drying. Proper airflow ensures that the materials it carries— namely water vapor, gases, volatile organic compounds, and other particulates and droplets— are directed to a desired location, preferably outside the structure.
The following sections of this standard describe the five primary methods
of carpet cleaning. In addition, a combination of methods may be used as
explained in Section 14.
The five primary methods of carpet cleaning are:
- Absorbent Compound
- Dry Foam
- Hot Water Extraction
The absorbent compound method is a minimum moisture system utilizing a granular carrier. Once uniformly distributed and dried, the carrier with absorbed soil is vacuumed from the carpet.
Dry soil, such as hair, lint, particle soil, dust, and debris must be vacuumed from the carpet fully before the application of an cleaning product.
Soil suspension fundamentals must be applied. In heavily soiled areas, it may be helpful to apply a suitable preconditioner with a hand-pump or electric sprayer. However, based on soiling and other conditions, preconditioning is not always required.
Chemical action is accomplished through Absorbent Compound application with or without preconditioning.
In entry, pivot, high-traffic, or other heavily soiled areas, a suitable preconditioner is highly recommended before using the absorbent compound method. For stain-resistant fiber the preconditioner must be anionic, nonionic or combinations thereof and have a pH of 10 or less. For wool fiber, the preconditioner must range between pH 4.5 to 8.5. Preconditioners containing dry solvent additives must not contribute appreciable quantities of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) to the air within the structure. Product manufacturer label directions must be followed for quality cleaning and proper lubrication of carpet yarns.
In normal soiling situations, chemical action is accomplished using an absorbent compound consisting of a carrier that is cellulose or polymer-based. The compound is mixed with an anionic or nonionic detergent with a pH range from 5 to 10. Manufacturer's instruction relating to the application rate and dispersion method must be followed.
Preconditioning solutions may be heated. The temperature of an absorbent compound will approximate that of ambient air within the room being cleaned.
Uniform absorbent compound distribution generally is accomplished using equipment incorporating two counter-rotating brushes, rotary brush action, or hand pile brushing action. It is highly recommended that product manufacturer's recommendations regarding brush selection is followed.
The absorbent compound remains in the carpet until dry in order to facilitate extraction of the compound and soils during the vacuuming procedure. It is highly recommended that product manufacturer's recommendations be followed.
Once cleaning agents in the absorbent compound have suspended soils and the compound has dried, it must be extracted with thorough dry vacuuming. High efficiency filtering systems must be used to prevent redistribution of extracted soils into the air. Extracted materials must be disposed of in accordance with local, state, provincial and federal regulations.
It is recommended that grooming be accomplished at the cleaner's discretion following vacuuming for optimum appearance. If post-cleaning treatments are used, it is recommended that pile setting be accomplished for uniform distribution.
It is anticipated that drying will be accomplished within 30 to 60 minutes depending on the use of a preconditioner and quantity of absorbent compound applied.
Dry Foam cleaning is a minimum-moisture method. Following vacuuming, a dense foam is produced through mechanical aeration and distributed via a mechanical brush. The excess foam and suspended soil is extracted using a wet vacuum typically incorporated into the same machine.
Dry soil, such as hair, lint, particle soil, dust, and debris must be vacuumed from the carpet to the fullest extent practical before applying any cleaning product.
Soil suspension fundamentals must be applied. In heavily soiled areas, it may be helpful to apply a suitable preconditioner with a hand-pump or electric sprayer. However, based on soiling and other conditions, preconditioning is not always required.
Chemical action is accomplished through Dry Foam application with or without preconditioning.
In entry, pivot, high-traffic, or other heavily soiled areas, a suitable preconditioner is highly recommended before using the dry foam method. For stain-resistant nylon fiber the preconditioner must be anionic, nonionic or combinations thereof and have a pH of 10 or less. For wool fiber, the preconditioner must range between pH 4.5 to 8.5. Preconditioners containing dry solvent additives must not contribute appreciable quantities of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) to the air within the structure. Product manufacturer label directions must be followed for quality cleaning and proper lubrication of carpet yarns.
Following the manufacturers label directions, a properly diluted and aerated, dry foam cleaning agent is used. The solution is aerated with mechanical agitation into a dense foam.
