The best way to ensure your carpet serves you for a long time is to take proper care of it, and this entails cleaning it regularly. A while ago I’ve made a definitive guide to carpet cleaning, which I’m sure you’ve already read. It covers everything your need to know in order to clean your carpet by yourself. However, there are cases when you have to leave this job to specialists. I’ve listed here the main carpet cleaning techniques used by these, in order to get a bigger picture of what is to be expected from them. Understanding what each is all about will help you choose the most suitable method. These techniques include:
1. Steam Cleaning
Some people prefer to call this method hot water extraction. As the name suggests, this method involves water that has been heated to very high temperatures. In other words, boiling water is injected into the carpet under pressure. What happens is that the hot water loosens the dirt contained in the carpet and the carpet cleaning machine draws this dirt away. Sometimes, instead of just hot water, a cleaning solution is used especially for heavily soiled carpets.
This method has been recognized by carpet cleaners and manufacturers as being extremely efficient when it comes to soil removal. The great thing about this method is that it is also effective when it comes to eliminating odors, bacteria and dust mites. Steam cleaning also attracts relatively low chemical costs. On the downside, hot water extraction means that you have to wait longer for your carpet to dry as the drying times are lengthier compared to other methods.
Tip: A few years ago, steam cleaning equipment was expensive, and destined only to carpet cleaning companies that were doing this job o a regular basis. Today, you can buy your own professional cleaner cleaner for just $100, just like the Hoover SteamVac from left picture.
2. Carpet shampooing
This is probably the most basic and one of the oldest carpet cleaning techniques. In fact, a lot of people will attest to having tried this method on their own without calling for the professionals. In this method, a foamy chemical is used on the carpet and scrubbed in using a motorized circular brush. This method works wonders for low pile carpets that are heavily soiled. It is also quite economical. Unfortunately, this may not be a good method to use for high pile carpets as you may end up damaging them due to pile distortion. The rotary shampoo method makes use of a rotary floor machine and follows the same procedure as earlier described.
This is one of the newer carpet cleaning techniques. It is classified as a “dry” method since it does not make use of water for cleaning purposes. Instead, this method makes use of a chemical that contains cleaning and crystallizing agents. The work of the cleaning agent is to suspend the soil which has already been agitated by a floor machine. The crystallization agent then encapsulates the soil and dries it into a crystal which is then vacuumed away.
Most of the available encapsulation products are formulated with a detergent and a polymer, which serve as the cleaning agent and the crystallization agent respectively (check the Fiber Tech Hydrocap solution from the left image).
There are several advantages to using this method. These include:
- The carpet stays cleaner for a longer period of time
- No rinsing is required
- Large areas can be cleaned quickly
- You can be certain there will be no dirt attracting residues left
Unfortunately, for carpets that are greasy (or grease impacted), this method is not as effective. Also, the price for a commercial encapsulation machine is high, they are quite heavy and not so easy to maneuver. For example, the Prochem Procaps Encapsulation Machine from left weights 17kgs and costs around $1800. The good news is that if you buy one of these, you can use it intensively, borrow it to your neighbors, friends or family, and thus score some points on the social scale.
4. Dry foam shampoo
This is a variation of the carpet shampooing method. The difference is that in this method, the shampoo liquid is first whipped into a foam by a foam generator before it is applied to the carpet. The reason why it is referred to as “dry” is because of the low amount of liquid used, as it utilizes only 10% liquid and 90% air.
Usually, foam equipment uses reel type brush systems for the purpose of agitation. Sometimes the equipment comes with a vacuum recovery system which is used to suck back the soiled foam. Such a system is Kirby Sentria Vacuum Floor Care, presented in the left image. Get a great discount for this product on Amazon.
The upside of this method includes the low moisture usage which means that the carpets take shorter times to dry. It can also be used to service large areas within a relatively short amount of time. The downside is that this method is not very effective when it comes to soil removal and may therefore not thoroughly clean a heavily soiled carpet.
5. Bonnet cleaning
This method is sometimes wrongfully referred to as dry cleaning. This carpet cleaning technique makes use of a cleaning product that is sometimes mixed with carbonated water. This mixture is then spread as a mist over the carpet, hence the assumption that it is one of the dry carpet cleaning techniques. A bonnet (circular rotating buffer) is thereafter run over the soiled area. This bonnet contains an absorbent covering which is replaced with a clean one as soon as it becomes soiled. As much as this method is quick, it does not really clean the bottom parts of the carpet. As such, soil and dirt which has settled at the bottom of the carpet remains. Carpet owners might want to use this method as a temporary solution as they await to carry out more intensive cleaning later on.
6. Carpet dry cleaning
As the name aptly suggests, this method uses no water and is therefore preferable if you do not wish to spend long periods of time waiting for your carpet to dry. For this method, an absorbent compound is spread over the carpet and a mechanized brush is used to work it through the carpet. This carpet dissolves the soil which is thereafter collected using a commercial vacuum cleaner. Besides having a very short drying time, this method is also friendly for fibers which are easily damaged, such as sisal and hemp.
7. Scotchgard carpet cleaners
This may not necessarily be a carpet cleaning technique but it is a carpet cleaning company that produces cleaning products that you should consider getting the next time you want to clean your carpets and rugs. These products have deep foaming action that is guaranteed to remove those stubborn stains. They are ideal for high traffic areas and full room cleaning. You can get them at your convenience from Amazon online store, at a discounted prices.
As you can see, when it comes to carpet cleaning techniques, you have a wide array to choose from. Your decision should be based on how dirty your carpet is, how long you are willing to wait for it to dry, how clean you want it to be, among other factors. It is always advisable to hire professional cleaners to properly clean your carpet, at least once every 2 years.
Did you enjoy this article? Have other cleaning techniques I haven’t heard? Write a comment and let’s initiate a dialog.