The best way to keep your carpet looking great and lasting a long time is to have it cleaned professionally on a regular basis. To get the most out of professional carpet cleaning you will want to make sure it’s done with the right equipment, methods and experienced technicians.
Taking Care of Carpet
The first step in maintaining the integrity of your carpet is to vacuum regularly and to treat spots and spills as quickly as possible. Spills are always easier to remove when they are fresh. Check with your carpet manufacturer for suggested ways on how to treat different types of stains. Never scrub a spot; always blot. You should always check the solution you’re planning on using in a hidden area so you can see if it will change the color of your carpet or damage it in anyway. Even if you are diligent in caring for your carpet, you still need professional help to keep it looking its best for as long as possible. The pros will use one of two methods to clean your carpets: hot water extraction, also known as “steam cleaning,” or low moisture which is also known as “dry cleaning.”
Understand Hot Water Extraction
Hot water extraction is a method of carpet cleaning where hot water and detergents are injected into the carpet. The water, detergent and the all the dirt and other debris is then sucked out with a powerful suction system. This method can be done with a portable system or a truck mounted system. The best results are achieved with truck-mounted equipment because they provide superior vacuum strength and the water also reaches hotter temperatures for more effective cleaning. Higher water temperatures will also kill harmful bacteria and fungi more effectively. Truck-mounted equipment can also remove up to 95 percent of the water that is used in the cleaning process. However, hot water extraction can lead to problems if the technician doesn’t do it properly. Carpets that are left too wet can encourage mold growth, and if drying time is a concern, you’ll need to keep in mind that it can take between 12 and 24 hours for your carpets to dry completely.
Low Moisture Carpet Cleaning
Low moisture carpet cleaning relies on a combination or dry compounds and application methods that allows for faster drying times. This is accomplished by using less moisture to clean, using absorbent products and high efficiency vacuums to extract water from carpet. Low moisture carpet cleaning can be done using dry foam, dry powder or bonnet. These three methods basically work the same way: the absorbent medium (or cleaning product) is applied to the carpet and brushed or scrubbed into the carpet. Dirt in the carpet is attracted to the cleaning product and removed with a vacuum. Your carpet will be left dry immediately or will require a very short drying time if the bonnet method is used. The low moisture carpet cleaning method requires little drying time, which is a great, but typically only cleans the top one-third of your carpet. Tough stains may be harder to remove with low moisture methods.