Both the preconditioners and the concentrated dry foam cleaning product may be mixed with hot water increasing solution temperature and speeding soil suspension. Thermal acceleration may reduce the quantity of cleaning agent required, which may result in fewer residues following cleaning.
Agitation may be achieved during or immediately after the application of the dry foam. Normally this is accomplished by rotary or cylindrical (reel type) brushes. To provide proper lubrication during agitation, product manufacturer's recommended dilutions must be observed.
Dwell time for the cleaning product may vary depending upon the soil extraction method used. 10.3 Soil Removal (Extraction) A wet vacuum attached to or separate from the application machine may be used to extract excess foam with suspended soil. Additional dry vacuuming procedures may also be used after the carpet has dried to extract crystallized detergent residue along with attached soils. High efficiency filtering systems must be used to prevent redistribution of extracted detergents and soils into the indoor air. Extracted materials must be disposed of in accordance with local, state, provincial and federal regulations.
Pile setting or grooming is highly recommended following dry foam cleaning to decrease drying time, remove distortion, and optimize appearance. Pile setting must be accomplished for uniform distribution of post cleaning treatments.
With the exception of heavily soiled areas, normal drying time is one to three hours. Steps must be taken to speed drying, such as employing air movers and additional wet vacuum passes.
The Bonnet cleaning method is also called Absorbent Pad method. It is a minimum moisture method. Following vacuuming, a detergent solution is applied to the carpet then extracted using absorbent pad/bonnet attached to a drive block low rpm rotary floor machine.
Dry soil, such as hair, lint, particle soil, dust debris must be vacuumed from the carpet to the fullest extent practical before the application of the cleaning product.
Soil suspension is accomplished after application of the cleaning product and prior to extraction. Application of the cleaning product ma accomplished through a variety of techniques.
Chemical action may be accomplished with two basic systems.
In entry, pivot, high-traffic, or other heavily areas, a suitable preconditioner is recommended before using the bonnet cleaning method. For stain-resistant nylon fiber preconditioner must be anionic, nonionic, or combinations thereof and have a pH of 10 or less. For wool fiber, the preconditioner must between pH 4.5 to 8.5. Preconditioners containing dry solvent additives must not contribute appreciable quantities of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) the air within the structure. Product manufacturer label directions must be followed for quality cleaning and proper lubrication of carpet yarns.
In normal soiling situations, cleaning products used in bonnet cleaning of carpet consist of anionic or nonionic detergents and solvents for suspending soils. A carbonated or noncarbonated water-based carrier with a resulting pH that is 10 or less may also be used. Cationic cleaners are not recommended unless specified by a fiber producer or carpet manufacturer for a specific product. Cleaning agents may be applied to the carpet using several applications or devices, including hand-pump, pressurized or electric sprayers and to the bonnet as well. Product manufacturer label instructions must be followed for uniform cleaning and fiber lubrication.
The bonnet product may be mixed with hot water increasing solution temperature and speeding soil suspension. Thermal acceleration may reduce the quantity of cleaning agent required, which may result in fewer residues following cleaning.
Uniform cleaning agent distribution is accomplished using a rotary floor machine incorporating a drive block at a speed recommended by the equipment manufacturer that is safe for the carpet being cleaned. This block transmits rotating motion to a bonnet made of cotton, rayon, or combinations of both (often including a synthetic fiber for increased bonnet durability). Provide proper lubrication during agitation as recommended by the product manufacturer
Although preconditioners may be used on rare occasions, cleaning agents generally are sprayed onto carpet and removed shortly thereafter through absorption into the bonnet. Thus, dwell time is accomplished between the chemical application phase and soil absorption phase.
During the agitation (spin buffing) phase of soil extraction, the bonnet (pad) absorbs suspended soils. Technicians must monitor the rate of soil absorption into the pad and turn it over • or replace it as significant soil accumulates. When both sides of a bonnet pad are soil saturated, it must be exchanged for a clean bonnet pad. Extracted solutions must be disposed of in accordance with local, state, provincial, and federal regulations. Further soil extraction may be accomplished once the carpet is dry, when remaining detergents with suspended soils are dry vacuumed from the carpet during routine maintenance. High-efficiency filtering systems or bags must be used to prevent redistribution of extracted soils and dry detergent residues into respirable air.
Pile setting or grooming is highly recommended following bonnet cleaning
to decrease drying times, remove distortion, and optimize appearance.
In all cases, pile setting must be accomplished for uniform distribution of postcleaning treatments.
Since this is a minimum-moisture system, drying will be accomplished within approximately one to three hours.
Following vacuuming, a shampoo is distributed to the carpet and agitated with a mechanical brush. The shampoo and suspended soil is extracted by either a wet vacuum or dry vacuuming process.
Dry soil, such as hair, lint, particle soil, dust, and debris must be vacuumed from the carpet fully practical before the application of any cleaning product. 12.2 Soil Suspension Soil suspension is accomplished during application of the shampoo detergent solution and the mechanical brush action that follows.
Although seldom required, a preconditioner may be used. In normal soiling situations, high-foaming or non-foaming detergents with a pH of 10 or less are applied to the carpet pile through a pump-up or electric sprayer or a shower or channel-fed nylon-bristled brush. For wool fiber, the pH of the cleaning products must fall between 4.5 and 8.5. Product manufacturer instructions must be followed to ensure high quality cleaning combined with proper yarn lubrication.
The shampoo may be mixed with hot water increasing solution temperature and speeding soil suspension. Thermal acceleration may reduce the quantity of cleaning agent required, which may result in fewer residues following cleaning.
When a non-foaming detergent is applied with a pump-up or electric sprayer, agitation is accomplished with counter-rotating, cylindrical brushes. Shampoo application through the shower or channel-fed brush is accompanied with uniform shampoo distribution using rotating brush action at a speed recommended by the equipment manufacturer that is safe for the carpet being cleaned. When preconditioning is omitted, multiple passes over heavily soiled entry and high-traffic areas may be necessary to accomplish thorough cleaning. To provide good-quality cleaning and proper lubrication of carpet yarns during agitation, product manufacturers label instructions must be followed.
Although preconditioners may be used on rare occasions, cleaning agents generally are applied onto carpet, agitated and removed thereafter through wet or dry vacuuming. Thus, dwell time is accomplished between the chemical application phase and soil extraction phase.
Once shampoo application and agitation are completed, suspended soil extraction must be accomplished with wet vacuuming of excess shampoo solution and suspended soil using simultaneous or supplemental wet vacuum equipment designed for that purpose. All extracted solutions must be disposed of in accordance with local, state, provincial, and federal regulations. Further soil extraction is accomplished once the carpet is dry, when remaining dry detergent residues, along with attached suspended soils, are vacuumed from the carpet during routine maintenance. High-efficiency filtering systems or bags must be used to prevent redistribution of extracted soils and dry detergent residues into the air.
Pile setting or grooming is highly recommended following shampooing to
decrease drying time, remove distortion, and optimize appearance.
In all cases, pile setting must be accomplished for uniform distribution of post-cleaning treatments.
Drying must be accomplished within, twelve hours.
Following vacuuming, a cleaning product is 4 to the carpet and agitated. The cleaning product suspended soil is extracted by rinsing with water a portable or truck-mounted extraction unit, may contain rinsing agents or emulsifiers.
Dry soil, such as hair, lint, particle soil, dust, and debris must be vacuumed from the carpet fully practical before applying any cleaning products.
Soil suspension fundamentals must be applied suspension is accomplished by applying preconditioner, or by injecting a cleaning solution.
Chemical action to suspend or emulsify soils r accomplished through preconditioning or cleaning solution application.
In entry, pivot, high-traffic, or other heavily areas, a suitable preconditioner must be before using hot water extraction. For stain-resistant nylon fiber the preconditioner must be nonionic or combinations thereof and have 10 or less. For wool fiber, the preconditioner range between a pH of 4.5 to 8.5. Preconditioner containing dry solvent additives must not co appreciable quantities of volatile organic corn (VOCs) to the air within the structure. Product manufacturer label directions m followed for quality cleaning and proper lubrication of carpet yarns.
Following preconditioning, in normal soiling s it is recommended that an appropriate cleaning agent be used during the injection phase of hot water extraction. This is essential for suspending soils.
Heating preconditioners and rinse detergents increases detergent activity. A heated solution requires less detergent and minimizes residue. Excessive temperature may cause accelerated color migration. Cut-pile wool and velvet-plush carpet styles may distort when excessive heat and injection pressure are combined.
Preconditioner application must be followed with cleaning agent distribution using hand brushing or mechanical brush action. Such action may include the use of cylindrical or rotary brush agitation equipment. Additional agitation is achieved during the injection lime using solution pressure, or using rotary Detraction equipment.
Preconditioners must remain in carpet for a dwell me of approximately 10 minutes for uniform soil suspension. Dwell time can vary according to soiling conditions. If label directions indicate a specific dwell me, follow those directions. Do not allow the preconditioner to dry completely.
Following preconditioning and agitation, suspended must be flushed from carpet using hot water extraction equipment. Multiple passes may be required to rinse suspended soil from the base of yarns. Additional dry extraction passes reduce moisture levels and minimize drying time. All extracted solutions must be disposed of according local, state, provincial, and federal regulations.
Pile setting or grooming is highly recommended Billowing hot water extraction to decrease drying Ines, remove distortion, and optimize appearance. Pile setting must be performed for uniform distribution of post cleaning treatments.
Complete drying must be accomplished within 24 hours. Procedures may be necessary to expedite drying. In the commercial setting, the customer may need to provide an override for the ventilation system during overnight hours to ensure continuous airflow.
In some cases, combining procedures from different cleaning methods may achieve optimum results. Examples of combination cleaning methods are described in the following subsections. Additional combinations of methods exist.
Following the hot water extraction method, bonnet-cleaning procedures may be used to remove additional soil or moisture.
In heavily soiled areas, the combination of shampoo and hot water extraction procedures maximizes agitation, dwell time, and temperature, while rinsing and extracting suspended soils. Prior to the hot water extracting procedure, apply the shampoo method using either cylindrical or rotary brush agitation.
Carpet protectors are materials that preserve the appearance of carpet by changing the surface characteristics of fibers, making the carpet pile more soil resistant, more spill repellent, and/or stain resistant. When carpet protector is properly formulated, mixed, and applied, it must not change the appearance or "hand" of the carpet appreciably.
Carpet protector must only be applied to new carpet or carpet that has been cleaned by restorative methods.
Application Carpet protector application must follow manufacturers label directions. Uniform application with even, overlapping passes must be achieved. Carpet protector may be applied using a variety of pressurized spray applicators. Care must be taken to avoid overspray. Following protector application, grooming is required for uniform distribution. The application of a carpet protector will extend drying time. Therefore, additional drying procedures are highly recommended.
Before applying carpet protectors, the product MSDS must be understood to ensure safe use of the product. Special attention must be paid to the solvent content and the flammability of the carpet protector.
Area rugs are textile floor coverings made of cotton, wool, silk, jute, animal skins, or manufactured fibers with or without a pile surface. They are usually made in separate pieces in sizes designed to cover a portion of a floor or other floor covering, as distinct from carpet. Rugs may include, but are not limited to hand-knotted oriental rugs, hand or gun-tufted, hooked, machine-woven, or tufted rugs, or flat woven textiles of any size.When practical, the preferred system for cleaning area rugs is to remove them from the home or business and clean them in a controlled "in-plant" environment, where a variety of cleaning methods, or combinations thereof, may be used. When necessary, on-location cleaning may be performed by technicians who have been specifically trained in techniques for inspecting, testing and evaluating, and then selecting the proper cleaning method.Failure to perform specialized procedures may result in permanent damage to the rug and the flooring materials under and around the rug. Incomplete soil removal may occur due to an inability to dust or adequately vacuum both sides of the rug. Improper wet cleaning on-location could cause prolonged drying, texture change, cellulosic browning, dye migration, mold growth, and/or dry rot.
Dry soil removal is best accomplished by vacuuming. The majority of the soil is particulate and accumulates progressively over the use-life of carpet. As with any floor covering, if newly deposited soils are not removed with routine vacuuming, or if accumulated soils are not removed with regular cleaning, a significant reduction in the use-life of the carpet can occur. Further, the health or productivity of occupants may be compromised.
There are three general classifications of soil found in carpet. The accumulation of each class depends upon outside soil sources, maintenance programs, and soil-generating activities that take place within the building. The classifications of carpet soil include dry particles, consisting of sand, quartz, clay, carbon, limestone, feldspar, and animal and vegetable fibers; animal, mineral and vegetable oils, and water-soluble soils, such as foodstuffs. The majority of the accumulated soil in carpet is particulate and has the potential to be removed most easily and economically with dry vacuuming.
Unhealthy particles, especially those that are respirable, usually are less than 10 microns in size. The smaller the size the more harmful the particle, because it can penetrate deeply into the lung. Biopollutants of all sizes also are of concern. Most vacuums can effectively remove particles as small as two to five microns in size; some specialized vacuuming technologies now available can remove particles that are one micron or smaller. The cleaning objective always should be to remove as many small particles and biopollutants as possible, not to redistribute them into respirable air.
It is important to remove particle soils before they sift downward into the carpet's pile and become more difficult to remove. The primary responsibility for this effort lies with the carpet owner. If maximum carpet use-life and appearance is to be achieved, vacuuming must be accomplished according to the maintenance frequency recommendations included in Chapter 3 of this reference guide.
Professional carpet cleaners should have the ability to perform thorough
dry soil removal with professional vacuum cleaning equipment. They should
have more powerful equipment, a better understanding of how and where soils
accumulate in carpet, their impact on occupant well being, and the knowledge
of how to remove maximum amounts of dry particle soil with the techniques
they employ. They should have a better understanding of vacuum stroking
patterns and speeds that result in maximum particle soil removal.
The Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) has developed testing criteria for vacuum equipment under its Vacuum Cleaner Indoor Air Quality Testing program. Using closed-chamber testing, this program evaluates the ability of both residential and commercial vacuum equipment, using high-efficiency soil collection systems, to remove carpet soils without expelling them into respirable air.
Before applying procedures involving wet cleaning agents, it is highly recommended that professional cleaners employ dry vacuuming procedures, including the following steps:
a. Pile Preparation - This step should precede dry vacuuming, particularly when higher pile carpet exhibits crushing, matting or tangling in entry, pivot and high-traffic areas. Pile preparation is achieved with an appropriate brush, comb, or carpet groomer.
b. Physical Soil Removal through Dry Vacuuming - To achieve effective dry soil removal from carpet, first, overall dry vacuuming of high-traffic and open areas is essential. An upright vacuum, or pile lifter, which incorporates high-velocity suction and pile agitation, is specifically recommended in soil-impacted commercial carpet entry areas. As with any home. or commercial vacuum, professional vacuums employed in this critical step must efficiently trap soil that is removed from the carpet with a high-efficiency filtering system to prevent redistribution of fine particles into respirable air.
Second, professionals should consider the buildup of dust and fine
particle soils that inevitably occurs around the edges and in the corners of
rooms. Where indicated, these should be removed with dry vacuuming (on
occasions with brushing of edges as well) prior to cleaning agent
Third, when substantial quantities of abrasive particle soils are observed at the base of tufts in entry areas, these should be hand-vacuumed, as practical (i.e., hand tool or vacuum hose cuff). Longer-piles or very dense Saxony, frieze or velvet-plush pile designs may be candidates for this procedure, particularly if entry mats have not been used to control the entry and accumulation of particle soils.
The use-life of carpet can be greatly extended with proper care. Carpet owners or maintainers must perform vacuuming, spot cleaning, and damage repair routinely. The charts on the following pages provide general recommendations for frequency intervals for activities commonly undertaken by carpet cleaners and maintainers (vacuuming, spot cleaning), as well as activities that should be performed by fined professionals (interim maintenance, restorative cleaning). Variations in the manufacture and use Dl' carpet may require deviations from the frequency recommendations provided herein.
Residential carpet should be professionally cleaned at least annually. Carpet that is subjected to extreme soiling or heavy use, particularly high-traffic areas, or carpet installed in homes occupied by persons with allergies or respiratory problems require increased cleaning frequency. Carpet in low-traffic areas, such as formal living and dining rooms, needs less frequent cleaning.
Carpet in a commercial setting should be evaluated to determine cleaning
frequencies. Factors to consider in the evaluation include: construction;
type and amount of traffic; soiling conditions encountered outside and
inside; occupant activities; building design; indoor environmental quality
(IEQ); and, appearance level desired. Customized maintenance programs (i.e.,
daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, yearly) should be designed to meet
individual needs. It is important to conduct more frequent cleaning of
entrances and high-traffic areas to reduce the contaminants and soil
particles from outside the building that accumulate in these areas.
Tracked-in contaminants affect indoor environmental quality if not
Homeowners and facility managers must not wait until carpet looks soiled before beginning a planned program. Significant soil accumulation at the base of carpet fibers occurs long before it becomes visible. In addition, the greater the soiling, the less the likelihood of restoring the original color, appearance and texture of the carpet, and the greater the adverse affect on LEQ.
Airflow is necessary to achieve drying. When a carpet is wet, the air in and immediately above the carpet rapidly becomes saturated with water vapor. When this air layer becomes saturated, no additional water can evaporate from the carpet. By increasing airflow through and above the carpet, this saturated air layer is displaced by drier air from the environment, allowing further evaporation to take place. This, in turn, significantly speeds the drying process, thereby minimizing downtime and the risk of microbial growth.
Cleaning agents may contain solvents used to dissolve greases and oils. These solvents may include volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can contribute to indoor environmental quality (IEQ) issues. These VOCs evaporate from the carpet the same as water. Increasing airflow greatly facilitates this evaporation. If these VOCs are not properly vented outside the structure, they can accumulate within the building and adversely affect IEQ. It is highly recommended that airflow with proper ventilation be combined throughout the cleaning and drying process.
The cleaning process itself affects indoor air. Humidity increases, VOCs from cleaning compounds evaporate, particulates trapped in the pile are disturbed, and small droplets may be distributed by equipment. Air can carry and distribute suspended and vaporized materials, such as water, gases, biological and inorganic particles, and droplets.
During the drying process, particle soils may rise to the surface and remain on the tips of pile yarns. To remove these fine particles, it is recommended that customers be advised to thoroughly vacuum the carpet with high-efficiency filtration equipment after the carpet is completely dry, especially if asthmatic or other respiratory-sensitive persons occupy the structure.
Damp carpet presents the potential for slip-fall hazards, particularly in areas in which freshly cleaned carpet transitions onto hard flooring surfaces. For this reason it is highly recommended that technicians make every reasonable effort to expedite drying by using the building's HVAC system supplemented with professional air moving equipment (carpet dryers). "Caution: Wet Surfaces" warning signs should be posted in any area where the potential for slip-fall hazards may exist.
A critical though often neglected responsibility of carpet owners is routine maintenance. Care must begin when the carpet is first put into service. The use-life, appearance, and cleaning frequency of carpet are affected substantially by the type, quality, and frequency of home and office maintenance procedures. The following guidelines were written to assist consumers in maintaining their carpet.
Most abrasive particulate soil accumulates initially within the first few feet of major entries to homes and commercial facilities. Once inside, this soil takes its toll on carpet fibers and on the general appearance of the structure. It also contributes airborne particles that affect the overall indoor environmental quality.
An effective walk-off mat system is very important in maintaining the appearance of a structure. Walk-off mats can greatly reduce the amount of soil entering a structure by normal traffic, since a large percentage of the soil in a home or commercial facility is tracked in from the outside on people's feet. Also, walk-off mats are helpful in removing moisture from shoes and preventing slip-and-fall accidents on hard surface floors. Basically, walk-off mats are the most efficient way of stopping soil at the door and keeping home and commercial facility maintenance costs down.
The choice, placement and maintenance of walk-off mats are critical to their effectiveness. The choice of mats is important because, although cheaper mats may do the job initially, they will not stand ur to the demands of a commercial location, and they are a poor investment. Mats must be properly placed to maximize their benefits. Also, the correct type of mat must be used for each location. For mats to continue to trap soil, they should be vacuumed and cleaned regularly — far more frequently than the carpet. If accumulated soil is not removed, the mat becomes overloaded and unable to perform properly. An overly soiled mat may act as a source of soil introduced indoors.
Routine vacuuming with properly maintained, quality equipment is the most important step a home (or business owner/manager) can take to prolong the life and enhance the appearance of carpet. A top-fl] upright vacuum with brush agitation, or a canister vacuum with a power head incorporating brush agitation, should be selected and used with routine frequency. Equally important, soil that is loosened and vacuumed from carpet must be collected in the vacuum's recovery system and not allowed to reenter the air within the structure. For this reason, a high-efficiency filtering system or bag should be used in any vacuum equipment used indoors.
Most spots can be removed if the excess is lifted or blotted and the soiled area is treated immediately with plain water or spotters containing mild dilute detergents (pH range of 5-9). If ignored, those spots, or components thereof, may bond with fiber dye sites, forming permanent stains. Extreme caution must be observed when spotting carpet on which the manufacturer recommends a minimum moisture method only. Always pre-test an inconspicuous area before proceeding and always follow label directions.
This section is included for the benefit of any person or company considering hiring a cleaning firm. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) and associated industry affiliates submit the following criteria to help identify reliable cleaning firms. A worldwide listing of certified firms is available at www.iicrc.org. Although this selection criteria is not fail safe, firms that comply with these criteria usually provide a higher level of quality service:
1. Insurance, Licensing, Taxes — Firms should carry adequate business and liability insurance for consumer protection. They should comply with the licensing requirements of local, state, provincial and federal authorities. They should collect, report, and pay appropriate licensing fees and taxes.
2. Ongoing Training — Cleaning firms should require management and employees to engage in formal ongoing training, providing them with the latest industry technologies and techniques.
3. Certified Technicians — Firms should have technicians on staff who are specifically trained in carpet cleaning and who are certified by the IICRC. There are separate courses taught for residential and commercial carpet cleaning.
4. Experience — The years of experience a firm has, combined with formal training programs, may contribute significantly to the proficiency of its employees.
5. Knowledge — Professional firms use trained technicians who have the ability to answer basic questions regarding cleaning, maintenance, and spot removal procedures.
6. Inspections and Pricing — Firms should offer estimating, consulting and pre-cleaning inspections. After inspection, the customers should be provided with a firm, written cost for the cleaning services.
7. References — Firms should be willing, when requested, to provide customers with references.
8. Trade Associations — Quality-cleaning firms are members of international, national or regional trade associations, which encourage high ethical standards and promote continuing education.
9. Customer Courtesy — Firms should provide value-oriented service including, but not necessarily limited to: courteous personnel; quick and comprehensive complaint handling; and appropriate recommendations for additional services, such as application of carpet protectors, carpet repair and deodorization.
10. Product Safety — Firms should use products and cleaning techniques in a safe manner. Products should be used and disposed of in accordance with applicable local, state, federal, and provincial laws and regulations.
1. Above all, technicians must be courteous. They must be willing to take time to pre-inspect carpet in all areas that need cleaning. In addition, they should discuss structure access, water availability and any special limitations. They must identify the carpet construction and fiber, evaluate specific needs, and recommend an appropriate cleaning method or procedure. Carpet should be cleaned by trained, conscientious technicians, backed by good quality equipment, products, procedures and reputable firms. The trained, certified technician, not a particular method, machine or process, is the key to high quality results.
2. Consumers have a right to expect itemized services and firm prices before technicians begin each portion of the work sold. While technicians may offer other services at additional cost, consumers should never be pressured to accept anything more than the services they request and authorize.
3. All cleaning, specialty agents and equipment must be used in strict accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations and appropriate safety and environmental regulations.
4. Firms should offer workmanship guarantees in writing. Fiber type, carpet construction, installation and maintenance may present circumstances beyond a cleaning technician's control. However, responsible workmanship must be implicit in any work performed.
5. All carpet must be thoroughly vacuumed before other cleaning techniques are employed, regardless of the cleaning method used. Special attention should be placed on vacuuming entry areas and walk-off mats where soil accumulates.
6. Unless clearly specified otherwise, moving furniture to access and clean carpet underneath should be considered part of the normal cleaning job. Items such as, but not limited to, fish tanks, waterbeds, loaded china cabinets, computers, large desks, file cabinets, bookshelves and extremely delicate or fragile furnishings (pianos, antiques) are considered exceptions. Plastic chair mats placed over carpeting cannot be re-laid until the carpet is fully dried.
7. Special attention to spots and stains must be included in normal job performance. However, time consuming specialized spotting may incur an additional charge. Technicians should advise customers of additional charges before extensive spotting or color repair is attempted.